LinkedIn is the most important professional networking tool out there today. With over 175 million professionals now using the service, you’re already behind the crowd if you haven’t established your presence on LinkedIn. But it’s easy to get lost in the wealth of features the site has to offer – dynamic resumes, a robust job search platform, interest groups, discussion forums, content sharing and much more. So we’ve compiled an all-encompassing guide to get you set up and on your way to becoming a LinkedIn expert.
Beginners LinkedIn Guides
These links will help you turn your profile into a compelling pitch to prospective visitors, and optimize it so you can be found in LinkedIn’s search results.
LinkedIn Learning Center – This is LinkedIn’s own resource center, with articles and tutorials on how to use all of the site’s myriad features. The most helpful resource if you have a question about a specific feature and you want the answer from the source itself.
Squidoo’s LinkedIn How To – A detailed Squidoo lens focusing on profile completion, differentiating your profile from your resume, building initial connections, and active participation in your network.
LinkedIn for Dummies Guide – The iconic yellow guy with the goofy eyes has 100+ articles laser-focused on specific site features. Dive into a category (e.g. “Marketing, Sales and Investing”) and dive into a wealth of resources.
How to Pimp Your LinkedIn Profile – Outlines the way you should represent yourself on your LinkedIn profile, in contrast to the way you behave on the rest of the Internet. (I’m looking at you, Facebook!) Contains some not-so-obvious advice, like why you should avoid the temptation to spring for back-scratching recommendation trades.
LinkedIn For Job Searching
LinkedIn’s job board is one of its oldest and most robust features, as well as the most potent way to leverage the site’s networking infrastructure. But the board itself isn’t the only way to find a job – take a look at this section for more ideas.
Job Seekers Guide – LinkedIn’s own guide for job seekers.
How to Use LinkedIn for Your Job Search – This “Dear Prudence” style article examines the hooks you need in your profile to put your profile in front of active recruiters.
10 Ways to Use LinkedIn to Find a Job – The job board is the most obvious destination for jobseekers, but remember there’s more than one channel of connection on LinkedIn. Uncover a wider variety of options – and create your own luck – with this advice.
LinkedIn for Recruiting
Recruiters love LinkedIn – it practically tosses qualified candidates into their laps. Recruiters, check out these links to see how you can get the most out of the service – and job seekers would be wise to learn how the recruiters operate, in order to position yourselves most effectively to be found.
How to Use LinkedIn for Recruiting Employees – A top-level guide highlighting the ways recruiters use LinkedIn to uncover quality talent. (To the quality talent: read this article and take steps to make sure you are uncover-able!)
4 Tips for Creating a LinkedIn Company Page– Use your company page for lead generation, talent recruitment and thought leadership – which will naturally increase visibility to your profile in the process.
LinkedIn for Business Development
LinkedIn is all about making mutually valuable connections. Check out these guides on how to use the site to create new professional relationships that will further your business.
How to Use LinkedIn to Meet People and Grow Your Network – A short video on how to use the site to make real life connections.
5 Ways to Use LinkedIn Groups to Build Influential Connections– LinkedIn encourages you to reserve connections for people you know in your real-world network. Groups, on the other hand, allow you to connect with anyone aligned with a common interest. Use them wisely to nurture new connections within your area of interest.
LinkedIn for Personal Branding
Your online profiles are a branded representation of how you want the world to see you, and LinkedIn covers the professional side of that coin. Use your profile to demonstrate thought leadership and authority in the subjects or industries with which you’re most familiar.
Use LinkedIn Answers; Build Your Reputation – How to use the Answers feature to establish yourself as an engaged thought leader in your industry.
How You Can Use LinkedIn to Reinforce Your Personal Brand – Guide on creating a cohesive image across the site.
How to Build Your Personal Brand On LinkedIn – Dan Schawbel is an expert on personal branding and provides this guide on how to leverage LinkedIn for it.
Become a LinkedIn Guru
LinkedIn is crammed to the brim with features, and you can certainly become a power networker without hunting through LI’s little nooks and crannies. On the other hand, what kind of perfectionists would we be if we didn’t try to leverage every little advantage we could find?
12 Little Known Tips For Using LinkedIn – This covers most of my favorite “hidden” LinkedIn features, from going stealth mode during your job hunt to squeezing SEO juice out of your company links. No need to dig through menus – this article discovers those secrets for you.
New Expert Tips for Using LinkedIn – Alumni Networking, testing LinkedIn beta features and graceful transitions from job to job – it’s all possible with deft handling of your LinkedIn presence.
Hopefully we’ve covered our bases here, but of course this isn’t an exhaustive list of useful resources. If you have a killer LinkedIn resource, don’t hesitate to share it with us in the comments.