You hear the buzz, everyone is saying how great LinkedIn is, but you find yourself thinking, "What? I just don't get it." No fear! Here are the top 5 mistakes you are making on LinkedIn and how to fix them.
1. Not having a picture!
People want to see your pretty face! In fact, people are 7 times more likely to click on your profile if you have a picture. *Caution* the type of picture you have is important. LinkedIn profile pictures should be like a professional headshot (yes, that's right, they aren't just for actors anymore!) so invest in a photo session that will yeild you a great looking pic! A pic where you looked all dolled up for a night on the town is best for Facebook!
2. Not putting your LinkedIn profile link on your resume.
It's an easy fix! You can edit your LinkedIn link to shorten it down to just your name, then, you can place the link on the header of your resume.
3. Not utilizing your Skill & Endorsments section.
This is a section that often times ends up floating down to the bottom of your page. However, this is an incredibly important component of your profile so move it to the top! What should you do with it? List skills that you have learned from your past job, internship, and leadership experiences. As people view your profile and see your skills, they will be more likely to endorse you. This shows future employers that you do in fact have these skill sets.
4. Eliminating past experiences.
LinkedIn should be viewed as an extended resume. Work on a really great service project or are you involved with an awesome club? Put it on your LinkedIn under your "Projects" section. You can also include additional details about previous work postions on your LinkedIn, directing people to "see additional information at (INSERT LINKEDIN URL)" on your resume!
5. Using the default connection request.
You're excited, you just found a member of a company you would really like to connect with and talk to. Don't make the mistake of sending a generic request. Especially with someone you don't know, state your name, school, major, and area of interest in your connection request. If you are looking to speak with them about a position at their company, include that as well!
Best of luck with your future LinkedIn endeavors! In no time you will be a pro at how to utilize this great professional tool. Connect on!