5 deadly mistakes on LinkedIn
There are more than 450 million users on LinkedIn, which makes it one of the best professional platform out there, and even if you are employed, you should definitely have a profile, at least for networking purposes. With that being said, they are codes that need to be respected in order for your profile to stand out from the crowd. We are not talking about the basic rules such as no putting your wedding picture as a profile picture, or not misspelling your own name. We’re talking about hidden mistakes that might seem harmless to you, but which can really be an obstacle in your job search. So here are 5 deadly mistakes on LinkedIn, that can really have you miss the opportunity or the professional relation of a lifetime!
1. Blindly adding/messaging people
Before you get excited about adding everyone under the sun, think about asking your first-degree connections for an introduction. LinkedIn is the perfect platform to ask such favors. Messaging strangers without any introduction might come off as too obnoxious. “Quality over quantity”, always keep that in mind when trying to network on LinkedIn. What’s the point of having tons of connections who have interesting titles, if they don’t feel comfortable talking to you?
However, they are some cases when adding someone new can be a good idea, well you should do it, but very carefully. First of all, don’t stalk their profile (or switch the “anonymous” feature before), send them a personal message (not the LinkedIn one) to explain why you want to connect with them.
2. Not SEO optimize your description
This is one of the biggest mistakes on LinkedIn. Don’t neglect the headline of your LinkedIn profile as it is the main way users find your page so be very precise about your situation.
Be precise, straightforward and use keywords related to your area of business. Every word/phrase count so be sure to SEO optimize the following sections:
– The Summary section
– The Skills & Experience list
– Your Current or Past Positions descriptions
– The Education section
3. Only mentioning your latest jobs
You might have changed fields but your latest job is not necessarily your most important one. You never know what a recruiter might be looking for. Sometimes skills that you’ve acquired in a totally different job, can actually be what sets you apart from other potential candidates.
Even job from your teenage years can be a good thing for your brand. It shows that you’ve had responsibilities from a young age and that you have work ethic.
Same thing for volunteering work, don’t be shy to talk about your volunteering work from 5 years ago, it will prove that you’re responsible, hard-working and that you’ve achieved accomplishments.
4. Not asking for recommendations
Recommendations are very crucial to a trust-worthy LinkedIn profile, but not just any recommendation. It’s very tempting to only ask friends and family members to recommend you, but please don’t. Make sure it comes from reputable persons that are related to your area of business and qualifications. When done properly, recommendations can give more weight to a profile so don’t be afraid to ask for them, you really have nothing to lose! Go to the “privacy and settings” tab, then to “profile,” and click on “manage my recommendations.” Then all you have to do is take the bull by the horns and ask for these precious recommendations to your ex-boss or co-worker.
5. Forgetting you’re a brand
From your profile picture to the publications you like, everything visible that you do on LinkedIn, contributes to your brand. Make sure to stay consistent in that brand and ask yourself the following questions:
– Is my profile consistent with my resume?
– Am I using the same writing style throughout my profile?
– Are my skills coherent with my past experiences?
– Are my status updates relevant to what I do?
If the answer to all these questions is yes, then you definitely have a valuable, rich and interesting LinkedIn profile.