Legal Law

Choose the perfect keywords for your LinkedIn profile title

Many people are stumped when it comes to choosing a LinkedIn profile title. What keywords should they include? How do you get that up and down symbol ( | )? (Press shift and the backslash key). Is it more important to have keywords or a tagline/Unique Selling Proposition (USP)?

This article will mainly address the last question: Keywords or USP? The answer to the question depends on your main goal with your LinkedIn profile.

Below are several situations you might find yourself in. Find yourself as close as possible and manage your headline in the most appropriate way for your situation. If not exactly found, find the closest match and adjust from there.

1. You are looking for a job and want to be found in searches.*

If you’re a job seeker, your main goal is probably being found and contacted by recruiters and hiring managers. If so, you should focus on the keywords in your title. Keywords are the terms a recruiter would search for if they were looking for someone like you.

The prevailing wisdom is to pick 4-5 words as keywords and leave it at that. Adding extra words or extra characters like your email address can serve to dilute the effectiveness of your headline.

Manufacturing and Supply Chain Executive | Asia
Procurement and Contract Specialist | Treasury manager
Account Executive | OEM Sales | Field Sales | territorial manager
Communications Director | Brand | Online Marketing | social networks
Keep in mind that these headlines concentrate on the most essential keywords and don’t add any fluff to dilute their impact.

Some job applicants write “Open to new opportunities” in their title. Some recruiters really search for the term “opportunities” and may find it that way. Other recruiters will ignore you if you put that phrase in your title. My advice is to try it one way, and if you don’t get the attention you want, try another way. That’s the beauty of social media…nothing is set in stone.

2. You are looking for a job and your main goal is to look good when people find you.

Perhaps you are currently employed and conducting a highly selective and confidential job search. Or maybe you want people to search for you primarily after you’ve contacted them. If so, you may not be particularly looking to be found in searches. In this situation, you have more flexibility when crafting your title. I recommend that you write your job title and a catchy phrase, tagline, or unique selling proposition.

Senior Financial & Analytical Coach | Driving international business teams to the top
Manager of Programs, Processes and Projects | Creation and Implementation of Innovative Technological Solutions
Managed Care Professional | Building relationships with care and integrity.

3. You are an entrepreneur or professional and you want people to find you.*

If you’re a business owner or professional looking to attract customers, include the keywords your customers would search for in your headline.

During admission season, I change my keywords to emphasize college essays and MBA admissions consulting.

Change your keywords as much as you like until you get the number of visitors to your site each day that you’re looking for.

4. You are a business owner or professional and just want to build a close network of strong business connections.

If you’re getting low on LinkedIn and selectively building a network, really all you need is your job title and your organization. LinkedIn will take care of that for you.

*NOTE TO CATEGORIES 1 AND 3: Remember that the number of views you get on your LinkedIn profile will always increase as your number of connections increases.

BEWARE of LinkedIn Default!

If you update your current job title, LinkedIn automatically changes your title unless you check the box that allows you to opt out. If this happens, take control and change your title if you want it to say something different!