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June 18, 2024

How to optimize your LinkedIn headline

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Looking for a way to standout on LinkedIn? Your LinkedIn profile headline can help you tell people why they should connect with you. But you're going to need a little something more than your current job title to catch someone's attention.  

In this blog post, we help you create a compelling LinkedIn headline by sharing examples of the best LinkedIn headlines, relevant keywords you need to know and more.

What is a LinkedIn Headline?

Have you ever noticed the text underneath someone's name as you scroll through your newsfeed on LinkedIn? That bit is called a LinkedIn profile headline. They're one of the most underrated spaces you can use to standout on LinkedIn. Especially as people are going to see it while they scroll. If that wasn't enough pressure – you only get a headline character limit of 220 (or less).

Your LinkedIn headline also appears when someone:

  • Does a LinkedIn search,
  • Is on your LinkedIn profile,
  • Sees your post in their newsfeed,
  • Sees your comment pop up in their newsfeed.

Why are LinkedIn headlines important?

You don't have to be in a particular industry to see the benefits of having a strong LinkedIn headline. No matter what industry or position you're in, a headline can help. A LinkedIn headline is quite often one of the first impressions someone has of you, which is why you need a good LinkedIn headline if you want to stand out from the crowd and create a strong first impression.  Your headline is also a huge part of your profile optimization strategy. That's why using a LinkedIn headline generator might not cut it and will instead, make you sound generic.

Heather Jackson suggests that a great LinkedIn headline needs to be communicated easily, have clarity, and be able to spark curiosity. In other words, it's not about sounding clever – it's more about keeping it simple so people have an idea about what you do without a lot of effort. That's why using relevant keywords to create a compelling headline is crucial.

LinkedIn keywords for a headline

The right LinkedIn keywords you use will make a difference, but can vary depending on your industry and target audience. To get you started, there are a few formulas you can use instead of using a LinkedIn headline generator.

  • Title + Company - USP (Unique selling point)
  • Title | Company | USP
  • Title + Company | keywords

If you're looking for a job, there are more targeted keywords that you can use to make the most of your headline. We've rounded up some of the best examples below from a mix of leaders in different industries to give you a better idea of how you can stand out in search results and someone's newsfeed.

Best LinkedIn Headline examples

Whether your aim is to increase your lead generation, grow your network, or simply want to share your current position. There are a few ways you can get creative if you're looking to update your current LinkedIn headline. Below are a few examples that you can draw from.

1. A headline that addresses the pain points of your target audience

Using the Title + Company | USP formula. Co-Founder Will Allred uses his LinkedIn headline to address common pain points he's built Lavender for.

2. A headline for talent acquisition leaders

Using the Title @ Company - tagline formula. Our Talent Manager Morgane uses her professional headline to show what she does and what folk is.

3. A headline with a sense of humour

Using the achievement for audience | mission | relevant keywords formula. Serial networker and business mentor Lenna Lou uses a sense of humour to describe what she does that adds a personal touch. She also uses it to share her mission and has a mix of keywords to show the type of projects she's often involved in.

4. A headline that shares your mission

Using a brief mission statement. + What you can expect by following formula. There aren't any job titles in this example. Instead, Justin Welsh uses his headline real estate to share what mission he's on in-order to attract like-minded and aspiring entrepreneurs.

5. A headline that shares your story

Using the title. Past experience and a personal touch formula, the COO of Exit Five, Daniel Murphy does a great job of sharing a glimpse of his journey so far.

Even though it can be tempting to copy an inspiring headline – doing so can harm your personal brand. Instead, use the above examples as inspiration and draft a few headlines that work for you. We suggest keeping a record of your past headlines so you can keep track of your changes and see how well they're working.

Now that you have an idea of some of the strongest LinkedIn profiles, let's look into how you can change your headline.

How to change your LinkedIn headline

Ready to craft a great headline? Updating your current one is easy to do. You can do so from both a desktop and mobile.

Image source: LinkedIn

If you're on your desktop, follow these steps to change your headline:

  1. Go to your LinkedIn profile,
  2. Click on the pencil icon next to your profile picture and name to edit your profile introduction section,
  3. In the pop-up window that appears, you'll see a text box for your headline (you might want to copy and paste this into a note if you want to keep track of headlines you're experimenting with),
  4. Enter your new headline in the relevant text box. Don't forget about the 220 character limit,
  5. To save your changes, scroll down to the bottom of the pop-up window and click the 'Save' button.

If you're on your mobile, follow these steps to change your headline:

  1. Go to your LinkedIn profile,
  2. Tap the pencil icon which is the edit button next to your introduction section,
  3. In the Edit intro page, make the applicable changes in the Headline field.
  4. Tap Save on the upper right.

Best practices for crafting LinkedIn headlines

Don't forget these best practices as you craft your shiny new headline. Remember – it's not about sounding clever. It's more about being clear so people understand what you do with minimal effort.

  • Be specific: Clearly state your role and key skills or areas of expertise.
  • Use keywords: Incorporate relevant keywords that potential employers or clients might use to search for professionals in your field.
  • Show value: Highlight what sets you apart or what value you bring to your role or industry.
  • Be clear: Keep it brief but informative, ideally within 120 characters to ensure it’s fully visible on your profile.

LinkedIn also suggests you keep the following in mind:

  • If your professional headline and current position are the same, your current position won't be displayed in the top section of your profile,
  • Editing the headline doesn't change what's listed in the Current, Previous, and Education lines in the top section of your profile,
  • If the changes to your headline aren't reflected on your LinkedIn homepage, make sure you're editing the correct language profile.


Your LinkedIn headline is one of the most underrated real estate spaces of your LinkedIn profile. It can help casual scrollers, people visiting your profile, or someone who sees your comment understand what you do and your value proposition effortlessly. Helping you get new opportunities, attract potential clients, or connect with another LinkedIn user organically. The best headline uses a mix of keywords that sums up their unique value.

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