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A well-executed elevator speech is a powerful business tool. During the time it takes for an average elevator ride, you need to sum up what your company makes or does and get your listener excited about it. 

Your LinkedIn Summary section is similar to an elevator speech. Because it typically shows up near the top of your profile, it's one of the first things a person sees when looking at your profile. It has also gained much higher importance since LinkedIn revised their IMG_0051app last fall. The first 78 characters (including spaces) of your Summary are now prominently displayed near the top of your profile when it appears on the app.

This screen shot shows how one of my LinkedIn consulting clients takes advantage of this.

Your Summary is the perfect place to market and brand yourself and your business. It should:
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  • Act like a cover letter for the rest of your profile
  • Include your most strategic keywords
  • Move your readers to action

It can include up to 2,000 characters, and I suggest you use every one of them. Use a word processing program, do a spell-check and character count, and then paste it into your profile.
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10 simple ways to enhance your LinkedIn Summary

Following these suggestions will help you creatively tell your unique business story and improve your chances of being found by the right people.

1.  Describe briefly the types of jobs you have had and any major accomplishments. Don't waste this space with all the details. That's what the Experience section is for. But if there's something you want to summarize or highlight, do it here.

2.  Describe your perfect customer, vendor relationship, employee, etc. If you're a job seeker, describe your perfect job.

3.  Include a direct quote from an impressive customer testimonial or letter of recommendation. If you want to share the entire testimonial or recommendation, include the quote in your Summary and then direct the reader to the complete document in the Add Media section below your Summary.

To learn how adding media can pay big dividends, check out my article Does Your Profile Need a Boost? Add Media!

4.  Describe what makes you, your company, and your products unique.

5.  Describe how you help people/companies accomplish their goals--and if you're a jobScreen Shot 2016-08-25 at 9.12.20 AM seeker, explain how your skills, experiences, and proven results can be used to improve a prospective employer's business. This screen shot shows how I use this strategy on my profile.

6.  Describe briefly any of your business relationships or experiences that resulted in superior outcomes.

Screen Shot 2016-08-25 at 9.10.18 AM7.  Include a specific call to action so the reader knows what to do next. This screen shot shows how I use calls to action in my profile.

8.  It's important to use a significant portion of your Summary section to share forward-thinking ideas and thoughts. Outline new markets or new job opportunities you are considering and the type of relationships that could assist you in that effort. Don't just duplicate the Experience and Education sections that revolve around your history.

9.  Describe your company's products, services, history, locations, etc. This description should include the critical keywords your company uses in its website.

10. If you feel comfortable doing so, include business-related contact information.

For more simple ways to create and enhance the Summary section of your profile, check out Chapter 7 in the third edition of my book titled That's My Boy. The LinkedIn Profile: Summary Section.