More than 400 million people use LinkedIn across 200 different countries. That’s a lot of opportunities, but also a lot of competition. If you want to catch the eye of the hiring professionals who use LinkedIn, to find people for jobs at exciting companies, your profile must do two things: it has to represent you as you truly are; and it needs make a great impression. Whether you are creating a new profile or overhauling an old one, here are 10 ideas for making it do just that.
1. Tidy up
Make sure you have a recent, professional picture for your LinkedIn profile. It doesn’t have to be corporate, but it does have to be a clear and friendly photo.
So, you appear in people’s searches, include a headline that uses industry buzzwords and your job title. For example, if you work in digital marketing, you might want to include key phrases such as ‘search engine optimisation’ and ‘PPC’.
Take a look at a few jobs within your areas of interest and see what skills are listed. If you have those skills or related experience, mention this in your profile. This way, when you’re job hunting in the future, you’ll match more of the required skills and can apply directly on LinkedIn.
We recommend personalising your profile’s URL too – this will look great in your email signature.
2. Perfect your elevator pitch
Your summary should be short and to the point, summarising your experiences and current job role. Think of it as your ‘elevator pitch’: you only have 30 seconds to sell yourself to some, so make sure you get your key points across quickly. It is a good place to highlight achievements you’re proud of, show off your skills and demonstrate progress towards your goals.
3. Don’t just copy + paste your CV
Your LinkedIn profile should not be a carbon copy of your CV; it should be a complement.
Think about the information on your CV and build your LinkedIn profile accordingly. In most cases, it’s a good idea to put key figures – that show results – at the top of your profile. Elsewhere, remember to include keywords, and emphasise your achievements and career goals. To further highlight specific skills, include multimedia work examples and certifications.
4. Turn on ‘open to new job opportunities’
If you are open to new roles, you need to tell recruiters – and your manager doesn’t have to know!
Click on the me tab and select settings and Privacy. Under account, click on job seeking preferences. You will see let recruiters know you’re open to opportunities. Click on change and move the slider to yes.
Congratulations, you are now open to new job opportunities.
5. Follow people In your industry
LinkedIn is a great tool because thought leaders and people you admire are probably already on there. Take some time to search for people in your industry who inspire and motivate you. Engage with them by leaving comments, sharing their work or reacting to their posts. For example, if you work in UX design, find and follow users who work in UX design for major companies like Google, Apple and Nielsen.
6. Connect with people to build your network
A lot of your friends and colleagues are probably on LinkedIn too. Connect with them to further build up your network. A large network is helpful when you are trying to reach out to new contacts: if somebody is already a second or third-level connection, introducing yourself to them will be much easier.
7. Join groups for networking opportunities
You can also join like-minded people in your industry on LinkedIn groups. These are places to share content, find answers, search jobs and more generally network with new contacts. To find groups relevant to you, simply enter keywords into the search bar or browse group recommendations provided by LinkedIn.
To search for groups by name or keyword:
- Select groups from the drop-down list that appears when you click into the search box at the top of any page.
- Enter your keywords.
- If you need to narrow down your searches, do this with the filters on the left side of the search results page.
If you’d rather browse groups recommended specially for you by LinkedIn:
- Hover over the interests bar at the top of your homepage and choose groups.
- Click discover at the top of the page to see your suggested groups.
- To request membership, click the ask to join button (under the group description).
8. Post content regularly to show expertise
Once your profile is complete, it’s time to start showing off your expertise. This doesn’t have to be time-consuming. To build up your personal brand, simply share articles you like, work you are inspired by, industry news, and personal achievements in your current role. This will give potential employers and recruiters an idea of your personality, values and industry knowledge.
9. Write articles to open dialogue
If you’ve got more time, you can share your professional thoughts and opinions by writing a short article. LinkedIn articles are easy to find when you visit a profile and help make a great first impression. They can also be seen and shared by thousands through LinkedIn’s content suggestions tab. Your article might just be a comment that is too long for a status update, or maybe you have an opinion on current industry trends or news. Just remember to remain professional. We recommend posting once a month to start.
10. Share kudos
LinkedIn has a new feature. You can now choose from 10 categories like ‘amazing mentor’, ‘inspirational leader’ or ‘team player’ to give kudos to a connection via your LinkedIn feed. The person you choose will receive a notification that you gave them a shout-out, in addition to seeing it in their feed.
You can also endorse somebody for a skill they’ve included on their profile. Just click on their profile, scroll down to skills and endorsements and click the ‘+’ button next to the relevant skill. People usually return the favour – but don’t bombard them!
Good luck creating or updating your LinkedIn profile. Let us know your favourite LinkedIn tip by tweeting @SaltJobsUK with the hashtag #CIMMJ