In this installment of Trend Tuesday we are going to focus on Linkedin – that little ol’ social networking site that is finally getting its turn to shine.
These days after the music starts, the lights fade, and the dance floor clears – its Linkedin that gets to stand in the spotlight playing the part of bell of the ball. And if we think of the hard working and often neglected Linkedin as Cinderella, then it’s the recession that gets to play the role of the Fairy Godmother.
Thanks to Oprah and the CNN’ Astson Kutcher circusâ€¦ umâ€¦ publicity stuntâ€¦ case study in the democratization of the media, twitter has grown an explosive 217% and appears to be the only social media tool out pacing Linkedin.
The recession has given Linkedin a much needed shot in the arm
If we look at the numbers before November ’08 we see Linkedin growing only very slowly. Even with the introduction of groups, answers and apps Linkedin was struggling to find its place in a world where Facebook is ever blurring the lines between our professional and personal lives.
For most of us, Linkedin has served as little more than a robust and up-to-date online resume. We weren’t sure how to leverage the generally accepted knowledge that executives are on Linkedin, even if they are not part of any other online social network. We weren’t even sure what the heck we were supposed to do with Linkedin at all.
Increased activity is not just job hunters
Unfortunately, these days with the unemployment rate reaching a 14 year high a lot of users are optimizing their profiles and those new fandangled updates from Linkedin are coming in handy. The increased activity and drive of job hunters to find and make new connections is putting Linkedin back on the radar. Like rubber-neckers on the freeway, those alerts and invitations in email in-boxes have us giving Linkedin a little more time and attention. We are all starting to actually use Linkedin toâ€¦ wellâ€¦ network, and that’s good for Linkedin. It can also be good for any of the a fore mentioned job hunters.
Say you are on the hunt…
… and find yourself out there is the jungle again and need a little neon sign, well how â€˜bout a really big – blinking – neon sign that says’ I Rock! Hire Me! Linkedin can help and below are a few pointers to get you started. And as our own Caitlin Kaluza can atest… it is possible to get a job using social media.
How to Optimize a Linkedin Profile
Phase 1 – Begin with:
- A GREAT profile picture
- No formal Holiday party shots (or Glamor shots either)
- No cheesy 1985 blue back ground head shot
- Good quality, not fuzzy or grainy
- Complete the ENTIRE Profile with as much info as possible
- Yes, include your high schoolâ€¦ you never know where a lead is going to come from.
- Use your one line bio as your elevator pitch. Make it short and impactful. Include keywords.
- Join relevant groups.
- Install apps you actually use.
- Do the “webmail import”
- Follow “People You May Know” suggestions >>>
Phase 2 – Recommendations
- Write them. Be real, be honest, be detailed, be relevant. This is not a yearbook entry.
- Get them. Beg, borrow, steal… no, probably not steal… but you get the gist.
Phase 3 – Grow it
- Link to your profile in your email footer and any other spots you can.
- Those with most contacts come up first in a Linkedin search.
- Put your profile URL on your own business cards or resume.
- Got a biz contact that is not in Linkedin? Invite them. Personalize ALL invitations.
Phase 4 – Maintain
- Search through your contacts’ contacts. Do this once a week for a while, then move to once a month.
- Gather biz cards. Check to see if they are in LinkedIn.
- Ask relevant questions. Use the answers in a blog post or article or something. Link back to your Linkedin profile.
- Post what you are working on. Use relevant keywords.
Phase 5 – Use it
- Research potential hires or vice-versa, research companies you are interested in.
- Find people within the company or organization you want to do biz with.
- Find companies you can partner and grow with.
- Be where they are. Use Linkedin to connect’ then meet face to face. Face to Face is always best!
- Use it to connect other people. They will remember you helped them out and stay loyal.
3 take a-ways
- Make a big splash in the beginning – get your profile complete as quickly as you can.
- Many Execs / Decision Makers are on Linkedin and no-where else.
- Be active – you can’t take away more than you put it!