If you’re on LinkedIn and you want to get the most out of this social networking service, here are 4 quick hacks that will help you connect, research, and perhaps land a new job.
1. Make Sure Your LinkedIn Profile is Complete.
Your profile is your virtual cover letter and first impressions matter — so make sure you’ve made your profile as complete as possible. As an added benefit, your LinkedIn profile generally ranks high in Google search results for your name, so make sure your profile is up-to-date, accurate, and complete.
Breakthrough Tip: Your LinkedIn profile should complement — not duplicate — your resume. Make sure the information connects the dots between the two as social media is a key player in today’s job search process and more than 70% of employers search online to vet candidates.
2. Grow Your Connections.
You are in control when it comes to making connections. You can selectively connect — accepting invitations only from those you know and trust — or you can use LinkedIn to grow the network of people you know.
Breakthrough Tip: The larger your network, the easier it will be to connect with someone you don’t know (yet). And, the power of increasing your first-degree network is in greatly increasing your chances of getting hired at a company where you have a connection.
3. Give To Get.
Authentic, genuine Recommendations can make or break a LinkedIn profile (just like references can for a job candidate). Select a handful of people in your network and write Recommendations for them, without asking for one in return. You will be surprised at how many people will reciprocate.
Breakthrough Tip: Make sure your Recommendations are specific and detailed. When reading the Recommendation, you should be able to tell exactly who it was written about. Quantify accomplishments (with percentages, numbers, and dollar amounts) as much as possible.
4. Get Involved.
Join some LinkedIn Groups. Groups are the “water cooler” of the social site. You can find Groups for school and university alumni, your former and current employers, trade groups, industry associations, and more. Even better, you can send a connection request to fellow Group members, even if they would normally be a second or third degree connection. (Great if you don’t have a Premium account on LinkedIn!)
Breakthrough Tip: One way to establish yourself as an expert on LinkedIn is to start your own Group. But be prepared to invest time to help it grow!
If you’re not on LinkedIn, here are 6 reasons why you should join Linkedin now.