Did you know that according to a poll recently conducted by The Drum, 36% of Gen Z prefer using LinkedIn for work-related networking and research? LinkedIn has swiftly emerged as a powerful agent when it comes to networking and upskilling. How else are you going to land your next gig at Google or Apple? Learning how to build a personal brand on LinkedIn is exactly as simple as mastering the platform and creating an impressive profile.

And, while not everyone on LinkedIn is marketing themselves to find their next job, they are building their LinkedIn brand for their professional reputation. Advertising your strengths, talents and achievements requires great finesse, but it is one of the ways in which you can use LinkedIn effectively. And, we at Kool Kanya are going to show you how exactly to leverage your personal brand on LinkedIn for your next big opportunity.

While we have you here, did you know that at Kool Kanya we have a diverse community of female professionals, who can help you expand your network and upskill with a range of courses. By purchasing PowerPass, you can #RaiseYourPower today!

1. What is your brand?

LinkedIn is used by 830 million individuals on a daily basis. That equates to 830 million people vying for recognition, businesses, new employment, and chances. It has never been more important to promote oneself on LinkedIn. Your brand is built around the authentic, talented, and truly one-of-a-kind person that you are. They are the essence of who you are as a person, and they contain your work strengths, successes, image, passion, and personality qualities when applied in the workplace. Take your first steps by opting for the right profile photo and writing a glowing description for yourself.

We understand how hard it can be to write about yourself, but since it’s your LinkedIn description, this is your chance to shine. Write in first person and remember to include a few tidbits that make your personality come through and convey what you are the best at. Did you know that you can optimise your description with keywords? This makes it more likely that it will be found by recruiters and potential clients. Your next task is to customise your URL. LinkedIn gives each user their own URL and the opportunity to personalise it. You can include this link in your email signature and CV, and it’s exceptionally easy to share.

2. Distinguish yourself

Next is a creative cover photo. Your background photo is your opportunity to distinguish yourself; it can be an achievement or a collage. This is your chance to make your profile as fun, quirky, or straightforward as you want. Then comes the elusive headline. A chance to make or break your profile. Your headline is your brand's tagline and you want to make it count, because it is the first thing people will see when they come across your profile. The next section to master is the skills section. Displaying your most in-demand skills on your profile will make it 3 times more likely for recruiters to contact you. Taking the assessments for these skills will only add to your relevance as a potential job candidate.

LinkedIn, after all, is a feed based platform and to stay relevant and expand your reach, you will need to stay up to date. Curating content, sharing your thoughts and contributing to the conversation will serve you well. By talking about your career journey effectively, you can leverage your content to reach out to your ideal audience and support your professional brand. Have you heard of the game changer? LinkedIn recommendations are comments from your past bosses, colleagues, coworkers, business associates, or employees that define your career reputation.

3. Find your groups and network

One of the most effective strategies to establish your personal brand on LinkedIn is to find and join groups. Groups will let you meet and mix with other experts in your sector as well as others. You can create significant connections and perhaps form long-term working partnerships. However, participation is essential. You can't sit on the sidelines indefinitely. Make a conversation, comment, contribute content, and offer advice; this type of participation will make these communities more helpful to you while also expanding your reach.

Now, onto networking. This particular perk is more or less associated with LinkedIn, and is used by many to gain referrals, find a mentor, and to seek advice. A few ways to network better are to be authentic to your personal brand, craft messages that resonate with your recipients, and seek meaningful connections. Reach out to folks that are in your desired industry, grad school, job positions or those that are hiring for these jobs. Connecting with alumni from your alma mater can also be really helpful in the long run. And yes, reaching out can be intimidating, but growth of any kind involves risk.

Kool Kanya’s course, Create your personal brand on LinkedIn & get jobs! is the 21st century tool that you need to learn how to leverage your personal brand to generate leads, grow your business, and find jobs. Learn a variety of LinkedIn tips and tricks including, how to build your brand through content and conversations and prepare your profile to land your dream job. #RaiseYourPower by signing up to build your strong professional network today.