If you haven't logged on to your LinkedIn account in a while, you're in for a treat. The social media network for working professionals has undergone an extreme makeover, and the latest version looks more sleek and visually appealing than ever before.
Obviously, a new look means the playing field has changed for LinkedIn users. To find out how we can use the upgrade to our advantage, we talked to Krista Canfield, senior manager of corporate communications at LinkedIn, for some insider tips:
- Add a photo. It's important to add a picture to your profile as it is more of a focal point with the new design. Your profile is seven times more likely to be viewed if you have a photo, according to Canfield.
- Include your skills. The latest generation of LinkedIn makes your skills and other accomplishments more eye-catching and organized. Add skills that are relevant so you will stand out, says Canfield. "You can add up to 50 LinkedIn Skills, everything from classical ballet to bloodstain pattern analysis." Your peers can also now endorse you for specific skills.
- Share your thoughts. If you happen to come across an interesting article, share it with your contacts. The activity feed is now on the top of your profile, so it's more important than ever to share interesting status updates and links. In fact, those who share an article on LinkedIn at least once a week are "nearly 10 times more likely to be contacted by a recruiter for new opportunities" than those who don't. But remember to think "quality over quantity" when you're updating your status or sharing an article, because it will be a reflection of your professional self.
Read on for more tips.
- Tell your story. With the higher visibility, it's imperative that you show off your online networking skills by fleshing out your background and work experience. Your profile is 12 times more likely to be viewed if you add more than one work experience to it because recruiters can be searching for a specific number of years of work experience.
- Analyze insights. You now can get a more in-depth look at your network and how people are finding you to the right of your profile. Keep in mind that 50 is the magic number on LinkedIn, says Canfield. You should have at least 50 contacts so you'll "have enough potential sources or contacts to really take advantage of the site's three degrees of separation rule." As a general rule, only connect with people whom you trust and know.