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“LinkedIn is in a very special place right now that only comes around every so often. It has become so popular as a platform, but the amount of supply of content to meet the demand is so low that your post… can easily over-index relative to your follower count…” says Gary Vaynerchuk, a successful entrepreneur, author, speaker, and Internet personality.
As the recruitment process is evolving through automation, the relevancy of social media platforms like LinkedIn is increasing. As of 2020, there are 766M LinkedIn users globally. This represents a huge pool of opportunities for networking, job hunting, recruitment, and business.
LinkedIn is a powerful tool that can bring transformational changes to your career. Optimizing your LinkedIn profile would be a great first step to attracting more recruiters, employers, and prospects. In this article, we will discuss a few LinkedIn trends that you should be aware of in 2021.
1. Leveraging Connections
In the past year, LinkedIn witnessed a 55% increase in conversations among LinkedIn connections. LinkedIn’s growing network is a great opportunity to foster professional relationships. These could be with key professionals from your target organization, such as the hiring manager, recruiters, or professionals from your target function.
According to a study, social professional networks are believed to be the #1 source of quality hires. Your first-level connections bring a huge pool of opportunities with them. After establishing a good relationship with these connections, you can request them to introduce you to other professionals that will help you grow your network. There is also a high possibility of these connections helping you get job opportunities in the future.
2. Optimizing the Profile Picture and Cover Image
The profile picture and cover image of a candidate play a crucial role in determining your profile’s credibility. Recruiters and hiring managers prefer people with profile pictures and cover images as it helps them recognize the person behind the profile. A good photo can help you get up to 21x more profile views, up to 36x times more messages, and 9x times more connection requests.
Using a formal, professional solo photo with the right expression creates a good first impression on your target employer. You should represent yourself in these pictures in the way you want the recruiter to remember you. This is important in establishing your brand.
Here is an example of a proper professional image and background:
3. Adding Media Content to Your Profile
Adding images, videos, and links to each job experience is another trend you can look forward to in 2021. This helps recruiters and employers to visualize your responsibilities and key achievements and get a clearer idea of your role. Some of the media components you can incorporate into your job experience section are:
- Award certificates of your achievements
- Pitch decks
- Sample portfolio (especially for creative/media professionals)
- Link to relevant sites
- Informative videos/images
While we understand that you have a lot to share, we would like to remind you to be careful about what to share on your profile. It’s essential to be succinct and concise to give recruiters/employers a great impression in a matter of seconds. The way you manage your information also demonstrates your professionalism, integrity, and trustworthiness.
For example, as a career consulting company that aims to add value to driven candidates, we attached a B2C presentation to educate our prospects on our mission, vision, and services. You can find it below:
4. Posting Relevant Content Regularly
Each social media platform has a specific algorithm that drives traffic and activity on one’s profile. This enables the LinkedIn system to analyze your activity and share your posts with relevant LinkedIn users. For example, if you are posting regularly about resume writing, your post would most likely be shared with resume writers, career coaches, and professionals who are seeking resume writing services.
According to SharpSpring, LinkedIn is a powerful tool to use in the B2B space, lead generation, networking, and recruitment. This highlights the importance of knowing some of the best practices when managing your LinkedIn content. Note that everything you share on this platform will serve as a foundation to build your brand.
Content creation will not only benefit your audience but will also help you build your personal brand. This will establish your credibility in your respective industry. It will help you gain a competitive edge over your competitors, thereby strengthening your candidacy.
Here is one of the posts we shared that added significant value to job seekers:
5. Displaying Professional Recommendations
Requesting and giving professional recommendations is a great feature that LinkedIn offers to its users. This section displays your referee’s name, job title, and feedback. This is a great way to showcase your achievements and track record of success in your respective field/s.
Having testimonials and positive feedback on your profile will allow other members to get an overview of your previous performance, skills, and teamwork. Since having referees in your resume is now outdated and considered unnecessary to a lot of recruiters, consolidating them in your LinkedIn profile would be a great way to keep all your professional commendations. This way, any LinkedIn member who visits your profile will be aware of your career success stories.
Here are some recommendations that drove client leads:
6. No hard-selling
It is true that to make an impact and be matched with the right opportunity, you have to sell your personal brand. What makes a real difference is a way you do it. Are you being pushy and aggressive? Do you sound desperate? Are you reaching out to the same person repeatedly, irrespective of their disinterest in your conversation? Well, if the answer to each question is yes, you may want to reconsider your approach.
Successful sales on LinkedIn depend on building and nurturing relationships. Everyone you make contact with on LinkedIn would not be interested in responding to or helping you. You need to make sure that you identify the signs of interest or disinterest and proceed accordingly. If you try to oversell yourself to someone, they may end up removing you from their network. Research has found this to be one of the core reasons for recruiters not accepting connection requests. Your message should be respectful and should help you stand out from the crowd.
Creating an optimized LinkedIn profile will not only lead to a stronger network but can also lead to job opportunities that you’ve been dreaming of. It is predicted that LinkedIn will grow as big as Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. That is why it is essential to keep your LinkedIn profile up-to-date and in line with the industry’s best practices. Let your LinkedIn profile demonstrate the value you are capable of adding to your target employers. Do more with your LinkedIn!