LinkedIn 101

Time to go back to school and learn about LinkedIn
Today’s post is going to cut right to the chase. I am going to show how you can use one particular social media component to drastically improve your chances of landing a job. 

LinkedIn has become a vitally important component of the modern day job hunter and a little time spent on it in the beginning will pay large dividends later. Here are 5 tips to create a top quality profile.

Smile for the Camera

Do not just scour your online albums for one that looks presentable. Have a professional headshot taken. If the cost of this is prohibitive then at least have a friend take a clean headshot of you against a plain and neutral background.

Create a Dynamic & Descriptive Headline

LinkedIn will use your most recent job title as your headline. Turn this setting off and create your own. Create a personal branding statement that communicates who you are in your professional life. This should reflect your professional reputation. On your resume, the statement is used to summarize, in just a few words, who you are. Using a similar branding statement on your social profiles create a certain amount of unity.

Summarize Who You Are Succinctly

While you shouldn’t make the mistake of writing paragraphs and paragraphs, you also shouldn’t just list a few key attributes and call it a day. In the end LinkedIn is a social media, so be social. Let some of your personality shine through.  A good strategy is to take the summary from your resume and rewrite it from the first person point of view. This allows a little life in the text without becoming too informal.

Key Words Are the Key

Employers use resume reading software to scan your resume right? Well, it is even easier to use the same tactics on LinkedIn. So be sure that the key words for your industry or job type are included. These should be liberally spread throughout your summary. Additionally you can simply create a key word competency section right within your profile. This way you are sure to have the right terms included and have an eye appealing profile.

Make Sure Your Profile is Complete

There is no sense in dipping your toe in the ocean that is LinkedIn, either jump in or don’t. Needless to say, I think you should jump. You really have nothing to lose, but a whole lot to gain. So be sure everything is filled out. List all of your relevant and recent jobs. Limit the details under each job to a couple key accomplishments. List colleges, professional development institutions etc.

Bonus Tips!

Hey, everyone likes to get a bonus right?

  • Create a professional sounding email. You do not want to use your current job email, and hodrod200@gmail isn’t going to cut it either.
  • Ask for recommendations. They are quick and easy to ask for and to give. If you get some be sure to reciprocate.
  • Update your status once in awhile. You don’t need to turn this into the next FaceBook, but once every week or so stop by and say Hi.
  • Experiment with groups. there are a lot of like minded job hunters and career builders out there. Find some and grow your network.

I know this article isn’t exhaustive, but it should be enough to get you started in the wide world of LinkedIn.