Daniel Futerman // Creative in Motion
Daniel Futerman // Creative in Motion

I work from my home office, set my own hours and do business with amazing clients worldwide. Love my job. I help businesses increase revenue & freelancers grow their business. Top rated motion graphics freelancer on Upwork.

Daniel Futerman // Creative in Motion

Ultimate Guide To A LinkedIn Freelance Profile That Wins Business

Daniel FutermanDaniel Futerman

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11 Tips To Optimize Your Freelance LinkedIn Profile

You know why you need to be on LinkedIn.

Now the question is this:

Can your profile stand out from the crowd?

And win business?

The answer is, Yes.

And it’s not so hard.

Keep reading.

11 Tips To Create A Freelance Profile That Wins Business.Click To Tweet

1. Use your real name, and have a great profile image.

Like all other social platforms, using your real name is essential for building trust and credibility, and having a great looking profile image is key to getting attention.

daniel-futerman-linkedin-profile

Your profile image is the first thing people notice when they view your profile, and pictures are the first thing people notice when they scroll through a list of profiles in places such as search results, suggested friends to follow, inbox messages and more (as you’ll see in step 2).

So while having a great profile photo might sound like an obvious step, you’ll be amazed at how many people get it wrong.

Three guidelines for having a great profile image:

2. Have an engaging profile headline.

The first thing people see right after looking at your profile image is your headline text. This acts as a slogan or belief  tagline about what it is you do.

Most people recommend using keywords in your headline, because this allows search engines (including LinkedIn’s own search engine) to pick up on those keywords and then display your name higher up in the search results.

While I usually tend to agree and recommend the use of keywords in many places, on LinkedIn I personally chose to do something different, and use the real estate of my tagline to briefly explain who should be interested in my profile.

So I chose to write: I help brands increase awareness and teach freelancers how to grow their business. Top rated freelancer on Upwork.

daniel-futerman-linkedin-tagline-headilne

If I had chosen to go down the keyword path, I probably would have written something like this: Explainer Video | Freelancer | Blogger | Top Rated Upwork Professional

Honestly, the second option might indeed be better for the robots and algorithms that control the search results. But I chose the first option because:

  1. I’m writing for humans.
  2. I believe that most people don’t find my profile via the search engine, but rather on places such as the ‘People also viewed’ section, the home feed, in groups, and in the notifications area (i.e. Daniel published a new post). When they see my name there, it always shows up with my profile tagline.

As you can see in the example below of the home feed, my profile image and name show up together with my tagline each time I share a new update on LinkedIn.

LinkedIn-tagline-in-home feed

Your profile image and tagline will also show up when people view LinkedIn profiles that are similar to yours, under the “People also Viewed” section:

 

similar-profiles-people-viewed

3. Get a personalized URL

Having a unique and customized URL on LinkedIn is one of the first things you should do. In fact, it’s one of the first things you should do on all social media platforms that allow it (Twitter, Google plus, Facebook, Pinterest).

Since you run a freelance business, and you are your own brand, be sure to add your own name to the URL.

For example, my URL is: https://www.linkedin.com/in/danielfuterman Here’s how you can

Here’s how you can customize your URL:

customizing-your-public-profile-linkedin-url

Get a personalized URL for your LinkedIn profile.Click To Tweet

4. Have a powerful introduction section.

If you have a great profile image and headline, people will start checking out your profile page.

So, the next thing you should have is a really powerful summary.

This section should provide a more detailed explanation about what you do.

Remember, if someone clicked on your profile image to check out your profile, it means he wants to learn more about you.

Having a compelling summary of what you do is very important, and acts as another way for profile viewer to know if you are someone he would like to connect with.

have-a-great-linkedin-summary

To get ideas about how to write a great introduction section and a strategy for perfecting your Linkedin summary, be sure to check out this post – How to Write the Perfect LinkedIn Summary. You can also check out a few LinkedIn profiles that you know are successful, and write down what you liked about their summary.

If you’re a designer or motion graphics artist, be sure to add a few examples of your work to your profile. You do this by hovering above the small plus sign (see image below), that allows you to add images, videos, documents or even presentations.

add-media-to-your-portfolio-on-linkedin

Pro tip

You can re-arrange the elements on your profile the way you want, by using the arrow next to the plus button.

drag-to-move-position-of-element-on-linkedin-profile

Pro tip: Signup to get weekly freelancing posts, straight to your inbox.

5. Share your professional experience

If your summary is engaging and interesting, people will scroll down the page to check out your expertise.

Keep this section professional and related to your business. If you’re a freelance copywriter – don’t add your experience as a waitress back when you were in college.

But if you previously worked in an advertising agency as a copywriter, and now work as a freelance copywriter, by all means, add that experience to your profile.

Bottom line is – if your experience adds value and increases credibility to the profession you want to be known for – add it to your profile. If not, don’t.

linkedin-experience-freelancer-profile

Pro tip: Ask to be recommended.

For each expertise you add to your profile, you can ask your friends, colleagues or clients, to write a recommendation on your expertise.

This is super powerful because one amazing recommendation can do miracles to your profile.

To ask to be recommended, on your profile page click on the arrow next to “View profile as”, and then click on “Ask to be recommended”.

ask-to-be-recommended-on-linkedin-2

Next, choose what field of work you’d like to be recommended for and select the contacts you’d like to ask for a recommendation from.

how-to-ask-for-recommendations-on-linkedin

Once you send out the request, your contacts will receive a notification from you, asking them to write a short testimonial about your services.

After your contact writes the testimonial, it will appear right under the expertise you asked to recommend you for, and will also appear a separate section on your profile featuring all the recommendations you received.

recommendations-on-linkedin

6. List your skills

One of my favorite parts of the LinkedIn profile is the skills & endorsements section.

The skill section acts as ‘social proof’ on your profile, that shows in a quick glance what other people say you’re good at doing.

In this section, it’s important to add skills that truly represent what you’re good at, otherwise people won’t endorse you.

linkedin-skills-and-endorsements-for-freelancers

Pro tip:

Once you start collecting endorsements, you can select which endorsements you’d like to display on your profile, and you can also re-arrange the order in which your skills are displayed on your profile.

I recommend arranging your skills by your most important and most endorsed skills first.

re-arrange-endorsements-on-your-linkedin-profile

Note – as you can see in the image above, my freelancing tips skill has only 2 endorsements, and that’s because I added it to my profile this week. So if you’re enjoying my freelancing tips series, and feel like being a star, I’d love to see your name up on that endorsement list 😉

7. Join groups and participate in conversations

One of the best ways to get attention to your profile is by joining relevant groups and participate in conversations relevant to your field of expertise.

When you join the conversation, don’t just add comments like ‘great post’ or ‘very interesting’. That won’t lead to anything.

Instead, take the time to write a detailed reply that adds value to the conversation.

The more value you provide, the more likely it is that people will respond to your comment, and check out your profile.

To find relevant groups to join, insert the keyword into the search field, and then narrow down the results to groups.

find-groups-related-to-your-profession-on-linkedin

When you are deciding which groups to join, pay attention to the number of members in each group (i.e. don’t join a group that has 3 people in it), and also check whether or not the conversations in that group are active and recent (i.e. a group with posts from 2012, with no comments, wouldn’t be one I’d join).

If you’d like LinkedIn to suggest relevant groups for your to join, navigate to Interests -> Groups -> Discover to find groups related to your business.

discover-groups-on-linkedin

Pro tips:

Once you’ve joined a few groups, you can arrange their display order on your profile to better represent your interest.

To do this, navigate back to Interests -> Groups -> My Groups, and click on the gear icon in the top right corner.

manage-your-groups-on-linkedin

Then rearrange the groups display order according to what you want to display first on your profile:

groups-order-and-display-on-linkedin-profile

Once you define which groups should appear first, they will show up on your profile according to your preferences:

display-relevant-groups-on-your-linkedin-freelance-profile

If there are certain groups that you want to hide from your profile, navigate to the setting tab, and choose whether or not to display that group on your profile.

group-settings-on-linkedin

Next, make sure group members are allowed to send you messages via LinkedIn (this will allow people to connect with you directly).

And you can also indicate if you want to receive an email digest from LinkedIn, that summarized all of the activities that took place in the group you joined.

specific-group-settings-on-linkedin

8. Publish posts.

A couple of years ago LinkedIn introduced publishing tools, allowing all members to share a long-form post on LinkedIn.

“Our publishing platform allows members, in addition to Influencers, to publish long-form posts about their expertise and interests. While publishing a long-form post doesn’t mean you’re a LinkedIn Influencer, it does allow you to further establish your professional identity by expressing your opinions and sharing your experiences.”

— LinkedIn Help

Just like you write blog posts for your personal website to build authority in your field of expertise, now you can leverage LinkedIn’s publishing tools to do the same.

There are two benefits of publishing posts directly on LinkedIn:

  1. They show up in a dedicated section in your profile.
  2. Each time you share a new post, all your followers get a notification about the post you published.

share-posts-on-linkedin-publishing

9. Add contact information.

As we mentioned at the start, LinkedIn is a professional network. So one of the main reasons for having a LinkedIn profile is to allow users to contact you and potentially hire you for a job.

LinkedIn allows you to send messages to your contacts using their own messaging platform (which seriously improved during the past few years), but it still has limited features.

So if you’d like to offer people more ways to reach out, add your contact details to your profile:

editing-contact-info-on-linkedin

10. Share updates.

Like all other social platforms, LinkedIn allows you to share updates with your network.

The key when sharing content on LinkedIn is to share content that is related to your business and is relevant for your target audience.

To share an update, navigate to the home feed tab, and click on share an update, upload an image.

share-updates-on-linkedin

Pro tip: Schedule updates.

You can use tools like Buffer to schedule posts that will be sent out during the week or month, instead of manually sharing updates each time.

schedule-posts-with-buffer

11. Add honors and awards.

If you’ve received any awards that help build credibility and authority in your field, be sure to add them to your profile.

The awards will be featured under the relevant sections on your profile that relate to that award, and in a dedicated section that features all of your awards.

honors-and-awards-daniel-futerman-linkedin

Bonus tip – Find work on LinkedIn.

Did you know that you can actively search for work on LinkedIn?

Maybe not, and that’s ok.

Honestly – while the option to find freelance work on LinkedIn does exist, I have never actively searched for work there.

For me, the best part about LinkedIn is the fact that people can find my profile and connect with me directly.

But since the option of finding freelance work on LinkedIn exists, I’ll mention it in case you find it helpful.

To search for jobs on LinkedIn, head over to the Jobs tab in the top toolbar (https://www.linkedin.com/jobs/).

In the search bar insert “Freelance Your Field”, enter a location, and click search.

For example, a search for Freelance Designer results in 77 open jobs.

search-for-jobs-on-linkedin

But an even more interesting and hidden tool in Linkedin is the ProFinder feature.

The ProFinder feature works very similar to the freelancing platforms we mentioned in this post: 4 effective strategies to find freelance work (scroll down to strategy 2).

linkedin-pro-finder-searching-for-freelancers

When a client initiates a new job on LinkedIn ProFinder, he is asked to fill in a questionnaire about the work he needs to be done, and then LinkedIn helps connect that client to a freelancer who is a good match for their needed skills.

client-describes-the-job-on-linkedin-profinder

If you want to apply to join the ProFinder program as a freelancer, you can apply using this link: https://www.linkedin.com/profinder/pros

get-freelance-work-from-linkedin-profinder

Summary

LinkedIn is the only social media network created solely for the purpose of connecting the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful.

To win business on LinkedIn, you need people to notice your profile.

If you followed this extensive guide packed full of actionable tactics, you will put yourself in a position to get more attention and win more business.

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LinkedIn for Freelancers: Ultimate Guide for a Profile That Wins BusinessClick To Tweet

Here’s what I want you to do next:

  1. If you know someone who might benefit from this guide, please share it with them.
  2. If you’re on LinkedIn, Say Hi.

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freelnaceworks-09-linkedin-for-freelancer-ultimate-guide-for-a-winning-profile

Weekly Google tip:

Next time you perform a search on Google take a look at the knowledge graph information on the right-hand side of the search results.

The “People also viewed” section on LinkedIn (see point 2 in this post), is similar in a way to the concept of ‘related searches’ that appear on Google search.

people-also-searched-for-on-google-search

Daniel Futerman // Creative in Motion. I work from my home office, set my own hours and do business with amazing clients worldwide. Love my job. I strive to help creatives like yourself reach the next milestone of their freelance career.

Comments 5
  • Dustin W. Stout
    Posted on

    Dustin W. Stout Dustin W. Stout

    Reply Author

    Awesome stuff Daniel! I’m going to head over to my LinkedIn profile and join some active groups. I’ve been meaning to do it for a while but just kept getting too busy for my own good. Thanks for the nudge!


    • Daniel Futerman
      Posted on

      Daniel Futerman Daniel Futerman

      Reply Author

      Thanks a lot, Dustin!

      Yes definitely – groups are probably one of the most valuable aspects of LinkedIn since they allow you to connect with like-minded professionals around a mutual interest.

      And if you participate and truly add value to conversations – you’ll build credibility and authority in your field, which will result in people checking out your profile and potentially hiring you for the services you provide.


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