If you think of LinkedIn in this way, you will get better results for your effort.
I want you to take a couple of minutes to think of LinkedIn. I don't care whether you're junior or senior, I think LinkedIn has fallen prey to its own success. It does confuse people and distracted people from the core of being effective on LinkedIn. You see, most people get the idea that there are recruiters out there who are looking for talent, and that their profile has to be good. But it needs to be really good for what you want to be found for. So think, number one, in terms of the all-star level of LinkedIn
reputation for how your profile's filled out, because, frankly, LinkedIn prefers people who hit that ranking. I also want you to think in terms of SEO, in terms of LinkedIn search engine optimization, because LinkedIn, fundamentally, is a search engine that's searching an enormous repository of database information about people and how it chooses you. Well, no one really knows exactly how it chooses people but we know that there's a preference for allstars. There's a preference for people who are active on LinkedIn, and we know a couple of different things-- that if the keywords for what you do are prevalent in your profile, you will be more likely served up.
Because when recruiters are searching, here's how they do it. They search by people within a specific geographic area, who have a or a group of specific keywords in their resume or in their profile. Then they may go to education, they may use the option, which I think is dumb of junior, mid level, senior executive to choose people to actually examine.
Once they get the search results, they may do a quick Google search of the individual before actually contacting them. You know, they'll look at your profile, they'll see what the name is, the headline nder your name and who you work for, look for something that confirms the keywords because, after all, you can use the FIND feature in their browser to look for the keyword in your profile, especially if it isn't obvious to them and attempt to confirm that you have that background that they want.
Part of the way they're going to measure that is repetition. If it's only used one time that they can find four years ago, like, a person I was talking to yesterday who wants to be marketed as a leader or manager and the only time that they really lead was about six years ago. They're going to struggle in terms of being found.
Now, also, and this is a subtle thing, not all recruiters are using the LinkedIn Recruiter product. The LinkedIn recruiter product opens up the entire database of choices on LinkedIn. Some people use lesser accounts and, for you, I also want you to think in terms of how to build out your network because, when you think about it, you are only able to reach as many people as your first and second level connections in order to do your networking. As a result, you are limited by the size of your network.
It's not just simply the magic 500. And I was I was reading something about how Reid Hoffman, in days of old, when he noticed the people were trying to game the system by just building up their numbers, decided that, on the profile page, they would only do 500 Plus, because they didn't want there to be a competition for numbers of people. So it only shows 500+.
You want to get as many people into your network because it opens up avenues of contact for you as you're building things out. Although LinkedIn used to promote itself for the people who you know well who you want to stay connected with. But when you're job hunting, you want to go beyond those people. You want to get to the people who your network knows who you don't. With the new LinkedIn messaging feature, which lets you know when people are online, it's messaging, by the way, is terrific. The old product was awful. This one is a really nice little product.
So, I want you to think of how you can be found within this database using SEO. And if we're not sure what the keyword terms are that people will use to find you, look at job ads on job boards; you'll start to notice, in the requirements area and in the description of the role, certain words, certain terms, start to repeat themselves. If you think of your profile in this way, if you start writing for LinkedIn and using the blogging platform to get yourself known as well and share that information because it's becomes Google-able, I can't believe I said that word, people can find you through Google, you will have gone a long way towards standing out from your competition.
I want you to take a couple of minutes to think of LinkedIn. I don't care whether you're junior or senior, I think LinkedIn has fallen prey to its own success. It does confuse people and distracted people from the core of being effective on LinkedIn.
You see, most people get the idea that there are recruiters out there who are looking for talent, and that their profile has to be good. But it needs to be really good for what you want to be found for. So think, number one, in terms of the all-star level of LinkedIn
ABOUT JEFF ALTMAN, THE BIG GAME HUNTER
Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a career and leadership coach who worked as a recruiter for more than 40 years. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 1400 episodes and his newest show, “No BS Coaching Advice.” He is a member of The Forbes Coaches Council. “No BS JobSearch Advice Radio” was recently named a Top 10 podcast for job search. JobSearchTV.com was also recently named a Top 10 YouTube channel for job search.
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