How to Use LinkedIn

By Contributing Writer

More and more people are getting involved in social networking. A few years ago, it was a trend popular among the younger crowd, but even companies and their executive teams are signing up. LinkedIn is a popular website for professionals to network, and college students also use it to meet someone in a company that they want to work for. It is advantageous to have a LinkedIn account, and here are some ways to make the most out of the online networking experience.

Things You'll Need

  • LinkedIn account

How to Use LinkedIn

Step 1

Network with those you already know. If you are new to LinkedIn, the best and easiest way to increase your connections is to add those you already know in person. LinkedIn allows you to import friends from your email accounts such as Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, Windows Live. You may be surprised that your connections have other connections to a person or company that you want to be in contact with, and it's easier to approach someone when you both have a common friend or connection.

Step 2

Online Identity. LinkedIn helps you build an online profile or recreate a professional identity different from that of your college party days. Since LinkedIn usually gets top ranking on Google, when someone plugs your name in the search engine, your professional profile comes up first. This is beneficial when you want to establish that you are professional identity because what they see on LinkedIn is a mini resume.

Step 3

Jobs. Although LinkedIn is more popular as a networking tool that allows you to contact people and companies, there is also a jobs section on the page. The jobs listed there are specifically listed by hiring managers and recruiters, so you get an inside scoop of what positions are open. You can apply for these jobs through the jobs page, but also utilize your knowledge of the contact person by being more assertive and contact them directly regarding the position.

Step 4

Find people. LinkedIn is also useful when you want to look for someone in a particular company, or to find out what positions people hold in a particular organization. You can them contact them directly-- but if you're the type who doesn't like cold calling, LinkedIn has a feature that helps you to "approach" someone and send them a message or email.

Step 5

Recommendations. LinkedIn has a built in page for recommendations. You can receive recommendations from colleagues, and you can also give recommendations to those who work for you. These recommendations are helpful since you can showcase your achievements and gain credibility.

References & Resources