When used correctly, LinkedIn can serve as an invaluable asset to your professional career. But many professionals don’t understand how to use this social networking platform effectively. To get the most from it, take a more professional approach – don't treat it like Facebook or Twitter.
Wondering why you’re not getting a lot of traction on LinkedIn? Consider these six common offenses:
1. Inappropriate LinkedIn Profile Photo
LinkedIn is a professional site, so vacation photos or shots of you hanging out with family and friends won’t cut it. It’s best to use a professional headshot, but if you don’t have one, ask a friend take a picture of you against a neutral background, dressed in business attire.
2. Failing to Complete Your Profile
The more information you add to your profile, the greater your chances of getting noticed. Take the time to thoroughly complete your summary, experience, skills, classes, volunteer experience, professional organizations and all other sections to broaden your reach.
3. Choosing a Generic Headline
The headline section of your profile is prime real estate. It appears directly under your name in search results, providing you with the opportunity to set yourself apart and interest employers. Replace the bland "sales manager" with “results-driven sales manager committed to leading his team to success.”
4. Typos in Your Profile
It takes only a minute to proofread your profile. Misspellings and grammatical errors lead people to assume you will be equally inattentive to your work. Don’t look sloppy or careless by allowing your profile to be anything less than perfect.
5. Adding No Personalization to Connection Requests
LinkedIn is a great platform to connect with new people with similar backgrounds or interests. Whether you’re sending a connection request to someone you met at a networking event, a former colleague or a person who works at a company you’re interested in learning more about, it’s always best to personalize it. If you’ve already met, this serves as a reminder of who you are, what you have in common with the recipient and where you met.
6. Not Joining Groups
There are thousands of groups on LinkedIn – at least a few of which can surely be beneficial to your career. Groups offer a unique opportunity to meet people in your field from all over the world, discuss issues important to your industry and learn about new job opportunities.
More LinkedIn Tips and Tricks from Sparks Group
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