Written by Tutortree account members Rita Herbstman, Sammi Brunk, Alvin Kim and Alli Utti.
Build a Stellar Profile
Building a LinkedIn profile to full potential helps students stick out against others when applying for jobs in a professional field. The first section professionals see on a LinkedIn profile is the summary. Adding a summary doesn’t have to be an essay, but it allows professionals to get a better understanding of whom they are looking at, what they have done, and what motivates them. Uploading a professional photo and background also sets LinkedIn profiles apart from the average user, and demonstrates a strong first impression to a recruiter. Lastly, students should make sure to add in a custom URL to establish their professional brand.
Take Advantage of the “Jobs” Portal
Using the “Jobs” tab on the top right of the LinkedIn menu will optimize all job searches for students hoping to land a summer internship or even a full-time position when they graduate. Many high-profile public relations agencies including Edelman, Ketchum and Weber Shandwick will advertise available positions in this portal. Students can use the “Advanced Search Option” which allows them to refine their search by date posted, experience level, location, job responsibilities, company, and industry. Students can also save job searches and subscribe to emails about new position listings.
Post Relevant Professional Articles
Public relations professionals often look at LinkedIn to find relevant articles on their specific field. If students consistently post articles related to their area that they find interesting, professionals may see the article they published and like it, which means all of their networks will see it too. If they reshare the article, they are also more likely to remember the student’s name in the hiring process. Students that share professional articles also show professionals that they are keeping up with the industry.
Connect with Guest Speakers
LinkedIn is all about expanding personal networks. As a student, there are so many opportunities to connect with professionals on your campus. At one point or another, college students probably had an inspiring guest speaker present in one of their classes but didn’t get a chance to collect any contact information. A great way to get ahold of them is to add them as a connection on LinkedIn and send them a personal message. Messages can be a thank you note, follow up questions regarding their presentation, or even eventually congratulating them for a promotion. LinkedIn connections can come in handy when applying for jobs or organizations in the future.
Search for University Alumni at Desirable Companies
If a student is interested in working at a specific agency or company, the first step should be looking up alumni from their university to make a connection and set up an informational interview. Informational interviews show that applicants are serious and have planned ahead. These quick interviews will set students apart from others applying for the same job because they will be better prepared for the real interview while already expanding their network within the company. Most of the time, when contacting alumni, they want to help others who were in the same position not too long ago.