Social Networks Are The Newest Recruiting Tool

I just read an article in Forbes that said social networks are the newest recruiting tool.

Here are a couple of LinkedIn statistics from the article:
* used by 80% of companies recruiting through the social Web.
* 90% of companies that recruit through social networks have successfully found candidates on LinkedIn.

I talk with recruiters and hiring managers every week who tell me the same thing. They research candidates online and what they find impacts their decision to follow up. They do not hire those who have negative comments or pictures on their profile.

Just as interesting, they do not hire people without a social networking presence either. They assume the candidate who is not online is “behind the times”, “out of touch”, “just not current”. Who wants to hire someone like this?

I am so passionate about the topic, so I had to write this book, Social Networking Throughout Your Career: What’s All the Buzz About? I go way beyond the basics in the book. My goal was to answer some of the deeper, more specific questions I’m asked.

What would you say to someone who asked you “Why should I join LinkedIn?”

LinkedIn Profile Photo

Does your LinkedIn profile have a photo? People remember faces and your profile photo helps others recognize and remember you.

Did you ever attend a networking event then get an email from someone you met there several days later. When a photo accompanies the name, we are more likely to recall meeting the contact.

Here are best practices for choosing a LinkedIn profile photo:

  • Photo should be high enough resolution so as to not look grainy
  • Project a professional image
  • Close up image so you can be recognized
  • Image of you, not a group of people
  • Photo of a person not a logo or graphic
  • In good taste and not offensive according to generally accepted standards
  • Upload only images you have rights to use

LinkedIn may remove your photo if they consider your image inappropriate. Follow the best practices above and  you have no need to worry.

Include a photo in your LinkedIn profile and put your best face forward.

First Impressions Matter

You know a positive first impression matters, especially in business and your career. Make sure you make a positive first impression with you LinkedIn profile.

The top section of your LinkedIn profile is highlighted in blue. This is your profile headline.

Let’s compare your profile to a newspaper article. When you scan the newspaper, you read the headlines to decide if an article content is worth reading. If the headline looks interesting, you go on to read the rest of the article.

In LinkedIn, readers use the same process to decide whether your profile is worth reading.

Take a few minutes to review your profile header to see if you entice other LinkedIn members to view your profile. Can they tell what your profile is about from reading your headline?

Are you making a positive first impression?

Leave a reply below and let us know what your LinkedIn profile header says and give us a link to your profile.

LinkedIn Customized Profile URL

Did you know you can customize your LinkedIn profile URL? Every LinkedIn member can create a easily recognizable link directly to their profile in LinkedIn.

When you create a profile in LinkedIn, the system automatically generates a link to your profile. By default, this is a meaningless string of numbers and / or letters. I recommend Linkedin members edit this field and creating a custom URL for their profile.

Create your own LinkedIn customized profile URL

My custom profile URL is http://www.linkedin.com/in/aprilmwilliams. Clicking on this link will take you directly to my profile page in LinkedIn.

Click on my custom URL http://www.linkedin.com/in/aprilmwilliams and connect with me on LinkedIn.

Members can customizable the last part of their URL or the segment after “in”.

http://www.linkedIn/in/<CUSTOMIZE>

Each LinkedIn member profile is unique. If you have a common name, you may have to be creative in your selection. Consider these options:

  • <FirstName LastName>
  • <FirstName Middle Name LastName>
  • <FirstName Middle Initial LastName>
  • Tag line: i.e., WorldsBestLawyer

Add your newly customized LinkedIn profile URL to your email signature and include it in your resume.

Enter a comment below and let us know your customized LinkedIn profile URL.

Ford Fiesta Movement Blog Campaign

Instead of using old marketing techniques, Ford is introducing the new Fiesta to the U.S. with the Fiesta Movement Campaign. During this promotion they are giving the cars to 100 bloggers throughout the country. During the next six months, Ford hopes the bloggers will promote the car to their followers through social networking.

My brother, in the market for a car heard about the campaign. There were a couple cars in the Chicago area but he could not find a way to contact the drivers. He called me for assistance.

I went online and found one of the bloggers Derek PrettyBoy Dow @Oprettyboy1 on Twitter. A few tweets between us and we had an appointment scheduled for my brother to view and sit in the car. Less than twenty four hours elapsed between my brother’s first call to me and his email to all thanking everyone for their help.

Thanks for your help Derek. Search for hashtag #fiestamovement to learn more.

Social Networking Classes for Business

Student feedback for the recent social networking classes in McHenry has been fabulous. We have a whole new set of LinkedIn users, Facebook friends, Twitter Tweeters and bloggers out there.


This four class series ran three times in McHenry at the Shah Illinois Small Business Development (ISBDC) Center.

After the class, students were invited to join our LinkedIn group to share learnings and best practices with each other. If you attended one of my social networking classes and would like to join this group, send me an email and let me know the class you attended.

If you missed on the session in McHenry, you still have time to register for classes in Elgin. Check our events page for the upcoming events.

Duplicate LinkedIn Profiles

Duplicate LinkedIn profiles are common. This can happen when you create a LinkedIn profile using one address then you receive another LinkedIn invitation to join through a different address. When you click on the link to the LinkedIn website, it does not recognize your email address and you are encouraged to create a profile.
ivan-walsh-linkedin-profile
Creative Commons License photo credit: Ivan Walsh

Why is this a problem? When you build connections and recommendations they are tied to a single profile. Currently, there is no way to merge two different profiles. They are each stand alone entities independent of one another.

Think of a customer or client who looks for you on LinkedIn. If they see two separate profiles, how will they know which one to connect with? The only way to resolve this is to delete one profile. When you do this, you will lose all your connections and recommendations on the deleted profile.

You can prevent this from occurring by updating your LinkedIn profile with all the email addresses you use.

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