A few months ago, I came across this question on Quora:
“Does being on LinkedIn really help me get hired?”
Hell yes, it does.
Only a year before I saw that question, a recruiter called me with an incredible position at Amazon.
How’d she find me? You guessed it: LinkedIn.
Having a LinkedIn profile literally changed my life. Instead of applying for jobs and praying, I flipped the traditional model on its head. I didn’t have to sell myself anymore.
Now, recruiters reach out every week to try and sell me on coming to work for them. If that’s where you’d like to be, then here are 5 tips to help you get there:
1. Complete Your Profile
According to LinkedIn, completed profiles are 40 times more likely to get a response from employers, yetonly half of the platform’s 400 million profiles are 100% complete.
LinkedIn is like Google for recruiters. If your profile isn’t packed with the right keywords, you’re just not going to show up in their searches.
Even worse, LinkedIn is biased against rookie and incomplete profiles. If you want to show up in recruiter searches, you have to workto improve the strength of your profile.
All that starts with bringing your profile up to 100%.
2. Clear Headline Is Better Than a Clever One
I’ve seen a lot of imaginative headline work on LinkedIn. There are plenty of people who describe themselves as “Marketing Ninjas” or “Accounting Wizards.”
I love the creativity, but the problem is they’re too clever for their own good.
Remember, LinkedIn is like Google for recruiters, and no Fortune 500 is looking to hire a “Ninja,” a “Wizard,” or an “Alchemist.” They’re looking for an “Account Executive” or a “Product Development Manager.”
You can (and should) still be clever, of course. But don’t let that unique attempt to sell your value obscure what it is you really bring to the table.
3. Pick an Awesome Headshot
I can’t stress enough how important it is to stamp your profile with a well-lit and professional headshot. Anything less and you can expect employers to skip right by.
Don’t have a professional headshot?
Services like Snappr are making it easy to book a professional photographer for a quick session.
Aren’t sure if your photos are all that good? With Photofeeler, you learn from the wisdom of the cloud whether your shot presents you as a competent and likable professional, or a creepy and offputting amateur.
4. Write a Compelling Description
In the two years I spent refining my profile, I learned quickly that you’ve only got a few lines to capture recruiters’ interest. You’ve got to make every word count.
Aim for simple paragraphs describing who you are, where you came from, and where you’re going. Most recruiters read on their phones, so keep your writing short and crisp.
Recruiters want someone they can get excited about presenting as a promising hire. So, write your story in a way that speaks to their needs more than it does your own.
5. Make High-Quality Connections
When it comes to connections, recruiters care about two things: quantity and quality.
Some recruiters tell me they’re turned off by anything less than 500 connections. They’re usually pretty forgiving, however, when it comes to recent college grads.
But if you’ve had at least a decade to get established in the industry, anything less than 500 signals that either you don’t play well with others or you’re not valued in your field.
The quality of your connections is what matters most. A recruiter doesn’t care if you’ve connected with 1,000 random people. They care about who those people are.
It’s especially helpful to have connections in the company where you want to work. If a recruiter from Google wants to make a hire, they’re going to feel much more comfortable contacting the person who knows 50 Googlers rather than the person who has zero connections within the company.
Can LinkedIn really get you hired?
Hell yes, it can; I’m living proof. Just follow these five tips and you’ll be well on your way to attracting high-quality contacts from the companies where you want to work.
In this video, I’ll share 5 tips I’ve learned along my journey to get found by recruiters.