There’s a lot of competition on LinkedIn, so if you want to get noticed, you need a few tricks to stand out.
In this article I’m going to show you how to make your LinkedIn stand out and catch attention from recruiters, hiring managers, and anyone else you want to network with.
The first thing you should do to make your LinkedIn profile stand out is have a friend (or professional) help you take a great headshot.
You should be clearly visible, smiling, and in a somewhat professional setting (not a dimly-lit party surrounded by beer bottles).
Your image on LinkedIn is one of the first things people see… in search results, when you make a post, when you comment on other posts, etc.
And it can make or break the first impression of you.
Also, the worst thing you can do is have no profile photo at all. Many people will assume you’re a fake account if you don’t have a real photo.
So before you do anything else to make your LinkedIn profile stand out, get a great photo set up.
Along with your image, your LinkedIn headline is one of the few things people can see BEFORE they click your profile. So it’s utlra-important if you want to stand out.
And there’s no rule that says it needs to be your job title.
You can get creative and put whatever will you think will attract attention from the people you want to connect with.
One word of caution, though: If you’re a job seeker, I don’t recommend saying “Actively seeking positions” in your headline. There are better uses for that space.
If you need help with your headline, you can find 10 LinkedIn headline examples here.
This is probably my favorite (and most underrated) tip for how to make your LinkedIn profile stand out:
Don’t think about yourself as you write your LinkedIn. Yes – it’s about you and your work experience. However, it’s also about the reader.
And you’ll get noticed more on LinkedIn if you think about your ideal reader when writing your profile.
Picture the person you want to read your profile and notice it. (You can even give them a name, decide how old they are, etc. In marketing this is called creating a “customer avatar” and is a powerful tactic).
Now sit down to write your LinkedIn profile thinking what that person will find exciting, what they’ll notice, and what will get THEM to click your profile and contact you after reading it.
(Your image and headline are what get people to click, and the LinkedIn profile sections on your actual profile page are what will get them to contact you).
Think of your ideal audience when writing ALL of this.
Use bullets and other formatting. Avoid large paragraphs with many sentences. Make it as inviting and easy to read as possible. This is one way you’ll make recruiters and hiring managers want to keep reading (and hopefully contact you) after they’ve opened your profile.
I recently wrote an article on how to write a LinkedIn summary – and there are some great examples in there of how you can even use emojis to grab attention on your LinkedIn profile.
Another way to make your LinkedIn profile stand out is ask a couple of colleagues to write you a recommendation.
You can ask past colleagues, bosses, current coworkers, or anyone else that knows your work!
If you want more info on this, I wrote an in-depth article about getting recommendations on your LinkedIn profile and why it’s so powerful.
The short answer is: Very few job seekers do it, so it immediately catches an employer’s attention and gets them to stop skimming and read it closely!
Part of getting your profile to stand out on LinkedIn is getting seen. Nobody can click your profile if you’re not showing up on their screen, right?
So no matter how great a profile you write, you also need to be active on the platform to get seen by more people.
Look for relevant groups to join and post in. You can ask questions, answer questions, share articles, and more. Just make sure you read the group rules first. Some group owners are terrified of someone “stealing their thunder” and posting advice in “their” group (it’s a terrible mindset and they’re not going very far in life or business, but that’s how some people think).
You can also post articles and tips/thoughts on your own feed. You can follow other people, comment on their posts, etc.
Every time you’re commenting, posting, responding to comments on your own posts, or anything else, your photo and headline are getting seen! And that’s a key part of getting clicked and getting messaged once you’ve written a basic LinkedIn profile that looks good and stands out from other people.
Recruiters spend a LOT of time on LinkedIn. Looking through hundreds of profiles. And we usually see the same things each day over and over.
Like anyone, we get tired, and start to go into “autopilot”. Our brain is half awake as we scan through a bunch of profiles quickly, looking for one or two keywords.
However, when we see a great profile that someone put effort into, it does stand out and grab our attention.
We stop skimming and start reading closely.
And we’re more likely to want to talk to you about job opportunities, invite you to interview for a position, or add you to our network.
If you follow the tips above, you’ll make your LinkedIn stand out so you can grow your network faster, get more job interviews, and advance your career faster.