Getting the most out of LinkedIn

Liz Sebag-Montefiore from gives some advice on how to use LinkedIn to find your way back to work.



At National Older Workers Week careers expert Liz Sebag-Montefiore from gave some important tips about how to use LinkedIn to network better. Here we reproduce the detailed advice from her team, including some brilliant advice from Sarah Burgess.

The days of LinkedIn just being an online CV have definitely passed, it is so much more than that. Here are some top recommendations for getting your LinkedIn profile looking better and hopefully starting to work for you.

1. Get your contact card sorted.

This is the box area at the top. It’s meant to replicate a business card. You want key information here so people can see straight away what it is you do and/or are looking for. You should have a clear headshot, which is recent. It doesn’t need to be professionally taken but it does need to look like you!

The standard LinkedIn default banner across the top is a grey banner. You can change this by clicking on the camera icon. You could have something that talks about what you do, or you could have an image (a city skyline of where you work is popular).

Make sure your name is correct, and a great addition to this field is to record yourself saying your name. You have 10 seconds to say your name and maybe what you do. The idea of this initially was so that other people would know how to pronounce your name. You can only record this on your mobile device. Gender pronouns are a faulty new addition, they are optional. Click the edit pencil in the right hand corner to amend anything here.

Under your name you have 240 characters available as a headline. The default here is your most recent job title and employer name. We recommend you change this so that it reflects what you do/ what you’re looking for/ any specialisms you have. The first 46 characters are the most important, so think carefully about those.

Your employer is shown by default on this section, but if you click on the edit pencil you can remove that by unchecking the box marked show current company in intro.

2. Customise your LinkedIn URL

On the top right hand corner of your profile page click on this link. Here you can remove all the extra characters LinkedIn adds to your URL and have it in a much simpler format. Then use this URL on your CV, your email signature and so on so that people click and visit your page.

3. Complete the About Section.

This is a freeform area where you can have up to 2,600 characters to talk about what you do. 10Eighty recommends writing in the first person – it’s much less formal and more welcoming to people visiting your page. Think of it as an elevator pitch, the first part should be very much forward focused (if you’re openly looking for a new role) about what you are looking for. It’s really important to think about key words that a recruiter, head-hunter or potential employer or customer might be searching for, and including those in here as well as in your headline.

4. Add to your profile

Use the Add profile section button at the top of your profile as a guide to take you through what’s important to add to your profile. If you don’t have anything academic you want to put in the education section, think about a work based course you have been on. Whilst you might not think education is relevant, unfortunately the LinkedIn algorithms favour those which have an education section.

The Skills section is important as this is one of the search criteria that recruiters use when searching for candidates. Think about the skills you have that you want to continue using in a new role.

5. Present your experience

As well as adding each of your roles (or as many as you’d like to show), make sure that you add enough information to give people reading an idea of what you did in that role.

6. Engage with people

You don’t have to write content of your own, in fact we think it’s much better from a time perspective and results perspective to like and comment on other peoples. Use the search function to find and comment on peoples posts on topics you are interested in, spend time going through your newsfeed to engage with your network. Every time you like or comment, about 5 % of your network will see what you’re doing. If it helps, be strategic, pick 2 or 3 topics and consistently engage with those. People will start to remember those topics and you.

How to download your contacts off LinkedIn

  1. At the home page click on ‘My Network’
  2. On your connections click on ‘See All’ (in blue)
  3. Click on ‘Manage synced and imported contacts’ (top right)
  4. Click on ‘Export contacts’ (bottom right)
  5. The system will ask you to login using your password. To confirm who you are.
  6. The system will then come back to you shortly.
  7. Go back to the page in approximately 10 minutes later
  8. Click on download, open up the connections file and save.

Once downloaded…Create three columns labelled:

  1. How well do I know this person?
  2. Have I invested in them?
  3. Do they have power of influence?

Then to score all people 0-3 under each

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