LinkedIn, the professional networking site home to over 300 million users, is traditionally thought of as being most beneficial to individuals looking for employment but its benefit to companies in the public affairs and trade association industries shouldn’t be overlooked. Companies looking to hire top-tier professionals commonly use the site to find high-quality applicants by looking at those working for industry peers and by searching relevant trade and skill-based networking groups.
The newest feature on the site encourages a new form of social media competition by evaluating your profile’s popularity compared to others in your network. Launched last week, the “How You Rank” feature is found under the Profile > Who’s Viewed Your Profile tab:
In conjunction with your ranking is a short list of those in your company or network that are ahead of and behind you – in case you want to do some quick profile comparisons. Similar to SAT rankings, the site also provides you with a percentage point for your standing in the network.
Included in the right panel of this feature is a list of suggestions from LinkedIn to help you improve your ranking within your network. Some of mine were as simple as “Join This Group” or “Add This Skill” but others are more in-depth, “Provide an Example of Your Work”.
However you decide to use this new tool, the feature will certainly garner a new wave of page views as users work to better position their profiles. LinkedIn explains the logic behind this new feature in a blog announcement made early yesterday:
We know that no two professionals are alike and by seeing how you rank relative to your professional peers, we believe you’ll have the added information and incentive to help you put your best foot forward on LinkedIn.
Beyond LinkedIn’s basic suggestions, here are a few tips to make sure that you’re set for success with your professional profile:
1. Make sure your profile is 100% complete! This should be a no-brainer but make sure your profile has content populating each section. An incomplete profile doesn’t impress anyone. You can tell where your profile stands with this graph in the right-hand column of your personal profile page:
2. Create or share content that’s relevant to your industry or career goals, and be sure that you’re publishing it across all of your social channels. When you’re sharing from the home page, you can opt to share your update with the public, only your connections, or with public and Twitter:
3. Edit your public profile URL to something simple and easy to find. This shows your attention to detail and makes your profile easier to find again later. You can customize your public profile URL under Privacy and Settings > Edit Your Public Profile: