Everyone knows that when setting up a professional social media account LinkedIn is the right and the first option to turn to. Being the leading platform in its sphere LinkedIn can be extremely powerful and effective if used to its full potential. Despite its wide range of opportunities, a LinkedIn profile can be completely useless if affected to the listed most common mistakes made by the users.
Starting off with the very first steps of registration the biggest mistake would be skipping the profile picture. As much as the content displayed on your page is important, the visuals are what catch the attention and create the first impression. Not having a profile picture to show is the biggest flaw that would drag your page down. When uploading a profile picture keep in mind that photos or selfies that look fancy on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook might not always fit into the context of LinkedIn. Remember that LinkedIn is a professional social network and that is how your picture should look like. The types of pictures to avoid would be:
Selfies of mirror photos
While those types of pictures might look cute on other social media pages, they are simply unsuitable for LinkedIn. As having a selfie or a mirror photo on a professional network might create an amateur impression.
Picture with filter overdose
Everyone uses filters once in a while as they tend to enhance the beauty while covering up the possible flaws that got captured by the camera. Despite the magnificence the filters create they do not belong in the context of professionalism. It’s up to you to get overwhelmed with the filter usage on platforms such as Instagram or Twitter, however when it comes to LinkedIn the only thing filters enhance is the sign of amateurism.
Blurry or pixelated photos
As mentioned before the whole purpose of having a photo to display is to create a good impression and build trust with possible future employers or employees. A picture where your face is hard to identify would hardy succeed in looking trustworthy.
Pictures with animals or babies
While it might seem cute to pose with an animal or a baby to get an adorable shot, it might be the last thing to do when taking a picture for a LinkedIn profile. Unless your profession actually involves working with children or animals, keep them away from the frames of your LinkedIn profile picture.
In brief, keep it simple and professional.
When it comes to photos and LinkedIn people usually think that having a profile picture is more than enough. The reality is LinkedIn provides another option for displaying visuals which usually gets ignored. That is background or cover image. As sadly as it sounds this feature gets ignored in most cases and as a results its whole potential leaks out. The role of a cover or background image is not limited to simply lighting up your profile as it can serve as a virtual billboard to display your professional skills or interests. A cover or a background image is a great promotional tool which lets the users immediately see your professional experience instead of simply reading about it in your bio.
As mentioned previously the visuals are what catch the attention of those viewing your profile, but the actual content is what makes the viewers stay on your page and consider you as a future business partner. With great visuals but a poor summary the profile is worth nothing. LinkedIn is the leading platform designed for professional use, but unfortunately the common mistakes made in written section of a profile shut down the flows of the potential opportunities. The worst mistakes that drag your profile down include:
An absent summary
The first and most critical mistake is to have a blank instead of a summary. The summary is the core of any profile and its absence is equivalent to not having a profile at all.
Letting it rot
Using LinkedIn shall not be limited to signing up and forgetting about the existence of your account. LinkedIn account can bring and open gates to various opportunities, however that would be impossible to reach if one's page is left to rot for years. Like every other social media account it has to be monitored and updated.
Forgetting About the Key Words
The avoidance of keywords has no justification as they assist in getting more visits to your profile. Add keywords that are more relevant to your current job or the one that you are seeking. Browse the keywords that fit the best into your needed category and optimize them for your own good.
The usage of worn out words
Despite the profession you specialize in, an ability to write and write well is always an advantage. The usage of worn out words usually declines the quality of writing and in this case the quality of your profile's summary. It has to be noted that the other extreme to avoid is the usage of fancy alternatives or synonyms that barely fit into the context. The trick is getting more specific and descriptive in your summary. For instance, instead of opting for overused adjectives such as ''creative'' or "talented'' go beyond the words and get more creative in describe why or how you are creative or talented by bringing up your motives and accomplishments. This tactic would not only make your summary stand out but also give a more accurate representation of your professional persona.
Typos and Misspellings
There is nothing shouting unprofessionalism louder than typos. It is completely understandable that people are not robots and everyone makes a mistake here and there, but at the same time it is worth to recall the might of proofreading and spell checkers.