Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile for Your Job Search
If you are in the process of looking for a new job, LinkedIn should be a part of your job search plan. However, for it to be used effectively, your LinkedIn profile should be fully optimized before you begin your job hunt. In order to optimize your LinkedIn profile, you must go beyond simply filling it out until it’s 100% complete. Of course, that’s the first step you have to take, but consider it to be the beginning rather than the end result. The best executive LinkedIn profiles are full of recommendations, skills, contacts, connections, and much more. As much as your profile can help you, it can hurt you just as quickly if you don’t display the right information. Here are some tips to consider before you actively begin your job search.
Recruiters and hiring managers use LinkedIn to find their next candidates to interview, and they do this by searching using certain keywords and phrases. Knowing which words those are takes a little effort and research on your part, but you’ll have to do that anyway if you have a fully targeted resume. Since you don’t know which section a recruiter will place the most emphasis on, optimize every section for SEO. The more relevant keywords you have, the easier it will be for a recruiter to find you.
Fully Complete the Profile Sections
Once the primary sections of your profile are complete, look at what else can be filled in. This may mean adding new skills as you develop them, discussing volunteer experiences, mentioning organizations you’re a part of, any coursework you’re actively participating in, and more. The idea is to give whoever views your profile a complete view of your skills, achievements, and personality.
Balance Personal Branding With Hard Skills
Your executive LinkedIn profile is the perfect place to highlight your personal brand. Sometimes it’s not appropriate to demonstrate your personal brand in your resume, but LinkedIn can be used to build on the resume itself. You can still mention your qualifications and hard skills, while also showing who you are as a person and a professional. Having a balanced LinkedIn profile like this will help differentiate yourself, and you’ll have a better chance of piquing the interest of recruiters or hiring managers.
Build Your Network of Connections
Getting to 500+ connections is easier than you may think, but it can require some effort depending on what stage you’re at in your career. Take a look at companies in your industry and see who you can connect with. You can also consider reaching out to previous coworkers, classmates, or people you’ve met at networking events to build up your connections list. Another avenue to make connections is by joining LinkedIn groups relevant to your industry and participating in meaningful discussions. This may be the most effective way to build your list of connections naturally, since the other group members will get to know you well with the way you communicate.
Be Active & Interact with Your Connections
Most recruiters will look at how active you are on LinkedIn and what your activity entails. Commenting in groups and sharing content or reaching out to people to share a piece of news or simply checking in with them are good examples of engaging activities. Not only do these activities demonstrate your interest in certain topics, but they also can show your expertise and leadership, depending on your interactions with the content. The more your name is in their mind, the better the chances are of them remembering you when an opportunity arises. And as far as the ability to optimize your LinkedIn profile, you may receive endorsements or recommendations from these people as a sign of appreciation for your interactions with them. You don’t want to be overly active all the time, but commenting and engaging with a few pieces of content daily is just right.
Recruiters are constantly searching on the platform to find the candidates they think would fit the opportunity they have available. When you optimize your LinkedIn profile in the right way, your name will show up in the searches more often than not. It’s not enough to simply have a profile. It’s critical for you to have yours updated and optimized before you start your job search.