Update Your LinkedIn Profile... Now Your skills change. So should your LinkedIn profile.

By Josh Steimle

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Around 40% of professionals make a significant career change every four years, a far cry from the old school mentality of staying with one company until you retire. The business world moves fast and the landscape changes daily, so professionals must update their LinkedIn profiles to keep pace.

There are more opportunities than ever out there — and more means to connect skilled individuals with them. For marketing purposes and more, you need your profile to be as up-to-date as possible so you stand the best chance of finding contacts to elevate your career.

A polished LinkedIn profile should reflect not only who you are, but what you can do. If you allow it to go too long without a tune-up, it runs the risk of stagnating and presenting you in a lackluster light.

Your achievements and skills change over time

No matter what industry you are in, the longer you stay with it, the more you will learn. With persistence, this base of knowledge translates into skills and achievements.

Studies show that, on average, a new skill takes about six months to develop, but far longer to master and gain recognition. Once you feel you have learned enough that it could bring professional value to others though, then it's fair to add it to your listed LinkedIn skills and achievements section.

If you aren't making regular updates to your profile in this manner, then your hard-won growth can go unnoticed. You want to show the world what you are capable of, and this is likely different from what you could do in the not-so-distant past.

You'll be recommended more relevant connections

The LinkedIn algorithm functions based on several factors, and the more it knows about you, the better it can guide you to connections with shared interests.

Depending on how you update your profile, you'll be recommended connections who share similar or related skills. Once these connections are made and solidified through interaction, you'll gain a wider and stronger network.

This benefits both sides immeasurably into the future, but it's important to remember that some of the highest quality connections might never be made if your profile is out of date. By consistently fine-tuning your profile to match your current worth, you better position your profile for future prospects.

Related: 5 Ways to Turn Your LinkedIn Connections Into Paying Clients

Your feed will be better tuned for breaking industry news

For marketing, in particular, staying on top of trends and news is everything in this lightning-fast digital age. There's almost no end to content being published each day on the platform, so it's important to have an effective system of filtration so you see what's most relevant to you.

Just like your recommended connections, your feed and news stories depend on what you list in your profile in interests, experiences, and associated industries. Your feed will reflect what you have focused on in your profile as the highest areas of priority.

In the marketing world, capitalizing on a timely trend can reap all kinds of rewards, and you can rest assured that you are staying up to date by simply keeping your LinkedIn profile today and up-to-date.

You never know who might view your profile

Even if you aren't actively looking for a new employer or client, there's no telling who might be sizing you up from afar. LinkedIn provides all kinds of useful tools to track who is viewing your profile, and the view count ranges from a few dozen to several thousand. All it takes is the right one to come along and like what they see to potentially change your business life overnight.

Gaining or losing an ideal opportunity could depend on how your profile presents itself. If you let your profile go stale for a few weeks or months, you might fail to make the kind of positive impression you need for someone researching you. There's no telling when such a view might come along, which is why continual upkeep of your profile is key.

Related: How to Establish Marketing Authority in a Niche Industry

It's the best way to build authority in your niche

You can't build or buy expertise in the business world overnight, it's something that demands consistency and dedication. This kind of crafting of authority takes time, and making regular updates to your profile shows others the incremental gains you make in your niche.

Rather than attempting to overhaul your profile overnight, it's best to slowly show your growth so others can see the journey rather than just the results.

By refining your profile methodically on a monthly or weekly basis, you display a commitment toward a path. People will notice and respect such an undertaking, and this sentiment in time becomes respect and authority in your industry's niche.

Becoming an expert in your field is an incredibly potent ability, a skill few achieve, and one that yields significant benefits for users. Possessing an up-to-date profile instantly markets yourself as an attractive and capable professional, and is perhaps the single most powerful way to use your LinkedIn profile.

Wavy Line
Josh Steimle

Speaker, writer and entrepreneur

Josh Steimle is the Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author of "60 Days to LinkedIn Mastery" and the host of "The Published Author Podcast," which teaches entrepreneurs how to write books they can leverage to grow their businesses.

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