Did you know that LinkedIn has over 100 million users? Compared to Facebook’s 700 million, it might not seem like a lot, but LinkedIn is the most popular social network for professionals, as well as one of the top social networks in the world. Do you think you’re using it to its fullest potential? I know for a fact that I am not. I am a user of Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn, and I definitely spend most of my time on the first two, hands down. But LinkedIn is a powerful platform that often gets overlooked and underutilized because of the buzz constantly surrounding Facebook, Twitter and now Google+. But the truth is, LinkedIn can be extremely useful, especially when you’re aware of all the hidden tricks that don’t get nearly enough exposure as they deserve. There are many hidden tricks to LinkedIn, and below are the top 11 that I think are most important to know and use.
1. Claim your vanity URL. Make your profile look more professional and easier to share by claiming your LinkedIn vanity URL. Instead of a URL with a million numbers at the end, it will look nice and clean like this: http://www.linkedin.com/in/katherinedougherty. You can do this by going here and clicking “customize your public profile URL” on the right-hand side. This will not only make your profile easier to share, but easier to remember as well for both you and others.
2. Search engine optimize your profile. You can optimize your profile to get found by people searching LinkedIn for key terms which you want to be associated with. Add these keywords to various sections of your profile such as your headline or summary.
3. Track company buzz. Company Buzz is a very helpful application that allows you to track what people are saying about your company and other related topics on Twitter. All you have to do is install the application and customize your topics to view top keywords, trends and tweets.
4. Be identifiable. Find out who’s checking out your profile by allowing others to see who you are if you view their profile. When you click the information under “Who’s Viewed My Profile” on your profile page, you’ll be able to view users who have looked at your profile, stats on your profile’s number of views, and its appearances in search recently. To change this, go into your settings and click “See what others see when you’ve viewed their profile.”
5. Take advantage of “Saved Searches.” LinkedIn allows users to create up to three saved searches. After you conduct a search, click the “Save This Search” option, this will allow you to save a search and easily run it again at a later time. You can also choose to receive weekly or monthly reminders through email once new members in the network match your saved search criteria. Just click on the “Saved Searches” tab on the Advanced Search options page and select one of your saved searches to run again.
6. Leverage the power of LinkedIn Groups. Did you know that if you’re a member of the same group as another user, you can bypass the need to be a first degree connection in order to message them? In addition, group members are also able to view the profiles of other members of the same group without being connected. Join more groups to enable more messaging and profile viewership capabilities, this will help with your overall connections as well.
7. Link your Twitter account to LinkedIn. Share your LinkedIn status updates on Twitter, and vice versa. The more activity you have on LinkedIn, the better! Learn how to connect your Twitter account here.
8. Use LinkedIn Today to keep track of industry news. LinkedIn Today is an great feature that provides you with the most popular stories that are shared on LinkedIn. Use it to stay on top of news occurring about marketing, the internet, computer software, etc. You can also sign up for email summary notifications of LinkedIn Today news.
9. Take advantage of advanced search options. LinkedIn’s Advanced Search feature provides a much richer search experience. For example, say you want to find out if you’re connected to anyone that works at a specific company. Type the company name in the company field in Advanced Search, then sort the results by “Relationship” to see if you have any first or second degree connections to any employees.
10. Quickly turn your LinkedIn profile into a resume. LinkedIn enables you to turn your profile into a resume-friendly format in seconds with its Resume Builder tool. Just choose a resume template, edit it, and export it as a PDF that you can print, email, and share.
11. Post Company Status Updates: LinkedIn recently launched the capability for Company Pages to post status updates to their company followers (much like Facebook business pages can publish Facebook status updates). Start promoting your company’s presence on LinkedIn today to generate more followers, then start using the channel to share your content and messages. Check out HubSpots blog post on how to launch company status updates here.
If you want to take advantage of even more LinkedIn features and capabilities, you should think about upgrading to a pro account for even more awesomeness. All of the social media platforms can be extremely beneficial if you know how to use them in the right ways. I hope these tips and tricks help you in your future LinkedIn endeavors![Via HubSpot]