15 LinkedIn Tips to Improve Your Job Search

Having a LinkedIn profile is a great way to network with professionals as you begin your job hunt, but having an unfinished or poorly compiled profile can send the wrong signals to recruiters and potential employers.

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Tue, September 11, 2012

CIO — LinkedIn is an invaluable social network for both job hunters and seasoned professionals, but it's also used by recruiters to find the candidate with the perfect mix of skills. The right LinkedIn profile can boost your visibility, improve your overall Web presence and strengthen your professional brand. Consider it your online resume, being that it contains all of the information from your resume plus a healthy splash of personality, if you've done it right.

Using LinkedIn strategically can help give you an edge over your competition. But where do you start? CIO.com has put together this list of tips to help you get the most out of your LinkedIn experience.

1. Temporarily Shut Off Activity Broadcasts

When you make a change to your LinkedIn profile, such as adding a past work experience, LinkedIn broadcasts this activity to your connections' streams. If you don't want people to see that you are updating your profile, you need to temporarily shut off this feature. To start, click on Settings from the menu under your name in the upper right-hand corner.

LinkedIn Profile Settings Link

In the "Profile" tab, click "Turn on/off your activity broadcasts." In the popup that appears, uncheck the box and click save.

LinkedIn Profile Settings Link

Note: Don't forget to go back to this setting and check the box once you have fully updated your profile.

Related Story: 12 Cool LinkedIn Features You Never Knew About

2. Add Keywords

In a Forbes article, General Manager of Lock Search Group, Peter Zukow had this to say, "We have 35 recruitment consultants" "Different recruiters have adapted to different strategies but all of our consultants have adapted LinkedIn." Recruiters, employers and school admissions officers search through LinkedIn and other career sites using keywords to target potential hires or students. That's why keywords are important throughout your entire profile, but especially in the "Specialties" section. That's why you should invest some time to choose your keywords. Think here about what terms might be important to potential employers. To boost your chances of being found by prospective companies, align your keywords with the role you are trying to get into.

There are several keyword tools available and you should use more than one. Here are several free ones that should do the trick.

Google AdWords
WordStream Keyword Tool
KeywordEye
KeywordSpy
SEMRush

3. Update Your Photo

Recruiters and employers regularly look through LinkedIn to find candidates and a professional picture sets the right tone. So it's time to update that old photo of you in a concert t-shirt. Find the most professional looking picture of you and crop it to a head shot. Once you have chosen a photo it's time to upload it to your LinkedIn profile. This can be found by clicking on Profile -> Edit Profile and then clicking on "Edit Photo" in the upper left hand corner of your page.

LinkedIn Profile Settings Link

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