Tips For Boosting Your LinkedIn Profile
Unless you've been hiding under a rock for the past few decades, you'll be aware that LinkedIn is the king of social networking sites for business professionals.
Think of your LinkedIn profile as your online CV. A CV that allows you to showcase way more than you ever could on paper, and that connects you with the brands you love and the companies that are looking for someone just like you.
A great LinkedIn profile can take some of the slog out of your job search. By tweaking your page to highlight your best bits, you position yourself to hiring managers and recruiters as someone worth getting to know little more. Hey, you spend enough time perfecting your Instagram page... so take a little time to showcase your professional side.
Clean Up Your Contacts
While you may have set up that LinkedIn profile years ago, you'll want to be sure that recruiters can get in touch when the right job comes knocking.
Update your contact info to make sure it's accurate.
Using an old school email address from back in the day? Consider changing the old 'firstname.lastname@example.org' to something more professional. Google email accounts are free. Set one up and link it to your LinkedIn for a more professional approach.
Make sure your current location is set so that recruiters searching within a specific city or county will find you.
Tip: Set your location to your current workplace or the areas you want to work, not your home, if you don't plan to search there.
Keep It Concise
Hiring Managers don't need to see a long list of experience from way back when. Save the fine detail for your CV and interview.
Format your LinkedIn profile so that it's relevant to the jobs you want, not the jobs you've had.
Think of it this way, if a recruiter is searching for a target-driven sales executive, you're less likely to be found if your experience is made up of administrative roles from decades ago. Which brings us neatly on to...
Nail the Keywords
Adding keywords to your LinkedIn profile helps recruiters and companies find you, based on your skills, experience and how well they match what they're looking for.
Focus on keywords that match your strongest skill sets. If you’re a web designer, include “responsive design”, if you're a sales executive, add "revenue generation", "closing skills" and "negotiation". Consider what hiring managers will be searching for and make sure you cover as many as possible to be seen.
There are thousands of groups on LinkedIn in a range of fields and interests. Add your own content to groups to share news, tips, blogs or opinions on your sector. This is not a platform to shout about 'brand you', so save your skill sharing for your own profile page. Though, it's a great way to position yourself as an expert in your field, and to encourage new connections from like-minded professionals... who may just know of a great role to suit you.
Contribute to ongoing conversations in industry-aligned groups. It shows your passion for your sector and will generate awareness of you as an individual, perhaps even an industry influencer if others like what you have to say.
Recent improvements on LinkedIn will soon allow you to post videos into your groups, mention the members you want to include, and reply to comments. Variety is the spice... get creative.
Tip: The best time to post on a LinkedIn group is Tuesdays between 10am and 11am when you'll capture the highest engagement from your fellow groupies.
Recommendations are a testimonial of your work and skills. The whole world can catch a glimpse of how awesomely you did your last job, and which industry leaders give you the seal of approval.
The most common way of getting a recommendation is to recommend someone else. Ask for recommendations from people who know your work well and who you know will speak highly of you.
Tip: Don't be shy to mention specific projects you'd like your recommender to mention. If you want someone in authority to give you the thumbs up, make it a thumbs up that's relevant for your next big role.
Endorsements are like a high five against all of the skills you claim to be awesome at. In one swift click, your connections can endorse you for specific skills. Think of it as a Facebook like, on a professional level.
Make sure you've listed all relevant skills in your profile (see keywords above).
Tip: Look at the profiles of those you've worked with and endorse them for their skills. It's usual common courtesy that they'll endorse you back.
Follow Your Dream Companies
There are millions of company pages on LinkedIn (13 million, in case you were wondering). Choose the brands you'd love to work for and follow them to receive updates. This is a great way of educating yourself on the business prior to an interview, and also keeping an eye on any job adverts that crop up, ready for you to pounce on.
Landed an interview? Check out our interview prep tips.