By Julia Wagner of our Center of Divorce Education Account Team

Photo by Inc.com

Living in a world with countless social media apps and ever-changing trends can make it difficult for a user to stay relevant. Instagram, Twitter, Tik Tok, and many more popular apps are all about likes and shares. Users curate their content in the interest of receiving the most attention.

On the other hand, LinkedIn is for professionals attempting to make connections and urges individuals to showcase their true selves through sharing thoughts and accolades. The main aspect that sets LinkedIn apart from other popular social media is that it encourages users to interact with one another through the entire basis of the app: making professional connections.

People need to particularly pay attention to the way they are promoting themselves on LinkedIn, as it is a professional platform. LinkedIn is an extension of a job application as employers often look at your profile at some point in the hiring process. If used wisely, LinkedIn can lead to jobs by separating you from an everyday applicant. People can also learn of new job opportunities through LinkedIn on its Easy Apply page.

But LinkedIn can be overwhelming when learning how to use it for the first time. So, here are three easy steps that will make your profile stand out:

#1 Be Sure You Are Active

This can be anything from requesting a new connection to publishing your own post. By liking or sharing just one or two posts a day, your profile will be seen by more users. It will not only help you gain connections, but you will often learn something as well.

Your feed displays both personal posts from those in your network as well as those they have liked, commented on or shared. By seeing such a wide variety of posts, you will discover new connections and information.

#2 Be Personal 

When making connections, it is important to be personal. Whether you know the person or not, it is crucial that you send a personal message along with your request to connect. This is especially relevant when the person you are attempting to connect with is someone who receives countless requests a day. They have seen “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn,” more than you could imagine and will not be prompted to connect with you based on this generic message.

The message does not need to be overly long, rather three to four sentences will do. Being polite and including personal information in addition to a shared connection (e.g., someone you both know, a common alma mater or past job involvement) will help you stand out and increase your chance of connection.

#3 Stay up to Date

Keep your profile updated! Your connections love to see updates about your career. If you post that you are starting a new job, fellow LinkedIn members will likely excitedly congratulate you and offer words of encouragement. Additionally, new employers will be happy to see that you are eager to begin and publicize their company.

A post does not only have to be about a change; it can also be an update on something you have recently experienced, such as an informative seminar, an office tour, a trip where you learned something, etc. These are all great things to share with your network and showcase to potential employers.

Bonus: Custom URL

Resumes and applications often ask that you include a link to your LinkedIn profile. If you go to your profile and click “Edit public profile and URL” on the right hand side, a new window will open. In this window, go to “Edit your custom URL” on the right hand side and click on the end of the URL which displays your current page link. Edit this to display your preferred name (this will often mean eliminating the numbers LinkedIn previously generated) and click “save.” This will make it easier to send your LinkedIn profile to employers as well as appear more professional.

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