The Most Effective Ways to Use LinkedIn

Tips and Advice for Using LinkedIn

Networking concept
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LinkedIn is the top site for professional networking. It's a terrific site for job searching, as well. Are you using LinkedIn effectively? What's the best way to make LinkedIn worth using for job hunting and building your career?

What is LinkedIn?

LinkedIn is an online directory of individual professionals and organizations. Individuals and companies use LinkedIn for professional networking. LinkedIn has millions of members in more than 200 countries, including executives from all Fortune 500 companies.

Individuals use LinkedIn for professional networking, connecting, and job searching. Companies use LinkedIn for recruiting and for providing company information to prospective employees. While you may use Facebook to connect with friends, family, and colleagues, LinkedIn is built for professional networking rather than connecting based on interests and personal relationships.

How to Use LinkedIn

It's quick and easy to get started using LinkedIn. You'll need to sign up for LinkedIn and create a LinkedIn profile. There are two main tiers of membership - Basic and Premium, with Premium branching into four subcategories including "Job Seeker," "Sales Navigator," "Recruiter Lite," and "Business Plus.”

The basic account features such as messaging, profile creation, and ways to apply to job postings are included in the free membership, but a Premium Account has added features and resources to expand your online presence and let you get more out of the service.

As soon as you log in, you'll be able to start using LinkedIn to connect, to network, and to job search and boost your career.

Get Started on LinkedIn

LinkedIn 101: Why Use LinkedIn
Why LinkedIn is a useful resource for job seekers: it provides information, it’s a billboard to highlight your unique value proposition, and recruiters will be looking for you there.

How to Sign Up for LinkedIn
Ready to get started?  It's simple. You'll need to enter your first and last name and email address, then create a password. Here's information on how to sign up for LinkedIn, how to create a strong profile, and how to log in once you have created a profile.

How to Take and Choose a Professional Photo for LinkedIn
Tips and advice for how to take and choose a photo to use in your LinkedIn profile, including what to wear, what type of photo to use, and how to pick a picture that will make a great impression.

How to Write a Good LinkedIn Summary
How can one write a good LinkedIn summary? Here are questions that will help you get the best result from those 2,000 characters, with examples of LinkedIn summaries that make the best impression.

How to Get Started on LinkedIn
One of the most important parts of LinkedIn is your profile. That's what you use to connect with people in your network, and your profile is how you get found on LinkedIn because it contains information about your skills and experience. Your profile will benefit from including keywords that search engines and hiring managers alike are eager to find in a candidate. Including these buzzwords in your summary, interests, former job titles, and skills are key to standing out from your competitors.

How to Request a LinkedIn Recommendation
Who to ask for a recommendation on LinkedIn, the best way to ask, tips for getting great recommendations, and how to manage the recommendations you get.

How To Use LinkedIn Endorsements
Endorsements indicate to other users what your expertise may be and are more likely to be used by your professional contacts, considering how quick and easy it is to endorse someone as opposed to writing a recommendation. Information on LinkedIn endorsements, including what they are, how to get them, and how to turn them off so they don't show on your profile.

Include Your LinkedIn Profile on Your Resume
It's easy to create a custom LinkedIn URL and include it on your resume. Prospective employers can, at a glance, visit LinkedIn to learn more about you and your skills and qualifications.

Build and Use Your LinkedIn Network

How Big Should Your LinkedIn Network Be?
How many people do you need in your LinkedIn network to make it an effective tool for job searching and career networking?

There isn't an easy answer - it depends on your career objectives and goals for using the site. Review these guidelines for determining the best network size.

Guidelines for Sending LinkedIn Messages and Invitations
Once you sign up for LinkedIn and create a profile you can start to build a network of contacts, including people you are connected with on a professional basis, an educational basis, or based on another common interest. Building your network is a key part of using LinkedIn, and there are do's and don'ts. While you want to build a network, your invitations should be to people who you have as professional contacts. You will be able to send messages to others who are on LinkedIn, but you need to keep your messages on point. 

Job Search on LinkedIn

How to Apply For Jobs on LinkedIn 
Job seekers can search and apply for jobs directly on LinkedIn. In addition, you will be able to view and contact your LinkedIn connections who may be able to refer you for the job. Here are step-by-step instructions for searching and applying for jobs on LinkedIn. 

LinkedIn Job Search Tools and Tips
How can you ensure that you're using the full power of LinkedIn to assist with your search for a new job? It's important to effectively use your connections and to use the information available on LinkedIn when you're applying for jobs. Targeted searches such as the advanced people or company finders can sharpen your scope and help you to find exactly what you are looking for. You can use the advanced search by location, industry, alumni status, or number of employees to get more concise, specific search results. 

LinkedIn Company Profiles
LinkedIn company profiles are a good way to find, at a glance, more information on a company you're interested in. You'll be able to see your connections at the company, new hires, promotions, jobs posted, related companies, and company statistics.

More Tips for Using LinkedIn

Update Your LinkedIn Profile
The more complete your LinkedIn profile, the more chances you will have to be found and to be contacted. Use your LinkedIn profile like a resume and provide prospective employers with detailed information on your skills and experience. You can customize your profile’s unique URL to make it easier to find and increase its visibility.

What to Include in Your LinkedIn Profile When You're Unemployed
What to include in your LinkedIn profile when you are unemployed is an issue. That's because even though you might be unemployed, you want to present yourself in a positive light to prospective employers and to networking contacts. Here are tips for what to include in your profile when you're out of work.

Use LinkedIn Mobile
LinkedIn Mobile features include searching and viewing profiles, inviting new connections, access to LinkedIn answers, and actionable network updates. You can send and receive messages, look up user or company profiles, and even upload your resume to job openings all in the palm of your hand. Use it to keep your job search moving forward when you're on the road.

Avoid LinkedIn Scams
LinkedIn is no different than other sites - there are scammers you'll need to watch out. Review how to spot a scam, and what to do if it happens to you.

More About LinkedIn: 9 Simple Steps to Build a Better LinkedIn Profile