Friday, September 21, 2012

How to take advantage of Linkedin’s profile update notifications

Craig Fisher

A funny thing happened when I made some changes to my LinkedIn profile recently. Several people sent me notes right away congratulating me on my new position. The notes themselves were not surprising. But the speed with which they arrived was new. And I didn’t actually have a new position. Not really.

I should explain that I regularly experiment with the titles and other areas of my own LinkedIn profile to test for traffic and effectiveness. As it was that day, I was adding keywords to the back end of one of my job titles in my LinkedIn profile. I find that if I put strategic keywords after (or in place of) my official title, I get more clicks and better search engine optimization (findability) for the terms with which I want to be associated. I change these keywords from time to time to get re-noticed by my target audience.

Here are examples of what I mean:-
Old Title:
VP Sales
Ajax Workforce Marketing

New title:
VP, LinkedIn Training, Social Media Strategy and Marketing
Ajax Workforce Marketing

Old title:
Senior Recruiter

New title:
Recruiter Hiring the Top Software Developers in Phoenix

The new title in each of these examples is more descriptive, filled with keywords that will come up in search results by your target audience, and will showcase your actual message when your network is notified about your “New” title.

So I got messages from my network congratulating me on my “new” title surprisingly fast. It turns out that LinkedIn is rolling out a new notifications system that utilizes icons at the top of your profile or home page letting your know about update activity from your network. (If you don’t see the icons when you log in to LinkediIn yet, don’t fret. It will roll out to everyone in due course.)

How can you take advantage of this new feature to get your message, product, service, job search, or job opening noticed by your network?  Here are my top tips

Know how to turn your activity broadcasts off/on. If you are going to re-vamp your whole LinkedIn profile at once, turn off your updates! You don’t want to bombard your network with your profile updates if you are making multiple changes. Hover over your name at the top right of your profile and click “settings” then “Turn on/off your activity broadcasts”. Turn them back on when you want people to see your updates again.

Add keywords to your headline and job titles. If you want a strategic message to show up in notifications as a profile change, consider adding some key words after your job title. For instance, if you are a recruiter for ABCD Corp, you might update your title from “Recruiter” to “Recruiter Hiring the Top Software Developers in Phoenix”. Two things will happen. 1) LinkedIn will post the notification on the updates page and new notifications icon. 2) Your network will get an email that day or week with your update included.

Editor’s note: at Talent Connect Las Vegas next month, Ajax Workforce Marketing will offer their popular ‘Pimp My Profile’ stations to help conference attendees maximize their presence on LinkedIn. Here Ajax VP Craig Fisher shares his tips for optimizing your profile – and those of your colleagues too.

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