Hello lovelies! I am back to provide more career advice for college students! Today I’m discussing LinkedIn! While LinkedIn kinda comes across as a boring professional brand site, it is a really important tool that college students should be using, both to create a network and to search for job opportunities. Therefore I’m providing tips to get you all started on your LinkedIn journey!

Step One: Create an awesome profile

Add as much information as you possibly can! Fill out all the basics: photo (use a nice picture of you smiling with a plain background behind you. No unsightly college nightlife pics!), headline (explain what you’re looking for and who you are in a few words), courses, languages, job experience, etc.

For your summary statement, think long and hard about what makes you stand out and who you are as a person and professional. What skills do you bring to the table and how do you shine?

When editing the Experience section, consider how best to illustrate the skills you’ve learned from each position. If you got promoted at any organization/company, make sure to show that. Have volunteer experience? Make sure to put that in the Volunteer Experience section!

Remember: the key is to add RELEVANT information. If it’s not important or doesn’t reflect your career aspirations, take it out!

Step Two: Start building your network

Reach out to peers, coworkers, past and current employers, and professionals in your field of interest. Building connections is really the key part of LinkedIn – these are the people who will likely help you find a job in the future, so don’t take this lightly.

Remember: quality over quantity. If you are connecting with random people who you don’t know or have no professional relationship with, they won’t really be much of a help to you. Seek out relevant, engaged members who are willing to go to bat for you.

Step Three: Make yourself search engine optimal

Change your profile settings so that you are ‘public’ (note: you are decide which specific parts you want to stay public). Also, you can create a unique URL for your LinkedIn profile, which helps booster your site in search results. It also makes it incredibly easy to add the link on your resume and professional website!

Step Four: Share and generate great content

Follow relevant companies and organizations and share an article, photo, or idea with your network! Remaining active on LinkedIn (or at least occasionally checking through your feed) adds a layer of credibility to your profile. It shows that you genuinely care and are actively interested in your chosen career field and what is happening in the moment.

Thanks for reading! What advice do you have for college students beginning to use LinkedIn?  Please share them with me below or on Twitter @CaseyDonart

xoxo Casey

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