How to be LinkedIn correctly

ImageI haven’t been on LinkedIn for that long. I not sure what kept me away all these years but it wasn’t until about six months ago that I joined the platform. I use to think that because I had a stable job and wasn’t looking for a new job there wasn’t a reason for me to be connected on LinkedIn. I’m learning how wrong that thinking was and the benefits that LinkedIn can provide to everyone.

I wasn’t aware of how LinkedIn made money until reading LinkedIn: The Ugly Duckling of Social Media. Their three main revenue streams are ad sales, talent solution listings and premium subscriptions with corporate customers making up for more than half of that revenue. I can certainly see the lure of LinkedIn to recruiters and companies looking for new hires. They have a huge database of potential employees at their fingerprints. The important thing to learn and remember is how to stand out on LinkedIn and keep from making mistakes that will keep you from being recruited.

There are many ways to optimize your LinkedIn profile and the article Preparing for the New LinkedIn Design: How to Optimize Your Page and Profile does a great job of breaking down the main points. The headline is the most important part with the summary being next in line. These are two things that will help you stand out from a crowd. I’m not sure I have either on my profile. These two things must be really important because the article 7 Quick Ways to Turn Your LinkedIn Profile into a Social Media Marketing Workhorse also listed them as points one and two.  

You want to be sure to have important keywords in your headlines and write about who you are in your summary. Things I would include are website management and social media. I’d also call to attention that while working a full work week managing a website and mobile platforms, I also spend my time getting my Master’s Degree in social media. Another area to make sure is up to date is the contact info where social media links should be provided.

The next time you visit your LinkedIn profile think about if you’re making any mistakes on your profile. The article 8 Mistakes You Should Never Make On LinkedIn says that not having a picture is the worst mistake. Your profile is seven times more likely to get viewed when you have a picture. The second mistake is to not have a professional looking picture. This isn’t the social network where a photo of your dog or baby is appropriate. I remember when first setting up my profile I contemplated using a photo of my baby and I. I’m glad that I changed my mind. You want to pick something that shows your professional side and potential connections aren’t drawn in by a baby, even if it is a cute one.

Other mistakes include not updating your status, skipping the summary, or not posting all job or volunteer experience. I don’t know that I’ve ever made a status update on LinkedIn. Updates aren’t needed every day but it is important to post something new every few days to keep your profile fresh and make your profile top of mind for your connections. My tactic will be to share articles I find interesting and helpful to those I’ve connected with.

What mistakes have you been making on LinkedIn that you will start to correct?

Do you make status updates on LinkedIn and if so what are usually?