Top tips for job seekers: enhancing your LinkedIn profile
Jimmy Ingram is a Practice Lead at VMAGROUP focusing on permanent marketing and digital recruitment across London, South East and South West England.
Finding a new position can be tough at anytime, and I’m frequently asked by job seekers how to stand-out and get noticed in a crowded marketplace.
Following on from our recently held interactive webinar on tips for job seekers, here are some simple tips to help raise your personal brand and drive targeted traffic to your LinkedIn profile.
Keywords are crucial
Choosing the right keywords can make all the difference.
The Headline section (below your name) is the most visible field for LinkedIn’s search algorithm, followed by title and summary. If you're openly looking for a new position, use this space to advertise yourself and insert keywords targeted to the role you're looking for - in the same way organisations use "we're hiring".
Use standard job titles to assist with searchability and be as specific as possible with what you’re looking for. For example, "Immediately Available Head of Marketing - Luxury Sector” will be displayed in all search results without anyone having to open your profile. This is in addition to the ‘open to opportunities’ feature that you may have turned ‘on’, but will only be visible to recruiters once they have clicked open your profile (except for those with a RPS License*).
If you’re a specialist in areas such as ‘Content’, Performance’ or ‘Product’, insert this in your job title to help recruiters understand your experience. Same goes with industries that place heavy emphasis on previous experience (such as Luxury or Asset Management for example), which I'd recommend including in the headline section. Bear in mind you might only have a few seconds to grab the attention of the person scanning your profile, and many recruiters (in-house and agency) will hire across multiple disciplines so be clear about what you do and what you're looking for.
Jimmy Ingram (left) and Dr Geraint Evans speaking at our recent webinar
Don’t treat your profile like a CV
Keep your profile simple and include key accomplishments, statistics and growth delivered throughout your marketing career to show how successful you've been. Focus on the last 6 years, and beyond this I would only include your employment history, job title etc.
Be specific with the roles you apply for. Consider being creative with your CV and profile for applications by using keywords from the job advert, assuming of course you have the required skills! This will help recruiters who are scanning a multitude of applications and potentially with any Applicant Tracking System (ATS) filters.
Stay engaged and be visible to your network by posting/sharing content regularly. Even by engaging in a post, you will appear in other people’s networks, allowing you to build yours. Discuss topical ideas within the marketing community to help establish your profile as a knowledgeable and experienced marketer. For example, if you’re a product marketer, share and discuss some relevant product innovations that are happening within your industry.
Take the time to reach out
Be proactive by making new connections; build your networks with recruiters and potential hiring managers and reach out to understand the market. Don’t be afraid to chase down positions you believe are a great fit with your experience. From over 700 applications we received recently for a marketing position, less than 20 reached out directly, so not everyone is taking the same approach.
Reconnect with your peers in organisations you want to work, find out who leads Talent Acquisition or who the Marketing Director is and request an introduction. Even if there are no current positions or opportunities, making that initial introduction could lead to future opportunities.
Generate recommendations from previous colleagues or hiring managers which can be added to improve your profile, and seen by your network.
Finally, stay positive, be patient, be proactive and be available to your network for advice and support.
*RPS is LinkedIn’s Recruiter Professional Licence - a more powerful product with a unique user interface focused on highly-targeted search. Increased functionality includes the ability to filter those with their ’open to opportunities’ signal turned on.
These opinions are mine and do not reflect the views of VMAGROUP.
VMAGROUP is a leading international interim and permanent communications, digital and marketing recruitment, and executive search specialist. Specialist practices cover internal and change communications, external communications, public affairs, marketing, digital, and agency services.
We have a reputation for providing leading consultancy services and advice supported by in-depth knowledge of the professions we recruit for. Our thought leadership and benchmarking studies have become go-to resources for the communications and marketing industry supporting planning and decision-making.
VMAGROUP has offices in London, Manchester, Amsterdam, and Brussels, but we work with organisations and individuals on a global basis.