social media profilesAutumn is a great time to update your social media profiles. It’s kind of like Spring Cleaning but in Autumn.

I know you put a lot of thought in when you first set up your social media profiles, I know I did. But when was the last time you checked it over? Does it reflect you now, or you when you just finished college? This is for your brand too. You’d hate to lose sales (or a job opportunity) because the person reviewing you didn’t know your latest skills and offers.

Here’s a checklist for some Autumn cleaning. It’s not platform-specific, but there are similar elements across all. And if you want to go deeper into each platform, there’s a link to Hootsuite’s Podium social media training.

Social Media Profiles Checklist

Location – It’s tempting to put global or leave it out to show you’re everywhere, but it’s a personal preference of mine to have your base city. I rarely follow just anyone on Twitter, so adding your base city helps me understand if there’s a connection between us. It also helps potential team members and customers decide if they want to work with you, or can work with you.

Bio – The size of the bio box varies from 160 characters on Twitter to 2,000 characters on LinkedIn, but both are important. Do you have the right keywords that reflect what you want? Don’t forget to check the balance between personal and professional. Personal is OK on Twitter and Instagram, but your partner and kids don’t need to be on your LinkedIn profile.

Social-Media-Profiles-TwitterPhotos – You have both a profile picture and a cover photo. On the profile picture, people want to see your face, and not at a bar or party. The cover photo should also represent you. It could be a landscape of your base city, or my Twitter one is currently my bookcase as I review a lot of business books. Make sure it’s in focus and sized for the platform. Canva is great for helping with this.

URL – Don’t forget to add your URL. If you don’t have a personal site or blog, your LinkedIn profile works great on Twitter and sometimes for Instagram. On LinkedIn, don’t forget to add your Twitter links.

Jobs – Look over your LinkedIn profile to ensure it’s current. My addition is to add your achievements as you go, instead of just when you’re looking for work. Not only does it help keep your job search discrete, but recruiters are constantly searching LinkedIn for candidates. You may get a great new job without even trying.

Vanity URL – Most social media platforms let you choose a vanity URL that looks a lot better than a string of characters. Get in quick with this so you can get the one that matches your Twitter handle or something relevant. Also, be thoughtful because some of these can’t be changed. I remember my best friend and I rushing to set our Facebook vanity URLs within 30 minutes of the option becoming available. Kathleen chose her latest silly nickname. Something she regrets seven years later.

This is just a quick checklist. Hootsuite’s new free social media training program, Podium, goes into more detail with specific platforms in the Optimizing Your Social Media Profiles class. All six online classes can be taken for free, with the option to sit the Social Media Marketing certificate. It’s a useful, quick course, and if you want to learn more about it, check out my previous review.

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