Does your LinkedIn headline allow you to show up in searches for your dream roles? To be found by recruiters and new contacts for your expertise and what you want to do next? Let’s break it down.

The headline is the # 1 weighted section of your LinkedIn profile for search. That means when someone’s looking for a non-profit CEO, someone with excellence in marketing or communications, or an epidemiologist, they search those terms first and the headline is what drives them to your page. You have 220 characters (quite a bit!) to market yourself right off the bat.

It’s important to say what you DO in your LinkedIn headline (your title), but sharing specifics is what will help you stand out so that you can be found for your particular strengths and in your target market.

Really think about how you want to be found – what’s the first thing you want people to know about you?

This is also critical because for most of us, when you Google your name, LinkedIn is the 1st or 2nd link that appears. So it matters outside of LinkedIn as well.

Let’s break it down.

“Nonprofit CEO” = 206K results.
✔️ “Nonprofit CEO housing” = 22K results.
💡 “Nonprofit CEO housing equity” = 4,100 results.

(This is all for my network, your results will be different. And of course there are results for these words that are listed in places other than the headline, but that’s another post. Let’s focus on the headline.)

By adding one extra term, you’ve SIGNFICANTLY increased your ability to be found for what YOU excel in and to drown out the noise of other people something similar to you, but not exactly what you do.

Add in additional details to set yourself apart from those 22K others – like the amount you’ve fundraised – always great to share numbers.

“Marketing Director” = 9M(!) results.
✔️ “Marketing Director digital insights” (two keywords) = 421K results.
Again, you can further refine and draw interest to your profile and how you’re found by adding more.

Final one:
“Epidemiologist” = 40K results.
✔️ “Epidemiologist technical assistance” = 2,800 results.

This is exactly how people search and refine who they’re looking for on LinkedIn, just like on Google.

Don’t let LinkedIn create your headline for you.

Create a headline that speaks to your strengths, your focus, and your wins. 💡