Not literally, of course. But, if you haven’t put much thought into your LinkedIn headline, you’re invisible. Here’s what we mean.
Type just about any job title into a LinkedIn search and this is what you’ll see.
Pages and pages of people whose headlines are nearly identical. Very few give a good reason to click on the corresponding profiles. And, often, the more a headline camouflages with the crowd, the fewer the visits to that profile.
The point? Whether a potential connection finds you via a LinkedIn search or in their feed, you want to grab their attention. You want to give them a reason to visit your profile and, hopefully, connect. So, a descriptive, strategic profile headline is essential.
Here’s how to write one.
3 great LinkedIn headline formulas to get you started
It can be hard to sum yourself up in 220 characters, don’t get us wrong. But it can be done using the popular formulas we’ve shared below.
1. What you do + who you help + how
Racking up lots of profile views isn’t really an achievement unless those views are from the people you’re looking to connect with. For example, potential clients, podcast guests, sponsors, and partners. This headline type is an effective way to attract ideal connections since it gives a complete but concise overview of who you serve, the work you do, and how you go about it.
Lia Zneimer’s headline is textbook. Can you spot the formula in action? She helps people or professionals (the who) to build fulfilling careers (the what) using brand, social media, and content strategy (the how).
2. Current job title + company + unique value proposition
The first two elements of this formula—your role and company—are straightforward. But the opportunity to stand out comes from adding your company’s unique value proposition (UVP). It can set you apart from others in similar roles or give your ideal connections the context they need to say, “I should connect with this person.”
Scott Lieberman’s headline is a good example of this. On its own, a title and company may not be that attention-grabbing but notice how The RideShare Guy’s UVP sparks curiosity. It gets you wondering about what makes this “the #1 destination” and, if you’re a gig worker, how it can help you maximize your income.
3. What you do + who you help + personal detail
Similar to the first formula, this one covers what you do and who you help. But it goes a step further by adding in a personal detail to build common ground with others or, at least, make you seem more human and approachable.
Mason Cosby uses this approach. This headline reveals that Mason creates predictable growth with ABM (the what) for B2B marketers (the who) and is a nurse husband (their personal detail).
What should you write in your LinkedIn headline?
With the above formulas in mind, let’s move on to some best practices you can use to write a headline that sparks interest in your LinkedIn profile.
1. Use more than keywords
You should use keywords for SEO (i.e. making your profile discoverable in LinkedIn search results). But don't just stuff your headline full of them trying to show up in relevant results more often. It can make your headline awkward. Plus, you'd miss an opportunity to give people a glimpse into who you are beyond your job title, your skillset, or the deliverables you produce.
For example, Adam Karpiak's headline has some keywords like "recruiter," "employee experience," and "remote work." But it also includes some terms that are more personality and passion-driven than keyword-based such as "candidate therapist" and "helping people rediscover their value."
2. Avoid self-assessments
Literally no professional in their right mind would label themselves as lazy, incapable, unskilled, lacking attention to detail, unreliable, etcetera. Therefore, describing yourself as driven or skilled, or detail-oriented—without any proof or additional context—isn’t as interesting and compelling as it may seem. There are probably hundreds of people with similar profiles describing themselves the same way.
3. Build trust
LinkedIn is a professional network so most people there claim to have expertise in their fields. But that doesn't necessarily mean that everyone is to be trusted, and LinkedIn users know this.
That’s why it's important to build trust. You can do this by mentioning your professional achievements, sharing outcomes you've gotten for clients or customers, or alluding to the work experiences behind your expertise.
Uday Gehani's headline does this by frontloading impressive results achieved using the skills mentioned later on. Spotlighting this info backs up the statement that Uday helps service businesses increase revenue, building trust in his capabilities.
4. Be specific
To add to our last point on trust-building, be specific in your headline. That could mean honing in on:
- Who you help (e.g. B2B e-commerce software startups vs. just startups)
- What you help them accomplish (e.g. "hit $1M in revenue" vs. "We help companies grow their businesses")
- How you help (e.g. "Helping small businesses boost advertising ROI with AI-powered ad optimization" vs. "Helping small businesses boost advertising ROI")
Or making a specific request. In Raven Douglas' case, the unexpectedly specific ask is for 47 minutes of a profile viewer's time with a mention of the outcome they can expect. This approach gets people mentally engaged and interested by raising questions like, "Why 47 minutes?"
5. Use the language of the people you want to attract
As with marketing in general, you need to speak the language of your audience. That could mean avoiding industry jargon if the people you want to connect with don't understand it. Or, on the flip side, using industry terminology if you’ll be engaging with professionals who understand and use that language.
6. Show some personality
Sprinkle in an emoji or two. Mention a personal interest or hobby of yours that could create common ground with potential followers. Share a core value that impacts the way you do business and live life. Use humor.
Of course, you don’t have to do all of these at once. But don’t be afraid to let some of who you are shine through, especially if you’re looking for a new job or trying to drum up new opportunities for your business. That can be just as much of an incentive for people to connect with you as your job title or the company you work at.
Diane Wiredu’s headline shows how to make a positive first impression this way. It gives professional details like job roles but spices them up by showing a little of Diane’s flair.
How to use Jasper to write a good LinkedIn headline
Formulas, best practices, and LinkedIn headline examples can be helpful. But brainstorming potential headlines can still be challenging and possibly even time-consuming. So using a LinkedIn headline generator may be smart. Here's how you can use Jasper—an AI writing tool—to make it easier and faster.
The first is with the Commands template—the fill-in-the-blanks alternative to the command feature in Boss Mode. To use this template, input the information you want to include in your headline and instruct Jasper to write a LinkedIn headline. Jasper will then generate ideas to get you started.
Another great option is the Perfect Headline template. Here also, you pop in a brief description of the info to include. You can also add a product or company name, a customer avatar, and the tone of voice you want.
From there, you can use one of the headline options as-is, use one for inspiration, or even combine several. Add any additional info you think is important like your role, company, or who you work with and you're good to go.
Tips for optimizing the rest of your LinkedIn profile
The headline is only one part of your LinkedIn profile. What about the rest? Here are a few pro tips for overall LinkedIn profile optimization.
1. Use copywriting frameworks for your summary
Copywriting techniques like Pain Agitate Solution (PAS) and Attention Interest Desire Action (AIDA) are meant to:
- Capture and hold the attention of your audience
- Persuade them to take an action
So, they can help you create an engaging LinkedIn Summary. One that encourages your target connections (e.g. potential employers and hiring managers) to get in touch.
Jasper makes it easy to apply these frameworks.
For example, in the Pain Agitate Solution Framework template, describe a challenge your ideal customers face and how your company addresses it. Then, Jasper can take that information and turn it into a targeted summary that highlights how you bring value to the people you work with.
You could even use the “Compose” button (available in Boss Mode) to expand the outputs from this template and add more detail, personal info, and pizzaz.
For example, to make the solution section more personal, we changed the first sentence to, “That's where I come in. At Links Links Links, I lead a team of expert backlink builders.” Then, we pressed “Compose” and let Jasper write more. Next, we added a question to connect what Jasper wrote to the next point. We then pressed “Compose” again to expand the last paragraph. This is what we got.
We could repeat that process as many times as needed for different sections to get the summary to our desired length and depth. This goes to show how quick and easy it can be to create and expand a summary using Jasper. You can follow this same step-by-step process to create a first draft in minutes!
2. Focus on impact in the Experience section
Your work experience section shouldn’t just be a list of job duties. (Nearly everyone in your role has and lists similar responsibilities, so you want to show what makes your expertise special.)
To do this, think about the impact of each of your job duties. What larger team or business goals do they contribute to? How do they translate into better results for your clients, customers, or users?
Pinpoint the specifics and, if you can, share some of the best outcomes you’ve gotten to prove your expertise and effectiveness. Then, pop those details into the Commands Template and instruct Jasper to write a summary for your role. (We kept it simple for this example but the more specific info you give to Jasper, the better.)
You can then grab pieces you like from Jasper’s outputs, combine them into one cohesive summary, and perhaps turn it into a list for readability and skimmability.
3. Bridge the gap between your education and expertise
In the Education section, go beyond what you studied. Are there any links between what you learned (or what interested you about your field of study) and the work you do now? For example, these could be practical skills you learned in college that you’ve mastered and turned into competitive advantages. Or underlying principles discovered during your studies that influence how you think about your current work.
Jasper’s Paragraph Generator template can be a good tool for bringing the education section to life. Just enter a few of the links you identified above, input any keywords you want mentioned, and choose a tone of voice. Jasper will do the rest and, of course, you can edit or combine the outputs as you see fit.
Write your best LinkedIn headline yet
All in all, there are plenty of formulas, best practices, and examples to help you write an engaging, optimized headline (and the perfect LinkedIn profile). Plus, you have Jasper at your disposal to help you present important professional details in the best light possible. Without spending hours writing and rewriting different variations of your headline and other profile elements.
And the nice thing is that this tool is flexible enough to help you write profile headlines and other content for any role. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a recruiter or a sales manager, a software engineer, or a digital marketing consultant. As long as you feed Jasper detailed info, he can help you write!
Why not take Jasper for a test drive today using the templates and techniques we showed you? You’ll get 10K words free when you sign up!