Jeff Zelaya

LinkedIn Q&A Episode 3: How Important is a LinkedIn Profile Picture?

LinkedIn Q&A Episode 3:
How Important is a LinkedIn Profile Picture?

Having an awesome LinkedIn profile picture is crucial for success in using LinkedIn (or any social media platform for that matter)! Check out my LinkedIn Q&A video below and then CLICK HERE to go read the article where I cover in more details the importance of an awesome LinkedIn profile picture.

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List of LinkedIn Q&A Episodes Season 1

LinkedIn Q&A Episode 1: How Important Are LinkedIn Recommendations?

LinkedIn Q&A Episode 2: How Can I Maximize LinkedIn Recommendations?

LinkedIn Q&A Episode 3: How Important is a LinkedIn Profile Picture?

LinkedIn Q&A Episode 4: What is Social Selling?

LinkedIn Q&A Episode 5: What’s the deal with LinkedIn Endorsements?

Step #1 to LinkedIn All-Star Success: Have an Awesome LinkedIn Profile Picture

The first step in becoming a LinkedIn all-star is that you got to have an awesome picture.

Here are some guidelines to ensure that you choose an amazing LinkedIn profile picture that gets you tons of likes, comments, views and LinkedIn invites to connect.

No party pictures.

What type of representation is that of you if you’ve got a red solo cup in your hand or you’re flashing gang  signs or have a very short dress on or something inappropriate?

No party pictures. Keep it clean. Never forget that LinkedIn is a professional network.


Also, it’s OK to smile.

Many people get afraid of LinkedIn and they think it’s all full of suits and stuffy individuals. That’s not the case. We want to be approachable. We want to make friends, make business partnerships and to look approachable and look happy, you got to smile. Don’t be afraid to flash a nice smile but don’t overdo it and be too happy either. If you overdo it you’ll come across like you’ve overdosed on Prozac and that’s really creepy. The key is a genuine smile and to look friendly and approachable.


No misleading profile pictures.

If people recognize you the day or people met you in person the day after they saw your LinkedIn page, would they recognize you? If the answer is no, get rid of that picture.

You need a more up-to-date picture or a picture that actually looks like you in person. That’s ideal because it could rub people the wrong way when they request an interview with you and you come to their office and they can’t even recognize who you are.


A quality picture is key.

No blurry pictures, no pixelated photos. This is not Instagram, so don’t add or customize filters into that picture and nothing that has a flowing – words in it. You want to avoid that. That’s against LinkedIn’s terms of service for profile photos. So you do this instead and here are some awesome profile picture examples:

Linkedin Profile Picture Examples

These are people that look very approachable. They look very welcoming and warm. I would want to do business with these individuals. Shawn’s profile picture (top right) is a great example of an action pic and something that I really enjoy seeing.


Have a default profile pic but change it up too.

This is kind of the default profile picture that you always go back to and that’s kind of your theme throughout for maybe a couple of months. This one should be professionally done and of the highest quality possible.

However, don’t be afraid to change your LinkedIn profile picture every so often for events or upcoming shows. For example, if you’re going to an upcoming trade show, maybe a profile picture of you at the booth would be nice to show. If you’re speaking at an event next week, maybe one of you actually public speaking would be great plus it would provide additional marketing support and awareness for your event. Changing pictures is a great way to stay top of mind with your LinkedIn network.


Showcase your personality and dress for success.

Dressing for success is different for everyone. If your work as a chef, you shouldn’t be dressing up in a suit. Dress up in your chef gear. Make your LinkedIn profile picture and the wardrobe that you wear match up with whatever industry you are part of. It’s OK to have a quirk or a little personality that shines through your picture. That’s ideally what you want. I have a buddy of mine, Sebastian Rusk who is well-known for his bow tie.

Sebastian Rusk profile picture

Sebastian’s Personality Shines Through


Sebastian like to wear very colorful bow ties and its part of his brand. That’s what he’s known for. It resonates with people that meet him and it makes him memorable, in a good way.


Definitely have a LinkedIn profile pic.

LinkedIn profiles that don’t have a photograph do not get views. The LinkedIn profiles that have pictures get seven times more views. Remember that a key to success in using LinkedIn is to be visible and you need a good quality profile picture to make that happen.

No LinkedIn Profile Picture

No LinkedIn Profile Pic = No Bueno


Check out the other steps to becoming a LinkedIn All-Star watch my video below:

LinkedIn All-Star Status in 5 Easy Steps from Jeff Zelaya on Vimeo.

The LinkedIn All-Star Profile Checklist

Having a LinkedIn All-Star Profile will get you more visibility, more leads and opportunities. A strong LinkedIn profile is the foundation for success with using LinkedIn and a mandatory requirement to unlock additional benefits and features of the professional network. You will never tap into the full potential of what LinkedIn can offer you if your profile is subpar and below average. To learn more about how to create a LinkedIn All-Star profile as well as other LinkedIn tips and strategies to keep in mind while creating an all-star profile check out the replay of Jeff Zelaya’s latest LinkedIn webinar.

Here is a handy checklist of must-haves in order to create a LinkedIn All-Star Profile:

✓  High quality profile picture

✓  Catchy headline

✓  Your location

✓  Your industry

✓  An above average summary

✓  Current employer and position

✓  2 past positions

✓  Your education (University, College, High School)

✓  Add your professional skills (up to 50)

✓ Get endorsed for your skills

✓  Add at least 50 connections

✓  Join at least 10 groups

✓  Include awards won, certifications earned and published works

✓  Receive a minimum of 4 LinkedIn recommendations

If you’d like to learn more about how to create an LinkedIn All-Star Profile watch the replay of the webinar: 

5 Steps to a LinkedIn All-Star Profile

LinkedIn All-Star Profile




Monitoring Your LinkedIn Profile Views

In my opinion, LinkedIn has some of the best actionable analytics out of all the social media networks. LinkedIn does not offer robust analytics for the individual user but they do share some  very important and valuable information with their LinkedIn Premium users….. they tell you EXACTLY WHO visited your profile and the total number of LinkedIn profile views you’ve had over the past 90 days.

Think about why you search for people on LinkedIn? What are you looking for exactly?

Of course the answer is IT DEPENDS.

Here are some of the reasons why people would look at your LinkedIn profile:

  • A college student might reach out interested in an internship
  • A former colleague wants to reconnect and share a new business lead with you
  • A college professor is looking up his former students for lecturing opportunities
  • A client is researching you and would like to know your expertise on a specific business matter
  • A prospect is interested in the services or products that you are selling
  • A recuiter that’s interested in hiring someone with your expert set of skills
  • An investor wants to connect with you and learn more about your business
  • A business partner wants to introduce to some of his influential contacts
  • Someone looks you up thinking your a former classmate but made a mistake
  • A friend of yours needs an introduction to one of your business contacts

These are just some of the MANY possible reasons why someone would be checking out your LinkedIn profile.

My LinkedIn profile has been viewed 2,294 times in the past 90 days! Imagine what you could do with all that traffic on your profile!
But how do you know EXACTLY  why people looked you up on LinkedIn? That’s Easy (answer below the screenshot !

LinkedIn Profile Views

I am currently averaging 25 LinkedIn profile views per day. That’s 25 inbound opportunities every day.


Ask them!

If you have a Premium LinkedIn account (which by the way starts at only $20 a month – an investment that will more than pay for itself) you should be able to see a view like the one in the LinkedIn screenshot above. Keep in mind that you don’t have to respond to everyone but take a look the users profile to briefly research if it makes sense to connect or reach out to these individuals.

Notice that LinkedIn won’t reveal everybody’s name due to the privacy setting of some users, however for the most part it will give you exact names and links to the those that have glanced at your profile throughout the day. Although, there are mixed views, most LinkedIn experts suggest reaching out to those that viewed your profile to either thank them, introduce yourself and ask them how you could help. You’ll be surprised how a simple open ended questions like that will get these people talking and many will follow up with a LinkedIn invite if they aren’t already connected with you.

Taking that minute to follow up with those that are looking at your profile is a great LinkedIn tactic that will help you build your network, increase your profile views and uncover opportunities that otherwise you might have looked over.

Premium LinkedIn Members will also get total LinkedIn search results impressions. In my case above I appeared in LinkedIn’s Search Results page a total of 27,712 in 90 days and ranked mostly for my first name “Jeff” followed by “Google”. This information can be used strategically to rank more often, get more clicks and improve ranking for specific keywords. This will all be covered in the FREE LinkedIn University webinar.

A popular question from our LinkedIn University students is:

“How can I get more LinkedIn profile views?”

That’s a very loaded questions and like an onion we’ll peel the layers of this question on our upcoming Free LinkedIn webinar.

Evan Weber, Yuhannes Watts and myself will be teaching students how to increase your visibility and connections on LinkedIn. Combined our LinkedIn expert panel has thousands of endorsements, thousands of connections and each of us over a hundred LinkedIn recommendations. Trust me, you’ll want to listen and act on the LinkedIn lessons that we’ll be sharing with our LinkedIn University students.

Register Below to Reserve Your Spot Today
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LinkedIn Beginner Tips

Disclaimer: The following LinkedIn Beginner Tips might be outdated. For the newest LinkedIn Beginner Tips check out LinkedIn University.

So I’m sure you’ve heard a lot about LinkedIn recently especially with their IPO launch today. For those that are fairly new to LinkedIn or have not used it yet then this LinkedIn Beginner Tips post is the perfect place for you to start.  I would like to share with you some tips on how to maximize and leverage this great social media platform. LinkedIn is a great tool to build your business and relationships with people within your niche. If you apply the following tips and follow my advice you can quickly see results from your efforts. The great thing about LinkedIn is the huge network of people that it connects you to in such a short amount of time.


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linkedin Connections tips recruiting

I’ve been using LinkedIn for over a year now and have accumulated 1,427 connections and those 1,427 connections have opened me up to a potential of 10,757,548 professionals and that grows by the day. If you know how to use LinkedIn correctly those groups of people have the potential of connecting with your business and what you have to offer.
One of the keys when using LinkedIn is finding the right people to connect with, you will get the best results if you are targeted and strategic in your efforts. My favorite way to do this is by joining “Groups” related to my niche, interests or geographic location. linkedin groups

Joining groups on LinkedIn is the best way to start building your network of people to connect with. The key is to jump in, get involved, have discussions and start connecting. Make it a goal to add new connections every day to your network and over time you will see great results.

The most important thing is to have your LinkedIn profile 100% complete. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve seen with subpar and incomplete profiles. Having an incomplete profile can hinder you from getting found and also from making solid connections with other. The more information you can share about your business the better, be professional and finish what you start.

Getting recommendations is an important thing on LinkedIn. Recommendations give you added credibility and showcase your talents better. Sure you can brag all you want about your skills but when others are able to do it for you it looks a lot better. Find someone within your network…a friend or a colleague that trusts your work and ask them for recommendations please, please, please do not ask someone for a recommendation that is not familiar with your work or if you have a weak relationship. Chances are that you won’t get the recommendation and might come across in a bad way. As you can see I have been given over 60 recommendations and this has been a great credibility building factor it also gives you preference in discussion groups and in search results. Continue to build those recommendations and see the great results that come from that.

As a public speaker and LinkedIn trainer, I am always looking for ways to improve the visibility of my page. I have had great LinkedIn SEO success by setting up my profile with target keywords. Take a look at the screenshot and tell me which keywords you believe I’m optimized for. I am also in the process of building links to my LinkedIn profile and will keep you updated and share those results with you. Do you have any LinkedIn tips that you would like to share? Post them in the comment box below. I will also be sharing some more advanced LinkedIn tips.

linkedin recommendations tips

Get your FREE LinkedIn Training videos that cover everything about HOW TO USE LINKEDIN from beginning to end:

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10 Essential LinkedIn Tips for College Students

LinkedIn Tips for College Students

Become a LinkedIn Pro

College students often assumed that LinkedIn is only useful for those already in the workforce, but you should not wait until you graduate to join. This popular networking site can be a powerful resource that students can utilize in many ways.

1. Introduce yourself to the professional world. LinkedIn profiles consist of sections that allow the user to provide information about their education, experience, and skills. By creating a profile you are letting the professional world know who you are.

2. Control your online identity. Having a LinkedIn profile ensures more than just your Facebook page will show up when potential employers Google you. LinkedIn profiles tend to appear at the top of online search results so that your first impression is a good one.

3. Get recommended. LinkedIn allows you to request recommendations from people you have worked with. College students can get recommendations from professors or internship supervisors that have seen their work. This may be just what a potential employer needs to verify their interest in you.

4. Join groups. Joining groups on LinkedIn helps you stay in touch with former or current organizations, find people with similar interests, and participate in a professional community online. Being a part of a group extends your network and increases profile visibility.

5. Begin networking. You do not have to wait until you graduate to begin networking. By making connections with professors and classmates, you can start to build a network that can prove valuable both during and after school.

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6. Prepare for job interviews. You are expected to know about a company you are interviewing for, but what about the people that are interviewing you? Their profiles can provide useful information about their job history or background that may increase your chances of making a good impression.

7. Stay in touch with contacts. Students often meet professionals at networking events and are asked to contact them after graduation. With LinkedIn you can request a connection to ensure they remember you and stay in touch.

8. Search for jobs. Whether you are about to enter the job market or are just curious about what kind of jobs are available, LinkedIn’s job search tool can help. You can search for jobs by experience level, location, company, job function, and industry.

9. Keep your information updated. It is easy to let profiles get out of date or remain incomplete. But you never know who is looking at them, so it is important to keep your work experience, skills, and contact information up to date.


10. Get answers. LinkedIn’s answers section provides a place where members can ask question about anything business related, from specific industries to career advice. So if you find yourself confused or curious about the next stage in your life don’t be shy, get advice from those who have been there.

Do you need help with you LinkedIn profile?

Check out LinkedIn University and RSVP for the next semester of FREE LinkedIn classes:

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