Friday, May 31, 2013

HOW TO: Connect with Recruiters on LinkedIn

by Donna Svei

You’re starting a job search. You have 60 LinkedIn connections. You want recruiters to find you.  Alrighty then. We need to get to work. A conservative estimate says there are over 600,000 recruiters on LinkedIn.  Here’s how they break out:

  1. About 16,000 of them purchase unlimited access to LinkedIn’s full database. If you’re there, they can find you.
  2. Another group uses Boolean search to mine LinkedIn via Google. But come on, how many of them do that? I mean, Boo-le-an search, it sounds scary! Boo!
  3. The rest of them, and, I submit, the greatest number, are limited to finding their first, second, and third level connections. You want to be one of those people.
Here’s what you do:
  1. Join the “Recruiter Network — #1 Group for Recruiters.” It has about 450,000 members, including recruiters and people who want to network with recruiters.
  2. Upgrade your account to “Recruiters Talent Basic” for one month. Stay with me here. More on this at the end.
  3. Go to the “Advanced Search” page.
  4. Type your job function in the “Keywords” field (accounting, engineering, HR, etc.).
  5. Type “LION” in the “Last Name” field.
  6. Type your zip code in the “Postal Code” field.
  7. Select “50 miles” at the “Within” box.
  8. Select “The Recruiter Network — #1 Group for Recruiters” at the “Groups” field.
  9. Click “Search.”

Your search might look like this:  see what the search would look like, the results, and the complete article

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Achieve LinkedIn All-Star status in 10 steps

By Laura Christianson

With 225 million members worldwide, 10-year-old LinkedIn is the social network for showcasing skills, job experience and education. LinkedIn’s recent redesign organizes your content in tidy modules and introduces options for uploading visual content.

In the olden days of LinkedIn (three months ago), the user’s goal was to create a “100 percent complete profile,” now known as an “All-Star” profile. Follow these 10 simple steps to achieve All-Star status.

Upload your business portrait. LinkedIn users routinely ignore connection requests from people whose profiles don’t display a photo. Claiming you don’t have a good enough picture of yourself is no excuse. If you want to be perceived as a professional, act like one. Invest in a business portrait session with a freelance photographer or photo studio. For around $150, you can obtain the rights to use your headshot in all your marketing materials.

Use your real name. LinkedIn’s database alphabetizes connections by last name followed by first name. If people know you by your nickname but you use your full name in a work environment, put your nickname in parentheses: Jonathan (Jon) Doe. It is acceptable to include a title such as Dr. or Rev. 

Craft an enticing headline. After your name and photo, your headline is the single most-viewed element on your LinkedIn profile. The headline displays prominently on your profile, in search results, messages, groups, invitations to connect, company page employee listings and in popups when LinkedIn users hover over your image. 

When you write your headline, ask, “What words and phrases would someone who’s searching for me use?” Highlight your expertise with those keywords in your 120-character headline. Make your profile searchable by entering your geographic location and industry directly below the headline.

Summarize your expertise and experience. You get 2,000 characters (a little more than half the length of this article) to introduce yourself. You can upload or link to portfolios, presentations, photos and videos from providers including Pinterest, Forbes, Hulu, YouTube, Spotify, Scribd, Slideshare, Word and more. 

Describe three job positions. In the Experience module, add your current position and two previous positions. As you begin typing your company name, LinkedIn auto-searches for a corresponding Company Page. When you select that Company Page, your profile will link directly to it and will list you as an employee. 

Tips 6-10 and the complete article

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

7 Tips to Help You Stand Out On LinkedIn

by @MarkLynch99.

LinkedIn has quickly become a driving force in helping executives and job seekers alike create an online presence that showcases your unique talents & skills (your personal brand)!

Most hiring managers (as many as 80%) will research candidates by searching the most common social platforms and if your on LinkedIn, you have only one chance to stand out! Just like Google, LinkedIn is also a search engine with every fortune 500 company (and more) represented. So if you have a profile on LinkedIn, here are 7 tips to ”Stand Out” and express your unique personal brand:

1. Remember that you are not a job title! You have 120 characters to describe your talents in the headline section of LinkedIn. Skip the generic title of ‘Sales’ or ‘Accounting’, rather take advantage of this space and get creative! Example: Early Adopter of Innovative Solutions for Business | Currently Seeking Opportunities | Lets Connect!

Hint: Feel free to change up your headline from time to time. Experiment until it feels right. The key is to create a headline that “Stands Out” and capture the attention of viewers. It is by far the most important and first place looked at on your profile. You have about 2 seconds to capture someone’s attention so make it your best!

2. You have 2,000 characters of ‘real estate’ for your summary section. This is where you can showcase your personal brand with examples of how you provide solutions, etc. Use keywords that are relevant to your industry. The summary section is often missed or underutilized, but this is a perfect place to create a commercial for the brand ‘YOU’.

Hint: Don’t squish all your words into one long paragraph. Space is good (think Google)! Make your summary easy to read and consider using symbols to draw even more attention. Copy & paste: ★ ► ◄ ■ ♦ ◆ ● ✔ ✘☑

3. Make it EASY to contact you! There is nothing worse than someone having interest in you after seeing what you have provided or displayed, only to find it difficult to contact you!
Hint: Put email address at top of summary section (phone # if comfortable).

4. Understand the 5 most important areas to describe your brand or expertise (keywords). These areas are: Your Headline | The Summary Section | Current Work Experience | Past Work Experience | Specialties

Hint: Search for people that are in the same or similar industry to get ideas on specific key words if you are stuck. The 5 areas above are key search engine optimization (SEO).

Tips 5-7 and the complete article

Thursday, May 23, 2013

How to easily find recruiters and active candidates on LinkedIn

The trick to using LinkedIn well is to put yourself in the mindset of the 'other side'. So if you are a candidate think like a recruiter, and if you are a recruiter, think like a candidate. As I have said many times, LinkedIn (as is all social media) is governed by the law of UGC - User Generated Content (which is actually everything on LinkedIn!)

So let's look at LinkedIn it from a candidate perspective.

How do you find recruiters that are posting jobs that may well be of interest to you?
  1. Don't use the main search bar at the top of the LinkedIn page, click on the advanced search to the side. Now you can use the extra field you are presented with.
    In the Title box enter the the job title you are looking for, in this case something like:
    "recruitment consultant" OR Recruiter OR "Recruitment manager" OR "recruitment director"

    **Warning** Just because they are recruiters don't assume they know how to use LinkedIn properly, many still have beginners armbands on!! They are also part of the UGC conundrum - they don't always call themselves recruiters!!

    Now in the Keywords box add the industry words you are looking for remembering to add the words AND after each word (with a space of course), if you have more than one.
    This will give you recruiters that recruit for your particular industry. Click on their profile and reach out to them as normal.
  2. What about searching for the jobs that recruiters are actually posting. Well first click on the jobs tab right at the top of the toolbar and search there - these will be the jobs that some recruiters pay to place.
    But most recruiters post their jobs through their status updates. For this you need to jump across to as it is the feed of all the status updates on LinkedIn - and of course you can search them!
    Try a different approach this time - use a search that uses some of the terms that recruiters use when posting jobs, like this adding in your keywords for your sector/industry at the end:

    ('recruiting for' OR hiring OR 'looking for' OR 'new role for' OR 'is seeking' OR 'looking to recruit' OR 'currently recruiting for' OR 'fantastic opportunity for') AND Keyword1 AND keyword2

    You can add in a Location filter and specific companies if you want down the left hand side. Also if you are looking for a contract role then add in words like:

    contract' OR contractor OR interim OR temporary

    This will give you any jobs that recruiters have posted in their status updates. Then SAVE THE SEARCH (at the top of the screen hit the word Save, and then name your search. Every time you click the saved search it will update in real time.)

So let's look at LinkedIn it from a recruiter perspective.

How do you find candidates that are looking for a new role on LinkedIn NOW and the complete article.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

10 Ways to Get the Most Out of Your LinkedIn Network


Ten years ago, entrepreneur Reid Hoffman had a vision for a website that could help create and foster important business connections among professionals. He co-founded a site called LinkedIn with the tag line "Relationships matter."

The social media giant, with 225 million members in 200 countries, celebrated its 10th anniversary yesterday. "Our vision at LinkedIn is to create economic opportunity for every professional in the world," Hoffman wrote in a blog post noting the company's anniversary.

In honor of LinkedIn's milestone, we've compiled the following tips to help business owners get the most out of the professional online network:

1. Communicate the important details of your business right away.
When filling out your company's profile, be sure to say exactly what your company is, who your clients are and how you help them. The idea is to make it as quick and easy for customers to know -- right up front -- what you offer and why they should contact you. And be sure that your profile headline and photo reflect your company and project professionalism. 

2. Share interesting, engaging information.
One way to boost engagement among your connections is to get them talking about relevant and timely news in your industry. You can do this by sharing links to interesting stories and asking questions about the posts you share. 

3. Include a call to action.
An important goal with online networking is to convert connections into paying customers. One way to do this on LinkedIn is to create a unique "call to action." Instead of simply filling in LinkedIn's generic "my website" or "my blog" links on your profile page, take the extra step and tell visitors to click on your links. For instance, write: "Click here to (insert your product or service here)."

4. Create and participate in groups.
Not only can creating and managing a group of your own provide you with a level of credibility, it can allow you to expand your network to reach targeted and influential individuals in your field. Research topics of interest within your industry and choose the top two or three as the basis for your group. 

5. Showcase your products.
Be sure to fill out the "Products and Services" section of your company page. Not only is this your opportunity to explain what you offer in a compelling way, individuals can recommend and share the products you list, becoming ambassadors for your brand. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

6 LinkedIn PlugIns you have to use

LinkedIn is a social media site dedicated towards professionals finding one another. The site is used in a very large way for Business-to-Business sales and programs. Of course, that isn’t all that can be found on this unique social media network. You can find professionals of a wide variety of talents in every shape and size imaginable. If you want to make your stay on LinkedIn fully worthwhile, however, there are six PlugIns you absolutely have to use. Lucky for you, we’ve made a neat, comprehensive list of them so you don’t have to do all of the research on your own. So, without further ado, allow us to introduce the six PlugIns, which are going to make your LinkedIn experience a true success.
1. Follow Company Plugin
Chances are you have a website or a blog to go with your LinkedIn profile. Use this Follow Company Plugin to help grown your LinkedIn Company page community straight from your main website, blog, or both! When a user clicks on the follow company button, they will automatically begin following your LinkedIn profile. It’s as easy as that to get more followers!
3. Sign In With LinkedIn
This is a plugin that we particularly love. This nifty little thing, which looks like a little rectangle when imbedded into your website or blog, allows people to sign into your web page using their LinkedIn professional identity. This plugin is amazingly easy to install, so with only a minimal amount of work on your own behalf you can use this product to quickly grow your site registrations while at the same time building an enriching, personalized experience for your users. You can even customize your functionality based on a user’s geography, work experience, and network. While a lot of social media sites have this type of ‘sign in’ plugin, we have fallen in love with LinkedIn’s customizable version.
4. Apply With LinkedIn Plugin
This plugin is a lot like the one mentioned above, only instead of allowing people to register and use your site with their LinkedIn professional identity, it allows them to apply for jobs you have posted using LinkedIn. If you have job openings at your business or organization, this neat plugin will make things a lot easier on your applicants. You can also integrate this with your Applicant Tracking System, as well as add an interface with your company logo and color. On this interface, you can add up to three custom yes or no questions. By using the Apply With LinkedIn Plugin, you can begin to attract the most talented individuals from your profession with ease.

Monday, May 20, 2013

9 ways communicate with your LinkedIn connections

Having a strong LinkedIn profile is essential to being found by other LinkedIn members and employers, but you’re job isn’t complete unless you’re communicating with your connections and the LinkedIn community as a whole.

I tell my LinkedIn workshop attendees that I spend approximately an hour a day (it’s probably more) on LinkedIn. Their faces register surprise; and I’m sure some of them are thinking, “Does this person have a life.”

Part of the workshop is about explaining the need to communicate with their connections, because networking is about communicating.

1. The number one way to communicate is posting Updates. How many you post is up to you, but I suggest at least one a day. This is when I get remarks from my attendees about not having time to make an update a week.

To illustrate how easy it is, I post two Updates within five minutes as I’m talking to them. The first Update tells my connections what I’m doing at the moment, which of course is leading the workshop. The next one is usually sharing an article from my first degree connections or LinkedIn Today.

2. Another way to communicate with your connections is to “Like” their updates. Liking their updates is great, but it takes very little effort to simply click the link. Like, Like, Like. Be more creative and add a comment which can generate discussion, or reply to your connections privately.

3. I’ll visit my connection’s profiles–with full disclosure–many times a day. My connections will visit my profile many times, as well. When they “drop in” and have disclosed themselves (not Anonymous LinkedIn User or Someone from the Entertainment Industry), I’ll show my appreciation by writing, “Thanks for visiting my profile.” This will also lead to a discussion.

4. You’ve probably read many opinions from people on the topic of Endorsements–here we go again. Add me to the list of people who prefer thoughtful recommendations, both receiving and writing them, as opposed to simply clicking a button. But, in fairness, Endorsements have a purpose greater than showing appreciation for someone’s Skills and Expertise; they act as a way to touch base. In other words, they’re another way to communicate with your connections.

Tips 5-9 and the complete article

Friday, May 17, 2013

A-Z of LinkedIn Marketing - 26 ways LinkedIn can help you and your business

26 LinkedIn features

These are the main features we think you need to be aware of on LinkedIn. Review which of these LinkedIn features you use to see how you can make more use of LinkedIn.
Note that some features you may have heard about have been withdrawn by LinkedIn that you may not be aware of (*).
  • 1.Activity Broadcast. Activity shared on your LinkedIn page and viewed by others, depending on the settings chosen. This includes group membership, comments, profile changes and application downloads. It will show when you change your profile, make recommendations or follow companies, etc.
  • 2. Ads. LinkedIn has targeted ads which enable you to post pay-per-click ads to target users by their role. They can be text ads or video ads which can be AB tested to find the most effective ad creative and message.
  • 3.Apps (*). Applications were provided as options to share your content from other sites seamlessly on your profile. The Amazon reading list app, Slideshare and WordPress blog sharing tools were the best known. Apps are no longer available, but a similar feature is now available when editing the profile summary.
  • 4. Advanced Search. You can find influencers to connect with using this approach rather than standard search which works best for known connections.
  • 5. Ask Questions (*). A feature to ask Questions where other members could reply. This feature was removed end of January 2013. Many companies are now turning to Quora as an alternative.
  • 6. Company Page. A page on LinkedIn where a company can list their products and services and share promotions, news and content through Status updates. More recent than Facebook brand pages and less widely used. We cover the best way to setup a profile in Step 1 of the guide.
  • 7.Connections. Members in your network on LinkedIn who you invited or have invited to connect with and follow. Through connecting you will receive their status updates.
  • 8.Contact info. Links to your websites are available in the Contact Info section of your profile. Unfortunately, these now require a click to be seen by profile viewers, but don’t forget to include your sites or other social networks.
  • 9. Endorsements. These are endorsements for skills on individual profiles. They only require a single click so recommendations are a deeper level of endorsement.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Think You Don’t Need LinkedIn? 10 Reasons Why You Do

Written by

Over the past week, I’ve talked to three acquaintances who are actively on the hunt for a job. They all have resumes (whether they’re professionally done, and of sufficient quality, is debatable). But when I mentioned LinkedIn, much to my dismay, their responses were dismissive.

“Oh, isn’t that like Facebook? I already have Facebook. I don’t need more pictures of people’s dinners.” “I’ll just see what happens after I send my resume to a few places.” “I’ll get around to that one of these days. I promise!”

Now, if you’re on a hunt, wouldn’t you want to use every dog you can get your hands on?

Then there are the folks I know that are already on LinkedIn. They have their name, their current position, and no photo. Oh, and they have exactly one connection: me.

There are a lot of very good reasons to invest a little time on LinkedIn. Here are just 10 of them. Trust me, there are many more. This is just for starters:

  1. It’s 2013, not 1993. Seriously. Times have changed. Nothing will prevent the need for a strong resume, but you need to be online. Before an employer calls you to set up an interview, they WILL Google you. If your competition has a fully-loaded LinkedIn profile that shows up on page one of their Google search, and you have nothing, guess who gets the interview?

  2. LinkedIn is much more than a Facebook for business types. Folks don’t use LinkedIn for meaningless tidbits of information (though who am I to say your cat is meaningless? She’s really cute). LinkedIn is a way to locate and communicate with people via your computer, but there the similarity ends. LinkedIn is the place where professionals go to talk (it used to be the drinking fountain). It’s a place where you might find out about new jobs, and where companies seeking new talent can find out about you.

  3. Not looking for a job? Still have a LinkedIn account. Plenty of useful business-related information is exchanged there each day. Join a group, answer a poll, and find out what your savvy peers are up to. By participating in discussions, you can demonstrate your leadership ability, and that’s always a good thing for your career management.

  4. Get the inside scoop on companies you’re interested in, for whatever reason. Company profiles can display lists of present and former employees (hint: someone who used to work at a company might have some valuable information for you), the most common positions in the country, even the ratio of male to female employees. You can learn about products and services, too, like on Profession Direction’s company page here .

  5. Brag a little where it will be noticed. Keep your profile up to date by highlighting your expertise. Even if you’re not seeking employment, you never know where sharing this information will lead: consulting or speaking arrangements, for starters.

    Reasons 6-10 and the complete article

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Top 10 Most Effective Keywords For Resumes And LinkedIn Profiles In 2013

A while back, LinkedIn started sending around noticies to certain users, letting them know that their profiles were among the top 1%, 5% and 10% most-viewed in 2012. Some people derided this as nothing more than a clever marketing ploy. After all, being in the top 10% on a site with 200 million members means that you got the same notice 20 million other people did.

Still, being most viewed on a site like LinkedIn is nothing to sneeze at. After all, if your profile is coming up more often on searches, then you’re more likely to be hired, right? It’s worth bragging about.

So what are some LinkedIn people doing right that you’re not? How do you get into the top 1%? It all comes down to keywords and keyword searches.

A Brief History of Keywords

Keywords have been important to job seekers since the 90s. Various software platforms allowed employers to scan applicants’ paper resumes into databases so they could better sift through the mountain of hopefuls. No more did they have to organize resumes into various piles and flip through them one by one. Now they could search by keyword to drill down to a micro level. A search could be done for “sales”, then “inside sales”, then “inside sales” plus “online chat” to  narrow down the pool of candidates to help fill a specific need.

The rise of the online job boards only increased this practice, as all resumes were essentially now electronic. Today, platforms like LinkedIn have taken keywords to the next level. Your online profile is your online resume, and the keywords on your profile are essential for you turning up when employers search the web. There are all sorts of advanced (but not too complicated) strategies for using keywords to help your profile be more visible. It’s almost like SEO for job seekers.

A lot of job seekers confuse keywords on a resume or profile with meaningless action phrases or power verbs like “self starter” or “detail-oriented.”

This is not a useful keyword strategy.

Your job titles are keywords. You skill sets are keywords. Your experiences are keywords. Your degree, major, specialties and certifications are all keywords.

To be successful, you need to think like a hiring manager thinks when she begins a search. The hiring manager has a specific job to fill, with specific skill sets required. She won’t be searching for a “self starter” or anything vague like that. She’ll be searching for her specific need and then narrowing down from there.

So, she’ll be looking for someone with “oil and gas” experience. Specifically, experience with “shale.” She also needs someone who is experienced in “right-of-way negotiation.” Oh, and the territory that she needs someone to work in is down in Mexico, so she might search “Spanish,” because having someone bilingual would be a big plus.

That’s how keywords work. Having a resume with oil and gas experience is one thing. But having a resume with keywords on it that will trigger searches for specific experience and skill sets is what gets people found and gets people hired.

Want To Get Into The Top 1% Of LinkedIn Users, These Are The Keywords To Use:

So, this whole LinkedIn top percent story got us thinking: what are the most effective, most in-demand resume and profile keywords right now in 2013?

What are the “hot” keywords that will help land you in the LinkedIn top 1%? What are the skill sets that employers are snapping up?

We polled our writers to find out, and based on their experience working with clients across more than 80 different industries, these are the ten hottest keywords we came up with.

Put simply, if you have the following keywords, degrees, job titles or skill sets on your resume or LinkedIn profile, you can expect to come up more often in employer searches:


We’re using Mandarin as a placeholder, because it’s the language employers seem to be looking for the most, but really any language is the most successful keyword on resume across all career fields. There’s almost no job where having a bilingual employee isn’t a bonus. More and more, we’re seeing employers doing keyword searches for multilingual job candidates. You might be a run-of-the-mill salesperson, but if you have mastery of another language on your resume or LinkedIn profile, you’re going to come up in keyword searches more often than you would think. Even something like a simple receptionist profile will come up more often if a phrase like “Spanish” or “Korean” is keyword loaded as well.

The bottom line is, across almost any industry or job niche you can imagine, job candidates with a mastery of other languages on their resume or profile are greatly in demand.

Math, Statistics or Data Analysis

What’s the most popular and in demand major we’re seeing these days? Believe it or not, it’s math. Advanced math. Statistics. Modeling. Economics. Math and Computer Science.
It’s no surprise to anyone that we now live in a world awash in data. It seems to be a major trend across all sorts of industries that businesses are hungry for smart people to help them manage, organize and tap into that data. No longer destined only for academia or research positions, young professionals with math degrees are by far the most successful young job seekers we work with. From Wall Street firms to Silicon Valley blue chips to staid old Fortune 500 conglomerates, corporate America is eager to snap up anyone who can help them use data to transform their business operations.

Supply Chain, Logistics

Possibly related to the previous “data” based keywords, job seekers boasting advanced experience with supply chain management and logistics experience are often the first searched for. Companies are always looking for ways to cut costs and be more efficient. 

Especially if you can load your resume or profile with industry and scenario-specific logistics keywords, you can expect the headhunters and hiring mangers to come to you.

Social Media

A newer keyword we’re seeing clients have a lot of success with is social media management. Companies and brands are hungry for people that will help them manage and expand their presence in all forms of social media. If the organization you’re applying for is somewhat old school, then a simple proficiency with Facebook, Twitter and the like might be impressive. But those that truly stand out are candidates boasting keywords and proficiency with cutting edge and next wave social media platforms and trends. Either way, if you do profess social media expertise, make sure you have active, public-facing presences on the keywords and platforms you mention. The hiring manager will definitely want to research and see that you’re practicing what you intend to preach about social media.


One keyword that is definitely growing in demand and popularity is telecommuting experience. What once was a workplace luxury you hoped to talk your boss into is now very much an in-demand feature that employers are eager to implement as an efficiency and cost saving measure (Yahoo aside). But employers want experienced telecommuters that they know can be productive without too much training and supervision. There are specific job titles where we are seeing employers keyword search for telecommuting experience first… even before searching for other skill sets.

Keywords 6-10 and the complete article

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

6 Foolproof Ways to Use LinkedIn Groups to Land Your Next Job


You probably have received the first memo: Being on LinkedIn is of key importance in your job search. It is crucial that you have a complete profile that presents your personal brand, accomplishments at each position you have held, skills, academic background and more.

Here's the follow-up memo: It's not enough to just create a static profile and let it sit there, hoping that someone who can be of assistance to you will stumble upon it. You can bolster your job search through knowledge you learn and visibility you attain when you take advantage of one of the key social aspects of the site: groups.

There are more than 1.5 million LinkedIn groups, ranging from just a few individuals to many thousands of members. At the discretion of the owner, a group can be open so anyone can join, or it can have restricted membership for which you must be approved to take part.

At any one time you can be a member of up to 50 of them. There are numerous groups for just about anything you can imagine, including: locales, industries, skill sets, job functions, professional organizations, alumni of both academic institutions and specific companies, sports, hobbies, etc.

Some of the best groups focus on getting a job and include: "Career Rocketeer," "Job Openings, Job Leads and Job Connections!," "Job-Hunt Help," " Job Search and Careers" and "Knock em Dead Secrets & Strategies."

Groups all share these common features:

a. You can see and access all the members of any group of which you are a part.

b. Each group has its own logo, and the logos of your groups are by default shown on your profile. However, you can hide any you wish by going into the "Your Settings" option located in the "More…" menu within each group.

If you're job hunting, you might want to have two or three logos visible to show that you are available. Having much more than that may send the "I'm desperate" message, which you want to avoid at all costs.

Also located in the "More ..." menu is the ability to regulate the kind and frequency of group notifications.

c. All the comments made in group discussions are searchable. When you write intelligently and share information of value, you boost your chances of being found by recruiters who regularly scan such messages to find thought leaders.

Here are six strategies you can employ to leverage the power of LinkedIn's groups:

1. Join as many as possible, up to the limit of 50. You can search for groups of interest to you by clicking on the "Group" drop-down menu at the top of LinkedIn's homepage. Create a basket of different types of groups, and try to join groups with many members. For example, the Linked N Chicago (LiNC) group boasts nearly 80,000 members with more than 100 new discussions each month, versus a very niche group that has only 20 members and which might not be useful to you unless you happen to know that its members are key to your job search.

2. Demonstrate your expertise by contributing to group discussions where you can make a substantive contribution. By doing this, your words get seen and you build your brand as a helpful expert.

3. Begin group discussions that will be of interest to others. You might begin a professional discussion with a question like: "Which of these options to do X (list two or three possibilities) do you find gets the best results?"

Way 4-6 and the complete USNews article

Monday, May 13, 2013

3 Rules You Can’t Break On Your LinkedIn Profile

Written by

You’ve worked diligently on your LinkedIn profile, and you’re ready to have it get you some hard-earned attention. You want to get noticed by recruiters and tell them all about yourself at a glance. So why not give yourself a moniker like “Jayne Smith, marketing czar?” Or include the name of your company? Or better yet, stick your email address up there so no one has to take the trouble to actually link to you?

Well, you can … if you want to have your LinkedIn account shut down for 30 days. Yep. LinkedIn has some very specific guidelines about what may, and may not, go into that uber-important name field, and there are a few good reasons for the rules.

A name field is for your name. Your first name and your last name — your real, legal ones. You can include a former or maiden name as well. And you can include degrees, suffixes and certifications (Dr., MSW, RN, Jr.,CPRW, Ph.D.)

But you can’t include a title (marketing director, president, architect). Your headline is for that. See how to write a powerful headline here. I also have a sample LinkedIn profile with a compelling headline here.

Nor can you include an email address, website, location or other contact information. Symbols, special characters and numbers are also verboten. And for heaven’s sake, don’t create a false identity so you can scope job opportunities without alerting anyone at your current company.

Why can’t you?
  1. Trust
    More so than other social media, LinkedIn’s power is in trust. When you’re connected with someone on LinkedIn, it should mean that you actually do know them on some level. Your LinkedIn connections reflect your own integrity. It’s not right to put someone else in the position of vouching for a “you” that’s not even you. And it breeds mistrust for LinkedIn.
    Email addresses in the name field smack of spam. People don’t want a sales pitch right off the bat when viewing your profile for the first time. If you want your prospective contacts to feel comfortable as they get to know you, let them do that before you shout at them to send you an email.
  2. Your own protection
    More than that, if you include your email address and your account isn’t shut down right away, you will GET spam – potentially a lot of it. Since your LinkedIn profile is a page on the web, it’s crawled by search engines for the whole world to see, not just LinkedIn members. So, deviant types, like spammers, can easily find it and add it to their network to send you lots of lovely email wanting to sell you Viagra.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

With Channels, LinkedIn Today funnels news into your network

The social network for professionals has redesigned its digital daily in the hopes of getting members to stick around longer.

LinkedIn has made over its e-zine, LinkedIn Today, with a new look and a new content discovery feature called Channels.
LinkedIn Today, first launched more than two years ago, is meant to be a digital newspaper that sums up the day's top business news. Today aggregates articles shared by the company's more than 225 million users, with each edition personalized to the reader based on his or her connections.
The new LinkedIn Today is dressed up with a more modern design, comes with more than 20 broad topic sections called Channels that members can follow, and features more content created specifically for the network by LinkedIn's Rolodex of 250 "Influencers."
LinkedIn will formally announce the changes Wednesday morning, but the redesigned Today is already rolling out to the social network's English-speaking members.

Channels is the most notable addition to LinkedIn Today. The umbrella categories are designed to help members find more of the news they care about in areas such as social media, technology, retail, economy, and health care. More important, Channels help pump even more content into LinkedIn's network, as members who follow a Channel will automatically find new news bits inside the feed of updates on their Web home page.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

How to Get Found by Recruiters on LinkedIn

If you’re looking for a job, and you are reasonably smart, there are recruiters out there who would benefit from talking to you. The problem is, they simply can’t find you. Or if they do find you, something about your LinkedIn profile turns them away. In either case, you have more control over this situation than you think. Getting found by recruiters doesn’t have to be a passive strategy.
Here is a two part active strategy for getting found.

First, Get on Search Results
The first step to getting found by recruiters is to simply show up. Like me, recruiters are using keywords to search LinkedIn profiles. Results will show up based on degree of separation and presence of the search term. 

Tip 1: become 1st degree connected to as many recruiters as possible. They are the ones making the most searches. Having recruiters in your network increases your chances of popping up based on your degree of separation.

Tip 2: describe yourself as specifically and as accurately as possible. The well known social media strategist Christopher Penn uses his own profile as a great example of this: 

My job is simple: get qualified leads in the door using Inbound Marketing methods such as social media, search, and email. 

Not terrible, but it doesn’t show results. Here’s an improved version:
My job is simple: get qualified leads in the door using Inbound Marketing methods such as social media, search, and email. In the first 8 months, I’ve helped to create a 10x increase in the number of inbound leads through organic SEO, social media marketing, email marketing, and other marketing methods. 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

LinkedIn Visual Profiles: 5 Things To Know

Debra Donston-Miller

Think you look all slick and professional in your LinkedIn head shot? It's not enough anymore.
Indeed, it's all about the visuals. Photos are proven click- and like-bait; Facebook has put images front and center on its Web, mobile and Homeeditions; Pinterest is all about images; and now even LinkedIn is getting in on it by adding the ability to dress up profiles with visual content.
"For the first time, you will now have the ability to showcase your unique professional story using rich, visual content on your LinkedIn profile," said LinkedIn's Udi Milo in a blog post. "This means you can illustrate your greatest achievements in the form of stunning images, compelling videos, innovative presentations and more. From the analyst who makes annual predictions on tech trends to the 3-D animator who is looking to fund a new short film, the opportunities are limitless for how professionals can now use the LinkedIn profile to help showcase these unique stories in a visual way."
Here are five things you need to know about the new capabilities.
1. Visuals are more than just photos.
Your profile can be illustrated with not just photos, but also videos, presentations and other types of graphics.
2. It's easy to get started.
To add images to your profile, just click Edit and follow the prompts for the Summary, Experience and Education sections.
3. It's not all about you.
Once you have added visuals to your profile, other LinkedIn members can like or comment on what you've added. Likewise, you can like or comment on what your contacts have posted. This adds a whole new level of collaboration -- and opportunities for connection -- to LinkedIn.

Monday, May 6, 2013

5 Ways To Boost Your Visibility With The New LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn has become a serious business tool for professionals and organisations.

With more than 10 million UK members and more than 200 million globally – LinkedIn is a significant resource for people to be tapping into.

Whilst the platform is still vitally useful for those looking for employment, or finding new talent – it is increasingly used by organisations or decision makers as a first port of call when looking to reach out for new suppliers too.

Unlike, Twitter or Facebook where you may visit for ‘entertainment’ value as well as for business – LinkedIn is the serious business to business network. Whether you are looking for employment, talent, business development opportunities or looking for new suppliers – LinkedIn is the social network people visit to ‘do business’.

In the latter part of 2012, LinkedIn made a number of revamps to the look and feel and functionality of the platform. Removing some assets such as, LinkedIn Events (still not clear why that useful element was removed, perhaps to become a paid for option in the near future), LinkedIn Answers – and LinkedIn Applications – to name a few.

However, whilst many of these elements changed, it’s not all doom and gloom. The new look and feel platform offers individuals the opportunity to develop a more ‘media rich’ profile experience. Also , the profile look is simpler and looks cleaner and definitely more 2013 – and the changes to the Company Profile, offers companies the opportunity to recreate keyword targeted, media rich landing pages to create a valuable and well optimised LinkedIn Company Profile.

LinkedIn – A Big Database
If you think about it – LinkedIn is a huge database, one which is increasing daily (stats reveal that 2 people sign up to LinkedIn every second!). Therefore, the task of getting your profile visible to people who are searching is becoming increasingly difficult.

As with all huge databases, the ability to search for what you require and have relevant results delivered is critical. LinkedIn has search algorithms in place to help users find what they are looking for.

Understanding how to stand out and ensure that these algorithms can view and sort your Profile is key. There are things that you can do to optimise your LinkedIn Profile for search and visibility – so let’s take a look at 5 Key Ways to Boost Your LinkedIn Profile’s visibility.

1 Getting to ‘All Star’ (previously 100% Complete) Pre the LinkedIn changes back in late 2012 – you may recall that when you created your profile you were presented with a ‘completeness score’. Effectively, this ‘score’ – provided you with a gauge as to how ‘complete’ your LinkedIn Profile was – eg: Your Profile is 15% complete or Your Profile is 55% complete.
There are a number of facets within your Profile to complete before you reached the ultimate 100%. Now with the new look and feel LinkedIn Profile – the same concept remains, however, the facets you need to complete to get your profile as complete as possible has changed slightly – and is now made up of the following:
  1. Your industry and location
  2. An up-to-date current position with description (please note that if you want your current position to align with the Company LinkedIn Profile that may already exist – be sure that you use the correct wording for the company name you work with – and to hyperlink your profile directly across to the LinkedIn Company Page – be sure to have ticked the ‘current position’ box.
  3. Two past positions
  4. Your education (again, this is what you choose to insert – you don’t have to give a running commentary from age 11).
  5. Your skills (min of 3)
  6. Profile photo (not the one of you over on Facebook enjoying a glass of wine with friends – but instead, your business persona).
  7. At least 50 connections.
The other change is the terminology. The words have changed from the easily understood, ‘100% Complete’ to ‘All Star’. Not sure why they decided to change the terminology – and the new terms certainly remind us that the platform was founded in the US – however, we are where we are – and the new terminology applies.
To summarise – the % of completeness of your LinkedIn Profile sends a signal to the algorithms to favour your profile above those profiles which are less complete than yours.
So, the message is to ensure that you have completed the facets as outlined above – to get your LinkedIn Profile to ‘All Star’ status.

2 Connect to All Stars – There is cause to believe that the ‘completeness theme’ continues with those that you connect with. Our networks play a big influence on how visible we are on LinkedIn – and research has identified that when people are connected to other ‘All Stars’ – that this plays a part in influencing your own visibility. So, spread the good word – and ensure that your colleagues and the contacts that you are connected with are all up to ‘All Star’ status – as this will help all of you. This may influence who you connect with.

3 Connections – As I alluded to in point 2 above – our networks play a big part in our own visibility on LinkedIn. To get to All Star status – you need to have at least 50 connections. However, research has shown that those with more connections gain more visibility. Is it a case of connecting with all and everyone? One would hope that LinkedIn’s search algorithms were more intelligent than simply just working on a network reach perspective – however, at this time of writing – then there isn’t any evidence to show that being more targeted in who you connect with provides you with any search Brownie Points. Of course, whilst the person you initially connect with may not seem to be directly relevant to you – remember they will have a large network – and many of those within their network could be really useful.

However, I would suggest that you do keep in mind why you are on LinkedIn in the first place – and be as targeted as possible in who you connect with – but just ensure that you connect with a lot of people. After all – the 1,2,3 layers of connection – very quickly get you into millions of peoples networks. Therefore – if visibility is your aim – then currently, growing your connections is a key tactic to employ.

Friday, May 3, 2013

How to Lose Contacts and Alienate People on LinkedIn


LinkedIn can be a powerful tool for networking andeven finding jobs, but if you're not careful, you can end up using it in ways that alienate the very people with which you're hoping to form connections. Here are some of the most common annoying behaviors to avoid on the site.
Sending connection requests to people whom you don't know at all. The point of LinkedIn is to connect with your contacts. If you try to connect with someone who has no idea who you are, and especially if you don't bother to include a note telling him or her why you'd like to connect, you'll alienate and annoy that person. (And if you send enough of these and in response enough people indicate they don't know you, LinkedIn may even ban you from sending more connection requests.)
Sending connection requests without any context, just the default message. Even with people whom you do know, it's considered good form to personalize the connection requestmessage, even if it's just a line or two. Most folks will still accept the request if they know you, but you'll make a much better impression if you write something personalized to them.
Updating your status too often. LinkedIn isn't Facebook or Twitter; it's a business networking site. If you clog up people's feeds with constant updates or posts that won't be of general interest, you may find some people remove you from their connections entirely.
Contacting strangers about job openings to try to circumvent their company's application system. If an employer has an online job application system, they want you to use it. They don't want you to contact their employees through LinkedIn to ask if they'll pass your résumé along for you. And those employees who don't know you have no reason to vouch for you, after all.
Lying about your title or your job responsibilities. Your co-workers will look at your profile one day, and they will lose all respect for you. And worse, if a reference-checker happens to cross-reference your LinkedIn profile with your résumé and sees discrepancies, that will be a huge red flag.
Indiscriminately endorsing people. Complaints have already started about the abuse of LinkedIn's new endorsement feature, which allows people to endorse you for various skills. You might think you're doing your contacts a favor by endorsing them for a litany of skills, but people don't want their profiles crowded with things they have no real expertise in.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

5 Reasons Why Your LinkedIn Headline & Summary should be Google Friendly

I spent 3 weeks recently searching the back end of LinkedIn on Google.

One Boolean search string after another, tinkering with the stuff I’ve learned from recruiting experts like Geoff Webb, Glen Cathay and Jonathan Campbell.I had to find a series of specific skill sets and previous employers and LinkedIn’s Advanced search wasn’t giving me any love.

Why? LinkedIn’s advanced search shows the most completed profiles, not the most relevant.

Searching LinkedIn Key Words, Skills, Head Line Profiles, and Experience – I needed to find a needle in a hay stack.

Frustration was inevitable especially when I ran across uncompleted Headlines and ambiguous Summaries.

My advice to people wanting to be found on LinkedIn is thus.

If you want to be found, keep in mind that a Boolean search for skills and experience on Google will capture the FIRST 7-8 lines of your LinkedIn profile.

1. Make sure your professional head line states what you do.
Use professional key words the describe your vocation.

2. Keep the first lines of your Summary fact based and 100% aligned to your work/service/product.
Google will capture only the first few lines and if you’re saying how enthusiastic and energetic you are,that won’t matter to a recruiter/consumer whose parsing through data.

3. List your work experience first.
Volunteer work and special events should be listed as an afterthought not in the chronology of your experience.

Tips 4,5 and Examples

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

10 Tips To A More Professional LinkedIn Profile


Regardless of whether you are in business, trying to put your startup on the map, new to the working world or focus mostly on non-profit work, LinkedIn is a very good networking tool to help you achieve your professional goals.

A hunting ground for headhunters, HR managers and new businesses looking for partners or opportunities, it will do you good to have a professional LinkedIn profile set up, to let you take advantage of this.

Unlike on Facebook, where profiles could be made up and are more suitable for personal networking rather than a professional one, LinkedIn encourages users to provide a highly professional look to their resume and/or profile on the networking site. Here are 10 things you can do to enhance your LinkedIn profile for a more professional look.

Unlike on Facebook, where profiles could be made up and are more suitable for personal networking rather than a professional one, LinkedIn encourages users to provide a highly professional look to their resume and/or profile on the networking site. Here are 10 things you can do to enhance your LinkedIn profile for a more professional look.

A LinkedIn profile is similar to a work resume, where you display your past education information, work experience, skills, current work position and profile picture. You can follow LinkedIn’s Profile Completion Tips when editing your profile.
Complete LinkedIn Profile
Besides that, adding a profile headline and summary would be real helpful to make an impression.
The headline gives yourself a professional ‘identity’, a front that may or may not showcase some of the more detailed parts of your profile, hidden away from viewers who are not connected to you. A summary would bring out your personality which can complement your Curriculum Vitae (CV) if an employer were to view your profile.
Profile Headline
It’s also important to use keywords in your headline, summary and throughout your entire profile. The keywords could consist of your main passion or profession and will help your LinkedIn profile turn up more often on search engine results.

2. Temporarily Turn Off Activity Broadcast

If you’ve had LinkedIn for a while and have already connected with people, updating your profile will fill their feed and your ‘Wall’ with update notices. This means that if you happen to choose to update your LinkedIn with ‘old details’, for instance, if you are finally coming out as the HR manager that you are, your connections will think that you’ve only gotten the job recently.

By turning off your activity broadcast temporarily, you can silently update your LinkedIn profile without letting the world know.
Activity Broadcasts
To do this, go to ‘Settings’, and under ‘Privacy Controls’, you should be able to see ‘Turn on/off your activity broadcasts’.

Click on that and another overlay window will appear allowing you to uncheck the option.
After saving these changes, other users won’t be able to see every detailed profile update you’ve made. You can choose to leave it off or turn it on after you’re done editing.

3. Proofread Your Entire Profile

Just like any other thing used in the professional world, you wouldn’t want your LinkedIn profile to have any sort of grammatical or spelling errors. You should also word your profile summary and important information effectively so that it is communicated to the reader without confusing them (something learnt from communication school).

Try putting yourself in the eyes of the reader and see if you understand what your profile is about. It may also be helpful to have someone screen through your profile for a second opinion or to point out any errors that you may have missed out. Basically, treat it like how you would treat a job resume.

4. Do Not Lie About Anything

We don’t want to sound like your mother, but lying is not tolerated in the professional world, especially when you can easily get caught. This is also true for information on your LinkedIn profile with details like your education and job history.

Not only is it very easy to check and confirm just about anything on the Internet, it is also a sign of how ethical (or non-ethical) you are. Appearing untrustworthy is never good for business.

5. Customize Your Profile URL

By default, your LinkedIn profile URL will consist of random alphanumerical characters. However, you can elect to have a customized profile URL by going to Settings > Edit Public Profile > Customize Your Public Profile URL.
Customize URL
Pick the name you would like to display on your vanity URL. Your profile URL will bear your name, something like ‘’. You can even take it a step further by making sure that your vanity URL for LinkedIn, Facebook and Google Plus are all the same, for added coverage.

Tips 6-10 and the complete article.