Linked In is a fantastic online tool to enable people to advertise their skills and experience on line. However, many people don’t understand how to use it to it’s full advantage. So, here are some top tips on how to understand what Linked In is and what you need to do to maximize it to your benefit.
What is Linked In? – It is a Social Network for professional people enabling them to connect and network with each other globally. It enables you to create a personal profile to promote yourself to a global audience. It is an online version of attending a ‘networking event’.
How big is it? Since its’ inception in 2003 it has grown to over 600 million registered people. It is the world’s leading Social Media channel for business marketing from large multinational, global organisations down to a single individual like you.
Why should you be on it? Simply put, Linked In is a must, whether you are looking for a job, already employed, an entrepreneur or a consultant. It’s about having a present in today’s business world and therefore if you’re not on it, you are out of the loop and could be letting potential professional opportunities and information pass you by every day.
What is it used for? It’s the best social media platform to promote yourself as a professional. You can demonstrate your key achievements, your job experience as well as topics which interest you. It can also be used as a platform to advertise your skills, build credibility as a professional and increase your visibility. Furthermore it is also a great medium for keeping up to date with business news and information.
- Always ensure you have a professional photo of yourself on Linked In that represents how you would want to appear to your audience. Avoid unprofessional photos i.e. social settings, photos with others such as children or family. Linked In is like attending a networking event – but online. Therefore, if you don’t have a picture, it would be like turning up to a networking event with a paper bag on your head! You need to be seen. Not having a photo will send a message you have something to hide …… you!
- Don’t be lazy and just upload a copy of your CV and hope that’s enough. It is isn’t. Your CV needs to be tailored to every job and audience so you need to keep this back. Instead, Linked In about showcasing your career history and the achievements you have made during your career journey.
- You can even upload presentations, useful links or anything you feel will strengthen your profile and be of interest to your audience.
- You can ‘follow’ people and organisations of interest to you; keep up to date with their social media profiles, jobs and industry business.
- Expand your network firstly by connecting to people you know – these are called your ‘first degree connections’. They can connect you with people they know –your ‘second degree connections’ and finally you can expand to their connections who will be business decision makers, recruiters and hiring managers – these are your ‘third degree connections’.
- The best thing about Linked In is it’s free! Although there is a paid option, that’s for Recruiters, Head Hunters and hiring managers to use as an effective tool to seek out ideal candidates.
- Finally, remember every time someone looks at your profile – you can see who has been checking you out. Always good to know who’s interested in you!