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How to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile for Job Searching

Updated: Nov 9, 2023

The best salespeople know that optimizing your LinkedIn profile is a great way to build credibility and drive inbound traffic–Jahleane Dolne wants job-seekers to know the same is true for them.

Starling hosted Jahleane this week for a community workshop on how to treat your job search like a sales pipeline and this is one of the many things we learned. In The Postgrad PlaybookTM, Jahleane teaches recent graduates how to leverage tactics of top sellers to land their next interview. The idea came to her after spending years in sales roles and reflecting on what she wished she’d known when searching for her first jobs.

There was a time in her life when Jahleane couldn’t land a job for six months. Then, as she says, “twenty dollars changed my life.” Jahleane invested in a course that showed her how to optimize her LinkedIn profile and within a week she went from not hearing back from anyone to receiving cold outreach from recruiters and hiring managers. Within a month, she had a job.

Other salespeople have told me the same thing—that optimizing your profile and having a LinkedIn content and engagement strategy can help make your cold outreach warmer, as well as bring the buyer proactively to you. Based on my experience on LinkedIn (I also invested in a course by Justin Welsh a couple of years back), it makes sense to me that this would be the same for job seekers.

So what kind of stuff can we do to “optimize” our profiles? Well, we can:

  • Have a high-resolution, clear photo of your face. Seems obvious, right? But Google search “worst LinkedIn headshots” and you’ll realize that maybe it’s not.

  • Use your cover photo to send a message. To this day I still see people with no cover photos at all. Use a tool like Canva to create a graphic that communicates something about yourself—that could be your profession or something about your personality.

  • Have a descriptive headline. There’s plenty of different approaches to writing a headline. Some say include a value proposition, Jahleane encourages people to include the job title you are looking for, the industry, and other keywords.

Speaking of keywords, Jahleane recommended we boost the keyword density of our profiles. In other words, include keywords relevant to the job you want scattered throughout your headline, bio, and work experience sections. To figure out what keywords to focus on, look through about ten relevant job descriptions and see what keeps coming up. Recruiters often use a tool called LinkedIn Recruiter that shows them top profiles that match the job they are recruiting for. Improving your keyword density can get you to the top of their lists.

I got a message from one of our members after the workshop that said, “That was an amazing session! Loved it!” But I didn’t see it for a couple of hours because I was too busy updating my LinkedIn profile.

Join the Starling flock today for access to more events just like this, plus recordings of past events and other educational content designed to help you thrive in your role and create happier, healthier workplaces.



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