LinkedIn Boot Camp – Challenge 1: Brand Yourself

Welcome to the CCO’s LinkedIn Boot Camp! Throughout the next 6 weeks we will help you to get your LinkedIn into shape, which will prepare you for online networking.

For the first challenge, we are going to set up the basics of your LinkedIn profile. This will include the following: personalizing your URL, uploading an appropriate picture, creating a professional headline, and establishing the industry in which you are interested in. 

Intro Picture

Personalizing your URL: This will allow your profile to be easily searched, provide you with an easy access link to put on your resume, and helps you keep track of your online footprint. To change your URL, simply follow the instructions listed below:

Step 1: Click ‘Edit Profile’


Step 2: A blue hyperlink next to your URL will appear that says ‘Edit’ – click this.


Step 3: You should see a screen that looks like the image below. Click ‘Customize your profile URL’ in the top right.


Step 4: Once you follow that link, a small pop-up box will appear for you to customize your URL.

Set URL as your first and last name. If it is not available, try adding your middle initial or a number at the end. Don’t select something for your customized URL that is subject to change such as your job title or desired company. After you see a green check mark signifying availability of your custom URL, click “Set Custom URL.”

Good examples***:

Bad examples***:

***Disclaimer: Hyperlinks are meant to serve as good/bad examples and will not lead you to an actual profile.

Uploading An Appropriate Photo:

Profile photos to avoid: Don’t pixelate, add effects, or add extra people/things to your photo, as these are not professional. You should stay away from full body shots, distracting backgrounds, and photos that make you look decades younger. Another common mistake is using a photo of yourself at a party or situation that is unprofessional. Keep in mind professionalism is the key when choosing your profile photo.

Profile photos to upload: A professional headshot or crop a photo taken of you in a professional situation, are the best photos to use. Keep in mind to have the least distracting background possible, the least amount of your body showing as possible, and the happiest look on your face. Also keep in mind photos of you involved in your industry are okay to use as well. This is how you want recruiters and viewers of your profile to remember you; this is a good first impression for a job search.

To see some examples of what not to use, check out this link:!/2011/06/linkedin-profile-pictures-gone-wrong.html

To see some good examples of profile pictures, research profiles of notable influencers from your industry of interest.

Creating a Professional Headline:

Your headline is a short, memorable professional slogan. You can share a headline that specifically states what you’re looking for, i.e. an internship/position or you can use the headline to share a creative side of your personality in a few words.

Some examples of both: “Management student seeking marketing internship” or “INFJ|Marketer|Coffee Enthusiast|Team Builder|Purdue Student”.

Take some time to put some thought into the headline. Instructions to edit your headline are below:

Step 1: Click ‘Edit Profile’

Step 2: Click the pencil on the second row down.


Step 3: Edit your professional headline.


Establishing Your Industry

Step 1: Click ‘Edit Profile’

Step 2: Click the pencil to the left of your current city.


Step 3: Select the industry that most closely matches your interests. Recruiters search for candidates by industry, so make sure it is relevant to your career goals.


Congratulate yourself for completing Challenge #1 of the Purdue CCO LinkedIn Boot Camp! Don’t forget to join the Boot Camp Fall 2013 group on LinkedIn to register. Our Career Consultants, CCO Ambassadors, and CCO Interns will evaluate profiles for completion of challenges. Stay tuned for next week’s challenge which will include developing your summary statement, skills, & expertise.

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