With billions of subscribers around the world and viewed as playing a role in a variety of political movements, it's not surprising that social media websites like Twitter and Facebook typically get the lion's share of attention in the general public. But LinkedIn is another well renowned website, chiefly used by those who hope to get ahead in their professions by networking with others who are in their industry.
At more than 200 million subscribers, it's clear that LinkedIn has carved out its own niche in the social media market. However, as ProducersWEB contributor Amy McIlwain points out, if users aren't following some of the strategies that enable them to stand out, their joining may be an exercise in futility.
For example, studies show that on dating websites, individuals are much more likely to click on a profile if it's accompanied with a picture. The same general rule applies with LinkedIn. McIlwain indicates that not only should a headshot be prominently featured, but it should accurately portray what one currently looks like.
"Does your profile picture look like a mugshot?" said McIlwain. "Is it a picture of you from 10 years ago? If so, it might be time to take some new, professional shots."
Don't be shy about keyword usage
Keywords are huge in the social media world, as indicated by the hashtag phenomenon that Twitter followers use in their posts. Keywords are important to utilize for LinkedIn users as well. For example, if potential employees are looking to hire someone with a unique set of skills - such as a retirement investment advisor or someone who's able to collect health leads for insurance agents - then those words should be used liberally throughout a profile description, McIlwain recommends.
Over time, professions change and experience is gained. Thus, McIlwain says that LinkedIn users need to account for these career path accomplishments by updating them on an as-needed basis in one's curriculum vitae or resume.
Words on a page aren't enough to attract employers; they need to be interesting and to the point for people to read them. McIlwain says that users should try to balance brevity with specific details that make a profile come to life, such as how one got into the profession and what their ultimate goal is.
Social media has played a major role on consumer and business interactions. J.D. Power and Associates recently published a report detailing how companies have adapted to the social media age in their practices.