A hand holding the LinkedIn logo

How to stand out in the LinkedIn crowd: Make your profile work for you

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LinkedIn is where serious people get noticed. Being spotted and being taken seriously requires putting in a little leg work.

Fear not, Eton Bridge Partners Head of Research, Kyle McLaren-Kennedy, says you needn’t worry – he’s written a downloadable guide highlighting top tips you need to know…

If you thought LinkedIn was a place for staying connected with current or past business contacts, sharing ideas or to access opportunities safely in the knowledge they’re from people you already know, you wouldn’t be far wrong.

Worldwide LinkedIn has more than 575 million users, 106 million of which use it at least once every month. Of those that use it this frequently, 40% visit daily, with more than one million people actively publishing material (sharing links to articles or writing blogs like this). The UK alone has 25 million members (making UK LinkedIn members the 4th most globally connected), with more regular users than Snapchat. Somewhat impressive given it’s only 16 years old.

Almost since day one LinkedIn has (thanks to the data contained) become a recruiter’s dream. The site is now one of the top 30 most visited globally, and a sizeable proportion comes from those questing for top talent. According to LinkedIn’s own data, there was a 40% rise in InMail approaches from recruiters to members between 2015-17, with 94% of recruiters now saying they use the site to vet candidates. In short, LinkedIn has become a job board. Anyone in any doubt of this only has to look at its Open Candidate feature (launched in 2016) where people can essentially flag themselves as ‘available’ which members seem more than happy to do so – some 10 million declarations were made in its first year.

For those that haven’t though, this means their talent still has to be found.  Despite LinkedIn providing ever-better mining technology (it recently launched LinkedIn Recruiter – using powerful algorithms/AI to make skill searches more accurate), this still involves deploying lots of painstaking manual searching.

With years of experience doing just this, Eton Bridge Partners counts itself amongst the best at doing this, but what we’ve also found is that successful professionals (even those at executive and C-suite level) often don’t maximise the potential and searchability of their LinkedIn profile. They might well be up for new opportunities; they might well welcome introductions coming their way, but if their profile isn’t making them visible enough to be found, they’re fighting a losing battle. Even if they’ve won on the visibility stakes, they’re often not conveying everything they need to.

That’s why we have produced a new guide aimed squarely at giving executives the information they need to not only be found, but also how they should present themselves.

Our learnings are based on thousands of searches we do every year. Setting up a successful LinkedIn profile isn’t difficult, but it does require considering those sometimes ‘not-so obvious’ basics, like updating job titles, thinking hard about the skills, experiences and development projects you have and the tone of voice you use. It’s been proven that members with up to date positions are discovered up to 18 times more in searches by other members and recruiters; members with five or more skills listed (a facility that your profile enables you to do), are messaged up to 33 times more by recruiters and other LinkedIn members and receive up to 17 time more profile views).

Active users are the most easily found, while the best LinkedIn members also cultivate their connections – they curate who they link with, who they talk to and what they post. Their profile reflects this – they don’t accept all and sundry either. The average CEO apparently has 930 connections.

These are just some of the useful insights our guide looks at. What we want to convey more than anything is that living on LinkedIn needn’t be a chore, but what it does need is an awareness and certain level of attention to often the smallest details. It’s often forgotten, for instance, that headhunters are just as interested in the scope of someone’s network as it indicates the circle they move in, the people they know and the standing they have. Maybe a headhunter already knows one of your connections – these are all things to consider.

Knowing some simple tricks of the trade will make you more marketable, more searchable, and ultimately more visible.

Click here to read Eton Bridge Partners’ LinkedIn Guidance

Top stats:

  • 122 million people have received an interview through LinkedIn
  • 5 million have been hired by a person they connected with on the site
    (source: StatisticBrain Research Institute)