7 Ways to Make the Most of LinkedIn in 2018

Managing your LinkedIn profile like a digital Rolodex could lead to countless missed professional opportunities.

In spite of the many social platforms, LinkedIn remains the ideal social network for business professionals. According to the Society of Human Resource Management, more than 90% of recruiters rely on the platform to find candidates. And today, it’s used in nearly every industry.

Each year the platform continues to improve its interface to remain an invaluable networking resource for professionals. However, there are a few things you should keep in mind to ensure you’re marketing yourself effectively on LinkedIn. Here are 7 ways to have an effective LinkedIn profile.

Be active

LinkedIn is a powerful resource. But, to make the most of the social platform, you’ll need to be socially active. Being an active user means engaging with your contacts by liking, sharing, and commenting on their activity.

However, it can be difficult to interact with your contacts throughout the day. One of the simplest ways to be active is to download the mobile app. The LinkedIn app provides an easy-to-use interface that makes networking a breeze.

Another part of being active is to ensure your profile remains current. Continually update your profile with projects you’ve worked on or presentations you’ve given. You can share your work by writing articles or posting pictures and videos. The goal is to provide content that will benefit your connections and make them want to interact with you.

Becoming a member in groups is another way to be effectively active. LinkedIn will allow you to join up to 100 groups. Once you join a group you become connected to the members within the group. This causes your profile to show up in more search results when someone is looking for your skillset.

Write an effective tagline
Your tagline, also known as your headline, should be optimized and captivating. It will default to your current job title if you don’t change it. But this is what potential connections and hiring managers will use to find you. To ensure it’s optimized, include words that you want to be discovered for. 

Rather than allowing it to default to your current job title, use the 120 characters to give the reader a snapshot of who you are. Provide a brief description that is both interesting and engaging. A captivating tagline will motivate them to click on your profile link to read further.

Use keywords

In addition to your tagline, use keywords throughout your profile. Include keywords you want to be targeted for within your headline, your position titles, summary, experience descriptions, projects, certifications, publications, and anywhere else they can be placed.

Currently there are more than 11 million active job listings on LinkedIn. If you want to be considered for a new opportunity, you’ll need to include those words within your profile. Recruiters use keywords to search LinkedIn for the job description they’re trying to fill.

Look through jobs you’re interested in, and make note of the specific skills and words used within the descriptions. Sprinkling those words throughout your summary and experience sections will help you connect with your desired opportunities.

But don’t stuff your profile with keywords. Injecting too many keywords is going to be obvious, and demonstrates poor communication skills. It will be obvious to the reader that the profile was created only for LinkedIn’s search engine optimization.

Discover your niche

How are you going to stand out among the millions of people on LinkedIn? At first, this may be overwhelming. But the solution is to select your desired niche. Identify yourself as specifically as possible.

You’ll be lost in the crowd if you simply market yourself as a manager. To attract the attention of a hiring manager, present yourself as an IT Security Manager with a CISM Certification. Distinction will make you standout and make you a more attractive candidate to the appropriate hiring managers.

Make sure your profile is complete

Don’t be satisfied with an incomplete profile. Complete all sections, including education, certifications, and interests

A complete profile will provide better position within search results. Be sure to include your information for all the applicable profile sections. As you complete your profile, contemplate your personal brand and the impact of the information you provide.

Consider the details that will help you standout among the competition. Include any certifications you have, projects you’ve been a part of, or foreign languages you speak.

Consider your images

There are two images within your profile you should pay special attention to: your profile image and your background image.

Your profile image says a lot about the rest of your profile. It’s often someone’s first impression of you. Your photo should be professional and appropriate for your industry.

The profile picture provides a personal connection for recruiters and hiring managers. An unprofessional or missing photo can seriously impact your job search. The image increases the likeliness of your profile being viewed by 40%.

In addition to your profile picture, use a background photo for additional personal branding. Use a photo that you have the rights to and communicates what you stand for. The size of this photo is 1400 x 425 pixels and should be a .jpg, .gif or .png file.

Get recommendations and endorsements

Having the recommendation of your peers is one of best ways to improve your profile’s social standing. It may be uncomfortable to request a compliment from a colleague, but offering to reciprocate the favor can make it feel more natural.

Don’t overlook the importance of endorsements. LinkedIn provides you complete control over your them. You can select the skills users can choose to endorse you for. You can also delete any undesired endorsements.

Endorsements also provide a unique networking opportunity. Whenever LinkedIn notifies you of an endorsement say “Thank You” to your endorser. This is a great way to naturally start a conversation with someone.

Final thoughts

Understanding the features of LinkedIn can impact the success of your job search. Knowing what areas to focus on will increases the opportunities of your profile being viewed by the right person.

Implement these 7 suggestions within your LinkedIn profile to help you connect with the right person in order to obtain the job you’re searching for.

DCA and DRI Women’s Group Volunteers at Dress for Success Cleveland

August 9, 2017

By Christy Fox, Marketing Specialist

Shayla Jastrzebski, DCA at Dress for Success ClevelandThe mission of Dress for Success is to empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and development tools to help women thrive in work and in life. Since 1998, Dress for Success Cleveland has been able to empower more than 19,000 women, establish three supportive service programs, and maintain a 52% placement rate in getting women connected to employment. About a month ago, the DRI and DCA Women’s Group was able to take part in Dress for Success Cleveland’s mission, and facilitate a professional development workshop.

Sarah Pozek, DRI at Dress For Success ClevelandDRI and DCA women joined a group of 6 Cleveland women participating in an 8-week program designed to increase interview skills, presentation style, and inspire their career development plan. Specifically, DRI and DCA volunteered to contribute four sections of professional development tools, tips and information to encourage the ladies’ success.

Part one of the workshop was dedicated to building LinkedIn profiles for the women. As a jobseeker, working professional, or even college student, LinkedIn profiles are a useful tool to network, search for jobs and build your online personal brand. DRI and DCA walked the women through a step-by-step demonstration of setting up the profile, and shared helpful tips to building out a profile that will help the women successfully brand themselves.

Alexa Milkovich, DRI at Dress For Success ClevelandThe next section of the workshop was to go over personal branding tips online and throughout social media profiles. DRI and DCA covered the basic do’s and don’ts to online presence and sharing. This went hand in hand with the LinkedIn profiles and the proper way to use social media for professional development.

DRI and DCA then moved on to interview prep tips and information. There was a great deal of conversation regarding what the women had experienced in previous interviews, questions they may have for future interviews, and the best way to approach an interview from all angles. DRI and DCA shared information on how to answer any behavioral based interview question step by step.

Nicole Dauria, DRI at Dress For Success ClevelandFrom there, the last section of the workshop was mock interviewing. DRI and DCA women asked the Dress for Success Cleveland participants common questions and coached them through how to best answer as well as tips on nonverbal communication skills.

Overall, the Dress for Success Cleveland workshop was beneficial for everyone involved. DRI and DCA women’s group was thrilled to play a part in empowering other women in the community and to encourage them on their career journeys!

There are many ways you make a difference to the women of Dress for Success Cleveland. Please attend one of their upcoming Getting To Know Us breakfast events to learn more about the organization and how you can attend!

Wednesdays – 8:00am – 9:30am
September 20, 2017
November 29, 2017
RSVP by calling 216-881-6048

For more information on Dress for Success Cleveland, visit their website.

Forbes Fast Tech 25

April 5, 2016

ForbesForbes Fast Tech 25

Forbes.com: Each year we rank the 25 fastest-growing technology companies. We comb more than 5,000 publicly traded technology companies, looking for profitable companies with a minimum revenue of $150 million and a minimum market value of $500 million. We then looked for firms with sales growth of at least 10% for each of the past three fiscal years and over the latest 12 months. Finally, we ranked companies based on their three-year average sales growth rates in descending order.

LinkedIn: Founded in 2003, LinkedIn operates the world’s largest professional network on the Internet with more than 150 million members in over 200 countries and territories.

Apple: Manufactures and markets mobile communication and media devices, personal computers, and portable digital music players, and sells a range of related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications.

Qlik Technologies: Sells software solutions that deliver data analysis and reporting solutions. QlikTech’s software platform, QlikView, combines enterprise-class analytics and search functionality.

Athena Health: Leading provider of cloud-based business and clinical services for physician practices.

Equinix: Connects businesses with partners and customers around the world through a global platform of high performance data centers, containing dynamic ecosystems and the broadest choice of networks.

Ebix: An international supplier of On-Demand software and E-commerce services to the insurance industry,providing end to end solutions ranging from infrastructure exchanges, carrier systems, agency systems and BPO services to custom software development for all entities involved in the insurance industry.

Aruba Networks: Connects local and remote users to corporate information technology resources via distributed enterprise networks.

Riverbed Technology: Developed solutions to address the fundamental problems associated with information technology (IT) performance across wide area networks (WANs).

Cognizant Technology Solutions: Provides custom information technology, consulting and business process outsourcing services.

Shutterfly: An online service that allows consumers to share, print and preserve their digital photographs.

Sourcefire: Provides cybersecurity solutions for healthcare, financial services, manufacturing, energy, education, retail and telecommunications companies, and federal, state and local government organizations worldwide.

SolarWinds: Designs, develops, markets, sells and supports enterprise information technology (IT) infrastructure management software to IT professionals in organizations of all sizes.

ServiceSource International: Engaged in service revenue management, providing solutions that drive renewals of maintenance, support and subscription agreements for technology companies.

Synchronoss Technologies: Provider of automation software and cloud technology solutions.

Ancestry.com: An online family history resource, with approximately 1.8 million paying subscribers worldwide.

Fortinet: Worldwide provider of network security appliances and a market leader in unified threat management (UTM).

Pegasystems: Provides business process management and software for customer centricity, helps organizations enhance customer loyalty, generate new business, and improve productivity.

Rackspace Hosting: offers a range of cloud computing services, including dedicated cloud hosting and public cloud hosting, to small and medium-sized businesses, as well as large enterprises.

Quality Systems: Develops and markets healthcare information systems that automate certain aspects of physician, inpatient and dental practices, networks of practices.

NIC: The nation’s largest provider of outsourced eGovernment portals. They build and manage official government Web sites, eGovernment services, applications and secure payment processing.

Red Hat: Provides operating system platforms along with virtualization, middleware, applications, management, and service-oriented architecture (SOA) solutions, as well as support, training, and consulting services.

Global Payments: Provides electronic payments transaction processing services for consumers, merchants, independent sales organizations (ISOs), financial institutions, government agencies and multi-national corporations.

CommVault Systems: Offers data and information management software applications and related services.

CACI International: An international information systems, high technology services, and professional services corporation.

Verisign: Provides domain name registry services and infrastructure assurance services.

Networking with Purpose by John Yurkschatt, Director of IT Services, DCA

In today’s challenging job market, it’s not just about who you know but how you get to know them.  If NOT done correctly, networking is a waste of your time. If your approach is to seek out people to tell them about ME, ME, ME, you’ll walk away from every networking event/opportunity disappointed.

The right way to network is to do it with “purpose”.  That means think beyond “What’s in it for me?”  Instead, think “How can I help you?”

True networking is all about connecting, communicating and building a relationship.  It’s about enjoying your conversation with others and actively listening in order to figure out what they need and how you can connect them with the right people without designs for personal gain.

For many of you, this revelation is eye opening.  It’s probably contrary to what you’ve been doing.  If so, the following 5 tips on how to network successfully are especially meant for you:

1) Start networking before you’re in a pinch.  Desperation can be smelled from across the room. Don’t be that person with panic in your eyes and only out for yourself. Handing out resumes at an event will make people run away from you instead of towards you. Start networking when you don’t have an ulterior motive.  Get to know people and about what’s important to them and start building a relationship.

2) Never dismiss anyone as being unimportant. Everyone has value and you’ll discover that fact if you keep your mind open and don’t judge people based on titles.   Remember everyone has connections therefore, everyone is important.

3) Ask for an attendee list. Prior to attending each event, ask the organizer for a list of attendees. You can do some research on the people you want to meet. Check out their LinkedIn profiles and Google their names to gather more information.

4) Fish in the right pond. Unfortunately many of you are attending every event you can. You want to meet anybody and everybody. Slow-down. You need to be more focused. For example, if you’re looking for a big fish, i.e. a key contact with a large company because you want to work for a large company, then you must attend the right event. You have to fish where the big fish are.

5) Figure out how you can be useful. Networking is not just one sided. It’s not asking for favors. It’s about building relationships.  It’s about a two way street and that means asking others how you can be of service to them. Be sincere and generous. Give them your business card and let them know they can call you anytime.

Please share how you network with purpose by posting a comment in the box below.