Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Why Every Top Recruiter Should Double as a Master Marketer on LinkedIn

Ross Carvalho

In order to attract and engage top talent, recruiters nowadays need to move away from the classically reactive and transactional ‘get me a hire’ routine and start thinking more strategically and proactively about how to build up their company’s brand. Or in short – recruiters need to become part-time marketers.

The questions that every marketer tackles daily and every recruiter must learn to pay attention to are:
- do your target audience know your brand?
- can your target audience find you easily?
- are you appearing in the places where your target audience go to regularly?
- once they find you, are you providing the right/helpful messaging?
- are you following up and staying top of mind?

Think about it the next time you go into a supermarket: how many times have you seen ads for that new favourite chocolate bar of yours? Probably the first time was on TV, then on the train or bus during your commute, then in the paper. Finally, as you entered the supermarket that final point of sale ad tipped the scales and you bought the chocolate bar.

1. Have a consistent brand presence

Pretty much like the chocolate bar, every recruitment team must have a consistent brand message – one of quality and ability to add value. This will help you build up a strong employer brand and attract good hires more easily.

Here are the steps you need to take to formulate your brand presence:
a. Establish what is the message you want to convey to potential candidates? Do you have any standout points that make working for your company unique? For this you can work with your HR team (employee survey results) and your marketing team (brand positioning).

b. Then you can start to think about where to put that message. This begins with telling the story through traditional channels such as your company’s careers website and following up by sharing your brand message on social media. A great place to start is your company’s Career Page on LinkedIn and your employee’s profiles.  Your employees can help by spreading your brand message in their profiles’ summary and work experience sections.

2. Advertise your jobs

It’s crucial to advertise your brand in the right places – where your target audience will be able to find you easily and where they are going regularly.

So where are these places?

About 20% of all candidates are active and you can target this audience through LinkedIn job postings or niche job boards. These candidates tend to be more proactive so are likely to seek as much information as they can get. As such, having a greater inventory of opportunities in these channels is important.

The other 80% of candidates are passive and you have a few tools at your disposal on LinkedIn to reach them:  - Read the rest of the LinkedIn Talent Blog post for more...

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Counterintuitive Advice for Maximizing LinkedIn - Part 1

William Arruda

Don’t read this if you’re looking for step-by-step instructions on completing your LinkedIn profile or ways to use LinkedIn to find a job. There are thousands of great articles and videos on the web with that kind of advice (here are a few).
This article, and the two that will follow, give you advice that no one talks about – the shortcuts and workarounds that can help you make LinkedIn a powerful personal branding tool. The tips I share in this series are among dozens of tricks I developed through my work with executives over the past several years. At first glance, this advice may seem counterintuitive, but these tips take advantage of the way LinkedIn works so you can build your brand and expand your success.
  • Part 1 – Brand Yourself: We’ll start the series by focusing on branding your profile, making sure it’s relevant and compelling to the people who are making decisions about you.
  • Part 2 – Find and Be Found: How much attention have you paid to making sure the right people can find you? We’ll focus on not only how to be found but also how to keep your own research top secret.
  • Part 3 – Stand Out and Promote: In this final piece in the series we’ll look at differentiating your profile from the masses and the tools that enable you to maximize the value of your profile by promoting it and syndicating it.
Before getting into any of the tips in this series, there is one seemingly misguided piece of advice that you need to implement before you start mucking around with your profile: Keep Secrets.
When you’re updating your LinkedIn profile you don’t want your contacts to be made aware of every little change. Of course, when you make a big change – like announcing your promotion or appointment to a board, you want your contacts to know. Alerting your contacts to every bit of wordsmithing you do while attempting to make your profile more compelling and more searchable, is not something I would recommend. When you’re in edit mode, turn off activity broadcasts and adjust the setting option for ‘select who can see your activity feed’ to be ‘only you’.
Remember to change the settings back when you have completed your edits. This way, when you do make a change that you want all your contacts to see, your scream won’t be ignored as just another rewording or spelling correction. 
Part 1- Brand Yourself
Be Redundant
Arrogance is an unsavory trait…except on LinkedIn. Know the top five strengths for which you want to be recognized and use them in your profile – repeatedly.
If your top skill is project management, describe your project management proficiency in your summary as well as in multiple experience descriptions. Personal branding requires steadfast focus and redundancy will bolster your brand around your critical skill.
In addition to influencing others, repeating keywords throughout your profile will help boost your ranking in searches of those keywords. Be sure to use all the different variations for how that skill is described to make sure people who are looking for what you have to offer will be able to find you, regardless of what terms they use in the search box.

Monday, July 29, 2013

How and Why to Make LinkedIn References Count


In the prehistoric days before social media, job hunters would typically try to withhold the names and contact information of their references until as late in the hiring process as possible. And, even if they requested them earlier, employers would typically not contact them until just before making a job offer.

Then, along came LinkedIn and its Reference feature. Here, you can write something positive about any of your connections. It is forwarded to the person being recommended for approval, before being posted to his or her profile. If he or she would like you to modify what you've written, he or she can suggest alternative language. Anyone can block a reference about him or herself that might be considered unflattering. LinkedIn references count in a job hunt for two key reasons:

1. References are searchable. Recruiters, human resources staffing pros and hiring managers all scour them to find great candidates. Rather than assuring the hiring authority at the end of the process that they are making a good choice, a reference can now bring you to the attention of decision makers at the very beginning. The unspoken message becomes: "You ought to look at this person, because when you do this is what you will find..."

2. References say more than endorsements. In the last several months, the Reference feature has undergone twists and turns, especially since the introduction of the Endorsement feature. You now have the ability to add Skills to your profile, and your first-degree connections can endorse you for any of them with a simple click. Unlike references, there is no need to say anything about a person, or to obtain permission for an endorsement to show up on his or her profile.

LinkedIn actively encourages users to endorse connections, and people often abuse the feature by making unfounded endorsements. Given this behavior, it is no surprise that the value of endorsements is diminished, and many rue the day when they came into being.

Recommendations remain valuable for both giver and receiver. They demonstrate that the person who is making the recommendation cares enough to take the time to actually write one instead of just clicking "Endorse." A well-written reference can convey so much more about the person being recommended than an endorsement. By giving recommendations you show yourself to be a person interested in others and helping them as a part of their team, a key characteristic of any good hire. When you take the time to recommend someone, they are much more likely to be open to recommending you in return, as well as helping you in other ways in your job hunt. You thereby improve the quality of your own personal brand.

How to create a new reference.  - Find out HOW and read the complete USNews article

Friday, July 26, 2013

5 Tips for Tweaking Your LinkedIn Profile


Grammarly, the online proofreading and grammar checking tool, often uses LinkedIn for recruiting. The company's hiring managers noticed that making a few tweaks to your LinkedIn profile may help boost your name in the search results and help you find a job.

One caveat before you start tweaking, if you're employed and updating your activity level be careful whom you share what you're doing with. You may not want your boss to notice a flurry of LinkedIn activity. Here's how to turn off LinkedIn activity broadcasts if you need to.

Here are tips for tweaking your LinkedIn profile:

Be passive. Don't mention that you are actively seeking a job on your Linkedin profile. Many potential employers are looking for passive job seekers who are committed to their current job, but may be a better fit for the hiring company.

Get active. A flurry of profile activity - such as making new connections, commenting in groups, adding keywords to your profile, etc. - helps candidates to show up in more search results. Activity also helps recruiters to judge if someone is thinking about looking for a new position and starting to tweak and improve their resume.

Include specific job titles. Maybe you're a marketing ninja at your current company - but what does a marketing ninja do, exactly? If you're looking for a job, include a job title that is transferable to the position you're looking for.

Tips 4,5, and the complete article

Thursday, July 25, 2013

How to craft the perfect LinkedIn introduction request

By , ITworld

Whether you're looking for a new job or trying to expand your network, career experts and job hunters agree: You need LinkedIn.
The currency - and power - of the site are connections, especially those second-degree associations, i.e., the friend of a friend, colleague of an acquaintance, etc., that will expand your reach, knowledge and opportunity.
You can forge connections with these second-degree folk via an introduction by someone already in your LinkedIn Network.
LinkedIn offers a canned, generic request, but career coach Carol Ross says there are four steps to writing your own that will greatly improve your chances of it being accepted.
1. Write an eye-catching subject line
"In addition to stirring someone's curiosity, subject lines should be relevant," Ross notes. "Make yours personal. Add humor if that fits with your personality."
Whatever you do, Ross advises avoiding the generic, "Need an introduction." No one's going to open that, let alone read it and respond with a "Yes."
2. Don't make the recipient guess who you are
If you're asking someone you don't know well, clearly state how you crossed paths.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Why Your LinkedIn Headline Is So Important


If you’re looking for a new job, you probably already know the importance of having an updated LinkedIn profile, but you may not realize how important the LinkedIn headline section can be to your job search.

Why You Should Update Your LinkedIn Headline

By default, LinkedIn populates your headline with your current job title and employer, but this field is fully customizable. Most career experts agree that this is one of the most powerful fields in your profile and you should take full advantage of the ability to show your awesomeness in 120 characters or less.

When recruiters use LinkedIn to identify candidates for their open positions, the first piece of data that comes up is your name and your headline. There needs to be some call to action for the recruiter to click through to your full profile.

Think Like A Salesperson

Rather than just listing your job title, think like a salesperson. What is your greatest asset for a prospective employer? What’s in it for the employer if they hire you? Why should this employer hire you or even make an initial contact with you? Since you’ll need to edit this down to a quick sound bite, make a list of all of your assets and then rank them in order of importance. Take the top two or three and work them into a headline of appropriate length.

If you’re struggling with this, ask people who know you to help. Sometimes, it’s hard for us to be our own agent, but other people see us favorably. Ask former co-workers, friends and family to tell you what they admire most about you and take those items and work them into a headline.

More tips and the complete Careerealism article

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

25 Things that Make You Look Dumb on LinkedIn


LinkedIn is one of those social networks you may feel a bit unsure about.

You might even be asking yourself, “How can this site help me grow my small business?”

LinkedIn is recognized as the professional social network. It’s a place where people in all industries can go to build relationships with their colleagues and demonstrate their experience and expertise. It’s also a place where businesses and organizations can show off their work to prospective clients, customers, and even future employees.

The last thing you want to do is look like you don’t know what you’re doing!

To help you get started, we compiled a list of 25 things you’ll want to avoid:

1. Not understanding the difference between a LinkedIn Company Page and a LinkedIn Profile. There are two ways for you to demonstrate your expertise on LinkedIn. With a Company Page, you’ll be communicating as your business. This is similar to a Facebook Business Page, where prospective clients can learn more about your business. However, it is much more focused on informing your audience rather than building a community like you would on Facebook.

With your LinkedIn Profile, you’ll be communicating as an individual rather than a business. Here you’ll connect with clients, colleagues, and other members of your professional network.

Mixing this up is a guaranteed way to look foolish when starting out.

9. Not proofreading your posts. An extra comma here and a misspelled word there may not seem like a big deal, but it does make you look less professional. Keep posts as grammatically sound as possible.

20. Not connecting to your other social media outlets. Think of your social networks as part of a larger ecosystem. They should all be connected and working together to help boost your social connections.

24. Not thinking about search optimization (SEO). For starters, completing your profile helps your ranking, but there is more you can do to make your Business Page SEO friendly. Being visible and highly ranked will help people find you.

See all 25 things and the complete ConstantContact blog

Monday, July 22, 2013

Creative Ways to Use LinkedIn in Your Job Search

Part one:  Look into Career Paths, Research People and Follow Companies

Are you guilty of logging in to LinkedIn to just look at people's profile pictures, check out the latest updates and browse? Not to worry, you are not alone. In my experience in career consulting many people tell me they have LinkedIn accounts but have no idea what to do on the site.  People tend to grossly underestimate the value of actively engaging on LinkedIn. Most use LinkedIn to search for jobs and network with others. I advise all my clients, if they are in the job market, to log on to LinkedIn several times a week, if not daily. With millions of users LinkedIn is an awesome place to gain information about career paths, skill sets and industry news!

How to discover career paths:
To learn about career paths on LinkedIn
  • Search your connections for people who are doing what you aspire to do and review their profiles.
  • Read their profile in reverse to determine what they did prior to their current job. This will help you see how they attained their current position.
  • Make note of what qualifications they have, the keywords used in their profile and what types of activities they've been involved with.  
While everyone's career path will be different, use this approach to gather ideas for new ways to find the job you seek.

If you do not have any connections with people who hold positions which you aspire to, search for new connections in relevant industry specific groups. LinkedIn has a fantastic “groups feature” which provides a place for industry professionals or people with similar interests to discuss business, share content, ask/ answer each other's questions and sometimes post jobs. If you join the right groups, you could learn about industry trends, and have current information about the industry for which you are interviewing. This will aid you in arriving to your interview prepared to discuss the work and ask good questions.

Research People and Follow Companies:
Another best practice for using LinkedIn while job searching is to follow companies which you plan to (or desire to) interview with to research the company. This is a strategy I have personally employed, here’s why:
  • Companies will often share different information on their LinkedIn Company page than what is presented on their website.  
  • You can also see their current and former employees and read company status updates.
  • Prior to the interview, find out whom you're interviewing with
    • review their profile on LinkedIn
Most people go to interviews with no information about who they will be meeting; while the prospective employer has read your resume and likely Googled you. With the access that LinkedIn provides, this should no longer be the case. Go into the interview armed with a little knowledge about what led your interviewer to their current position.  You may even have a few shared connections!  Use the information you find about your interviewer to “break the ice”.  Should you make it to the second or third round of interviews this will prove to be helpful as you will be introduced to more people at-varied levels within the company. If possible, make a habit of finding out who you will be speaking with and get to know each person that will interview you.

LinkedIn is an invaluable tool that could be used to give you leverage as you job search, network or consider learning a new skill or career.  When using the site, think of it as a free career counselor with endless information, right at your fingertips!

Part Two: Learn Skills and Read the News - Read Part 2 and the rest of the Simply Hired Blog post

Friday, July 19, 2013

3 Secrets to Getting Recruiters to Find You on LinkedIn

Have you ever wondered why you aren’t getting random calls from recruiters looking for someone with your experience and skills? I mean, the economy is coming back. Companies are hiring. And hiring managers are STILL struggling to fill positions. There should be a huge number of recruiters out there teaming to find people just like you!
Well, all of that is true. But chances are you are impossible to find!
Recently, I wrote a social media job search training curriculum for an unemployment organization. I had seven days to find trainers to subcontract and deliver it.
So I wrote up a job description and sent it out on my social media channels, emailed it to my network, and called a few friends. Five days later, I had no one, except a few pathetic emails from people who didn’t even send me their resume or LinkedIn profile link. The one resume that was sent in was so generic that I wondered if the person even read my job description.
With just two days left to deliver my candidates, I decided to do what most recruiters do in my exact situation. No, not start drinking! Do people searches on LinkedIn.
Several great candidates showed up as first or second degree connections. Of those, just one seemed to be available for contract work. So I InMailed her an inquiry, and she responded with a resume and video of her training. She was a perfect fit.
Life lesson: recruiting is hard work!
If you’re looking for a job, and you are reasonably smart, then there are recruiters out there who would benefit from talking to you. I’m guessing from my own experience, that 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 their 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 leaves a lot to be desired. Here’s the much 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.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

6 Steps to Creating an Effective LinkedIn Profile

Jason Seiden

Jason Seiden is CEO of Ajax, an agency helping turn employees into better brand advocates

In my experience, the place where most people struggle in optimizing their LinkedIn profiles isn’t with their content, it’s with their approach.

Here’s the source of the problem:

The text fields we fill out on LinkedIn are like little essay questions, each begging us to draw from a lifetime’s worth of growth and change and developmental experiences to fill in the blanks.

Unfortunately, our brains don’t like this kind of exercise. Most of us show a strong preference for concrete, multiple choice type questions over open-ended, essay-type questions. When we sit down to write our LinkedIn profiles, our brains respond as if we’ve just given ourselves an essay test.

Not fun.

So what happens next is that our minds start turning all those open-ended questions into something more concrete and manageable… typically, a résumé. This feels appealing because résumés are nowhere near as open-ended as LinkedIn profiles: they are drafted for a specific audience, are written according to a specific format, and are used for a specific goal. Very clear, very concrete.

Unfortunately, also very misaligned. The people looking at our LinkedIn profiles are more likely to be coworkers, bosses, and customers looking to work with us, than recruiters looking to hire us.

This misalignment creates conflict, and sends people looking for advice about whether or not to connect with their boss, or how to manage their networks, or how to deal with all the other problems that arise when they use the wrong model for their LinkedIn profile.

It’s like they’ve dressed for a beach party and, finding themselves at a professional dinner, start trying to figure out how to survive in their swimsuits, when the easiest course of action would be to duck into the restroom and change.

What people need is a different way of thinking about their LinkedIn profiles; one that still eliminates ambiguity but better fits the way people actually interact with them on LinkedIn.
Here’s what we recommend:

Step 1: Pick an audience.

We can’t control who visits our profiles, but we also can’t be all things to all people. So who’s most important? What group do you really want to impress? Write down who this group is. Then, picture one representative from the group. Give the person a name. Write that name down. You’re going to write for him (or her).

Step 2: Decide on a goal.

What do you want that person to know about you? Write down exactly what impression you want that person to have of you after he or she visits your profile.

These two steps have just established the context for your LinkedIn profile. With these answers, those open ended text fields will start to feel more concrete—in a good way.

Step 3: In a few words, write down what you do, from the perspective of the person you’re writing for. 

That person may use different language than you would use, and that’s OK. You’re not writing this for yourself, you’re writing for them. And by the way, you just created your headline.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

6 Ways Recruiters Use LinkedIn to Headhunt

Have you ever wanted to get inside the head of a headhunter?

There is a certain mystique about the people who make their living by finding the specific talent that will add value to their clients' businesses. If you want to be recruited, it is important to understand how recruiters, commonly referred to as "headhunters," research talent and build relationships.

Mary Truslow, a veteran recruiter at Pile & Co. in Boston, focuses on creative types of professionals, such as marketing managers, writers, Web designers and more. She operates as part of a well-oiled team of other recruiters, account managers who interface with clients and administrative support personnel. Interviewed for this article, she offers valuable insights about how recruiters go about their work. With this in mind, we can discern valuable lessons for job hunters.

LinkedIn isn't everything, but it is at the core of today's recruiting function. Truslow has in excess of 3,500 first-degree LinkedIn connections, which expands to an immense network of people at the second and third degree. "I'm constantly adding contacts," she says. When sourcing talent she readily admits that she "relies on people providing appropriate, honest and continually updated information in their profiles." Truslow employs several different tactics to leverage her LinkedIn presence:

1. Recruiters perform straightforward keyword searching. All it takes is using LinkedIn's Advanced People Search function to find people within a certain geographic radius who possess the self-identified skills, education or experiences integral to a given search.

Tip: Carefully read several job descriptions of positions similar to what you seek, and parse out the skills, actions or descriptors that can be used for keyword searches. Make sure that you sprinkle these words throughout your branding statement and profile summary. Take pains not to just list a block of keywords. Instead, use them in the bullet points that describe who you are, what you've done and how you have achieved it.

2. Recruiters join industry and skill-based LinkedIn Groups, and carefully follow their Discussions. Truslow uses this tactic to observe quietly what leaders are talking about, and who else contributes to the discussion. This way she can see easily who really has the combination of knowledge and the communications skills that everyone claims to possess.

Tip: Join LinkedIn groups relevant to your skill set and industry to keep up with what is going on, and make constructive contributions to the group discussions.

3. Recruiters follow thought leaders and key influencers. A significant part of a headhunter's value is to know "who's who" in his or her specialty field. Beyond that, headhunters need to know who makes up the first-tier followers. Truslow makes it a point to stay up to date with her large base of contacts, to understand and follow the real leaders by analyzing who is following whom on LinkedIn.

Tip: Make sure to stay extremely current in your field, and show it by following the people who will benefit you by your association with them.

Read the full USNews article

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

How to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile in Fourteen Minutes a Day!

by Kate Denoyer Fitzpatrick

Many people ask me how to decide which social media platform or platforms are right for them. This varies widely from person to person, depending on your background, industry, goals and the amount of time you intend to spend maintaining your profile. But practically everyone should have a LinkedIn profile – think of this medium as the Yellow Pages or 411. It's where a lot of individuals and companies go to first look someone up and learn about their experience, and if you don't have a LinkedIn profile, you could definitely be missing out on valuable professional opportunities.
Like I said in my previous post, "How to Manage Your Facebook Business Page in 11 Minutes a Day," none of us have a ton of time on our hands, so we have to be effective with each post and update, not spending any more time on social media than is truly necessary. While your role on social media is generally NOT to sell your product or service, LinkedIn is the place you can feel the most comfortable promoting yourself as an authority in your field. After all, remember your audience and their motivation – people log in to this platform specifically to see what their contacts are up to professionally, so it's expected and encouraged to describe your skills and current projects.
A lot of people don't know where to start on LinkedIn; there are Connections, Groups, Endorsements, Recommendations, Jobs, etc. Although it can be overwhelming, it's a terrific chance to be proactive about building your network and engaging with others; you never know when that next opportunity is going to come from. Above all, remember to think of this platform as a virtual job interview and conduct yourself as professionally and respectfully as possible. So here are my top tips for how to sift through the noise and optimize your LinkedIn profile in fourteen minutes per day:
2 minutes - Post an update. Your followers are looking to be informed about you and your experience, so post an update on a project you're working on, relevant article, industry event you're looking forward to attending, book recommendation, new product or service you're offering, or a question/poll that engages them. This is a great place to post a link to your website or latest blog post encouraging people to click through, but remember the golden 80/20 rule – 80% of your posts should be informative while 20% can be purely promotional. Still not sure what kind of updates to post? Look at the individuals you enjoy following the most and see what kind of updates they share.
3 minutes – Connect. Answer any Comments, questions or messages that your Connections have posted since the last time you logged in. Respond to any Connection requests and send Connection invitations to anyone you've met recently who you'd like to get to know better. Scroll periodically through the People You May Know recommendations on your homepage to Connect with individuals suggested by LinkedIn based on Connections you have in common. Post any Recommendations that have been made for you, and return the favor by Recommending a colleague. Feel free to Endorse someone who has performed exemplary work but don't spend too much time or energy on Endorsements; Recommendations hold much more weight so be sure to ask for them when appropriate.

Monday, July 15, 2013

5 LinkedIn Tips: Be a Connector, Not a Creeper


I was on the phone with a prospect the other day. He asked me the silly question of, “Are you really a belly dancer?!” and I replied, “Hardly… why are you asking?” He then informed me that he looked me up while we were talking, but he definitely came across the wrong LinkedIn profile. Of course, I had already looked him up as well and invited him to connect. In sales, it’s about connecting and networking; LinkedIn is a great tool for both.  In a recent survey  of sales people, 78.3% stated they use social media in the sales process. You may not be a sales person, but in today’s business world, each person in the company can have an impact on sales – negative or positive. Your company’s image can be enhanced and your brand awareness increased by effective use of LinkedIn. 

Here are some tips on using LinkedIn for sales: 

1. Be Social Your profile should include your full name. What’s with the use of an initial instead of the full last name?  We have Google; we can find out who you are. And those of you who don’t have a good photo—and I’m not talking about one of your boat or your dog—how social is that? People want to get a sense of who you are. Use the summary area to tell your story. Why do you do what you do? Why do you believe in your service or product? 

4. Educate There are several ways to educate clients and prospects about your area of expertise. Connect your blog to your profile. Add a video or Slide Share presentation to create a visual of your skill sets.

Tips 2,3,5, and the complete B2C article

Friday, July 12, 2013

How To Ensure Your LinkedIn Profile is Found in Google

Author: Vicky Jones (@VixJones)

With more than 225 million business individuals now on LinkedIn, there is a growing trend to ensure that a LinkedIn profile is not only created professionally, but can also be discovered by search engines such as Google. As a result of the public nature of the majority of users’ LinkedIn settings, an increasing number of individual profile pages are appearing in search engine results – particularly when searching for, validating or screening the information and expertise of potential candidates.

LinkedIn advise that in order to ensure your profile is displayed in search engines like Google, Bing & Yahoo, your profile can be made visible by adjusting your settings, sending out at least one invitation to a business colleague or friend and adding as a minimum, one connection.

In order to ensure your profile is visible you will need to amend your settings. The process should only take a couple of minutes and can be found by going to your profile avatar (picture) in the top right corner and choosing ‘Privacy & Settings’ as an option. Here you can amend who can see your profile picture (‘Change your profile photo & visibility’ and ensure your settings are ‘Everyone’) and ‘Edit Your Public Profile’. Users have a tick list of profile content which you can opt for everyone to see.

Additional Sections:

LinkedIn recommend users to ensure their profile is updated regularly (at least every month if you are wanting to be top of results), as well as checking all additional sections have been correctly filled in. These sections include:
  • Attaching a headshot as your profile photo - This should be a professional business photograph. Users should remember that all profile images are searchable on search engines, especially in Google Images. Therefore care should be taken on the choice of image used, perhaps choosing to reflect a corporate element for a business networking site – here are 7 pictures you should NEVER use.
  • Completing your Headline - This is the wording which is shown next to your profile picture and name on LinkedIn. Some people like to customise this to fully reflect your role and act as an aide to stand out from your competitors – it’s shown as a summary in all search results. Here are 10 LinkedIn Headlines that stand out from the crowd.
  • Writing a short description to include in the Summary box - This is similar to a summary of a CV and is meant to be a couple of paragraphs detailing you and your role – make sure you spruce it up!
  • Adding industry specific key words under your job history - If you work within a business sector which has unique industry key words, recruiters will search on those requirements and therefore your profile will show in search results.
  • Entering each of the skills & expertise you possess - This acts as an additional section to add industry specific skills. Care should be taken however to ensure that you only accept skills from individuals endorsing you which are relevant to your business area.
As LinkedIn are constantly changing and updating their offering, a number of optional areas have recently been introduced to complete such as:  See the additional areas and read the complete "TheUnderCoverRecruiter" article

Thursday, July 11, 2013

5 Easy Tips to a POWERFUL LinkedIn Profile

How does a person write a powerful LinkedIn profile when you are an early professional job seeker?
I often hear from young professionals who want to create a POWERFUL LinkedIn profile but because they are just starting out in their career, they are uncertain how to make their profile stand out when they have limited experience. I say, DON’T WORRY! Just because you are just starting out doesn’t mean you must have a dull, boring, and mostly empty LinkedIn profile. What you need to do is approach your LinkedIn profile strategically. Here are 5 tips to help you:
1. Get a Professionally Taken Profile Pic
You are who you say you are and a picture is worth a thousand words. Make sure your profile picture depicts a savvy, on the ball professional by having a real photographer take it. You want to come across as friendly, approachable, well-adjusted and confident.
Aim for a profile picture that looks like this:
Great Profile Pic for young professional
Avoid a profile picture that looks like this:
Bad Profile Pic for a Young professional
I know, you are young and just starting out… who can afford a professionally taken profile picture?You can do it. Think of it as an investment in your future. Shop around and you will find there are photographers out there that don’t cost a fortune and they even may be willing to give you a student / young whippersnapper discount. The typical cost of a business headshot is somewhere around $100.00 – $500.00. Let’s split it and say 250— that’s about 35 beers. Choose water and before you know it, you’ll have the money you need to hire a photographer.
A POWERFUL LinkedIn profile is a profile that can easily be found by your target audience. So the first question you need to ask yourself is… WHY ARE YOU ON LINKEDIN? What is it that you want to get out of this network?
Answers might be:
  • To find a job
  • To enhance my credibility and branding
  • To sell my products and services

Now that you know why you are on LinkedIn, who is your target audience?
If you are looking for a job, the answer would be recruiters, hiring managers, or HR professionals. If you are looking to enhance your personal brand, the answer may be employers, colleagues, or clients. If you are looking to sell products and services, the answer may be prospective clients or current customers.
So now you know your target audience… how might they be trying to find YOU? LinkedIn is a database of professionals, for professionals. People are querying this database looking for you… the trouble is, they don’t always know your name. Without your name, they will use keywords to find you. Keywords that describe you. What are your strengths, skillsets, core competencies? What are the solutions you offer? Dynamic, problem solver, caring, and professional ARE NOT KEYWORDS! You need to get very specific. Think in terms of job titles, skillsets, applications you know, methodologies, etc…
ExampleAccount Manager, Salesperson, New Business Development, Sales & Marketing, Solution Selling, Technology Sales,, CRM, Prospecting, Closing, Cold Calling, Social Media, etc…
Once you have your keywords, make sure you sprinkle them through your profile. You can’t be found for words that don’t exist on your profile. Use these keywords organically… this means don’t just list them but work them into sentences. We’ll get into using actual sentences in tip #5.
By adding keywords you are ensuring that your profile will be found by your target audience.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

101 LinkedIn Tips, Tricks and Strategies For Success

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If you want to build your business and your career then these 101 LinkedIn tips must be part of the mix! With more than 170 million professionals worldwide and 3 million in London alone LinkedIn is the best place to start!

Recent design changes have hidden many of the features that have given your profile much of its power – recommendations, web links and social media. As a result, creating a highly searchable and keyword rich profile is essential.

With  more than a million groups and great search features, LinkedIn is an amazing opportunity to build a business! Put in the effort to grow a network and learn the ins and outs of the system and the payoffs are huge!

  1. Secure your name to customize your url. This is done in the settings function and will provide you with a professional looking link instead of the default link which contains lots of numbers and random letters. Please feel free to connect with me!
  2. Complete your profile. Nothing says amateur than an incomplete profile. A complete profile will help when contacting with others.
  3. Start with connecting with your warm market. Invite friends, relations, schoolmates, customers and colleagues.
  4. Use LinkedIn to follow-up after other communications. Don’t make the mistake of trying to connect with lots people you don’t know. LinkedIn will warn you, and then could shut you down if too many people don’t respond to your connection request. Whenever you receive an email, business card, or leave a voicemail; add that you are going to also connect by LinkedIn right at the end. Then people make the connection as someone they know and approve your connection request.
  5. Customise the standard connection request message that LinkedIn puts in to something you write that is more personal. Note that if you import lists or use the mobile application to make requests that customization is not an option.
  6. Teach LinkedIn strategy and tactics to your employees. Get your people together and coordinate your efforts and strategies as a team. If you provide your staff with a team approach you will get much stronger results. Leverage each other’s connections for better team results.
  7. Give and receive recommendations, a heart-felt recommendation helps build relationships. Nothing boosts morale, loyalty, and friendship, like an unsolicited recommendation. Try it. And don’t be afraid to ask for it from co-workers, friends, and even customers. Be generous with your praise!
  8. Use your “3 Free Backlinks” (these are the weblinks) with all employees: Google uses backlinks to drive search engine results. Every LinkedIn account has a place for 3 Free Backlinks, and LinkedIn leaves these links open to indexing by Google. Ask that employees list your company website, blog and facebook page.
  9. Define your LinkedIn sales strategy. Know what you want to achieve and keep this in mind when making connections, posting in groups and creating updates.
  10. Have your marketing department assist your team with writing of profiles to be certain everyone within the company provides a professional profile.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

LinkedIn Strategies That Keep You Unemployed


Mingling around in the hundreds of LinkedIn groups is a great way to network, get yourself noticed, and increase your chances of finding a job or getting a new job. Without a doubt, LinkedIn is a huge resource for job seekers. However, there are wrong ways to use LinkedIn. Ways that, without a doubt, will cause more damage to your personal brand then you might ever imagine.

With so many people unemployed or in search of a different job, lots of people are congregating to job search or industry-related groups on LinkedIn. In these groups (and even many other type of groups) people are telling their story. When I read through the content in these groups, I am often shocked at what some people are saying, on a public website, that many employers use to find candidates for their open positions.

I understand it is frustrating to be out of work or in desperate need of a new job, but so many people are displaying their anger and frustration in these LinkedIn groups – a place where hiring managers are also present. In addition, potential employers who Google you may also have access to this content.

Joining a LinkedIn group and participating, is not something to take lightly. The content you put out there should reflect you in a very positive light – one that shows you are a high energy, self-motivated, positive individual who possesses skills and talents that are desired by employers.

While some groups require you to join and subsequently be accepted, that does not mean it is a private group where you are safe to vent amongst your peers. Many recruiters and hiring managers are also members of these groups! Just click on the members tab and you will see who all is reading your content. And many groups are completely open, now for anyone to read. Your posts can be found very easily by anyone who is reading through the group or wants to learn more about you.

Some of the big errors I have noticed include:

People disclosing their age as the reason they do not believe they are being hired.
  • “I am only 23 so I have no real job experience.”
  • “I am 58 years old and all I see is age discrimination.”
People! Employers can’t ask for your birth date and age, so why offer it up and then follow it up with a non-selling statement about yourself? I do not feel any person should mention their age in these groups – especially if you are in an age group that you feel has perceived disadvantages. Yes, in the United States, it is unlawful to discriminate against people based on their age.

Do employers do it?


Sadly, some of them do. Even if it’s just a silent notation that a hiring manager makes when coming across your post. I do not believe employers should ever discriminate based on age, but since it can be reality of life, don’t disclose it (and other personal details about your life), no matter what age you are.

Disclosing all the reasons they have heard so far as to why they were not offered a job.
  • “I have been told I am overqualified so many times.”
  • “I have been told I just don’t have the skills needed.”
  • “I make too much money.”
  • “I have been told I have a lack of focus.”
  • “I am competing against people who have much better experience than I do.”

Statements like these should never be said on LinkedIn! Maybe this is your reality, as there will always be reasons why people don’t get hired. But, if I am hiring and reading something like this that you wrote? You just gave me a reason to pass right by you.

More tips and the complete Careerealism article