Linkedin is a goldmine of information and connections, whether or not you’re actively seeking a job. Here’s our advice for making the most of the site:
LEARN FROM OTHERS
Joining relevant groups and linking up with other people in your industry will help you to keep up to date with news and job opportunities and become better known amongst your peers. Most Linkedin users are happy to connect – just make sure you include a personal note in your invitation to connect so they know why you want to link up. Thought leaders are also sharing great posts since the introduction of the “Influencers” feature. You’re sure to find a few Influencers to follow that post about topics which are interesting and relevant to you.
When we, as recruiters, search profiles on Linkedin we generally search for specific skills or industry keywords, so make sure you include all your key skills and responsibilities in your profile summary. Once we’ve found your page, we need clear examples of your work, so including a more detailed description of specific projects under each of your previous roles is a great way to make your profile stand out.
OWN YOUR LINKEDIN URL
Set a personalised URL with your name by pressing Edit under Profile and clicking “Customize your public profile URL” and changing it to your name (the name by which people will search and know you and ideally the same name you use with other profiles i.e: your work brand name)
OWN YOUR HEADLINE
DO NOT have your job title here, rather keywords that describe what you are and maybe a benefit. Separate these with the | symbol. E.g
Your photo is one of the easiest ways to update your Linkedin profile but make sure you think about the impression you want to give. Remember this is a professional social network, so your Facebook profile photo of you pouting in front of your bedroom mirror (and yes, we have seen this on Linkedin!) won’t work here. On the other hand, leaving the photo section blank means you’re more likely to get skipped over when recruiters look through a list of people with similar skills. A simple colour shot of you looking straight at the camera and smiling is a fail-safe option.
RECOMMENDATIONS > ENDORSEMENTS
The new endorsements tool is nice, but to take a cynical view, most people who are using it just endorsing others for everything and anything in the hope that they’ll return the favour. If 30 people have endorsed you for social media that’s great (and it will help you rank higher in search results), but nothing beats a personal recommendation from someone who has actually worked with you, so ask for a few lines from them that will show what actually makes you a social media expert.
DON’T NEGLECT IT
You might not check Linkedin as frequently as you do other social networking sites, so make sure your primary email is an email account you check regularly, so you get notifications if anyone tries to approach you. (You can change this easily – just click you name in the top right hand corner of any page in Linkedin, then select settings, then change/add primary email.) Even if you’re not actively looking for a job make sure that your profile is up to date, because a perfect opportunity may come along at any time, and you don’t want to miss it!