How should you leverage LinkedIn in your job search?

In the previous post, we looked at some strategies you could employ when using LinkedIn in your job search. In this article, we will look at another four strategies that you could employ to your advantage when using LinkedIn during your job search process.

Your LinkedIn profile is a marketing piece. It’s not a biography or a Résumé. It’s not designed to outline your entire professional history. Instead, it should provide enough information to get people to connect with you and/or contact you. Because it’s a marketing piece, you need to come up with a headline that will instantly attract the attention of your reader. In this article, we will look at four pointers that you could enhance your job search outcomes when using LinkedIn.

Fourth, include all relevant keywords & skills in your profile

Include all the keywords and skills from your Résumé in your profile. That will make it easier for your profile to be found in search results. The first word in your LinkedIn headline gets big SEO juice from LinkedIn’s search algorithm. Thus, it’s critical that you start your headline with your most important keyword. Many members don’t understand this, so if you do it, you will get powerful SEO. It matters because if you don’t come up high in search results, then you won’t get the chance to convince a recruiter to click through to your profile. Game over. Seventy six of the FTSE 100 use LinkedIn’s Talent Solutions teams to find top individuals. If you don’t include the skills you have on your personal résumé, then you might fail to show up in a search, when other professionals are looking for an expert just like you.

Fifth, check your contact settings

If you’re looking for a new job, LinkedIn offers plenty of exposure to recruiters and others who will be helpful to your search. According to LinkedIn, more than 45 million profiles are viewed each day. You definitely want to make sure that you select the correct contact settings for your LinkedIn profile. After all, if you’re looking for a new job, for example, you want to make sure the option for Career Opportunities has been checked. Your contact settings let your connections and recruiters know what you’re available for. Options include: career opportunities, consulting offers, new ventures, job inquiries, reference requests. Even if you’re not actively seeking a new job, it’s beneficial to be flexible about your interests, because you never know when a good opportunity might come along.

Sixth, get recommended

Recommendations are the currency in LinkedIn. To a potential employer, a LinkedIn recommendation is a reference in advance. With LinkedIn becoming increasingly important in the recruiting and hiring process, having Recommendations on your profile is important. Great Recommendations can be the difference in getting the job offer. LinkedIn Recommendations are a natural evolution of references and letters of recommendation. However, they often are more credible than these traditional documents, because it is harder to fake a Recommendation on LinkedIn than it is to forge a letter. Since many companies are restricting reference checks to verification of title and dates of employment, a LinkedIn Recommendation from a supervisor or coworkers carries weight. LinkedIn has been described as a “reputation engine.” That’s an apt description, because your reputation does precede you online — not just in your work history, but also in your LinkedIn Recommendations. Someone looking at your Recommendations wants to know two things:

1. First, what are you like?

2. Next, are you good at what you do?

Recommendations are also vital in increasing your visibility on LinkedIn. In order for your profile to be considered “complete,” LinkedIn also requires you to receive a minimum of three Recommendations. According to LinkedIn, “Users with Recommendations in their profiles are three times more likely to receive relevant offers and inquiries through searches on LinkedIn.” In addition, you can enhance your own reputation by providing Recommendations, because people viewing your profile can see (and read) the Recommendations you make.

Finally, grow Your Network

Connections are the gasoline in the tank that makes the engine work on LinkedIn. The more connections you have, the more opportunities you have, but don’t randomly connect with people you don’t know. All that does is annoy them – you won’t gain anything by attempting to connect with someone who never heard of you. The more you put into LinkedIn, the more you will get out of it. It’s a place to be proactive! Don’t be afraid to invite people to connect on LinkedIn after you meet them in person or through some other channel. It’s a great way to follow up, keep in touch, and build up your network.

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