Archive for the ‘Social Media’ Category
You can create an effective LinkedIn profile by following many of the same principles that I would recommend for your resume. For example, focus on accomplishments, have a summary section, use keywords that resonate with your audience, etc. etc. (see this blog post and this one for other guidelines). Three key differences in the way that resumes and profiles are shared, however, could have a big impact on how you choose to modify your resume for your profile.
1. Only one LinkedIn Profile, so you need to choose
It is impractical and confusing to spread your network across multiple profiles (unlike your resume, where you can and should have a different resume for each job target). Having only one profile means that you will have to decide whether to go more general, to encompass multiple job targets, or to focus your profile on your primary job target only.
Your decision will depend on your specific situation. By focusing on one job-target, you maximize the likelihood that someone from your target audience reading your profile will quickly grasp how you can help them. I recommend that you try writing your profile for your primary job target, IF the “cost” doesn’t out way the benefit. By cost I mean missed opportunities or puzzled looks from your boss or colleagues who wonder why your profile says something very different from what you are currently doing!
Warning: In case you accidentally open up more than one profile (search under your name if you are unsure), close one down to avoid major confusion in building and updating your network (Note: You cannot transfer connections from one profile to another).
2. Your LinkedIn Profile has a broader viewing audience
It is sometimes not a good idea to list certain specific accomplishments on your profile that you would have no problem listing on your resume, because of the profile’s broader viewing audience. You will need to be the judge of when that’s the case.
3. Having a LinkedIn Profile doesn’t mean you’re looking for a job
While your resume equals “job search,” the same is not true for your LinkedIn Profile. If you are actively looking, you may want to indicate that somewhere on your LinkedIn profile (assuming you don’t have a current employer who will care). This way, potential employers may be more likely to contact you.
I say “may” because there is a case to be made that a potential employer will be more interested in you if you appear to be fully and happily employed. And, if you are going out and getting what you want in a job search rather than waiting for the recruiter to call, as I recommend, indicating on your profile that you are looking becomes less important.
Nevertheless, some clients have gotten responses by indicating an openness to new opportunities on their profiles, which is why I suggest that you consider it. If you feel that in your case it makes sense to let people know that you are looking, do one or more of the following:
- Edit “Contact Preferences” (bottom of your profile) to include career and job opportunities. In my opinion, you should do this even if you are currently “happily” employed. Since so many employed people check these boxes, it will likely not be looked at askance by your current employer.
- Since the Contact Preferences section is buried at the bottom of your profile, you may want to enter near the top of your Profile Summary section “Looking for my next great challenge,” “Open to new opportunities,” or something similar. NEVER put “unemployed” or “looking for a job” on your profile—these phrases have negative connotations and will turn off a potential employer.
- Alternatively, if you are not working, you could enter one of the phrases in the bullet above as your current job title.
Some advocate that you put these phrases in the “headline” at the top of your profile, under your name—so it’s the first thing a potential employer sees. I do not advocate this approach. Since your headline can only be 120 characters, it is better to use this limited space as an opportunity to share a “mini-pitch,” that is, a concise statement about how you can help a potential employer.
What have your experiences been with indicating that you are looking for a job in your profile?
If you market your (or your employer’s) business or organization using social media, and you are open to using Hootsuite as your social media organizer, you need to know about this useful new LinkedIn-related feature.
A little background: Many (including myself) use social media organizers such as Hootsuite and Tweetdeck as vital “filing cabinets” for their social media content, be it tweets, Facebook posts, LinkedIn updates, “Group” conversations, and so on. A major benefit of these social media organizers is that they enable you to simultaneously update Facebook, Twitter, and a number of other social media sites via just one post. Using these organizers to update LinkedIn Company Pages, however, was not possible—until now.
Hootsuite’s new LinkedIn company-page update capability makes maintaining your company presence on LinkedIn far easier. I believe it is likely to boost the popularity of both LinkedIn company pages and Hootsuite. This is significant news because for many organizations, LinkedIn’s targeted audience of professionals and “career-advancers” is more relevant than the mass audience associated with Facebook company pages.
A few relevant links: My company page (please “follow me”), and the Hootsuite Blog post announcing the change. By the way, if this discussion of social media organizers has you a bit mystified, I cover the topic extensively in the “Twitter” and “Building Your Business” sections of my e-book.
LinkedIn’s “Advanced People Search” feature is a fantastic tool for finding people in your extended network or shared groups who can help you to reach your career goals. Including boolean logic in your search terms such as AND, OR, NOT, parenthesis and quotes around phrases can greatly expand its power. To demonstrate, here’s an example of a client who was interested in obtaining a marketing manager or director position at Pfizer. My client began her people search as follows:
- On the upper right of her screen, she clicked on “Advanced,” to the right of the “people” search box.
- Under “Location,” she selected “In or Near” her zip code, “within 50 miles.”
- She kept “Sort by Relevance” (experiment with these sort options to vary the results).
- Under “Company,” she entered “Pfizer,” and just below that she selected “Current,” meaning the results will show only people who currently work there.
- She then clicked on “Search” at the bottom.
Her result: Thousands of entries came up. Within the first couple of pages she saw many 2nd degree connections (people to whom she could be introduced by her first degree contacts) working at Pfizer. But she realized she was not getting enough senior marketing people in her results– that is, people in a position to hire her. So she refined her search by adding the following criteria:
- For “Title” she entered: Marketing AND (Senior OR VP OR SVP OR Executive OR Chief OR “Vice President”) AND NOT “Senior Manager” and selected “current” just below to ensure these keywords were in their current job title.
Notice that entire phrases such as “Vice President” can be searched for (or in the case of “Senior Manager” excluded) by enclosing them in quotes, and that the boolean logical connectors (AND, OR, NOT) must be capitalized.
The result—my client found the potential hiring managers at Pfizer that she was looking for, including a Senior Vice President- Marketing, Senior Director/Group Leader- Consumer Marketing, and a VP – Head of Global Marketing & Brand Strategy. The first two of these were second degree connections. She shared a group with the third one, meaning she could reach out to this contact by messaging him directly through their shared LinkedIn group.
I’ll have lots more to share about leveraging LinkedIn for your career in my ‘LinkedIn Intensive’ webinar on June 6, 7-8:30pm EST.
I’ve been sharing LinkedIn’s new Skills section with clients; they’ve found it very helpful for a range of activities including composing a resume or LinkedIn profile, evaluating a career change, deciding on companies to target, identifying contacts for meetings, and staying current in their present job. Once you input a skill you possess or want to learn more about, you get a “skills analysis” that shows you:
a list of people in your network with the same skill in their profile. This list is great for suggesting people you may want to try and meet with.
companies that hire for the skill you’ve selected. Use this list of companies for your job-search marketing plan.
a list of additional related skills (i.e. other skills that people have on their profiles along with the skill you entered). Use this list as source material for “skill” keywords to add to your LinkedIn profile or resume.
LinkedIn Groups to join that are related to the skill you’ve selected.
A listing of job openings that use this skill.
A definition of the skill (e.g. from Wikipedia, etc.) that can be useful in exploring new career options.
To start using this feature, go to “More” on the top menu of LinkedIn, and in the dropdown, select “Skills.” Then type in the skill you want to analyze or add to your profile. As you type, LinkedIn will suggest the word you’re looking for. For example, if I start to type “financial advisor” LinkedIn prompts me to select “financial advisory” from among a list of related skills. Try to select one of the skills it suggests for you that matches most closely. To add to the “Skills” section of your profile (increasing its appeal to recruiters sourcing candidates on LinkedIn), click on the “Add” button on the analysis page.
UPCOMING CAREER WEBINARS
I’ll be covering this new feature, and far more, in the webinars I’m running in December that are open for registration, including Finding YOUR Right Career (Dec 6), Resume and “Pitch” Intensive (Dec 13), and Getting Interviews (Dec 20). Feel free to check out my seminars page for more information on these and other webinars.
Post originally appeared in the blog for the Marketing Executives Networking Group (MENG)
Most of my job-search clients are getting interviews these days by tapping into the hidden job market; they are both reaching out to their network and contacting people directly who they don’t know. You, too, want to prioritize efforts that will allow you to bypass the glut of applicants going through ads or recruiting firms. Spend only 20% of your valuable job search time on ads and recruiting firms, and the remainder on the hidden job market. Here are four ideas to get you started.
1. Send an email (or LinkedIn/Facebook message, etc.) to your entire network asking for referrals.
Think broadly about your network –- aim for 200 people initially (family, friends, colleagues from 10 years ago, your dentist, old professors, etc.). Include the following elements in your email:
- Subject Line: ‘Your Help Requested.’
- Your “pitch” that states what you want to do and your value to an organization.
- List the names of up to 25 organizations where you want to work at the bottom of the email.
- Ask your network for contacts in any part of any of the organizations listed.
- Let them know you will not be asking their contact for a job but rather a 10 minute conversation about how the company is organized and where you would fit down the road.
- Make sure to “bcc” all the recipients — don’t expose their e-mail addresses!
My clients do this all the time with great results. For example, Jerome sent an email telling his entire network about his job search and his interest in Pharmaceutical Marketing in New Jersey. Interestingly, the people he least expected to help him responded with the best leads. In one case, his neighbor’s wife’s brother put him in touch with the CFO in a pharma company, which led to an interview for a CMO role. And all because he included his neighbor in this email.
2. Make every meeting count!
Elena went through a long interview process at a large financial services firm. In the end they chose someone else. Undaunted, Elena called the hiring manager (before 9am , the only time the hiring manager would be at her desk) and asked if other areas of the company would be interested in her experience. This effort landed Elena with another interview in a different division. Again they turned her down, and again she asked for a referral. This process was repeated two more times! The fourth time, she received a great job offer that she accepted.
3. Re-contact your network at least once a month to remind them of your search, so that you are top of mind should an opportunity arise.
For example, you could update your LinkedIn status, post on Facebook, or send individual emails. The text for an individual email could be as simple as “Hope you’re doing well. I really enjoyed our meeting last month! Thought I would update you on my status. While I am meeting with many technology companies in the NYC vicinity, your company continues to remain a top choice. If there is any additional information that I can provide about my background, please feel free to ask. Have a great day.” Or, even better, send a link to a useful article.
4. Use LinkedIn to get informational meetings that could lead to interviews.
If you are not using LinkedIn for your job search, you are missing out! My book “Your Social Media Job Search” contains step by step approach to getting set up and using on LinkedIn. Here are some quick ideas culled from the book.
Step 1: Get set up for free on LinkedIn (www.linkedin.com) by:
1) building an accomplishment-oriented profile,
2) building your “1st degree” network of people you know in some way,
3) and joining relevant LinkedIn groups.
Step 2: Conduct “advanced people searches” (click “Advanced” on the upper right, next to the People search-box) to find people you want to contact. Then, reach out to them via LinkedIn or by email.
Two client stories illustrate the power of this approach:
– Ellen wanted to work at Apple Computer as a Marketing executive. She conducted an “Advanced People Search”. She entered Apple as the company name and selected “current” for currently employed at Apple. To her surprise and delight, she found an old classmate she was connected to via a LinkedIn Group and worked at Apple in a related area. She emailed him directly— and he referred her for an interview.
– Armando was searching for a senior level position directing a marketing analytics group. He conducted an “Advanced People Search” using the word “Marketing” in the job title. He saw he was indirectly connected to a CMO through both a LinkedIn Group and two mutual connections. He decided to email the CMO directly, referring to their mutual LinkedIn connections in the email. His efforts resulted in their meeting, which led to a series of interviews and a job offer.
LinkedIn, accessed for free at www.linkedin.com, enables users to keep in touch with and expand their professional network, get introductions to others outside their network, and join groups of professionals organized around industries, professions, and associations. Recruiters routinely use LinkedIn to scan profiles for viable candidates.
LinkedIn has become essential to conducting an effective, productive job search! I hear from clients almost every day about how they got an interview or informational meeting via LinkedIn. Below I’ve included a few success stories culled from my clients’ experiences, to help generate ideas on how you can use LinkedIn. Read More
Many (or most) of you are probably on LinkedIn to some extent (if you’re not you should be– www.linkedin.com). LinkedIn is an awesome tool for getting results in your job search. But are you really getting the value out of it that you could be? Use LinkedIn to advance your search in three ways: 1) Research career options, organizations, people you should contact, or to prepare for meetings/interviews, 2) Get interviews via building and leveraging your LinkedIn network, and 3) Get interviews by contacting people directly who you don’t know. All of these are of course covered in my book. In this post, I’m going to share some LinkedIn features that are useful for job-related research.
A note on the importance of research: it’s your best friend in the job-search. Use research to a) explore career/industry changes- research possibilities to narrow down the list, b) learn how to market and “sell” yourself effectively for different positions, c) find companies you want to work in, to focus your efforts, d) find people to contact in those companies, e) prepare for meetings or interviews. Here’s an overview of the LinkedIn features (all accessed from the top menu) to use for each of these areas. For more information, check out LinkedIn’s help feature (in the main menu under “More”, “Learning Center”), or read my book!
LinkedIn “Answers”: Use this feature to ask people in different fields or industries about their professions, the skills you need to excel, how to position yourself effectively for career change, which career is right for you, etc.
LinkedIn “Groups”: Find groups that represent targets you may be interested in. For example, if you are interested in Human Resources Management, do a search using those keywords, and join one of the groups you find. Then monitor or contribute to the discussions, or ask questions of group members. For this approach to really be effective, you need to find high-quality groups, meaning– a) a good number of active, interesting discussions (many groups have this feature, but other unmoderated groups are dominated by member sales-pitches), b) a large number of members who are employed doing what you want to do (or who can hire you).
LinkedIn “Companies”: When you go to the company page, you will see a list of the organizations people recently left the company for, or came from. This feature can be useful in coming up with ideas for other organizations to target in your search.
“Advanced” People Search: Use keyword searches, job title searches, etc. to find people in your network or in shared groups who do what you might be interested in doing, or who are in a position to hire you. Then contact them for informational meetings (initiating this contact is both a science and an art– the subject of a future blog post).
LinkedIn Profiles: Do a search under the names of your job-target role-models. Their public profiles (if they are complete enough) could give you a clue as to how to attain similar success, or make a similar transition. Similarly, look at the profiles of people who you are meeting/interviewing with, to help you prepare– e.g. asking the right questions, proposing the appropriate solutions or sharing the right examples from your experience.
In LinkedIn’s blog and a recent Wall Street Journal article, a new LinkedIn capability was described. Career Explorer is designed to help college students use LinkedIn’s network to make career decisions; it’s now being tested in 60 schools.
Career Explorer looks like it will be quite helpful to students (and others as well as it gets rolled out to a wider audience), for a couple of reasons. First, it’s a helpful way for students to get introduced to LinkedIn– an essential job-search/career development tool for many professions. Today’s college students are Facebook-centric; their Facebook use is almost like eating– just another vital part of the daily routine. But many (or most) have not yet grasped that Facebook is no substitute for LinkedIn in aiding their professional advancement. The Career Explorer tool will help them to see that.
Second, this tool does introduce three new features that are not currently available on LinkedIn, and could be useful to anyone seeking to make a career move. (Two other features are also mentioned, but seem similar to or the same as what you can do on LinkedIn now, just repacked under the Career Explorer umbrella.) My take on the three new features follows:
1) Explore different career paths: This feature recommends career options based on what others on LinkedIn with your major and industry preference have done in their careers. What I like about this is it gives you (graduates and perhaps others) another useful way to brainstorm career options. It’s a nice starting point for career ideas. I would encourage any student contemplating a career move with access to this feature to give it a try.
One thing to be cautious about: not to feel boxed in by the “top” career options that LinkedIn selects for you. Also research out-of-the-box options that could be more relevant to you based on your self-assessment; i.e.what you enjoy doing most that you are good at, how these fit with your longer term life goals and your work-related values. The bottom line– don’t necessarily default to the tried and true route based on what LinkedIn (or anyone else) tells you that “everyone else” has done. See the career links page on my website for other ways to research career options.
2) Follow Potential Employers: This feature suggests companies based on the number of people on LinkedIn with your degree/industry preference who work in these companies. I appreciate how this could help give you a place to start in developing your job search marketing plan– it will help to give you an idea of what organizations (and what types of organizations or industries) you should approach.
3) Get the Unique Insights You Need (i.e. industry/profession research): If sourced externally (as salary data appears to be according to the WSJ article), it could be very useful, but I would need to compare it to other resources when the capability is rolled out formally. Research that is based only on LinkedIn’s membership might be less useful; many professionals are not on LinkedIn, or have not updated their profile, which could skew the results.