I have been using linkedin.com since 2007 so have been able to build up my contacts, content and activity levels to a level that has enabled me to be very successful in using it as a means of finding opportunities and having my profile viewed at a time when I’m in search of opportunities.
My success with LinkedIn didn’t happen overnight because I had to put a lot of thought, time and research to make sure I got the most out of it as possible. Having more than a decade of recruitment expertise meant that I knew what recruiters and employers were looking for and the potential that Linkedin had bring opportunities my way because Linkedin is all about;
- Building a profile
- Building a network
- Searching and communicating with leads and contacts
- Selling personal skills, attributes and achievements yourself
Benefits I experienced
The time and effort I invested in putting together a Basic profile meant I have been able to reap benefits, including;
- when I was searching for opportunities I was getting between 10 and 15 calls from recruiters daily
- my profile was being viewed regularly by recruiters and hiring managers who either found me via the LinkedIn interface or through Google natural search and at its peak I was getting between two and three inmail (linkedin name for email) daily
- I got meetings, interviews and offers off the back of my profile
- I used my profile for job market research and was able to ask my trusted contacts exactly what different jobs entail and what the expectations of employers were for those particular jobs
- I received regular emails from LinkedIn with jobs that matched the criteria of my search
- it really helped me build my confidence when employers and recruiters commented on the professionalism and relevance of my profile according to the jobs that they were recruiting for
What’s more I got all this for free from the basic profile package!
Now, LinkedIn does charge to use its premium job search function but as I said, I produced all of the results listed above(and more) using a basic profile so didn’t have to pay a penny which means I got great value for my endeavour.
I believe that anyone can have the same experience I have had using LinkedIn by taking the time and effort to build a strong profile that gets positive attention. But it requires commitment and you probably won’t see results overnight. That being said once you’ve built momentum then you’ll find that things become easier.
Beware, Linkedin Information Overload!
There is so much information to read on linkedin on the Internet and books you can refer to (most of which are out of date) so I put together this linkedin guide which works as a checklist so you have all the basics in place.
I really wish I had this checklist when I was starting out with my basic LinkedIn profile so that I didn’t have to do things by trial and error and take so much time to get the basics right. And I believe that if you dedicate time and effort to your profile you can produce similar results or at the very least have an effective profile for job search.
Who should read this guide
The guide will benefit anybody who;
- wants to know how to set up a basic profile from scratch and optimise the profile so that it can be found by recuiters and hiring managers
- is looking to optimise an existing basic profile so that over time there profile can be found in organic search engine results and via the LinkedIn interface.
Checklist for a basic LinkedIn profile
Here’s a checklist of things that I added, optimised and created as part of my basic LinkedIn profile to have the great success that I described above so make sure you check each item as you go through to make sure you don’t miss anything out.
- An interview-ready Photo
- A key word-infused Headline
- A personalised URL
- Customised public profile
- A profile Summary that was unique attention
- A Specialties sub-section in the summary
- Succinct job description with quantified achievements
- Optimum and easily readable career history
- 50 Skills & Expertise listings
- Relevant education details
- 2 to 3 LinkedIn Groups
- At least 2 to 3 LinkedIn Recommendations
- A strategy to embed relevant keywords in 5 key areas of your profile
- Contact details added
Before you start
But before completing/starting your basic LinkedIn profile just take a step back to think about what it is you are doing. You are essentially adding your name online to a database of professionals which can be searched by literally anyone that sets you to control information that’s available (more on that later). And ask yourself are you ready to commit the time and effort that is necessary to build success?
Struggling to get interview? Then you’ll probably struggle to get offers for jobs you actually want.
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