The basic information on your LinkedIn profile is oftentimes the most important information because it is the first thing a lot of people see. In order to get started, simply click on the Profile link at the very top of your screen and then click Edit Profile. If you see a big blue box indicating that you need to walk through these prompts, hit the x on the top right.
Let's start here at the top. When I hover over any piece of my profile, you'll notice that it highlights with this little blue pencil out to the right-hand side. That indicates that this is an area you are allowed to edit. If I want to make a change to any of this, all I have to do is click on that pencil icon, and then I'm allowed to change it using this interface. For instance, if I needed to change my name, I could simply enter that information and then click Save.
Once that is saved, the page will refresh and you will see your newly entered information. If the blue box continues to appear, just click the x each time to remove it. Directly underneath, you can add something called a headline. The headline is very important because the headline is what's really going to attract people to your profile. I recommend adding something that's attention grabbing yet relevant to what you do. For instance, here I might type something like "Real Estate Agent Prep - Get licensed, then get business". Because that's what I do, and I hope it grabs the attention of people who can use my service.
You will find that most real estate agents just state their business and title as you can see here:
"Real Estate Agent at Keller Williams Real Estate"
"Real Estate Agent and Mortgage Consultant at Aurora Realty and BayCal Mortgage"
Some go above and beyond, like this one: "Real Estate Entrepreneur, Mentor, Community Expert and Supporter, The GRUBB Co."
These are all great; it just depends on what brand you are trying to convey to your audience.
Once I have a headline I like, I will click Save. Underneath that, I have the ability to change my location. If I click the pencil here, I can change my country. I can also enter my postal code, and that's going to give me the option to enter in either the city and state or a broader-facing area.
Then after that, your industry. I'm going to choose Real Estate.
Hit Save, and all of that information is now added to my profile. Now I'm going to add a photo. I can do that by hovering over the photo and clicking. That's going to launch this dialogue box where I have click "change photo". Then I have the ability to choose a file on my computer. The files that work best are going to be JPEGs or PNGs. They need to be square in nature, and the file size limit cannot exceed eight megabytes.
I'll hit Choose File, and on my desktop, I have a headshot that I'm going to use. You'll notice on the left-hand side we have an Adjust Photo section, and on the right-hand side we have a Preview section. The Preview section is giving you an idea of what this profile photo is going to look like in all of the different areas where LinkedIn might display a profile photo. So you're seeing the larger ones, the smaller ones, and even the round ones that are going to appear in different areas of the LinkedIn interface.
In order to adjust the photo, you can click inside this box and move the picture around. You'll notice that as I do that, the Preview updates on the right-hand side as well. You can adjust the crop by clicking and dragging this square, like so, and then you can center it or change whatever you want. Once you have it exactly like you want it, you're ready to apply the photo. But before you do that, you may want to change the privacy setting down here at the bottom. You can choose whether or not your photo is available to only your connections, your entire network, or everyone.
I'll go ahead and select Everyone and then I'll hit Save. Once that is saved, it's going to be added to my profile. If I scroll up, I can see that my new profile image is now intact.
Now I'm going to scroll down and add a summary statement. A summary statement is basically a way of adding an objective or an introductory paragraph inside a resume. So I'll click the pencil and type it in.
This section is to give people a brief overview of who you are, what you do, and maybe what you are proficient in. I HIGHLY recommend you look at many other real estate agents' profile summaries before you write your own. You will start to get an idea of what appeals to to you and what does not. This is your initial sales pitch to the world, so you want it to be something you are proud of.
We can see a few examples here. These are great profile summaries stating what makes them great real estate agents. However, if you can, I would recommend keeping it to one paragraph. Remember that when you market yourself online, you always have to market as if everybody has ADD, because when people use the internet... well... they kind of do. Why do you think I keep all my videos under 5 minutes?
There we go. That's the basic information you need in order to make your profile successful on LinkedIn. As we continue to fill out our profiles, you're going to see that this thing really starts to come together, and you're going to be amazed at some of the things you're able to add and customize in the Profile section.