Ngaire Moyes is the Director of Corporate Communications for the EMEA Region at LinkedIn. Ngaire has had over 17 years’ international communications experience in the internet, media and technology industries working for leading brands on corporate, trade and consumer communications. Ngaire has been the Director of Corporate Communications for the EMEA region at LinkedIn for over three years after previously having worked at IBM, Firefly Communications, ninemsm and Microsoft.
“…Spending just nine minutes a day connecting with people you met with that day, or looking at ‘recommended connections’ will make a real difference to your online network…”
Employers and business contacts are increasingly using LinkedIn as a platform to check you out online, so it’s important to make your online first impression count. And it doesn’t have to be difficult; we’ve found investing just nine minutes a day on your profile can make a big difference. Here are my top tips on how to use those nine minutes to get the most from your LinkedIn:
1. Shine online
When you apply for a new job or make a new business contact, the likelihood is that they will look you up online, so it’s important to make sure your online footprint gives a good first impression.
First thing’s first, if you haven’t got a LinkedIn profile, get one. It’s very easy to get started and the professional nature of LinkedIn sets it apart from other social networks.
Like anything, you get out what you put in on LinkedIn, so make sure your profile is up to date, as completed profiles are more likely to be viewed by potential employers. And, to inject some colour and personality, use it to showcase any relevant presentations or links to standout work, as well as adding a picture to give it a personal touch. Profiles with pictures are fourteen times more likely to be viewed – just make sure you keep it professional!
2. Connect for success
By connecting with just 50 trusted contacts you will increase your chances of getting in touch with the right people. Spending just nine minutes a day connecting with people you met with that day, or looking at ‘recommended connections’ will make a real difference to your online network.
LinkedIn is also a great way to tap into your old school, university and work networks – you might be surprised where they’ve ended up and they could be a great business contact, potential employer, or even your next hire! But, make sure you set yourself regular reminders to get in contact with them – this can be anything from a quick message, a comment on their status or an endorsement.
3. Distinguish yourself
An endorsement counts for a lot, so ask your colleagues, clients, and employers to recommend you on specific skills or personality traits that drives their opinion of you. This will show that you’re a respected and valued employee or business contact to have.
It works both ways, so remember to return the favour by offering meaningful comments and recommendations to your network of connections.
4. Keep your LinkedIn profile active
Just having a profile isn’t enough, you need to be proactive and keep it active too. Use your LinkedIn profile to create a conversation with your connections, by sharing interesting content. If you see an article on a topic that interests you, share it and invite discussion by posting it on your LinkedIn homepage, this will show an air of confidence, and an interest in your industry.
Check out the profiles of successful businesspeople you admire and look at the kind of content they’re posting and engaging with – I’m not saying imitate this, but it’ll give you an idea of what a strong profile looks like.
5. Be natural
Match your offline with your online identity by keeping your profile authentic. Light up your profile with your voice and try to avoid writing in the third person unless that formality suits your industry. Picture yourself at a meeting or interview and make sure your online profile marries with this.