Maximize Your LinkedIn Profile
LinkedIn dominates the professional world. If you’re in the job market, it’s THE one social media platform you have to be on.
I like to think of LinkedIn as Facebook for grown ups, and just like any other social media platform, there are things you can do to you stand out and get noticed.
Use LinkedIn to find a new job or establish yourself as an expert. Begin by optimizing your profile to make sure you rise to the top.
1. Complete Your Profile
This one may seem like a no brainer, but you’d be amazed at how many people don’t have a complete profile. Your profile will help you rank higher in LinkedIn’s search results, so get your profile to “All-Star” status.
This includes having a professional profile picture (not the one of you partying during spring break!), filling out every section and having recommendations and endorsements. Examples of your work are a powerful addition, in Slide Shares, PDFs or articles.
2. Join Groups
LinkedIn groups are powerful. VERY powerful. If you are targeting a company you want to work for, find out what groups people who already work there belong to and join them… like yesterday! Contribute content to get noticed and establish yourself as an expert. Good articles increase sharing, and your visibility.
3. Use Keywords
LinkedIn is not the place for writing essays. You need to get to the point and get to it fast! This is where keywords come into play. If you want to make LinkedIn’s search engine work for you, optimize your job title to include relevant keywords. For example, if you want to work in the inbound marketing world, instead of having the title “Marketing Intern,” you could make your profile LinkedIn search friendly by using the title “Inbound Marketing Intern.” It’s only one word, but it could make a HUGE difference.
The next step is your job description. An essay won’t work here either. Instead you should use a wide variety of bulleted keywords that are relevant to the position. Doing this will instantly make your profile easier to scan by LinkedIn’s internal search engine. look at the way they title other professions. Use the ones closest to what you do.
While it’s important to use keywords, be careful not to ‘stuff’ your profile with too many of them. Be smart, and make the keywords you choose count!
4. Claim Your Name
Claiming your personal URL may not help you in a recruiters search results, but it looks good. What’s a personal URL? Sounds fancy right?! It’s when your name is displayed in your profile URL. For example, a customized LinkedIn URL would look like this: linkedin.com/in/georgiawarrington, not this: Linkedin.com/profile/view?id=ADEAAABAEs4B-DpSbKIbxVX1VmzZfuvW-yNfIm0&authType=NAME_SEARCH. Claim your URL in seconds by hitting the edit profile button.
This makes it easier for your connections to find you. It also looks a lot better when you add your custom URL to your business cards, emails or any professional materials. Let’s face it… who doesn’t want that?
5. Connect With people in Your Field
You don’t have to connect with everyone, it’s not a race to see how many connections you can get. Connect with colleagues you met while interning, previous employers or people who posted an industry article you gained insight from. Your uncle is nice, but unless he’s in your professional network, connect on Facebook instead. LinkedIn means business.
6. Build Your Recommendations
Recommendations work! They are a great way for a potential recruiter to get insights into the type of employee and person you are. It’s important that recruiters find the perfect person to ‘fit’ the job, so recommendations will help them decide whether or not they should contact you. If your profile doesn’t have any recommendations, it’s time to reach out and ask.
7. Post Updates Regularly
Use the updates tool to share articles you find around the net. No, not ones about cat antics. Ones that show you read about your industry and stay on top of the news.
Like with any social media platform, there are certain rules you need to follow on LinkedIn and things you should avoid. For more tips, check out the Secret Do’s and Don’ts of LinkedIn.