To further your career, you’ll need to create a LinkedIn profile as a tool for networking and job searching. But how do you make sure to use LinkedIn effectively? Here are six tips.
- Complete the entire profile. Your LinkedIn profile is just like your résumé—It should include all of the elements that describe you and your qualifications. The registration process is a guided one, and LinkedIn even includes a meter that tells you how close to completion you are. Just follow the instructions, and you’ll be set.
- Use lots of the right keywords. LinkedIn is a virtual résumé, and just as you want to use keywords in a paper résumé, you want them to work for you on LinkedIn, too. One great way to find terms is this one from The Muse: Put the text from a few different job postings into a word cloud generator, and you’ll see in the results which terms are most likely to resonate with employers in your industry.
- Get personal. A résumé is a just-the-facts document; your LinkedIn profile should “sound” like you. Write in the first person, and state strengths as your strengths and successes as your successes. Let your personality shine through.
- Add media. Build to your personal brand by personalizing your URL, customizing your links, adding a background image and writing a great summary; then, highlight the work you’ve done by adding links, images, video and other multimedia to each position you list. Learn more about these from Inc.com.
- Get endorsements. With the click of a mouse, your contacts can vouch for your skills one at a time, which backs up what you say about the work you’ve done and gives recruiters a good idea about what you can do. You can request that a contact endorse you, or you can get the ball rolling by endorsing them first!
- Get recommendations. Just like with endorsements, this can be a good way for colleagues to promote one another. There’s even a simple recommendation request template that you can use when making contact. If you didn’t work closely with a person, though, you can still ask them to recommend you by reminding them of work you may have in common.