If you’re only using LinkedIn as an online resume, you’re missing out!
LinkedIn is a professional networking platform that can actually help you get hired faster. Employers are more willing to hire someone who has been referred by another employee than an unknown job seeker off-the-street. LinkedIn can help you grow your referral network, connect with employees that work for your ideal companies, and speed up your job search.
Unfortunately, there isn’t much guidance available on LinkedIn once you have created a profile. That’s why so many LinkedIn users are inactive or only log in once a month (or less!). This is one of many mistakes you may be making on LinkedIn.
This list shares what not to do on LinkedIn and how to start using LinkedIn to get a new and better job faster!
1 | Create A Profile and Disappear
If you’re not going to use LinkedIn, don’t bother with it. Yes, it can serve as an online resume; however, it’s greater purpose is to serve as a networking platform. If you create a profile and disappear, you may miss messages from hiring managers and recruiters.
You may miss out on referrals and, ultimately, job opportunities available to LinkedIn users.
2 | Settle For The Default Headline
When you create a profile, you get an amazing opportunity to showcase your personal brand and optimize how you appear in search results by creating a keyword-rich Headline. If you hurry through creating your profile and select the default that LinkedIn gives you, your Headline will only list your most recent position title and company name.
You will be less likely to appear in LinkedIn search results if you settle for the default LinkedIn Headline.
3 | Make Your Public Profile Invisible
While there are some circumstances where making your public profile hidden is understandable, you’re not helping yourself if you force every LinkedIn user and non-LinkedIn user to connect without before they can see your profile.
In fact, most hiring managers and recruiters will move on to a more accessible LinkedIn profile if you have set strict privacy settings.
4 | Send Connection Requests To Everyone
You want to connect with LinkedIn users who will be mutually beneficial to connect with. Some of the smartest first connections you should make will be family members, friends of family, friends, current and former co-workers, current or former supervisors, former classmates and professors, and colleagues that you have met in professional networking.
If you’re sending connection requests to everyone on LinkedIn and not considering the mutual benefit, those connections won’t add any value to your profile or referral network.
5 | Endorse Skills You’ve Never Witnessed
This is still a continuous problem on LinkedIn. If you endorse skills that you’ve never witnessed for connections, it’s easy to find out. Your profile is connected to the endorsed LinkedIn user’s profile, and other users can find out if you’ve worked with this person or have mutual connections in one click.
Be a transparent, honest, and helpful endorser by only endorsing the skills you’ve personally witnessed in action.
6 | Only Request Recommendations
Have you heard the saying, “To make friends, you need to be a friend?” This is true on LinkedIn and especially where recommendations are concerned. If you are only asking your connections to endorse your skills or write you recommendations and you fail to return the favor (transparently and honestly!), you suffer from poor LinkedIn etiquette.
You have the power to boost your connection’s profiles by writing short by specific LinkedIn recommendations that support their career goals. So do it.
7 | Repost Personal Instagram Photos
LinkedIn is not the place to share photos of your food or pets (unless it’s Bring Your Pet To Work Day). LinkedIn is a network of business professionals who are here to keep up with industry insights and updates, learn or improve their professional skills, and grow their referral networks.
Reposting personal Instagram photos on LinkedIn won’t make you very many friends (or connections).
8 | Treat Your News Feed Like Facebook or Twitter
Similar to the point above, LinkedIn is not designed for social networking like Facebook or Twitter. You shouldn’t be sharing political or social opinions, videos of drunk (or stupid) people, or too personal of information. LinkedIn attracts a more business professional audience.
Keep your news feed clean of posts that are more suited for Facebook or Twitter.
9 | Complain About Your Boss or Co-workers
Whether you have connected with your boss and co-workers or not, LinkedIn is not the place to publically bash on your workplace. Hiring managers and recruiters will not want to reach out to someone so negative or someone who complains in such a professional space (in this case, LinkedIn may be compared to your place of work).
Keep your status updates, messages, and comments positive and professional to make a better first impression.
10 | Click “Post” Without Proofreading
Your social media profiles, in general, are being screened by hiring managers and recruiters and the top turn-offs are your typos, poor grammar, and overall lack of business professional communication skills. Don’t look like a fool on LinkedIn because you can’t take 15 seconds to proofread your posts.
You don’t know who will be reading your posts or comments, so proofread before clicking “Post.”
11 | Ignore Messages
Check your messages frequently. If you have a smartphone, there is no reason why you can’t download the LinkedIn app if only to get alerts when you have a new message. LinkedIn Messaging is where the networking magic happens.
Hiring managers and recruiters will not respond well to a response that comes a month (or more) after the fact.
12 | Apply For Jobs Without Updating Your Profile
Don’t make this fatal mistake! When you apply for jobs on LinkedIn, one of the first details the job poster will see on your application is the number of related skills you have on your profile compared to the job posting. They will also see your Headline and a snapshot of your Experience and Education sections.
At the very least, identify the keywords used in the job posting and add them to your Skills section.
If you’ve only been using LinkedIn as an online resume, it’s time to reassess your strategy and start using LinkedIn as the networking platform it is.