I have a bit of an embarrassing confession to make. I am absolutely obsessed with LinkedIn. While I love a good Instagram of someone’s brunch as much as the next girl, the content on LinkedIn tends to be more serious. Which can be a nice change of pace.
We invest so much in our careers, it only makes sense that there is a place to share what is going on in our work with our career connections. LinkedIn is a great place to share your accomplishments as well as keep your work relationships strong, but in order to succeed on LinkedIn, you need to have a great profile. Check out my tried and true tips for creating the best LinkedIn profile.
The best thing you can do for your LinkedIn profile is add a photo. Having a photo makes your profile 14% more likely to be viewed. Be careful though, this is not the time to post a selfie. Use a clean and professional headshot with no distracting backgrounds and work appropriate hair, makeup and clothes. Also make sure your face takes up 60% of the frame so you are recognizable.
Fill out as much information about yourself as possible. Having a complete profile will make it so much easier for LinkedIn’s search engine to find you. Which means recruiters will be able to find you easier. LinkedIn allows you to add so much more detail than a resume or cover letter.
Add where you went to school, what applicable courses you’ve taken, volunteer work and any awards you’ve received etc. As a writer I take advantage of the Publications feature which allows me to link to every article I have published online. Have a website or links to any special projects? Don’t forget to include them; this is your chance to brag about how amazing you are. P.S. Want to look like a LinkedIn expert? Create a clean, custom URL. It will look so much better when you provide anyone with the link to your profile.
Most people do not realize that you can post on LinkedIn like any other social network. Provide the occasional status update about your career, use the blogging platform for more detailed posts and join groups and contribute to their conversations. I like to share a status update whenever I finish any courses or certifications related to my job.
Let’s not forget about connecting, that is the whole point of LinkedIn. It can be nerve wracking at first, but add as many career connections as you can. In my experience most people will accept your request. This does not mean you should add random people in your industry; fake connections will do nothing for you. Add current and past coworkers, former classmates and people in your industry that you have connected with outside of LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a great way to stay connected with people you don’t work with on the daily and remind them of your growing skills and career.
Are you using LinkedIn? Share your best tips in the comments!
By Jacqueline DeMarco
Featured Photo: Walk In Wonderland