When I suggest to a client that they should create a LinkedIn account, most of them say: “yes, I have an account but I never use it”. And then, often it’s followed by the question: “why do I even need one?”.
Let’s try to answer few of these questions:
Why do you need to be on LinkedIn?
In few words… The power of networking!
Recruiters seek candidates on LinkedIn, headhunters and HR managers will first check LinkedIn for the best candidates whether they are referred by a 3rd party or fond through online searches. Business owners will look for freelancers on LinkedIn however, predominantly based on the connections of their own connections.
Many Linkedin users receive job offers even if they’re not currently searching for one mainly because their work history fits the criteria entered by the searchers.
How to create a good profile?
1) Use English, with no spelling mistakes. I also suggest that you ask someone you trust to double check your profile for grammar mistakes. Today, all major browsers have spelling check and autocorrect making spelling mistakes truly unacceptable.
2) Upload a good profile picture – bright, showing your face, in very high resolution. This picture will also show when someone is looking for you on Google images.
3) Write a good and relevant profile summary. This is probably the first thing anyone will read about you, spend the time to make sure this will show your most important qualification. Use relevant keywords (I hope that you know that Google also visits your profile, right?).
4) Keep your profile relevant and up to date. Got a new job? Add it. Did a new course? Add it. Got promoted? Add it. It’s quick and simple to keep it up to date all the time even if you currently aren’t looking for a job.
5) Publish any blog posts that you write or collaborate on and promote any projects that you are currently working on. Are you a freelancer? Then you should definitely publish your current project, upload videos and keep it lite and interesting.
6) Grow your network! Each person in your network can help you find your next project. Don’t be so picky on who you accept as a connection. Check their personal profile; check their connections; why did they ask you to connect? Only then decide whether to accept or block.
7) Don’t spam. Don’t solicit others to endorse you. Don’t send spam massages, this is not the place.
8) Join groups – if you want to be exposed to new contacts, if you want to be heard, groups are a very good place to do so. Try to join relevant groups, participate in discussions and contribute your knowledge to the group. You will find people with the similar interests who are not connected to you… yet.
9) Privacy settings should allow you to be found and even stand out from the competition, which in this case is everyone else. Don’t be shy; be proud!
10) Don’t lie! Just DON’T!
Your LinkedIn profile is your business card and your connection to the entire business world. Be active, participate in discussions and keep your profile up to date. You’d be surprised how often, when you least expect it, and when you dearly need it, Linkedin will be there for you.