The best LinkedIn headlines will help turn connections into powerful leads.
Your LinkedIn headline is a succinct set of words that tells the world who you are and what you do—all in a 120-character limit. Consider it your elevator pitch for the fast-paced world. This headline appears pretty much anywhere you post on LinkedIn and right below your name on your profile, making it the first impression many people will get of your personal brand.
LinkedIn can be a powerful tool for meeting your business goals, as long as you can stand out among the millions. Professionals around the world are currently signing up for LinkedIn at a rate of two new users per second. That rapid growth shows just how many connections you can turn into leads each day.
With the right LinkedIn profile headline, you can make an effective first impression instead of getting lost in the crowd.
Why LinkedIn headlines matter
Whether you're selling business services or collaborating with peers, LinkedIn can help you make the right connections, and an apt headline is a big part of that.
Simply having a LinkedIn headline is a necessary step toward reaching All Star status, a LinkedIn accomplishment for completing your profile that makes you 40 times more likely to get contacted by other users. If you follow great LinkedIn headline examples to build your unique 120 characters, the likelihood of other users reaching out (and responding to your messages) can only increase.
If you own a B2B business, successful interactions with other LinkedIn users are particularly important. This is because B2B companies can gather as much as 80% of their social media leads directly from LinkedIn.
LinkedIn headline-writing tips
Writing a great headline isn't rocket science, but there are headline formulas that you can follow to create your own LinkedIn headline that remains unique from the rest. Here are some basic tips for what to include in your tagline to gain new opportunities to connect, sell, and grow:
1. Write for your audience
Many LinkedIn headline examples you'll find on the web are fairly vague, focused on showcasing users' personal skill sets before anything else. This is a great example of a value proposition where you want to appeal to a wide variety of recruiters, but when you're not job searching, it can pay to be specific.
While you don't necessarily want to give everything away, potential customers and collaborators need you to sell your expertise before they believe you're worth a meaningful conversation. For example, you may incorporate jargon or include industry-specific accolades you've received in recent years. Before you do so, be sure that these industry terms will immediately be recognized by your target audience to ensure you're not wasting characters.
It also won't hurt to throw in your current job title—founder, C-suite, and other high-ranking positions naturally draw eyes.
2. Include your business name
At the very least, your headline should include your company name. Think of the LinkedIn headline as an opportunity to — if nothing else — get new audiences familiar with the name of your business. While including your business name won't necessarily draw in new audiences on its own, it's a necessary step to taking full advantage of this free social media marketing opportunity.
Including your business name also offers an easy way for people you've met at networking events to find you and follow up. This is because the LinkedIn search tool uses your headline as a key indicator that you're a match for a user’s inquiry.
3. Add a value proposition
Simply telling your audience what you do isn't going to drive them your way. You'll also need to tell your audience what you can do for them. For example, anyone can be a financial advisor, but not everyone can be a financial advisor that cuts your debt in half.
Your value proposition is perhaps the most persuasive part of your LinkedIn headline. While other parts of the headline formula may be informative and position you as a thought leader, this part tells your audience why you're the exact person they need to connect with.
Focus on your customers and stakeholders as you're writing this portion of your headline, so you can tell them what they want to hear.
4. Include keywords
Since LinkedIn's search tool takes your headline into strong consideration when users search for potential connections, keywords are essential. Including the right keywords in your headline can help you appear at the top of local search results, much like how including SEO-friendly keywords on your website can boost your Google ranking.
Keywords will most often be related to your job title or expertise. Think about what your audience would search for to look for you. For example, it may be tempting to call yourself a wordsmith, but a practical title like "copywriter," "content writer," or even "freelancer" is a more likely search for someone seeking writing services.
5. Get creative
Even if you're trying to blend practical keywords into your 120 characters, there's still room to get creative. The best LinkedIn headline examples are the ones that differentiate a professional by showcasing their brand. At the very least, your headline shouldn't just be a list of keywords and titles.
If your industry allows—creatives may have a little more leeway than lawyers—don't be afraid to show a bit of personality. Give a little hint of who you are in the workplace, which may be professional, but likely isn't as lackluster as a bulleted list of awards.
3 great LinkedIn headline examples
Learning by example is often the best way to go, so we've compiled a list of three great LinkedIn headline examples from leading professionals on the platform that you can get inspired by. As you're looking through these, take note of what headline strategies speak to you and which ones would work well for your audience. In addition, consider what tweaks you would make to these examples to fit your own unique brand.
1. "Bestselling writer about habits and happiness at gretchenrubin.com"
This headline from Gretchen Rubin is an extremely simple headline that checks off many major must-haves. She tells you who she is ("writer"), why you should trust her ("bestselling"), and what she can do for you ("habits and happiness"). Since she's technically her own business, including the link to her website is a cherry on top that can quickly drive page views to more of her work.
2. "Global Economist, Author, Investor in the Future, Marathon Runner"
Dr. Dambisa Moyo seemingly writes a more traditional LinkedIn headline, but it again hits many marks by explaining her role as an economist and author, while also showcasing what she does for others. At the same time, it ends with a short two words that do a lot to put her personality on display and, in a sense, show she's a real person.
3. "CEO at Event Tech Tribe | Growth Mentor | On a mission to close the digital knowledge gap"
This LinkedIn headline example, written by Carsten Pleiser, provides the best example of a value proposition out of the bunch. While still briefly leading with his position and expertise, he puts the focus on how he's helping his audience. This is also a well-formatted headline that makes every part of his brand distinct.
Gain connections that matter
Whether you're finding leads for your B2B company or seeking an opportunity to collaborate with local leaders, LinkedIn can help you make the connection. To do so, you need to first become a stand-out professional by updating your LinkedIn headline to cater to your audience.
No matter what industry you're in or what social channel you're posting on, catering to your customers and clients can help you gather leads faster. Read our article to learn how you can nail your customer engagement strategy to improve customer loyalty and grow your revenue.