I’m a huge fan of social media and love finding new tricks to improve efficiency and make life simpler. LinkedIn is one of my favorite platforms because it’s a great way to show your accomplishments and it helps with job hunting; it’s also extremely professional and helps you get your foot in the door. When someone asks for job hunting tips, making a LinkedIn is definitely one of the first things I encourage people to do.
Here are five LinkedIn tricks to help search for jobs, increase your connections, and organize your notes.
Saving Notes | When you’re on one of your connection’s profile, there is a toolbar beneath their photo that says “Relationship” and “Contact Info.” Once you click on them, a bar opens and you’re able to type notes about this person like how you met, the best time to contact, and any other things you’d like to remember. There’s also a really great feature that lets you set a reminder that will notify you in the allotted time. The best part? These notes are only visible to you! I use them with recruiters when I want to remind myself to email them about potential jobs, and also with a few connections I’ve made in New York this past summer for when I want to reach out to them in a few months if I move back.
Finding Someone’s Email Address | Sometimes when you’re trying to reach out to someone to make a connection, they’re not in your network (meaning they’re a 3rd connection) and you’re unable to get an email. If you only see their first name and first initial of last name (like Helena M.) you can google their first name + first initial of last name + their company, and chances are you’ll find their full name. Once you have their full name, you can google their full name + their company + “email”. I have made many connections this way because it shows initiative and that you have great critical thinking skills. Pro tip: Some people include an “Advice for Contacting Me” section under “Additional Info” at the bottom of their page which makes this process a whole lot easier! 🙂
Becoming Anonymous | This next trick is pretty helpful to some people, but I personally wouldn’t recommend it. One of LinkedIn’s attributes is that when you look at someone’s profile, they get a notification of this. To me, this is a great tool because I can see when recruiters are viewing my page and I can strike up a conversation with them; other people don’t like this feature because they may want to view a profile without them knowing. If you’re with the latter kind of person, there’s a way to turn off this feature.
- In the top right corner of your page, hover over your profile picture and then click “Privacy & Settings: Manage.” It may prompt you to input your credentials since you’re making changes.
- A new page pops up and “Profile” should already be selected. Under the “Privacy Controls” section, there are a few links to “Turn on/off your activity broadcasts,” “Select who can see your activity feed,” and “Select what others can see when you’ve viewed their profile.” Click on this last one.
- A box will appear and you can choose whether you want your name and headline to be seen, anonymous profile characteristics like your industry and title, or you can choose to become completely anonymous. Some people like to have this option, but I personally like when people know when I view their page.
Setting a Personal URL | One of the important things I see people forgetting to do is to set up a personal URL. It’s very simple and it can be very effective, and you can share this URL more easily.
- When on your profile page, select “Edit My Profile.”
- Underneath your photo and headline, there is a small LinkedIn URL with a bunch of random numbers and letters. Hover over it, and click on the pencil icon.
- This will bring you to a new page where you can “Customize Your Public Profile.” Under neath that option, on the righthand side of the page, you’ll see a little box that says “Your public profile URL.” If you click on the new pencil icon, you can change this URL. I would recommend your first and last name but sometimes people include middle names or initials.
Getting Recommendations | This last one isn’t so much of a trick as it is a tip. One of LinkedIn’s features gives you the ability to receive recommendations on past experiences. This is a great tool because their recommendation goes on your public place with their profile connected so people can see your credibility. Of course, everyone wants tons of recommendations, but it’s important to get them from key professionals in your industry who you’ve known for at least a year and who will help to make you stand out both professionally and creatively.
- The first step is to ask. While it may happen, it’s not common that someone will go on your page and write you a recommendation. LinkedIn has a feature where you can “Ask for Recommendations” so all they have to do is click on the link to write about how great you are.
- The next step is to follow up. People often forget the simplest things so it’s nice to send them a quick LinkedIn message or email to remind them. I would give them a week or two before following up.
- Return the favor! Some people think they’re not credible enough to write a recommendation, but the offer speaks volumes.
Like most people, I love to learn new things, and I’m constantly trying to! If you know of any other LinkedIn tricks, I’d love to hear them in the comments!