LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network. On a global scale there are more than 400 million users, and in Denmark, more than half of the population has created a profile. You can use LinkedIn to gain inspiration and advancing your career. You can find new job opportunities, establish new customer and partner relations, make you and your professional expertise visible for the world to see, and you can expand your network with new relevant professionals. Many use LinkedIn for making research before meeting with new clients or before going to a job interview, and many uses it to establish relations with contacts they have met at a conference or course. In order to get as much out of LinkedIn as you possibly can, you should focus on creating value for others. You can do this by helping your network gaining useful information and knowledge. If you invest in your network, you will see, that you will get better opportunities to use it when you are in need of its’ help.
Why is LinkedIn smart?
LinkedIn is an online dating site for organizations. According to Magistrenes A-kasse, 88 percent of all managers has a profile, and 64 percent use it for recruiting. However, it is important to point out that LinkedIn is what you make it. Just like with your CV, it is essential to be clear with what you wish to communicate to the outside world though your LinkedIn: in which direction should your profile go, and how should your profile be understood?
What can I do to get an attractive profile at LinkedIn?
Profile picture and cover photo
Your profile picture and cover photo are your opportunities to visually showcase your personal and professional identity. Adapt your pictures to the standard within the industry and discipline you are – or wish to be – operating in. Make sure to make eye contact and to give a professional and pleasant impression.
Your title/headline is where you send the first signal about what the viewer can expect of your profile. It can be your job title followed by relevant key words that points to your primary competencies that are relevant for the professional direction you are aiming for. Your choice of wording here is of high importance, as it is the viewer’s first impression that is built on these.
In your summary you should set the agenda for your profile. What are your core competencies and how do you create value? What is your motivation, and what do you strive for? Your choice of words in the summary is of high importance as LinkedIn is a search engine that works best when you repeatedly use a few key words throughout your profile. Your summary should be a concoction of your competencies, experiences, dreams and the value that you create. There are many ways to set up your summary, but what is important is that you use the last row to tell the reader that they are welcome to contact you, connect with you, etc.
NB: It is only the first part of your summary that is constantly showing on your profile, and because of that, the first partis of high importance. Make sure that it fits with your title/headline.
In the description of your work experience it is important that you write clearly about your responsibilities, your competencies, and not least your results. Make it easy for the receiver to understand what you stand for. You also have the opportunity to upload examples of your work in the shape of documents, photos, videos, and such. This might a good way of making a visual representation of you and your results.
Make sure not to write too much at each work experience – keep it short and concise. You could for example follow these guidelines:
- Link to previous employers’ organizational LinkedIn-profiles
- Add two rows about the organization and two rows about your position there
- Add your specific tasks and responsibilities, perhaps in bullets
NB! Remember that it is important to use key words. The more times you will show up in a search, the higher is the possibility that you will be discovered.
How can I become more visible at LinkedIn?
The more active you are at LinkedIn, the easier it will be for others to spot you. By being an (inter)active user, you are rewarded by LinkedIn by being moved up in searches where your profile meets the search criteria. Therefore, it is smart to e.g. share articles that you find interesting and write relevant and professional comments to posts. That is a good way of showcasing who you are and what you stand for professionally.
Profile in several languages
If it is of relevance to you to be found through key word in more than one language, you can create you profile in more languages. Note that changes in your profile does not always update automatically on all your different language profiles.
Find people and organizations
- Click in the search field
- Choose ’All filters’ and search for people, jobs, or companies
- Use the filters to achieve the results you want
How you can find inspiration for your next job
If you e.g. are a project manager at Siemens and wants to know what kind of jobs previous project managers at Siemens has, you should:
- Go to the search field and click on ‘all filters’
- Type project manager in the field ‘Services’, and Siemens in the field ‘Past companies’
- Click on ‘Apply’
- Now you can see what previous project managers at Siemens work as now
If you e.g. are a sociologist and wants to know what kind of jobs you could get in a large private organization, you should:
- Type cand.scient.soc. in the search field
- Click on ‘all filters’ and choose a large company, e.g. Novo Nordisk
- Click on ‘Apply’
- Now you can see what the sociologists hired by Novo Nordisk do
If you want to know who works with a certain profession – e.g. project management and nudging – in your geographical area, you can:
- Write ‘project management AND nudging’ in the search field
- Click on ‘All filters’
- Choose your geographical area and click on ‘Apply’
Follow organizations, people, and hashtags
The benefit of following organizations that you are interested in, is that you will get the organizations’ updates in your feed. You will be able to smoothly follow news about the organization and its employees, vacancies, launches of new products and initiatives, as well as reports and articles that the organization posts. You can also choose to follow specific persons and hashtags. When you do this, their updates will appear in your feed, too. Others are able to see which organizations and profiles you follow.
How it works
When searching for an organization, click on ’Follow’. When you are searching for a person, enter their profile, click on ’More’ and chose ’Follow’.
You can find opinion makers, influencers and channels that you want to follow by clicking ‘View all recommendations’ on your homepage. Click on ‘+ Follow’ on those you want to follow. Click on ’√’ if you want to unfollow them.
If there is a certain subject you want to follow you can also search for hashtags (#). You can get an overview of what hashtags you are already following under “My Network”, “Hashtags”.
Get inspiration for your career by using the alumni function at LinkedIn. Here you can find your previous fellow students and learn more about what organizations they work in, what they have stated as their competencies, and what tasks they perform.
How it works
1. Find your educational institution and click on ‘Alumni’.
2. Enter your academic degree and click on ‘Next’. Here you can see where others with the same academic degree as you work, what they do, and what their competencies are.
A tip for expanding your search option is to use the familiar; AND, OR, NOT and (). E.g.:
- Novo AND Carlsberg
- Novo OR Carlsberg
- (Novo OR Carlsberg) NOT Unilever
- Controller AND (Carlsberg OR Novo)
You can always save your search and create a search agent. If you for example have searched for a certain job category in some specific organizations in a certain geographical area, you can save the search and ask for a daily or weekly e-mail from LinkedIn with the latest search results from your search criteria.