Are you on LinkedIn? If you are serious about looking for a new job then you really should prepare your LinkedIn profile for the interview. LinkedIn is the only successful social networking site dedicated solely to working professionals. It’s your opportunity to network online, rather than attend stressful group events, and it’s a chance for you to show off your resume and try to attract job offers.
But how do you use LinkedIn to get a job? There are 6 key things you need to do to promote yourself effectively on LinkedIn:
1. Create a Professional Portfolio
Before you add even a single person, create an incredible portfolio. Showcase your best skills. Use a great photo. Make sure that your profile is already fully prepared. You never know when a decision maker will see your profile. Before you even add your very first connection, make sure your profile is complete.
2. Join Groups
Groups are one of the best ways to get noticed. You can join your old college alumni group, or groups related to the industry you hope to break into. Groups also provide you with updates that you can comment on and the ability to show off your thoughts and expertise.
3. Add Connections
Once you’ve prepared your profile you can go ahead an add connections. Everyone you have ever met could conceivably be a connection. Just make sure that all of the following is true: They remember you, they like you, and you have some type of personalized message you can send them. That last part is key – always make sure that your LinkedIn message is friendly and personal, especially for those that you don’t know that well.
4. Follow Companies
Find the companies that you want to work for and follow them. Many companies post open jobs to their LinkedIn profiles, and if you follow them you can be one of the first people that finds a new job when it opens and applies to it. Try to find specific employers you genuinely want to work for, and discover businesses that work in your industry that are unlikely to be followed by thousands of others.
5. Follow Recruiters
Similarly, follow local recruitment companies. Many of them now provide services through LinkedIn and post jobs immediately after receiving them. They collect applications, and they will get to know your resume.
6. Apply Off LinkedIn
Finally, here is a trick – after speaking with several employers, we found that many of them did not like reviewing the applications through LinkedIn. Check first to see if they have a link to the job somewhere online so that you can apply through email with your professionally written resume and cover letter, rather than through LinkedIn’s application system. Then, only if you can’t find it, apply through LinkedIn. Your LinkedIn profile will never be as specific as your resume, so see if you can apply via email first.
LinkedIn Works – In fact thousands of people get their jobs through LinkedIn but mastering it can be difficult. Make sure you are aware of the most common mistakes which alienate people on LinkedIn.
See Also: Cleaning up your online identity