Tips from Toronto Recruiters: How to Write a LinkedIn Summary

According to the blog LinkedInsights.com, “Your LinkedIn summary is the most important white space on your entire LinkedIn profile.”  So why is it so hard to write a good one?  How do we promote our skills and our professional brand without seeming arrogant?  Toronto recruiters, who specialize in the finance and accounting industry, explain how to write a great LinkedIn summary that opens the door to opportunity.

Define Your Target Market
Start by defining your target market.  Who is your ideal audience?  What are their pain points and how do you address them?  Understanding the needs of your target market and what action you want them to take are critical in writing a compelling LinkedIn summary.

What Are Your Accomplishments?
Once you have properly defined your target market, it’s now time to reflect on your accomplishments.  You need to connect your accomplishments to your target market’s pain points.  After all, you are essentially positioning yourself as a solution to a problem.  And since you’re an accountant, tie your general statements to specific numbers.  If you re-worked a process that resulted in increased efficiency, don’t hesitate to quantify the benefits that resulted.  LinkedIn is a way of saying “look at what I can do for you” without actually saying “look at what I can do for you.”

Resource: This article does a great job of offering 3 different profiles that show how to highlight your accomplishments in a way that will reach your target market.

Write a Great Headline

Consider the following when writing your headline:

  • Your headline must be 120 characters or less.
  • The primary function of your headline is to get your target audience to want to read more – so don’t just list your job title, list what differentiates you and consider how recruiters might find you (think about your keywords since LinkedIn, like Google, operates like a search engine).
  • Don’t just write the phrase “currently open to new opportunities” – lines like this will work against you when the recruiter or hiring agent conducts a search – where are your keywords?
  • If you don’t write a headline, LinkedIn uses your current job title as a default.

Tips:  To find out which keywords others are using in their headlines:

  • Use LinkedIn’s comparison tool.  First, make sure you’ve selected an industry on your profile.  Now go to the edit option for your headline (the pencil icon) and click on, “See what other users in your industry are using.”
  • You can also go to the Jobs tab and see what words are commonly used in job postings.  Take note of specific terms and skills.
  • Indeed also has a job trends title tool which will analyze thousands of job postings and show how many of them have a keyword that you’ve searched for.

Be Succinct
The best profiles are less than 250 words (LinkedIn only gives you 2000 characters).  Remember, you want to connect with your market quickly, make statements that show you can deliver and give insight into your personality.  If you only had 30 seconds (the average amount of time a reader spends on your LinkedIn summary) to make a good impression, what would you want to say?

Personality
While some people write their profile in the 3rd person, there’s nothing wrong with writing your summary using “I.”  In fact, all of the LinkedIn summaries in the article “3 Stunningly Good LinkedIn Profile Summaries” use the 1st person.  Using “I” personalizes the summary and allows your personality to shine through.  One caveat, be careful if you use humour.  It has to be done correctly to be effective.  For a good example of a profile summary that uses humour well, check out the first 3 sentences of Kay Allison’s profile summary in the article “3 Stunningly Good LinkedIn Profile Summaries.”

Call to Action and Specialties
Make sure you have a call to action at the end of your summary.  This asks the reader to reach out and connect with you.  As well, all profiles should end with a list of specialties.  This can be one of the areas where you include keywords that help you become more searchable by recruiters and hiring managers.

Key Takeaways
A great LinkedIn summary gets you noticed by Toronto recruiters and internal hiring agents.  It focuses on identifying how your accomplishments and personality can help move your target market forward.  Compelling LinkedIn summaries are brief, have dynamic headlines, include a call to action and list your specialties at the end.  Since your LinkedIn summary is the most important white space on your profile it pays dividends to take some time in writing it correctly.

Your Next Step
No one should walk the job search or hiring road alone.  At Clarity Recruitment we help others realize their success through a process that marries proprietary technology with unwavering commitment.  Contact us today to take control of your career, or to partner with us to hire well.

Clarity Recruitment, connecting exceptional people with remarkable companies.