While LinkedIn has tried to make it easier for us to create a professional summary of our skills and experience, it's still pretty daunting for most people to fill out their online profile. Especially, if you're a job seeker. LinkedIn is currently the No. 1 tool used to proactively look for and contact candidates for open positions. Knowing how to optimize your profile so you show up in recruiters' search results is smart. Unfortunately, many people are making a huge mistake when doing this.

Too Much Text Says, "I'm Trying Overly Hard To Impress You"

While you need to include enough information so a hiring manager will want to contact you, too much information is visually overwhelming and sends the wrong message. Nobody reads a LinkedIn profile in its entirety today. Especially, recruiters who must look at hundreds each day. Instead, they skim. Therefore, putting in the right amount of text so they can quickly review your profile and get a great first impression of you is key. Think of it this way: your LinkedIn profile is essentially the initial conversation between you and the recruiter. When you write an epic novel about how amazing you are, without realizing it, you're sending potentially negative messages. Things like, "I'm desperate for you to be impressed by me." Or, "I think I'm amazing and you should too." I'm sure most of us aren't trying to say those things, but that's what's happening.

3 Rules For A Solid LinkedIn Profile

At Work It Daily, when it comes to LinkedIn profile optimization, we tell every client, "Brand or BE branded." Here are our three best tips to make sure your's isn't sending the wrong message:

Rule No. 1 - Keyword optimize the headline.

Recruiters pay a lot of money to be able to search for talent on LinkedIn. They use the key skill sets needed for the job (ie. the things you list in the Skills & Endorsements section), to search for profiles that match. When you put the right relevant keywords in your headline, you'll show up in their searches.

Rule No. 2 - Summary, by definition, means "short."

If your summary section reads like three-page bio, I guarantee it's not getting read. Recruiters are cynical. After looking through so many "I'm the greatest!" profiles, they don't believe much of what people write about themselves. Keep your summary short and factual. 

Rule No. 3 - Quantify your work history with stats, facts, and figures.

Numbers are the easiest thing for us to read and understand on a profile. Simplified bullet points that offer proof in the form of measurable results is what every recruiter wants to see. Don't share how you did it, just share what the outcomes were in numbers.

P.S. - Don't Wait Until You Need To Change Jobs To Fix Your LinkedIn Profile

When it comes to managing your career today, your network is your net worth. Job situations change overnight. You can love your job today, and lose it tomorrow. Having a well-optimized LinkedIn profile makes it easy for you to stay connected and visible in your industry. You just never know when you'll need to tap into your network. Being ready with a well-optimized LinkedIn profile is smart career management.