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Do’s and Don’ts of Using LinkedIn

LinkedIn can become of the most useful platforms when it comes to the job search. By creating a profile detailing your past employment, experience and skills, you’ll be open to a vast number of employers and useful connections who may be able to offer you opportunities.

However, it’s not as simple as creating a profile and hoping for the best. It takes some thought and dedication to make your LinkedIn profile stand out from the crowd and attract the correct attention. In fact, many professionals are off-put by the idea of using LinkedIn in case they make some crucial mistakes.

Panic no more – this guide will give you some helpful do’s and don’ts for using LinkedIn:

1. Do use an appropriate profile picture

The profile picture you use on LinkedIn has major importance to how you’re perceived. It’s often the very first feature that users notice when coming across your profile, so it needs to make the right first impression.

Use a headshot that you would be happy for potential employers to see (therefore, no alcohol or silly faces). Ensure you’re dressed smartly and standing against a plain backdrop.

2. Do be proactive in making connections

The basis of LinkedIn is to make as many relevant connections as you can within your niche, to help drive your career in the right direction. If you only make a small number of connections, you won’t be making the most out of the platform and therefore, it is unlikely you’ll find the best opportunities available to you. Aiming to make as many relevant connections as you can go a long way for your success on LinkedIn and these tips should come in useful:

· Search for users who may be able help you reach your aspirations

· Join groups and make contact with new people

It can, however, be easy to get carried away and make a large number of unnecessary connections and in this instance, it would be better to make a small number of relevant connections that have potential, rather than hundreds that you have no interest in pursuing.

3. Don’t treat it like your other social media accounts

It can be easy to get into the habit of using LinkedIn in the same manner as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, however, this should be avoided at all costs. Remember, that the aim of using LinkedIn is to show off your professional side, so you should try and keep up this persona at all times.

Writing several updates per day or sending colloquial messages to your contacts not only comes across as unprofessional but is also likely to annoy. Evaluate every single thing you post on LinkedIn because one bad move could ruin your reputation.

4. Don’t make your profile private

Many LinkedIn users make the mistake of making their LinkedIn profile profit, just as they would with personal social media accounts, but in this case, it wouldn’t be advised. Don’t forget – LinkedIn is a platform intended to expand your connections, rather than limiting your network for business purposes. Also be aware, to check that the 'allow recruiters to view my profile' option is switched on also.

If there are certain people that you don’t feel comfortable having on your connections list, then it’s easy to remove them from your list.

If you have always wanted to use LinkedIn to boost your job prospects, we hope this guide has come in useful to help you achieve success. It may be a case of trial and error upon first starting out on the platform, but by taking the above tips into consideration, you will hopefully be able to use LinkedIn as a valuable tool to reach your career goals.

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