With more than 500 million members, LinkedIn is fast becoming the platform for online branding. Whether you’re job-hunting, gathering leads, or networking in your industry, having a professional, eye-catching LinkedIn profile can open up a number of opportunities for your career.
Getting started – Choose the right profile picture
Your profile picture should be professional, approachable and clear. Steer away from selfies – they don’t send the right message. Choose a picture with a smile, perhaps from an event or a professionally taken photograph from inside the cockpit (in uniform of course!)
Add a background photo
Your background photo is the second most important visual on your profile, so it should be equally as eye-catching as your profile picture. A number of pilots using LinkedIn change their background photos to reflect their current airline, but you might have a different idea. Whatever it is, it should reflect professionally on you and your company.
Be creative with your headline
If you try searching for someone specific on LinkedIn, their name, profile picture, and a headline will be the first thing you see. Many people use the headline section to show their job title, but think carefully about this. If you really want to stand out, this headline could be used for so much more. Perhaps a strapline for your airline, or a more insightful statement about your passion for being a pilot? However, you only have 120 characters, so keep it short and sweet.
Form an exceptional summary
Too many people leave this section blank but this is the perfect opportunity to tell your story. Don’t just settle for a list of qualifications or airlines you’ve worked for – there are other areas on your profile for that. You have to bring light to why these skills matter and how they can make a difference to the people you work with. This is a work of art, and the first big chunk of written content people will see on your profile – so make it a worthwhile read.
Promote your expertise
If you have many more years of experience, use this section to build up to where you are today. You have 2,000 characters, so you can bullet point your skills, but for the more crucial, relevant parts, use this room to elaborate.
Add your skill set
The Skills and Endorsements section allows you to showcase your ability. The audience you are looking to target must be kept in mind for this. Stay relevant and make sure the skills represent what you’re doing now. You can list up to 50 skills. When listing them, keep in mind how a recruiter will search.
Hot tip! Get your friends, employees and fellow connections to endorse your skills. They can do this by heading to your profile and clicking the + sign on the relevant skill. More people endorsing your skills shows to others that you are credible. Don’t forget to endorse their skills too, it would be rude not to!
Ask to join groups on LinkedIn so you can be a part of the conversations that interest you. In the search section, you can search for groups by name. Alternatively, you can click the Work icon in the top right of your LinkedIn homepage and select Groups from the menu that appears. Click Discover at the top of the page to view suggested groups. You can then request membership by clicking the Ask to join button under the group description.
Aviation Professionals (170,817 members)
Aviation Network (114,640 members)
Business Aviation Network (38,558 members)
If you would like to be seen as a committed LinkedIn user, make sure you gain more than 500 connections. Once you reach 500, it simply shows ‘500+ connections’. Anything lower, it shows the exact number of people you’re connected with, which could give the impression that you don’t use LinkedIn much.
Consumers today are surrounded by so much content, they’re becoming numb to it. In a crowded noise, you need to shout extremely loud and provide content that people will want to read to get noticed. However, the good news is, people are naturally interested in the life of a pilot and do want to hear more about it, so provided you’re connected well, you shouldn’t have too much trouble engaging with others. Discussing industry news, sharing your experiences and providing useful tips is always popular content.
4 golden rules for your status updates
• Use plain, well-spaced text
• Aim for 218 characters
• Avoid links to other websites
• Avoid generic stock photos
What is the Aviation Job Expo?
The Aviation Job Expo is the UK and Europe’s only job fair for the entire aviation industry. If you’re looking to connect with airlines and recruitment agencies, look no further.
You’ll meet exhibitors such as BA City Flyer, BAE Systems and Bombardier – simply register for your free ticket now!
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