LinkedIn is one of the really useful tools a headhunter has in their research armour. As recruitment professionals, it allows us to find out about our industry sectors, target companies and importantly, talented individuals i.e. potential candidates. We are drawn to profiles based on good quality detail and interesting content. Here are a few tips on getting noticed on LinkedIn and whilst you may not be looking for a new role surely you would hate to miss out on hearing about your dream job or worse still, be passed over by a potential customer or business opportunity. Here are a few useful tips to consider to take advantage of all of these opportunities:
THINK about yourself as a brand: how you would like to be perceived and the message you would like to get across. Your profile needs to catch people’s attention, give some simple information about your experience and what you are looking to do. Be professional yet retain some of your personality.
CAPTURE a professional, yet unique profile image: ‘selfies’, holiday snaps and you at the annual sales conference may not be appropriate – it's social media, but not that social! Try getting somebody with a good quality digital camera to take a few headshots and use those instead.
WRITE a profile headline, with your current job title: if you are looking for a new role, you may want to add “currently seeking a new challenge” or similar to catch someone’s eye.
USE the features available on your profile: You can advertise yourself as an ‘open networker’ which means you are interested in networking and in connecting with other professionals. The ‘IN’ symbol means you have activated the feature where other members can contact you via ‘Inmail’ for free so will be more inclined to write you a detailed message instead of just a connection request. By activating to job hunter feature (the little briefcase) recruiters will have a visual focus that you are ‘in the market’
INCLUDE a brief summary of your top achievement: In the very top summary of your profile, you can add a nice, easy to read a list of your biggest achievements. Include bullets and limit this to around 5 – 6 items.
PROVIDE an overview of your career expertise: Not the whole CV but a flavour of your achievements and the things you are proud of, once again if you are proactive in looking for a move, put what your ideal role would look like in terms of your goals and ambitions.
INCLUDE automated feeds to other social networks: Got a Twitter, Facebook, or blog? Take the time to add your links so that when you post elsewhere, it appears as an update on your LinkedIn profile. Obviously, make sure the content on these networks is relevant and appropriate for a professional audience and make sure you are using these, otherwise, there is not much point putting them on.
SHOW OFF by adding examples of your work/portfolio: LinkedIn allows users to add URLs to their profiles. Make use of this (when other job seekers don’t bother) by adding a link to your website, blog, and online portfolio(s) if you have them.
JOIN strategic LinkedIn in groups: Check out industry groups and join those specializing in niche recruiting.
FOLLOW aspirational employers in your industry: this will show research, knowledge and visibility in your sector.
ADD industry-relevant content frequently: Start sharing content that demonstrates your areas of expertise. Post to your main update feed and to the groups you are a part of for maximum exposure.
USE your offline network, connect with friends, family and professional contacts and connections of your connections that you think may be able to help.
DON’T BE AFRAID to approach recruiters, headhunters or hiring managers directly if you have something interesting to say about your industry or are looking for new opportunities to add value to another business, why would they not be interested in your message? At Collingwood, we have had experience of being approached on a speculative basis on LinkedIn and within one meeting our client had offered a senior executive role that provided the opportunity and growth the individual was looking for. He is still with the global corporation, heading up one of their European divisions.
LinkedIn is a networking treasure chest for any businessperson, filled with great opportunities to cement existing relationships, meet new professionals and network within your industry sector. We hope our advice will help you make the most of the opportunities available. Why not get started now by linking in with Collingwood’s company page.