by Cheryl Simpson
Think of your LinkedIn profile as the hub of your online identity. All of your online content should lead to your profile, and your profile’s purpose is to guide readers to call you or request your resume.
When you think of your LinkedIn profile this way, you’ll see why it’s critical to secure a custom URL for yours if you don’t already have one. You can achieve this at no cost by logging in to LinkedIn and navigating to Settings > Edit Public Profile > Create Custom URL.
Once you have a custom LinkedIn URL, what do you do with it? How can you share it with others to help drive traffic to your profile and interest to your resume?
1. Your Email Signature File
Arguably the most important place to include your LinkedIn URL is in the signature file of your email host. This feature can be accessed from your email system’s settings page. Note that I’m speaking of your dedicated job search and career management email address here, not your employer, business, or personal email account.
- The simplest email signature is your name, of course, but if you’re using this email for job search and career management purposes it really should contain more information such as:
- A title or positioning statement
- A tagline or power statement
- Your personal contact information
- Your LinkedIn URL along with links to other key social networking sites.
- A link to your blog or Twitter stream, if pertinent and appropriate.
- You may wish to consider including a photo.
- A great app to use to create a good-looking email signature is Wisestamp.
2. Your Bio Or Marketing Brief
Because resumes are highly specific and focused tools these days and are generally highlighting your qualifications for a specific role rather than a range of possible positions, they aren’t effective networking documents anymore. Bios or marketing briefs are better suited for networking purposes (a bio presents a third-person narrative description of your brand and career story, while a marketing brief provides a richer array of information about your candidacy, impacts, and goals). Most job seekers will need one or the other, not necessarily both.
- Since the task of either of these documents is to lead the reader to learn more about you, it’s appropriate to include your LinkedIn profile URL. It can be embedded as a link or listed in full address form.
- You can also insert a QR code leading to your profile.
3. Your Business Card
Depending on your job search geographic targets, you may or may not need to do local or regional face-to-face networking as part of your search. If you are, consider making or securing a business card not affiliated with your current or most recent employer.
- Use a positioning title that echoes the one used in your LinkedIn profile headline.
- Include all of your contact information along with URLs to social networking profiles, including LinkedIn.
- You can use a QR code which leads readers to your LinkedIn profile if you like, though I would also recommend listing your URL in non-QR code form as well, since many folks do not have a QR reader or functionality.
- Don’t forget to highlight your core competencies and career brand on your business card as well.
Places 4-10 and the complete Careerealism article