Thursday, February 28, 2013

How to Build a Personal Brand Through Linkedin

LinkedIn has become one of the most important professional network platforms on the planet. It has grown phenomenally in the last 5 years, with over 200 million members worldwide and 7 million in Canada alone. With every Fortune 500 executive having a LinkedIn profile, the website has become popular not only among students, but also corporations and individuals.
In a recent article published in Forbes MagazineSusan Evans discusses a report released by Bullhorn Company concluding that LinkedIn is the dominant networking site among job seekers and recruiters. As LinkedIn's CEO Jeff Weiner states, "It's not just about job seekers looking for the perfect job it's also about entrepreneurs looking to make money, sales reps looking to turn warm cold calls into prospects, and journalists looking to break a story."
Given LinkedIn's growing worth, with the company reporting on Feb. 7 a 192% earnings per share as revenue rose 81%, and Facebook struggling to stay afloat in the markets, a LinkedIn profile is definitely an asset to your networking cocktail. The site provides attractive options to those who wish to market themselves to potential companies, recruiters, or customers, allowing users to display their academic credentials and professional experience at the top of their profiles. In addition, users now have a larger profile picture, an attractive contact button, and the elimination of job titles at the top of the profile to make the playing field more level.
At a recent Toronto event hosted by HAPPEN (professional networking group that links professionals with opportunities), Perry Monaco, Recruitment Product Consultant at LinkedIn, spoke about the benefits and tips for building your personal brand.
Here are a few highlights: 
• LinkedIn offers 4 product lines: Personal Membership, Sales Solutions, Marketing Solutions, and Talent Solutions. The Personal Membership product (personal profile) line is one of the fastest growing in the world. Visit LinkedIn's product page for more information.
• Adding designations beside your name puts you lower on the search ranking algorithm. You want to be found and found near the top of search rankings.
• Students and new graduates are recognizing LinkedIn as one of the best tools to connect with potential employers. 
• LinkedIn provides free job listings for anyone looking to hire a student or individual with less than 6 months of work experience.
• LinkedIn has undergone a major facelift and in September 2012 a new "Endorsement" feature section was added so fellow users can endorse your listed skills. 
• The more completed your profile is, the higher number of searches your profile will appear in. 
• You can join up to 50 groups and up your exposure by posting to groups with relevant content.

What should you include in your LinkedIn Profile?  Read what to include and the complete Huffington Post Article

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

13 Tips to Get That Job in 2013 on LinkedIn

LinkedIn emailed me that I'm in its "Top 1 Percent" of viewed profiles. Only two million of us are, so I'll share my pearls of LinkedIn Networking wisdom. On LinkedIn you should:
1. Use a picture and real name.
2. List a profession, even if you're jobless. Examples: "Financial Services Professional," "Global Brand Marketer" or "Fortune 100 Accountant." Your headline doesn't need to say unemployed. If you don't list your company's name, the assumption is you're seeking new opportunities.
3. When you reach out to someone, know what they and their company do. Don't assume you already know. I often get emails from people about Latin American marketing because I work at Telemundo, whose primary business is TV for U.S. Hispanics. Not the same thing. It's not cheating on LinkedIn to use other sites like Google to research a company before emailing new contacts.
4. If you want a contact to forward your info, write an email that is easy to forward and helps you. An email with typos won't cut it. Neither will one that says you'd like a job in three different industries like wealth management, public relations or sales. Nor does one about your interest in jobs at three competitors.
5. Don't say that you'd like any job in the field. Know your skills and explain how they match a particular job or opening. The job opening for a jack-of-all-trades is rare.
6. Do not send job requests in an email with multiple cc's at various companies. Court your contacts. Make them feel special. No one wants to see that you want any old job. We'd like to feel that you want a job from us or with our companies.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

8 LinkedIn Etiquette Mistakes

If you want to network professionally today, you have to be on LinkedIn. And, just as in face-to-face interactions, there are some specific no-no's when it comes to communication and collaboration on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn hangs its hat on being the most businesslike of the major public social networks, and many people who would never dream of liking something on Facebook or tweeting status updates on Twitter will participate on LinkedIn. Many people, on the other hand, are pros at using social networks and might think of LinkedIn as just one more. That would be a mistake. One of the biggest missteps people make on LinkedIn is treating it like any other social network. Think of it like flip-flops: Would you wear them to a job interview? Probably not. Likewise, you shouldn't do the virtual equivalent of kicking off your shoes on LinkedIn.
Another way in which people sometimes falter on LinkedIn is by taking advantage of their connections. Yes, it's really cool that you are directly connected to the CEO of your company, but that doesn't necessarily mean that you should direct message her on the network. And just because you have, say, 500 connections, it doesn't mean that you should be sending out 500 requests for recommendations. As in real-life business situations, discretion, judiciousness and courtesy should guide your interactions on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn has been making many changes to its interface lately, and some of the features have been met with more enthusiasm than others. Endorsements have been a particularly prickly subject, with many people believing they are meaningless or manipulative. It's important to keep abreast of changes to LinkedIn's platform, and to develop an understanding of how new features are being used and perhaps even abused. You don't want to be the one in breach of some unwritten rule. Two other mistakes people tend to make on LinkedIn are to do too much or to do nothing at all.
In trying to get into the spirit of using LinkedIn, it can be easy to go overboard updating your status, requesting connections and joining groups. But watch out. These activities can be perceived as spamming your connections.
Doing nothing, on the other hand, can be even more problematic because it renders you almost invisible and negates the very purpose of being on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is one of the most powerful networking tools out there, and it grows in power as more people see it as the de facto professional social network. Doing nothing can be the worst LinkedIn no-no of all.

1) Don't Be Promiscuous With Endorsements

With just a click of a button, you can endorse the skills and expertise of people you are connected to on LinkedIn. But that doesn't mean you should. Have you actually experienced this person's skills and expertise first-hand? For that matter, have you actually ever met the person whose skills and expertise you are endorsing? Do you expect something in return? If you answer no, no and yes to these questions, an endorsement will do you more harm than good.

2) Don't Ask Everyone And His Brother For A Recommendation

As in the non-LinkedIn world, it should be considered a big deal to ask for a recommendation, and it should be a big deal to be asked to give a recommendation. Don't blanket everyone you are connected to with a request to recommend you. You'll put people who don't know your work well in an awkward position, and the recommendations you do get won't be as meaningful as if you had asked in a more pointed way

8) Don't Do Nothing

Doing anything too much -- whether it's updating or messaging or liking or whatever -- isn't good, but doing nothing at all might be worse, at least when it comes to your career. On LinkedIn, why wouldn't you keep your profile updated, update your status with relevant news and content, connect with people you have met at conferences, and join and participate in industry-specific groups? When it comes to any social network, one of the biggest no-no's is to do nothing at all.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Tips in Optimizing Your LinkedIn Profile for Successful Job Hunting

LinkedIn and job hunting – a match made in heaven

Can your LinkedIn profile help you land your ideal job? Yes, it very well can. Considering the fact thatLinkedIn is the single largest social media platform that specializes on business networking, putting an impressive profile in this network can significantly increase your chances of getting discovered by job recruiters and employers alike. 
However, since there are millions of people who are also trying their luck in finding a job through the site, you need to create an outstanding profile and optimize it accordingly to get found by the right people. If you are absolutely clueless on how to accomplish this goal, here are some tips that may help you.
Use a powerful profile headline. For the record, a simple and direct headline or personal tag line is all you need. You can develop an effective personal brand by describing the services and the qualities you can offer without going over the top. Avoid using buzzwords such as extensive experience, innovative, motivated, results oriented and dynamic, to name a few, since they are really quite overused. Tip: Consider branding yourself on who you want to be seen to increase your chances of landing your dream job.
Highlight important details. Write a compelling profile summary to build your readers' interest and urge them to know more about you and what you can bring to the table. Keep in mind that the topmost part of your profile is the most important so try to make it more substantial and interesting.
Use industry keywords. Increase your chances of getting found by job recruiters and employers alike by optimizing your profile for the search engines. However, avoid overdoing it or Google may penalize you for keyword stuffing.
Be wise in using recommendations. In this case, more is not necessarily better. Consider featuring only the best or most recent recommendations and keep the rest away from the public to keep your profile clean. If you don't have any experience relevant to the job you are seeking, consider asking for recommendations from your professors and classmates. You can also ask for recommendations that highlight your work ethics instead.

Friday, February 22, 2013

The Secret Benefit of LinkedIn Endorsements


A little while ago, LinkedIn began allowing members to endorse each other. Unlike recommendations, endorsements were simply a way for one member to confirm that another member has a particular skill. Because LinkedIn made it extremely easy to quickly endorse people for multiple skills, and because there is no verification required at all, many observers questioned the validity or use of the feature, myself among them.

Of course, it’s nice to have a great list of skills on your profile, and having tons of endorsements for your skills is certainly more impressive than none at all. Furthermore, each time you endorse a potential partner or prospect, that person gets a nice email telling them that you thought they deserved to be endorsed for some skill.

If you thought that was all there was to LinkedIn Endorsements, then you might not have noticed the Skills & Expertise section.

Skills & Expertise

Like the old LinkedIn Answers, Skills & Expertise is hidden within the More drop down. If you can find it, you’ll be rewarded with a great-looking landing page that announces that Skills & Expertise is there to help you “Discover the skills you need to succeed. Learn what you need to know from the thousands of hot, up-and-coming skills we’re tracking.” According to LinkedIn, this feature is still in beta.

The top of the page features a search bar where you can begin typing in a skill. It can be for someone you wish to hire, or something you want to learn about and are looking for someone who’s blogs you might want to read. Or, more interesting, do a search on one of your own skills to see where you stack up.

Below is a summary of a couple of specific skills. For me, iPhone was the first “skill” listed, and the summary included cities, related skills, and featured professionals.

Skill Details

If you search on a skill and select it, you’ll see the full Skill Details page. The left side lets you search for a different skill or take a look at related skills. We’ll get back to the importance of related skills in a moment.

In the middle, you’ll see your selected skill and a nice box that details the industry the skill is typically associated with, whether or not you current list that skill, and a button to see suggested skills. You’ll also see a percentage followed by y/y, which stands for year over year. We’ll talk about the importance of this metric as well in a moment.

Below the info box will be a list of professionals who list that skill. You might think that these professionals are ranked according to the number of times they’ve been endorsed for that skill, but that isn’t the case. The top ranked professional for “Social Media Marketing” only has 33 endorsements for that skill, while the #2 individual had 99+. So getting ranked isn’t solely based on the sheer number of endorsements.

At the bottom is a list of LinkedIn Groups that are associated with that skill.
Along the right side you’ll find buttons to share the skill, charts for relative growth, size and age, related companies, related jobs, and related locations.

More Benefits and Complete Article

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

29 LinkedIn Tips Everyone Should Use

LinkedIn continues to be cited as one of the top sites for sales professionals, recruiters, and job seekers. Is the site continuing its’ explosive growth? LinkedIn recorded 4.2 billion professionally oriented searches on the platform in 2011 and is on pace to surpass 5.3 billion in 2012. Additionally, they’ve added 1,000 employees this year. Yeah, that’s growth.

We’ve been working with the Minnesota Recruiters community on publishing some great content for job seekers and recruiters. 2 of the most recent posts include 25 social media tips from Recruiters and 50 job search tips. The focus for this article is LinkedIn and goes beyond the basic tips of using a professional photo.. Here are 29 LinkedIn tips everyone should use:
  1. Looking for a promotion or ideas to advance in your current role? Use LinkedIn to search for people and titles of the jobs you’re interested in. This is great research for what skills you’ll need to obtain.
  2. Use the CardMunch app for growing your network and LinkedIn connections. It’s quick and easy – use it for every person you meet and business card you receive.
  3. Use spellcheck. As Steve Levy told me in a recent call, you don’t want the word moron added to your skills inventory. A great example of this:  Are you the “Director of Pubic Relations”, or the “Director of Public Relations”. :)
  4. Create a more compelling summary. Many LinkedIn profiles lack information in the summary which is near the top of the profile. This is a quick way to stand out from others on the site.
  5. Take initiative beyond connecting. Don’t be afraid to ask for a call, a meeting, an informational meeting, or interview .
  6. Write and include a creative headline in your profile.
  7. Stay up-to-date with your network and use the site often. Don’t just engage with your network when you need something. Give back, frequently.
  8. There are now more than 2.6 million company pages. Use the company search function and use the results to research and connect with employees from target companies and follow their pages.
  9. Save time by signing up for job alerts – and let the site do the searching for you.
  10. Clearly articulate the value and impact you have made in current and past positions.
  11. Include specific information throughout your profile (context of roles, location, direct contact info, etc.).
  12. Connect your LinkedIn profile from other sites you use (twitter, facebook, blogs,, etc.).
  13. Keep the skills section of your profile updated throughout the year.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Social Branding: How To Create The Perfect LinkedIn Profile Blueprint


Optimizing your social media / LinkedIn profile is key to you managing your social brand. Using this The Perfect LinkedIn Profile Blueprint will help you make your social brand work a little harder for you!

I just returned from SAP’s field marketing kick-off meeting where we provided social media brand tune-ups using a similar format as the blueprint outlines.  Many of the 2,000 people who stopped by our Social Media Genius Bar had their profiles tweaked and enhanced to highlight their true brand! There are many platforms on which your brand can excel, however, one of the key components to your social brand is your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn is the digital hub for your experience and network of past, present and future clients! You need to invest some key time into your profile because it is the first thing that your contacts check out when they meet you are going to meet you. Did you know that LinkedIn states that only about 50% of users have a completed profile? This under-completed profile is an enormous missed opportunity to be found and to position your social brand!

How To Build The Perfect LinkedIn Profile

Use this social media blueprint to help you build your perfect LinkedIn Profile.
Social Branding: How To Create The Perfect LinkedIn Profile Blueprint image Slide111

2013 LinkedIn Profile Character Limits

Knowing the space with which you can work in your LinkedIn profile is key to helping you build your perfect social brand! Here are your character limits:  More tips and complete article

Monday, February 18, 2013

Top nine tips for your LinkedIn profile


“I pretty much hang around and point out my staff’s shortcomings, talk on the phone, and complain about how things should be ... Sometimes I make a sales call.”
Art Flater became something of a celebrity thanks to this amusing LinkedIn profile. The owner of an office equipment company based in Waukesha, Wisconsin, also claims to have “invented the 2-hour lunch break, which has been adapted by sales slackers everywhere” .
But Kellie Tomney, owner of personal and employer branding company Stand Out Advantage, says Flater’s is a high-risk strategy. “I would only recommend using humour if it is truly authentically you – and it should be used with caution,” she says.
LinkedIn now has more than 200 million users worldwide and is increasingly being used by recruiters and employers to research job candidates and employees, as well as by many others before business meetings. The Australian Financial Review asked two experts for their top tips on creating an outstanding profile.
1. Get on it. Peter Williams, chief edge officer at Deloitte’s Centre for the Edge, says “LinkedIn is definitely not new but it’s the dominant business social network. You’ve got to be on there.”
2. Don’t lie. “While you might get caught lying on a resume, the chances of getting caught are higher on LinkedIn,” Williams says. “This makes you lose credibility with people who know you.”
3. Don’t be too honest. Tomney, who also works in recruitment, says she’s come across LinkedIn profiles that announce things like “I’m not a team player”. “It attracts attention for sure, but what employer or connected sales person is going to want to deal with you?”
4. Remember who is watching. Williams says he is interested when a staff member or competitor starts “polishing” their profile or receiving lots of recommendations – “it’s a tell tale sign you are looking elsewhere”, he says.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

5 Ways You’re Not Using LinkedIn (But Should Be)

by Hannah Morgan

How do you use LinkedIn?
If you’re an internship or job seeker, you might be using the number one professional network to look at open positions. If you have a job already, you may use the site for networking with colleagues or finding leads.
The reality is: this is a much more powerful tool than that… and you may not be using LinkedIn to its maximum benefit.
Job seekers can not only find jobs, they can research target companies, study the backgrounds of upcoming interviewers and hiring managers, and network to get “inside” a company before getting hired. Current careerists often use LinkedIn for generating leads and researching their next job opportunity.
Here are some other ideas on what you could be doing with LinkedIn:

Personal Branding

LinkedIn is a terrific outlet to share expertise and promote your personal brand. If utilized purposefully and intelligently, LinkedIn is a great way to be found… just by showing what you know.

Keep Up With Industry News

How are you keeping up with what is going on in your industry? What publications or news sources do you regularly read? With a little effort, you can set up your LinkedIn News… and save time scouring news sites… by having that information delivered to you automatically.

Make New Connections

People define their LinkedIn connections differently. Some, known as LIONs (LinkedIn Open Networkers) connect with any and all. Other LinkedIn users only connect with people they’ve met or know well. And then there are those who fall in between or have no specific logic at all for whom they choose to connect with. Here are some ideas on how to find great contacts on LinkedIn.

Ways 4,5, and The Complete Article

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

How To Create a Brilliant Personal Brand on LinkedIn

Whether we are walking through town late at night, catching a train or queuing at the supermarket checkout, we make assumptions about people we don’t know: sometimes positive, sometimes negative.

When delivering my employability seminars, I often show a number of images of me. I ask the audience to shout out words they would associate with each picture. I never have to wait longer than a few seconds before people start throwing all kinds of descriptions at me.

A few years ago I presented a TV show that had a business element to it. The professional photos I had taken were black and white; I wore a power suit and was asked to look directly into the camera (without even a hint of a smile).

Well, they were professional shots, so I thought little about it and just used them on my LinkedIn profile.

A few months later, a fantastic company was looking to recruit. The hiring manager asked around for recommendations and a lovely lady, who had worked with me previously, very kindly recommend he contact me.

He searched me on LinkedIn, saw my image and felt like I was the last person he wanted to work with. He thought I looked hard nosed, arrogant and a little scary. It was only when our mutual contact persuaded him that I was none of those things that he eventually called.

We have since become good friends and luckily he told me how my LinkedIn image made him feel. After we had a giggle, I obviously changed it straight away.

I was extremely grateful for his feedback, but saddened to think about how many other people may not have contacted me because they felt the way he did.

I don’t believe those words define my personal brand; it was just a poorly chosen photograph. I had failed to recognise the way the photographer wanted to portray me, was not actually who I was. You may not like me, but you definitely won’t think I’m ‘scary’.

The reason I want to expose my mistake so publicly is to encourage people to think about their own LinkedIn image. I would advise you do the following:
  1. Choose three words you want your personal brand to be. Describe the way you want employers and potential business partners to perceive you.
  2. Choose a few images that you feel are suitable.
  3. Choose three people who you believe will tell you the truth and place the images in front of them. Ask them to pretend they don’t know you and to list words that describe the person in the picture.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

5 LinkedIn Marketing Tips to Grow Your Business


Are you looking for ways to expand your business with LinkedIn?
With a recent homepage redesign, profile and company page redesigns, new mobile apps and the introduction of notifications and endorsements, engagement on LinkedIn is growing.
Understanding a few simple strategies that can help you become a smarter and more effective marketer can really boost your results over time.
Here are 5 high-impact strategies to boost your marketing results on LinkedIn.

#1: Review and Reboot Your LinkedIn Profile… Frequently

Most recently, LinkedIn made some major changes both to personal profiles and company pages. For a comprehensive review of the most recent updates, visit this post to learn more about how to optimize your LinkedIn profile and company page.
In addition to making sure that you adjust to the changes in your profile layout and features, it’s a good idea to “reboot” your profile from time to time. I tend to reboot my profile every couple of months or so to keep it fresh, relevant and interesting.
Each time you update your profile, the update is shared to your network as long as you have this feature enabled in your settings.
adjust profile settings
Adjust your profile settings to show profile updates in your activity feed.
Is your LinkedIn profile picture outdated?
It may be time for a new one, especially if you’ve changed your look. Do you have a new hairstyle or color? Have you updated your wardrobe?
If it’s been a couple of years, your picture is most likely outdated. If you want to be recognizable in person at meetings, conferences and events with your LinkedIn connections, make sure your picture really does look like you today!
current profile image
Keep your LinkedIn profile image current and update your headline with relevant keywords.
Refresh your LinkedIn headline
I’ve found that when I update my primary profile headline every few months, my profile views jump. Also, when you add new keyword phrases to your profile summary and new relevant skills it may help you show up in more LinkedIn searches due to the search value of these key areas on your profile.
You can review your LinkedIn profile stats provided in the sidebar of your homepage to keep an eye on the number of times your profile has been viewed, as well as how many times you appear in LinkedIn searches.
Remember you won’t be able to determine who’s viewed your profile without apremium account, but you can still access the number of views you are receiving.
profile views
Review your profile stats frequently from the sidebar of your homepage.
The more people who view your profile, the more likely a percentage of those visitors will click through to your website or blog and learn more about you!
Keeping your profiles fresh and active will not only enable you to grow your visibilitywithin the network, it will also allow you to potentially drive relevant traffic to your blog or website.
Remember, your profiles are the foundation of your presence on LinkedIn. Don’t let them get outdated and rusty!

#2: Build a Deep and Wide Network

One of the best ways to get found on LinkedIn is to build up your network of connections. Certainly you will want to focus on having a quality network, but don’t be afraid to expand your connections.
LinkedIn does value both the depth and breadth of a member’s network, especially when showcasing search results. Every new connection you make is an opportunity toenhance your visibility.
Typically my rule of thumb is to review each invitation request received and make sure that the person has a completed LinkedIn profile with a picture.
Also make sure there is some relevant reason why it would make sense to connect.
  • Do they live in my community?
  • Do we belong to the same group(s)?
  • Are they connected to someone I know?
  • Do we or have we worked in the same industry?
  • Do we share common hobbies, interests or causes?
  • Have they read or spread my content?
  • Have they included a personal note with the invitation?
I’m much more likely to connect with people if they provide a good reason why they would like to connect, rather than sending a generic invitation.
By the way, you should use these same suggestions when identifying and reaching out to others to connect with youPersonalize your invitations when possible and provide a compelling reason why someone should connect with you.
What you will find is that as you grow the quality and quantity of your LinkedIn connections, there will eventually be a tipping point. This means you won’t have to proactively seek out new connections all the time, because they will come to you. Doors will open and more opportunities will come your way if you are more open to growing your connections!
It’s also perfectly fine to remove a connection, especially if over time you find that there really isn’t a good reason to be connected with a particular individual. If you do so, the person whom you remove will not receive any kind of notification of this action.
Another simple and effective way to build your connections is to invite other group members to connect with you. Hopefully by now, you’ve joined some groups that are relevant to your industry, community, alma mater or even your targeted prospects. If so, LinkedIn allows you to send invitations to connect with other members within the group.
group invitation
Connect with mutual LinkedIn group members who share common interests.
Be cautious not to send too many invitations to people whom you don’t know and may have never seen you before. For example, it makes sense to be consistently active within a group before reaching out to other members to connect.
To grow your network deep and wide, always be connecting! Connect with clients, prospects, partners, vendors, colleagues, community leaders, fellow alumni and anyone you meet face to face at networking events or conferences. Let those people you meet know that you’re going to be reaching out on LinkedIn to connect with them.

#3: Be Consistently Visible, Valuable and Timely

If you have a great LinkedIn profile and lots of connections, it’s not going to do you much good unless you become more active on the network. You can’t position yourself as a go-to resource unless you are visible, valuable and timely with your participation on LinkedIn.
Additionally, your most recent activity on LinkedIn now shows up toward the top of your profile. If you haven’t been sharing, commenting or interacting, nothing will show. Take advantage of this real estate and post a status update to your profile once or twice daily.
profile activity
Your most recent status updates now show near the top of your LinkedIn profile.
The great news is, you don’t have to spend a significant amount of time to truly be visible and valuable on LinkedIn. By focusing on critical activities, you will be able tostay top of mind with your connections with ease.
What are critical activities on LinkedIn?
There are activities that have the potential to grab the most attention from your connections. These include media-rich status updates (links that showcase images) with compelling headlines; thought-provoking questions; comments on the status updates of your connections; and overall the sharing of reputable, relevant and interesting content with your network. You should engage in these critical activities on LinkedIn 2-3 times daily.
Need some ideas for what to share with your network? Tap into LinkedIn Today for popular and trending news topics, as well as the LinkedIn INfluencer program toshare and comment on insights from well-known thought leaders!
Although it’s impossible to keep up with every single update from your network of connections (and beyond), LinkedIn now provides some nifty tools to make sure your interactions are more timely and relevant.
Check out your Notifications at the top of your profile. This is a new feature that LinkedIn recently added to make it easy for you to review the most recent interactions from your network.
Now you can easily scroll through these notifications and respond accordingly, in a timely fashion. This feature makes LinkedIn more of a true online networking destination.
Notifications can be found at the top of your LinkedIn profile.
Another timely networking option for being visible and valuable is to filter the updates on your LinkedIn homepage by Shares. There you will find what’s trending in your network and you can jump right in to contribute to the conversation!
network shares
Filter your homepage updates by Shares and participate in trending conversations.
LinkedIn status updates are by far the most powerful opportunity to be visible and valuable with your network. Many of the inbound inquiries I receive in my business are a direct result of being consistently visible, valuable and timely through my LinkedIn status updates.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Insider Tips: How to Use LinkedIn to Find a Job

LinkedIn has become an integral recruiting tool for employers of all sizes, and job seekers need to know how to best use the tool to aid their hunt.

While having a profile is a step in the right direction, it’s not enough to make a candidate stand out or look attractive to employers.

Nicole Williams, Linkedin's career expert-connection director and author of Girl on Top, gives the inside scoop on the best ways to use the social network to get a job.
According to Williams, LinkedIn has executives from all 2012 Fortune 500 companies as members. “There are 85 of the Fortune 100 companies using LinkedIn to find potential hires.”
Long gone are the days when companies posted a job on LinkedIn and then sifted through submitted resumes. Hiring managers are being proactive and looking through LinkedIn profiles to fill open positions. Because of this shift, Williams recommends that every part of a job seeker’s profile is complete.

“You don’t want to undermine yourself by not being identified as a potential hire so you have to make sure your profile is filled out completely and you’re adding skills,” she says.
Users that only list their last or current job in the experience field could look inexperienced, despite being in the workforce for many years.  

Skills are also important to keep up to date and detailed. Not only do employers want a marketing executive, they want one with social media experience. The more information candidates display on their profile the higher their chance of getting noticed by recruiters, according to Williams.

“If you have more than one position listed on your profile it’s 12X more likely to be viewed. People are looking for experience.”

In addition to a complete profile, Williams recommends users be active on the site to get noticed by recruiters: share professional content such as an interesting article about something in the industry or information about an upcoming event. “By sharing industry-based information, you demonstrate industry knowledge and it keeps you top of mind.”
According to Williams, professionals who share articles or content with their LinkedIn network at least once a week are nearly 10X more likely to be contacted by a recruiter for new opportunities than people who don’t make offerings.

More Tips and Complete Fox Business Article

Friday, February 8, 2013

Want a Job? Here Are Six LinkedIn Tips To Finding One

Scott Gillum

LinkedIn’s stock opened at $45 a year and a half ago. It now sells for $120 per share. Unlike Facebook, one of the primary reasons it has done so well is that LinkedIn found its “killer app” early on and built a business model around it.

For recruiters, LinkedIn is the largest (now 200 million members) and most current database of business professionals in the world. For job seekers, it’s a portal into new opportunities, connections and references.

To learn more about its capabilities as a recruiting tool, we posted an open account supervisor position for our D.C. office on LinkedIn. The resumes have been coming directly to me for the past month. The applicants are unfiltered by a recruiter or the HR department, so that means I felt the direct shot of the power of LinkedIn. As the hiring manager, I learned a good deal about using the online tool and how job candidates can better marketing themselves for posted positions.

Because of the volume generated by LinkedIn, hiring managers have the luxury of trying to find exactly what they are looking for without having to dig too hard to find it. We quickly scan the email summary and the attachments. As a result, candidates need to pay close attention to these six areas:
  1. Actually read the job description – Hiring managers and HR personnel spend a great deal of time defining the requirements of open positions. Take the time to adapt your resume to highlight those areas that best match what companies are looking for. Don’t make them connect the dots, because they won’t. They’ve already moved on to the next candidate.
  2. Customize your cover letter – Tell us why you’re the right candidate for the position in the cover letter, especially if you can’t link it on your resume. Make a compelling case as to why we should spend additional time looking at your resume and background. A generic cover letter is a waste of time and a sure way to take yourself out of the race.
  3. Know that we will check you out – If we find someone we like, we’ll spend time checking that person’s LinkedIn profile (beyond the summary below that appears in our inbox), the current and former employers, as well as the candidate’s social profile. For example, a resume that caught my attention was eliminated from the process because I couldn’t find the candidate’s last two employers on the Web. The learning? Companies go out of business or are acquired all the time, so make sure your resume reflects or notes that change. Know that we will “Google” you.
  4. Tips 4-6 and Complete Forbes Article

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The 13 Sneakiest LinkedIn SEO Tips to Boost Your Profile’s Views


LinkedIn is really even more of a popularity contest than Twitter, but I’m the only one with enough sense to realize it. On a very basic level, if you don’t have any LinkedIn connections, you’re not going to be found. The vast majority of searches on the burgeoning social media network for professionals are done through a filter of personal connections. Optimizing your network and the SEO aspects of your profile can take your profile views go from 0 to 1,000.

1. Use Anchor Text in Links

Every LinkedIn profile can list as many as 3 links. The default options include “Company Website” and “Blog,” and these just aren’t very SEO-friendly. You can customize the anchor text in your URLs by selecting the “Other” option. Use a keyword-rich title, such as “My Inbound Marketing Blog.”

2. Finish Your Profile

This one is almost a no-brainer, but far too many of us haven’t taken the time to fully complete our LinkedIn profiles. Ask for recommendations (and give recommendations back), fill out every single section, and use LinkedIn’s help to guide your profile to completion.

3. Keyword-Optimize Your Job Titles

We’re definitely not recommending you describe your last position as “Management,” when it was more administrative. However, fudging your job titles slightly to include a few keywords is just smart. Instead of “Blog Manager,” bait search engines by clarifying “Inbound Marketing Strategy Blog Manager.”

4. Maximize Your Group Membership

Joining and participating in relevant groups won’t just expand your network, but it can improve your profile’s SEO. Since the group names appear on your profile, search engines have no choice but to crawl the titles and learn more about who you are and what you do. Not only will industry-relevant groups improve the keywords on your profile, but local groups like “Nashville Marketing Professionals” can help with geo-targeted SEO.

5. Aggressively Expand Your Network

If your LinkedIn network is one-fourth the size of your Facebook connections, it might be time to search your email contacts. Plus, it’s the perfect platform for connecting with colleagues but still maintaining a semblance of work-life separation on social media. Entrepreneur Rick Stomphorst writes: “[LinkedIn search results] elevate results for connections within a network (i.e. 1st, 2nd, 3rd level connections, groups). Therefore…you need to be connected to as many people as possible.”

6. Optimize Your Job Descriptions

Lindsay Hunt recommends that “your job descriptions on LinkedIn should be creative, truthful, descriptive and succinct.” Instead of writing out full paragraphs, use a wide variety of relevant keywords in bullet-pointed lists. Formatting your descriptions will also increase your profile’s scannability.

7. Claim Your Vanity URL

The fundamental SEO benefits of claiming your vanity URL may be minimal, but it’s just good business. Connecting your LinkedIn profile to your name will allow you to be found easier by real-life connections. It will also let you add your custom URL to business cards.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

How to Use LinkedIn's Alumni Tool to Network, Job Hunt


LinkedIn debuted LinkedIn Classmates in October 2011, designing the tool to give you insights into your college or university's alumni and help you connect with them. It surfaced high-level information about fellow alumni, such as the most popular companies they work for, the fields they're working, where they live and more.

This week, LinkedIn launched an update of the tool, releasing a handful of new features renamed it LinkedIn Alumni.

"Gathered from the profiles of more than 200 million members, LinkedIn's Alumni tool helps you explore alumni career paths from more than 22,000 colleges and universities worldwide—and build relationships that can help you along the way," says Christina Allen, director of product management at LinkedIn.

Here's a look at the new LinkedIn Alumni tool, plus how you can use it to connect on a more personal level and grow your network.

LinkedIn's New Alumni Tool

If you're looking for a job at a specific company, in a particular industry or in a certain location—or are just curious about where your college friends are now working—the LinkedIn Alumni tool makes finding those people easy.

Navigate to to start. Your college or university will automatically be selected.
LinkedIn's new Alumni tool.
At the top of your Alumni page you'll see three subheads: "Where they live," "Where they work," and "What they do." Click the arrow to the right to view additional categories, which include "Where they studied," "What they're skilled at" and "How you are connected."

All the graphs are interactive: Click any of the blue bars to drill down and refine your search. Clicking "Greater New York City Area," for example, will display the names of alumni living in New York City below the graph, and update the top lists detailing the companies they they work for and the fields in which that specific group of alumni work.

[LinkedIn Revamps Profile Pages: Tour the New Features]
LinkedIn's new Alumni tool.
You can also explore the alumni of other colleges and universities by searching for one under "Change school" in the top-right. You can also narrow searches by refining the attendance dates, found at the top.

How to use LinkedIn Alumni to find a graduate program: If you're thinking about pursuing an MBA or other graduate degree, LinkedIn's Alumni tool can help you find a good fit.
Use the Alumni tool to see which schools place graduates in careers most aligned with your professional goals, Allen suggests. "Search for a school, select the field of study most relevant to you, and you'll get a top 25 list of companies that have hired graduates from the selected school," she says.

More Tips and Complete CIO Article