How to be a LinkedIn All-Star

Last week I attended PodCamp Toronto, and sat in on a packed session with Tang Choy, employment counsellor at Ryerson University, and certified LinkedIn All-Star®! *

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LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network, with over 277 million members in over 200 countries and territories. Recruiters regularly use LinkedIn as a hiring tool, and 90 of the Fortune 100 companies use its corporate talent solutions. While only half of LinkedIn’s members complete their profile, it’s pretty simple to do. Having a complete profile is an easy way to stand out and take advantage of this social network.

Here are some of Tang Choy’s suggestions for optimizing your profile:

  • Include a headshot with a light background, your name (bonus: accreditation), and maximize your 120 characters. Include your Twitter handle if applicable.
  • Use first person or implied first person. Third person is too impersonal.
  • Use bullets, not dashes, for easy readability.
  • Use key words: look at job descriptions in your field and use some of those key words to describe your relevant experience and qualifications.
  • Select your target industry (or whichever LinkedIn option comes closest).
  • Always customize your message when adding people. LinkedIn’s default “I’d like to add you to my professional network” is too impersonal.
  • Include websites, and choose Other so you can personalize the website description (rather than ‘Personal Website’ or ‘Company Website’ descriptors.)

* LinkedIn All-Star® may not be an official designation, but if you follow these steps, you’ll get pretty close.

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