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The world is becoming increasingly digitized, so you only have a small window of opportunity to give a great first virtual impression. In the Oliver James & LinkedIn Podcast series, Matthew Davis (Global Customer Success Manager, LinkedIn) and Jayne Laird (Managing Associate, Oliver James New York), provide their tips and expert advice on all things LinkedIn. Here are the key takeaways from the series:
Capturing a recruiter’s attention
Recruiters have a very trained eye, so you only have a window of around 5-7 seconds to capture their attention.
Your profile picture is the first part of your profile a recruiter/hiring manager will see. Use a high-quality and clear headshot.
Include your skillset in the headline. For example, if you are a Data Architect specialist, make sure this is in your headline.
Video is the fastest-growing type of content on LinkedIn. To get your profile noticed, include images, documents, and visuals to get your story across.
If you are open to opportunities, you can let your network know on two different levels. You can privately signal you are open to new opportunities or you can let your entire network know– this is the photo frame with the green banner.
In the open to work functionality, you can also specify the types of roles you are interested in, as well as preferred locations. These will help your profile show up to the appropriate recruiters.
Your job title should be reflective of the position you want.
The summary section is a chance to give people a snapshot of who you are and what your experience is, so avoid generic words such as team player and hard- working. Instead, focus on what you do, your experience, and your specialisms - think elevator pitch.
In the experience section, lead with an achievement or accomplishment, and make it concise. How did you impact the business? Did you save money? Did you reduce time?
Recruiters search using keywords and job titles, so make sure you avoid internal language and use keywords that they will be searching on.
Avoid overfilling your profile with keywords that are not directly related to the type of roles you are searching for and only use keywords that reflect your experience.
Your profile should reflect your skillset, experience, and career ambition, so update it as you go.
Remember, LinkedIn isn’t your CV. It’s an opportunity to provide an overview of your skillset.
Highlight any online courses or qualifications you have attained. Hiring managers are looking for candidates that can, and want to, keep their skills up to date.
Don’t forget to check how your strategy is performing. Check your analytics (available via your profile page). Look at your profile views, the number of times your profile has shown up, and how many views/interactions your posts are receiving. Take a critical review of these and refresh your profile accordingly.
Networking on LinkedIn
Networking is at the core of LinkedIn. If you are not doing it, you are missing out as networks can help you unlock new opportunities.
Once you have a strong profile, get it out there and get networking! Join associated groups in your industry. Start sharing, commenting, and providing updates. Being active on LinkedIn will open you up to new connections and new opportunities.
LinkedIn is the world’s largest social network. If you are not on the platform or are not utilising it to its fullest potential, your competitors and peers will be. So, have a voice and optimise your profile.
Follow industry leaders who can help you to build out your thought leadership.
Connect with people you know, for example, previous and current employees.
To identify people you could connect with, utilise the 'people you may know' feature in your network tab.
Once you have connected, you could like/comment/share and engage with them. The key is to maintain these relationships. Have a little and often approach to communication.
When you connect with someone, add a note, mention an old colleague or a mutual connection. People like to connect with like-minded people.
To attract new connections, share your experiences and ideas on the platform. Reshare posts and add your thoughts and comments – you will quickly start to get noticed outside your initial network.
Your profile tells your story, so forget about jargon and use impactful words. Engage, start sharing, have fun, and get out there. The more you put in, the more you will get out.
Using LinkedIn to land your next job
Make sure your LinkedIn profile and CV are up to date and relevant - take a critical look at them.
Look at what skills are relevant to the role. Are there any LinkedIn Skills Assessments you can take to validate you have these skills?
Use your network to your advantage. Check out groups, influencers, and company pages and get connected with the right people.
Connect with people that can help you, for example, recruiters.
Utilise LinkedIn in your interview preparation. Show you are proactive and interested in the role by looking at the company and hiring manager's LinkedIn page.
Your profile will also show up off the platform via search engines. You have an opportunity to customise your LinkedIn URL and a LinkedIn profile with a customised URL will rank higher in those search results.
When you upload your pictures or banner, you can name the files and use your name. Google will index these images, showing them in image search results.
Creating backlinks to your LinkedIn profile from blog posts or your website will optimise your chances of being discovered on sites that aren’t LinkedIn.
Have a strategy when it comes to posting content. Post regularly, even if it’s once/twice a week.
Listen to the full podcast series here.