State of the Coast Event


This week, MB Humphrey from  Louisiana Sea Gran,t Beth Stauffer from University of Louisiana at Lafayette and I are giving workshops at State of the Coast on social media and science communication. Check out all the student specific workshops here: State of the Coast Ignite Workshops

To compliment my presentation I am posting a multipart series on how to utilize LinkedIn.

How to build an effective LinkedIn profile: Part 1


LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with 300 million members in 200 countries and territories around the globe. Their mission is to connect the world’s professionals across different industries to help them be more productive and successful by expanding their networking power. When you join LinkedIn, you get access to people, jobs, news, updates, and insights that help you be great at what you do . But many of us don’t take full advantage of everything that LinkedIn has to offer.

So how do you optimize LinkedIn for your own professional career?

First, ask yourself what you want to achieve with your LinkedIn profile. Most individuals utilize LinkedIn for career management, professional networking, research, and seeking collaborators for current or future projects.

LinkedIn can help you achieve those goals by allowing you to showcase your expertise and skills, as well as search for jobs and/or consulting opportunities via its various search and survey tools. The first step is to build an effective personal profile. Think of your profile as a living resume that you must continuously update and refresh.

LinkedIn considers a profile 100% profile when it contains the following information:

  • Industry
  • Postal code
  • Current position with a descriptionLinkedIn-Profile-Completeness-Featured1
  • A summary of your background
  • Two past positions
  • Education
  • At least 5 skills
  • At least 50 connections
  • A current photo

However, just because LinkedIn considers your profile 100% complete doesn’t mean that it’s catching the attention of the individuals with which you want to connect. That takes more work!

When evaluating your current LinkedIn profile ask yourself is this headline compelling?

Your headline is the tagline shown below your name.

 Dr. John Smith

Research Professional

Lynchburg, Virginia Area

Your tagline could mean the difference between a viewer looking at your profile or moving on to the next person.

It should contain a short description of the services you can provide utilizing key words for your specific profession. Be creative and yet specific.

A better tag line:

 Dr. John Smith

Molecular biologist with expertise in anti-viral drug delivery seeking full time position at a pharmaceutical company

Lynchburg, Virginia Area


Take a look at your LinkedIn profile and at your tagline. Does your current tagline showcase what you have to offer?


Coming up in Part 2: Creating an effective summary and ensuring your background accurately reflects your expertise and experience.


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