LinkedIn is literally the king of business networking sites—at least until something better comes along.
Ask any recruiter about LinkedIn, and they will likely groan about the rapid proliferation of fake profiles that have been rampaging through the site of late.
Unfortunately, nothing else HAS come along, so back to LinkedIn recruiters go.
As a user, you need to be on your toes in order to be as optimized as possible within this site so you can be found.
I had the opportunity to peek behind the “curtain” on the recruiter’s dashboard of LinkedIn, and these tips will help you stand out:
Make it compelling by speaking to the audience
It is too darned easy to copy/paste your résumé into your LinkedIn profile. Have you done this and thought, “Am I missing something?” The answer is yes. LinkedIn is, well, social, and social media demands personal interaction, so using a personable tone and using pronouns is important to get audiences to engage with you directly on this site. Besides skills, culture fit is a top concern of recruiters and hiring managers, so letting a bit of your personality funnel into LinkedIn is a good thing versus the mainstay that most people include in their profiles which seems endlessly repetitious. The key to success: Don’t be afraid to tell readers of your profile what you liked or learned in each job… this shows insights to your personality.
Mind your headline
Some people end up in the unfortunate situation of looking for work, and immediately change their LinkedIn headline to say “Unemployed” which is NOT A GOAL. A much improved headline: Budget-Focused Meeting Planner Ready to Add More Profit to Your Bottom Line. This is action-oriented and forward-facing rather than job-loss facing and promoting non-employment.
Everything these days is keyword-driven, including LinkedIn. That means you need to pay special attention to the skills you list and words you sprinkle throughout your profile. Has someone endorsed you for underwater basket weaving? If that isn’t actually relevant to your career goals, then take it off. You can add/subtract skills as you like, with a maximum of 55 different skills that can be listed.
Update and update regularly
An easy rut to get into is only updating your LinkedIn profile when you are actually getting ready for or actively engaged in a job search. That means all hustle and a lot of updates suddenly taking place on your profile can be automatic tipoffs to your connections (and possibly, the boss) that change is imminent. Solution? Keep regularly adding content to your profile. By keeping up a regular chatter of updates, anything you do will blend in and be less noticeable than a complete revamp.
Establish subject-matter expertise
Long-form posts (articles) are the gold mine on LinkedIn. This is a great opportunity for you to write an informative and helpful post which can not only establish your knowledge/experience/skills in an arena, but also help align certain keywords with your profile. Do it right and you might be blessed with a viral article! Another way to establish subject-matter expertise includes getting involved in groups via participation in discussions. You can either post a question or answer one, which can put you in front of a wide array of potential target audiences.
Staying on top of an actively tended-to LinkedIn profile will help you get noticed and position you as a helpful expert in your field. Remember: If you build it, they don’t necessarily come. You have to tend to it in order to let it flourish and grow.