Showing posts with label LinkedIn. Show all posts
Showing posts with label LinkedIn. Show all posts

Monday, April 20, 2020

Career Membership Sites: Helping Jobseekers Beyond the Resume

Jobseekers often need more help beyond just writing them an interview-winning resume, cover letter, LinkedIn profile, and job search documents.

Some resume writers are offering additional support for jobseekers using membership sites. These sites can offer specific assistance in one area, like LinkedIn profiles, or a wide range of support for the job search. Some charge a small monthly fee while others are a one-time fee for “lifetime” access to the materials.

Here is a roundup of several career membership sites for jobseekers:

The Classical Career Club
This club offers four membership levels and is hosted on the Patreon platform. Memberships start at $3 for a "virtual tip jar" level that offers members access to a “bi-weekly newsletter featuring original content as well as curated lists of the best jobseeking and career development articles on the web.” The level also includes “good karma” as a membership benefit.

The “Athenian” level, $20 per month, is for those who are "serious about your career development and know you need to play the long game.” It includes the benefits from the three previous membership levels,  plus exclusive patron-only posts and a weekly newsletter, access to The Classicial Career Club community, and the “Classical Career Coaching’s Guide to Networking,” which is “20 pages of info on How to Use Your Network, Networking Cover Letters, Informational Interviewing, and much more.” This level also includes periodic additional long-form jobseeking resources, an ATS-friendly basic resume template, and regular access to VIP office hours and monthly “Ask Me Anything“ sessions.

The membership club owner, Steve Brady, has also upped the value of his memberships by offering members the opportunity to put the total amount of their membership fees towards the resume package of their choice once they reach their one-year anniversary of membership. Great idea!


Job Search Secret Weapon
This membership site is a collaboration between four veteran resume writers: Virginia Franco, Sarah Johnston, Ana Lokotkova, and Adrienne Tom. The membership site “connects jobseekers with everything they need and in one place” and is geared towards early-to-mid career level professionals. Members pay one upfront fee to get access to the membership site resources targeted to a kit that fits their specific needs in the job search.

The membership site offers several different “kits” for the job search: a “Resume/Cover Letter kit,” “LinkedIn kit,” “Interview kit,” “Job Search Planning/Hidden Job Market Strategy kit,” and a “New Grad kit.” Each kit includes a variety of resources, including articles, worksheets, templates, and/or videos. Kits range from $69 to $129 each.

Or, members can get a “Complete Job Search Solution” membership for $199 with more than 60 resources that include job search planning tools, resume templates, interview preparation guides, LinkedIn resources, and more. It includes scripts, worksheets, articles, and videos created by the four career industry professionals.


Leveraging LinkedIn For The Job Search
This fixed-term membership is an inexpensive ($15), yet effective way for jobseekers to start, cultivate, and maintain their LinkedIn profile. This eight-day membership delivers one lesson each day, via email, for eight days. It includes an action checklist to guide specific actions to take to build a LinkedIn profile that attracts interest from recruiters and hiring managers and helps you connect to your next job. The activities in each lesson can be done in just a few minutes.

Lessons include:

  • Lesson 1: Step-By-Step Guide to Setting Up Your LinkedIn profile. This lesson walks you through the process of setting up your LinkedIn account, using screenshots to show you exactly how to do it. (13 pages)
  • Lesson 2: Privacy Settings on LinkedIn. How to make sure the right people see what you want them to see. (5 pages)
  • Lesson 3: Putting Together Your Profile. What to put in your profile so that it’s attractive to recruiters and hiring managers. (13 pages)
  • Lesson 4: Making Connections on LinkedIn. How to connect with the people you already know on LinkedIn, and then leverage those relationships into connections with people you want to know. (10 pages)
  • Lesson 5: How to Give — and Get — LinkedIn Recommendations. Understanding LinkedIn’s online endorsement system, and how to get your network to say nice things about you publicly. Includes an easy formula to write LinkedIn Recommendations. (22 pages)
  • Lesson 6: Using LinkedIn to Find Jobs. Where to find job openings on LinkedIn — both advertised and unadvertised opportunities. Includes a Target Companies List. (20 pages)
  • Lesson 7: Maintaining Your LinkedIn Account. Now that you’ve spent time building your profile, don’t lose it! Step-by-step instructions to back up your profile and secure your data. (9 pages)
  • Lesson 8: LinkedIn: Next Steps. How to use LinkedIn on an ongoing basis and make the most of your LinkedIn profile. (2 pages)

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Are Keywords Still Important in a LinkedIn Profile?

The short answer is YES.

I received this question from a colleague who was wondering, since LinkedIn has changed its search functions with the 2017 update ("the new desktop experience"), relegating many of the higher-level search functions to paid accounts. With the vast majority of LinkedIn users still using the Free level, the question was: Are keywords still important in a LinkedIn profile?

Let's take a closer look at where keywords can be helpful.

Industry is still included as a field in the search filters -- even on Free level -- so it's helpful for SEO there (with the idea that the ultimate purpose of SEO is to be found). Although note that the "default" search categories are limited to fields similar to your own unless you type in an industry category ("+Add").

(Click on Industries):

There is also a Keywords-specific search box:

It's only been in the last two months that LinkedIn has updated their SEO algorithm for the "new desktop experience" -- you can see the latest details on this page:

Most relevant on that page is this quote:
"More keywords aren't always better. Our advice would be to avoid overfilling your profile with keywords and only include the keywords that best reflect your expertise and experience. If you integrate an extended list of keywords into your profile, it's likely that your profile will be filtered out by our spam detection algorithms, which will negatively impact your rank in search results."

Quality over quantity. "More keywords aren't always better."

That said, I think that it's premature to say that because LinkedIn has reduced the prominence of showing the Summary on both the desktop and mobile versions that SEO/keywords aren't as important. I saw an article a couple of months ago that addressed this (I don't know if I could find it again), but it said the Summary is now more like a cover letter for LinkedIn users -- instead of how we used to position it as an "executive summary" for clients. If you provide compelling content in those first few words/lines, they'll click to read through, but it's vital to put good information in the entire profile to be found by the search engines, but once you've been found, you have to compel the human reader too. (The more things change in job search -- and technology -- the more things stay the same!)

Like with the ATS, the keywords have to be in the content in order to appear in search results. But the best strategy for jobseekers remains to use LinkedIn to build their networks (and increase their visibility through LinkedIn Publishing and liking and commenting on content -- since this appears on your LinkedIn profile page) and keeping in contact with their LinkedIn connections.

So, in lengthy summary -- I wouldn't advise any change in strategy for content based on the new desktop experience.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

"I'm not sure what to do with my LinkedIn profile..."

I was going to call this blog post, "I'm on LinkedIn, Now What?" but that's actually the name of an excellent book by my colleague Jason Alba. (You should definitely check it out too!)

I get a LOT of questions from jobseekers about LinkedIn. 

The most common one is: 
“I’m not sure what to do with my LinkedIn profile.”

So here's a short guide with some practical tips!

It starts with "Profile Completeness" -- you want to make sure you have a fully populated LinkedIn profile. Profiles that are considered "complete" by LinkedIn's standards receive 40 times more "opportunities" (contacts from prospective hiring managers and recruiters) than incomplete profiles, according to LinkedIn's own research.

Filling in your profile improves your chances of being found by people searching for you specifically, or someone with your qualifications, credentials, and background. And that's true even when using sites like Google and Bing. As LinkedIn's own materials say, "LinkedIn profiles typically appear among the top search results when people search by name."

LinkedIn has its own criteria for “profile completeness,” which has changed somewhat over time. 

As of April 2015, to be considered “complete” by LinkedIn’s standards, you need these items in your LinkedIn profile:
• Your industry and location
• An up-to-date current position (with a description)
• Two past positions
•  Your education
• At least three skills
• A profile photo
• At least 50 connections

To maximize your success in using LinkedIn in your job search, you should also complete these activities:
• Customize your LinkedIn profile URL (
• Create an attention-getting LinkedIn Headline 
• Use the LinkedIn Summary section to tell your STORY! Who are you, what do you want to do, what sets you apart?
• If you’re including a link to your website or blog, customize the text link (rename it so it doesn’t just say “Personal Website” or “Company Website”).
• Include your contact information. LinkedIn allows you to add your phone number (designated as home, work, or mobile), Instant Messenger contact information (AIM, Skype, Windows Live Messenger, Yahoo! Messenger, ICQ, GTalk, QQ, and WeChat), and multiple email addresses (in addition to your primary/sign-in email). You can also provide your Twitter handle.
• Add languages that you speak.
• Fill in key projects you’ve worked on (this is a separate section within the profile). Showcase your work!
• Add a list of courses you’ve taken. (This helps with keyword searches.)
• In the “Settings,” change the “Select what others see when you’ve viewed their profile” to “Your name and headline (recommended).”

Most important:
• Proofread your profile carefully. Check grammar and spelling!
• Update your profile regularly! Not only will your connections be notified when you update information on your profile (bringing your profile additional visibility), but you’ll also be confident that someone searching for you will have access to the most current information!

Okay, now that you've completed those steps, what's next?

1. Grow Your Connections. There are two schools of thought when it comes to LinkedIn connections. You can choose to connect selectively, accepting invitations only from those you know and trust, or you can use LinkedIn to grow the network of people you know. You can connect with people you meet through Groups and get introduced to people you don’t yet know offline.

POWER TIP: The power of networking lies in “friends of friends,” so the larger your network, the easier it will be to connect with someone you don’t know (yet). Remember the principal of “six degrees of separation.”

2. Give To Get. Authentic, genuine Recommendations can make or break a LinkedIn profile (just like references can for a job candidate). Instead of sending out those presumptuous LinkedIn “Can You Endorse Me?” emails, select a handful of people in your network and write Recommendations for them, without asking for one in return. You will be surprised at how many people will reciprocate.

POWER TIP: Make sure your Recommendations are specific and detailed. When reading the Recommendation, you should be able to tell exactly who it was written about. Quantify accomplishments (with percentages, numbers, and dollar amounts) as much as possible.

3. Get Involved. Join some LinkedIn Groups. Groups are the “water cooler” of the social site. You can find Groups for school and university alumni, your former and current employers, trade groups, industry associations, and more.

POWER TIP: One way to establish yourself as an expert on LinkedIn is to start your own Group. For example, you might consider starting an online job club centered around your industry or geographic proximity.

Finally, don't make these mistakes on LinkedIn:
  • Don’t Dismiss LinkedIn as Something Only for People Who Are Looking For a New Job. The best time to build your LinkedIn profile, connect with people, and participate on LinkedIn is now, before you need it. If you find yourself suddenly unemployed and decide that now is the time to start using LinkedIn, you’re going to be playing catch up. Instead, take time to “dig your well before you’re thirsty,” as author Harvey Mackay says.
  • Don’t “Set it and Forget It.” Your LinkedIn profile is an evolving snapshot of you. You should be updating it regularly with new connections, status updates, and activity (especially within LinkedIn Groups) 
  • Don’t Ignore It. Check in on LinkedIn regularly; at least every other day if you are in active job search mode; at least once a week for passive jobseekers. Plan on adding one new status update each time you log in.
  • Don’t Be A Wallflower. LinkedIn is most effective when you engage with it. Seek out opportunities to connect with thought leaders in your industry. Join 3-5 Groups and participate in conversations.
  • Don’t Be Selfish. You will get more out of LinkedIn if you focus on how you can help others, not how they can help you. The phrase “give to get” is very powerful on LinkedIn. You can earn the respect of your peers and people of influence if you “help enough other people get what they want,” in the words of Zig Ziglar.
  • Don’t Wait For Others To Find You. Use the LinkedIn People Search function to look for people you know and invite them to connect with you. You should aim to add 2-5 new connections each week if you are a passive job seeker, and 6-10 connections a week if you are actively searching for a new job.
  • Don’t Forget to Explore the People Your Connections Know. One of the most powerful functions of LinkedIn is the ability to connect you with people who are connections of the people you know. Follow LinkedIn’s guidelines on connecting with these folks, however (using InMail or requesting connections through your mutual friend), so that your account is not flagged for spam.
  • Don’t Indiscriminately Try to Connect With People. One of the strengths of LinkedIn is the connections you make, but it’s not a race to get to 500 connections. Have a reason for each of the people you connect with — either it’s someone you already know or are related to, or someone it would be beneficial to connect with. If you don’t know someone, get to know them a bit before sending a personalized connection request. (You can do so by seeing who you have in common — or who they are connected to, checking out their LinkedIn summary and work history, visiting their website or blog, and seeing what Groups they belong to). 

If you're just getting started on LinkedIn, check out my 8-part course, "Leveraging LinkedIn For Your Job Search." Each day, you'll get a new lesson that will help you develop and enhance your LinkedIn profile. It's just $15. Order it here:

Friday, October 24, 2014

Resume Writers: Want More Clients From LinkedIn?

You know that LinkedIn is an important website for your jobseeking clients … but are you taking full advantage of LinkedIn's power to connect you to prospective clients for your resumes, cover letters, LinkedIn profile development services, and job search support offerings?

Check out this special report from
"14 Ways to Get More Clients From LinkedIn"

Tips include:

  1. Take full advantage of your public profile.
  2. Create a unique public profile vanity URL.
  3. Create a profile badge.
  4. Thank people for Recommendations.
  5. Create a Company Page.
  6. Maintain your LinkedIn account via mobile.
  7. Set up a Google Alert for yourself to monitor LinkedIn.
  8. Be choosy.
  9. Import all your offline and online business contacts into LinkedIn to create your social graph.
  10. Share your social graph with other social networks.
  11. Share your LinkedIn posts with Twitter.
  12. Whitelist LinkedIn in your email filters.
  13. Rearrange your Profile sections.
  14. Use LinkedIn – don't just be on it!
The guide includes step-by-step instructions for implementing many of the tips too. And it's free.

Colleagues: Like this post? Please share it!

Monday, October 13, 2014

What's the Next Big Tool for Jobseekers...After LinkedIn?

LinkedIn is definitely the #1 took for jobseekers when it comes to connecting with your network to find leads, contacts, and opportunities … but it's not the first tool you can use in your job search, and it won't be the last.

An article in TechCrunch talks about a new tool that will help you analyze your existing connections to help you reach the people you want to know. It's called "Conspire," and it analyzes your email (Gmail, specifically) to help you connect to people you want to meet -- and, in particular, it helps you analyze the strength of the connection to the people you already know to make that introduction.

Read the TechCrunch article here:
Forget LinkedIn, Conspire Analyzes Email To Be Your Next Networking Tool

Right now, the app has the strongest successes within the tech community. When I tested it out, it helped me identify people I already knew, but wasn't as successful helping me reach people one connection out. Part of the challenge is that it only uses Gmail right now, and I don't use my Gmail email as much as I do my and Resume Writers' Digest emails for work contacts.

For example, I tried Conspire to see how it would do with two of the career industry's top thought leaders. First, I tried Wendy Enelow:

Because I have corresponded with Wendy through my Gmail account (occasionally -- I usually correspond with her through my Resume Writer's Digest email), it found we had a direct connection, although it was weak.

Next, I tried Louise Kursmark … which, considering my connection with Wendy, I should have some sort of connection with her on Conspire:

Nope. Not only did it not connect me with Louise through Wendy, but it didn't show any connection with her at all. (I actually correspond with Louise through my Resume Writers' Digest email account).

So, it's not perfect yet, but it's definitely worth a try. It's another tool in the toolbox for jobseekers … but LinkedIn is still #1. Perhaps as the Conspire network grows, it will become more effective and powerful.

Check out Conspire here. It's free.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Keep LinkedIn From Sending Those "Say Congrats" Notifications To My Network

Got this question from a resume writer:

"Does anyone know how to keep "say congrats" from being sent to someone's network once they've changed jobs? Thank you in advance!! 

Because LinkedIn has several places to control your privacy settings and notifications, this one can be a bit tricky. But here's the answer:

On your LinkedIn profile, click "Edit Profile":

Click on the existing job you're editing in your Experience section (or Add a position). If updating a current position, click the "Edit" button:

After you've made your changes, look in the upper right-hand side of the page and check what settings you have for "Notify Your Network" --

If you do not want LinkedIn to notify your network of the update or addition (and you do NOT want a "Say Congrats" notification sent), make sure the line is RED and it says, "No, do not publish an update to my network about my profile changes."

Want more information? Check out this LinkedIn help page:

Want to learn more about LinkedIn?

Saturday, September 6, 2014

LinkedIn Offers New Tool for Allowing Clients to Export Their Data

As a resume writer, you should be encouraging your clients to "back up" their LinkedIn profile regularly by having them export their data.

LinkedIn is adding a new data export tool to make this easier.

Read about it here:
LinkedIn Announces New Security and Privacy Control Tools

Do you encourage your clients to back up their LinkedIn profiles? Why or why not?

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Remind Your Clients to Personalize Their LinkedIn Connection Requests

As a resume writer, do you receive LinkedIn connection requests from people, but you have NO IDEA who they are, or why they might be asking to connect?

Most resume writers I've surveyed will connect with almost anyone who requests a connection … but they are MORE likely to connect if the individual personalizes the LinkedIn connection request.

If you haven't written your own blog post or article on the importance of personalizing LinkedIn connection requests, you can share this post with them:
Want to Make Better LinkedIn Connections? Get Personal

It includes three examples of personalized connection requests.

Do you personalize the LinkedIn connection requests YOU receive? If not, you should!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

23 Social Media "Rules" Resume Writers Shouldn't Ignore

Okay, so the author of the article actually calls it "23 Tips Successful People Use for Social Media Strategy," but it just so happens that I think the tips are good enough that savvy resume writers should consider them to be RULES to follow, not just suggestions.

I like how the author focuses on engagement and authenticity. Too many resume writers have a Twitter profile because they think they should. Or do LinkedIn profile writing even though their profile isn't populated and they have fewer than 100 connections.

Pick a platform and OWN it. (If you don't have a preference, pick LinkedIn. Not only is it a great source for connecting with clients, but you can also connect with recruiters, learn from colleagues in LinkedIn Groups, raise your visibility online by trying LinkedIn publishing, and you've got status updates on there just like you'd have on Twitter and Facebook. So yeah, if you're going to pick one, pick LinkedIn.)

Which is YOUR favorite tip from the article -- and why?

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Portfolio Jobs: Everything Old is New Again

When I was in sixth grade, I remember learning about the concept of portfolio jobs. It was the "workplace of the future." Instead of having a job that lasted years and years, you might have two or three "project"-oriented jobs each year, working on defined tasks and then moving on. Or you might have a couple of part-time jobs instead of one full-time job.

That was back around 1984. In the intervening years, job tenures did become progressively shorter, and the "lifetime" job, where you started in the mailroom and retired as CEO, all but disappeared. The portfolio job hasn't really materialized … but the idea lives on.

I was reading the July 7-13, 2014 issue of Bloomberg Businessweek and came across a book review by Bryant Urstadt reviewing The Alliance, a book written by LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman and entrepreneurs Ben Casnocha and Chris Yeh.

In the book, Urstadt says, Hoffman suggests keeping employees engaged by "setting up 'tours of duty' involving specific tasks such as managing groups, then mining the networks they form."

While not exactly the definition of portfolio careers I learned in the sixth grade, it's interesting that the project-oriented career is still being explored. It works well in Hollywood, where the "gig" lifestyle is geared around a movie: People are hired, do their jobs, and then move on to the next project.

Perhaps it's coming to the Fortune 500 company near you.

As resume writers, it's something to consider. Maybe there will be a whole new resume format that arises to help meet the need of describing this project-oriented career. After all, as anyone who has ever written a resume for an IT consultant or project manager knows, those resumes can easily stretch to 4, 5, or even 6 pages or more.

Urstadt writes, "Hoffman's ideas have grown out of an environment where young workers with elite backgrounds and big personal dreams are feverishly recruited under the guise of changing the world."

These are the clients who will be hiring us. If not now, they will soon be.

Food for thought, for sure.

Monday, July 7, 2014

10 Headline Hacks for Client Resumes and LinkedIn Profiles

The most important part of the client resume and LinkedIn profile is usually the first thing readers see: the headline.

The headline immediately alerts readers if the rest of the content is what they’re looking for. The first line the reader sees should tell them instantly if what your jobseeking client has to offer is exactly what they are looking for in a candidate for the opening they have. You can accomplish this by using a strong headline and then following it with informational sub-headlines (in the LinkedIn Summary) or a qualifications summary or bullet points (on the resume).

The headline has to convince the reader to continue reading. You only have a few seconds to capture the reader’s interest and attention. And, on LinkedIn, you have limited space — your client’s headline can be a maximum of 120 characters. On the resume, you can use more space, but the best resume headlines are generally 5-10 words.

Stuck for how to get started writing the headline? Try these headline hacks (formulas) excerpted from this special report, "Writing Better Headlines For LinkedIn and Client Resumes":
  • [Job title] for [industry] at [company name] 
  • [Job title] specializing in [skills/keywords] 
  • [Job title] focusing on [job functions] 
  • [Job title] that gets [these results] 
  • [Adjective] [job title] With a Track Record of Success in [results] 
  • [Job title/keyword] who does [what] for [target audience] [+ PROOF] 
  • [Job title] + [differentiator] 
  • [Job title] + [target audience] + [industry/field] + [achievement/results] 
  • {This client} helps [target audience] [do or make what?] 
  • {Client’s biggest achievement} 

Want more strategies for creating reader- and SEO-friendly headlines? Check out the special report.

Writing Better Headlines For LinkedIn and Client Resumes

When you only have seconds to capture a reader's attention, the headline is especially important. This short report gives you the tools you need to write attention-getting, powerful headlines for client resumes and LinkedIn profiles.

The report covers:
• The one question every headline must answer
• Questions to ask before you start writing the headline
• Three specific strategies to write the headline
• More than a dozen headline formulas (a cheat sheet!)
• Tips for formatting your headlines
• The role of keywords and SEO strategies in headline writing
• A 10-point "Checklist for Assessing The Headline" 

Buy "Writing Better Headlines For LinkedIn and Client Resumes."

Monday, June 16, 2014

Are You Risking Your LinkedIn Account to 'Help' Clients?

I pulled up Facebook today and saw a post from a colleague that said, "Logged into LinkedIn this morning under a client's account and..." and I stopped reading.

As a resume writer, you may be "helping" your clients by logging into your client's LinkedIn account and populating their profile for them. After all, "they're paying me to help them," or "they're busy" or "they won't do it right." All valid reasons. Unfortunately, LinkedIn is very clear on this point. Here's the LinkedIn Terms of Service:

You agree to ... 3) not use other's accounts

When you signed up for your LinkedIn account, you entered into a legal agreement. You're bound by this agreement if you use LinkedIn:

The prohibition against signing into someone else's account is actually listed twice in the LinkedIn Terms of Service.

Under section 10.2: Don't undertake the following: 7) Use or attempt to use another's account...

But people violate LinkedIn's Terms of Service all the time, don't they? Also under section 10.2, it says you can't "Publish inaccurate information in the designated fields on the profile form (e.g., do not include a link or an email address in the name field)."

Because everyone else -- including some of the biggest names in the resume writing industry -- are doing it, it's okay if you do it too, right?

Growing up, my Mom always said, "Well, if everyone else jumped off a cliff, would you?"

My personal stance on this is no, we should not be logging into client's LinkedIn accounts and updating their profiles. Ever.

Do you want to risk your personal LinkedIn account? And your client's? Your client is relying on you to provide them with advice. If you tell them it's okay for you to log in to their account and their account gets shut down, are you putting yourself at risk? Yes. In theory, your client could sue you.

I understand that people will say that they "don't have time" to do this themselves -- but just having a static LinkedIn profile isn't going to really benefit them. If they don't know how to manage their own LI profile, they probably shouldn't be on LI at all. It's better to NOT be on LI than to put something up there they don't use.

I liken it to the role of the resume in the job search. We help clients come up with the content (resume, cover letter, bio, LI profile content, etc.) but once we've created it, it's up to the client to actually USE it.
We don't go on the job interviews for them. We give them the tools but they must use them.

One way to emphasize this to "busy" clients is, "This is the difference between teaching a man to fish, and giving him a fish. I know you just want the fish, but I'm not doing you a favor if you don't learn how to use these tools as part of a bigger career management strategy. The benefit to being on LinkedIn isn't just having a great Headline and Summary -- it's engaging in Groups, giving and getting Recommendations, making Connections, and building a pond that is well stocked with fish for the future. I'm asking you to take an hour now to learn how to use LinkedIn, and 10-15 minutes a week going forward to manage your account so that you won't go 'hungry' in your job search again in the future."

You can give them resources that will TEACH them how to use LinkedIn. You can purchase my LinkedIn Pass-Along Materials -- a 40+-page step-by-step guide to help them set up and manage their LinkedIn account. For $20, you can put your name on it and use it with all your clients (contact me for details -- currently updating it for the "new look" LinkedIn for 2017).

If your client knows how to use LinkedIn, but you want to give him/her a document they can use to populate the LinkedIn profile -- I also give you a step-by-step guide for that (LinkedIn Profile Delivery Document)

If the client is truly *that busy,* they probably have an assistant or someone they can give your LinkedIn Profile Delivery Document to (or maybe their wife or kid) who can implement it for them.
But I personally would not risk my LinkedIn presence for any of my clients. And I don't think you should either.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Five Ways to Improve Your Skills as a Resume Writer

I've been writing resumes since I was 12. A lot has changed in that time. In fact, the resume writing business continues to change all the time. LinkedIn was launched in 2003, but I didn't join until October 2008. Most resume writers will tell you that LinkedIn has really impacted the hiring process — but the reality is, most of that change has come in the last five years. If you're a resume writer and you're not on LinkedIn, you're already behind the times. If you're not also helping clients improve their LinkedIn profiles, you're missing out on a great source of revenue ... and results for your clients.

The next big change in the hiring process — and, consequently, your resume writing business — might be just around the corner, or it might be five years away. But it's coming. That's for sure. Because nothing stays the same forever. There's always something new to learn. If you're planning on still being in business a year from now, you need to be investing in your skills. What you know today will not be all you need to know tomorrow. Get out there and learn all that you can.

Here are five ways to improve your skills as a resume writer:

1. Take a class. One of the great things about the resume writing industry is that there are lots of opportunities to improve your knowledge about the writing process, coaching clients, and new technology. (Check out the Events listing on site — I collect information about training opportunities from multiple sources in the industry.)

2. Get involved. Is there a resume writing conference going on near you? Register and attend the meetings to find out what others in the industry are doing to grow their resume writing business. It's also a great opportunity to network with those who can help you succeed.

3. Gain certification as a resume writer. There is a lot of debate whether certification is worthwhile in the resume writing industry, but in business in general, it's all about expertise. When you can show that you are an expert in your field, you gain the trust not only of clients but also of other resume writers. (Some resume writers will only hire certified resume writers as subcontract writers.) There are many choices for certification. 

4. Ask questions. If you don't know how to do something, then ask. All of the major professional associations (PARW, NRWA, CDI) offer e-lists. Participate in the discussions and ask other resume writers for advice.

5. Find a mentor. Is there someone in the resume writing field that you look up to? They may be able to impart knowledge that can take you far. If they are willing, learn all you can from them.

If you want your resume writing business to grow, you need to grow along with it. Continually learn new skills that can grow your business!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Beyond Marketing - Why Social Media is Important for Resume Writers

Most resume writers understand the value of using social media to market their resume writing business. They create Facebook pages, LinkedIn profiles, and dutifully fill out their Google business listing — all in the hope of expanding their marketing efforts. However, did you know there are many more benefits of social media than marketing? With proper use and deployment of social media, any business can do all of the following and probably more.
  • Find subcontract writers and freelancers. Looking for subcontract writers? Or someone to handle a one-time project for your resume writing business? Use social media to help. Create a detailed listing of what you're looking for and post it on your social media accounts. Ask your friends and followers to share. It's more than likely that the person(s) who answer a call like this will be more compatible than using a huge impersonal job board.
  • Create more sales. You may think that sales and marketing are the same thing, but they're not. Marketing is increasing your reach so that you can get more leads, but sales are different. Social media can increase sales outside of your marketing efforts just because your clients might share with others the positive experience of working with you on their career marketing efforts. And if they like what you are talking about on social media, they might like to buy from you more.
  • Reward customers. Provide discounts, special incentives, and targeted career content for your customers using social media to "check in" or when they communicate with you via social media. People love getting free things, so take advantage of that by using social media to encourage more interaction with your customers and between your customers.
  • Brand your business. It's important that you brand your resume writing business across all social media accounts as honest, relevant, and even generous. (For example, be sure to mention when you volunteer your services by speaking to organizations or participate in job fairs!) Be aware of how consumers, as well as your referral sources and other resume writers, view your business via all your social media interactions. Listen to your customers and be perceived as a company that does so. Demonstrate these things as often as possible as a way to brand your business on social media.
  • Connect with your customers. You can set up private closed groups using Facebook that only your clients can see. It's a great way to increase your connection with your clients and to build a community. Encourage your clients to support other jobseekers in their job search.
  • Easy project collaboration. Another use for private Facebook groups is easy project collaboration. In Facebook groups you can upload documents and communicate easily in one spot about various projects, without ever having to have a face-to-face meeting — but still be able to keep excellent records of the events and ideas as they unfold. I know of one group of resume writers that is working on a book project through a Facebook group.

By being involved with social media, you can increase your profile among prospects while building a stronger connection with clients. Use social media to form a connection with your community. Your resume writing business can be an integral part of your community in every way that it can. And those are benefits that extend beyond using social media only for marketing.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

How Do I Get My Company Logo on My LinkedIn Profile?

Have you noticed that some resume writers have their company logo next to their business name in their LinkedIn profile? Are you wondering how they made that happen?

The answer is: Company Pages!

If you haven't yet set up a Company Page for your resume writing business, there are a couple of reasons why you should do it now:
  • To get that logo to show up on your personal profile!
  • To get additional visibility for your resume writing business on LinkedIn.
  • Because it's easy!

Here is a step-by-step guide to setting up your Company Page on LinkedIn.

First, you must have a domain name for your resume writing business, and have an email address associated with that domain name that is on your LinkedIn profile. (You can add the email address if you don't have it already linked to your profile.) That domain name can only be associated with one company page. You must also have your resume business listed under the "Experience" section of your profile, and your profile must be complete ("Intermediate" or "All Star" status, with numerous connections.)

On the main menu bar, click on the "Companies" tab.

On the Companies page, click "Add a Company" in the upper right-hand corner.

This wil take to you a page to "Add a Company." Fill in your resume writing business name and your email address (remember, it has to be a domain name for your business name — it can't be a Gmail or other type of email address).

You must also verify that you are the official representative of the company by checking the box.

You'll be taken to a new page where you can edit your company profile.

When you are finished entering the information, click the blue "Publish" button in the upper right-hand corner.

Finally, click on the "Products" tab and add in information about the products and services you offer. Not only will this help you attract clients, it will also help your page get found, as the more content you add, the higher the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) value of your page.


The LAST STEP you need to take is to edit your profile and select your Company Page when articulating your business name. Go into your LinkedIn profile and choose "Edit Profile." Then, go to your current position and click the "edit" tool. As you type your business name, you should be presented with a list of companies to choose from.

Select your Company Page from the list, and then save your profile.

You will see that the logo from your Company Page now shows up on your profile.

Friday, August 31, 2012

How to Make Your Resume Writing Business More Credible

© iQoncept -
With so many resume writing businesses marketing and promoting themselves online nowadays, you may be wondering: "How do I set myself apart?"

One answer is through credibility. Credibility helps separate you from your competition (or colleagues, if you prefer the more collegial definition of "other resume writers.) It also helps your resume writing business appear larger to your prospects and customers. Credulity gives your customers confidence in you. This confidence and trust results in purchases and profits.

So how do you create this credibility? How do you demonstrate to prospective resume clients that you can be trusted?

Professional Policies and Procedures
One of the best ways to establish trust and credibility with your prospects instantly is to make sure you represent your company online in a professional and credible manner. The simplest way to accomplish this is to publish your policies and procedures on your website. Make sure the policies page is easy to find and that it covers all the information someone would want to know. For example, what is your privacy policy? What is your payment policy? (Payment in full up front? Half due now, and the rest when the resume draft is delivered?) What about refunds? Do you have a guarantee?

Transparency is a key credibility builder. Consider also including a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page on your site. It may cover much of the same material that your policies and procedures page covers, but that's okay.

Large Networking Presence
More than 800 million people are on Facebook right now. It's important to have a presence on mainstream social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. You may even want to have a Pinterest account. It's also important to integrate your activity and social networking presence on your resume writing business website. For example, include links to your social networking profile on your site. Allow people to connect with you on the platforms they use.

Social networking is a credibility builder because it's a personal way to connect with your company. Again, it goes back to transparency and availability. If you're open and easy to connect with online, it builds trust. Most resume writing businesses are solo operations -- so when a client is choosing to work with your company, they are really choosing you.

Additionally, if you're connecting with other notable experts (especially thought leaders in the careers industry -- other resume writers, career coaches, recruiters, HR professionals, etc.) on social networking sites, your prospects will notice that. You will earn credibility by association.

Great Content
Finally, great content is essential to building credibility. You want to make sure your content positions you as a knowledgeable expert in your industry. You can publish content on your website or blog. You can also publish content on your social networking profiles.

Each article, blog post, or web page will ideally offer value to your reader. When you offer value, you help build a foundation of trust with your readers. They begin to learn from you and about you. This helps them feel like youĂ­re a company they can count on to continue to solve their problems.

In addition to publishing great content, it's also helpful to publish content frequently -- and on other websites. For example, if you are able to publish content on your site and contribute to other relevant blogs as a guest blogger, it helps establish your credibility. Publish articles on article directories or on sites like Squidoo. If other business owners are turning to you for great content, then you must be an expert!

Building credibility isn't difficult, but it does take a plan. Represent your resume writing business online in a professional manner. Make sure to be completely transparent and to publish content that offers value.

Monday, November 7, 2011

"Getting Started With LinkedIn In Your Job Search"

For the past month, a good deal of my time was consumed developing the November Pass-Along Materials content pack -- a special report on "Getting Started with LinkedIn In Your Job Search." This 41-page guide enables resume writers and career coaches to brand (put their name on) a step-by-step user guide for clients to help them set up their LinkedIn profile.

LinkedIn currently has more than 120 million members, and they are adding new members at the rate of two new profiles per second. That's amazing.

You may be asked this question by job seekers: "Why do I need a LinkedIn account in addition to a Facebook profile?" As LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner put it in an Oct. 4 interview with Charlie Rose, "Why do you need an office when you have a house? Or why do you need a suit when you have sweat clothes?"

LinkedIn's purpose is "Connecting talent with opportunity on a massive scale," said company co-founder Reid Hoffman in the Rose interview. What else is a job search except "connecting talent" (your client) with opportunity (the ideal job)?

As resume writers, we know our clients should be on LinkedIn. But we also know that the majority of them don't know how to get on there -- or what to do once they are! (Have you read Jason Alba's excellent book, "I'm On LinkedIn, Now What?" If not, you should!)

Having a step-by-step guide for clients to help them develop and enhance their LinkedIn profile can be a valuable resource. You can provide it as an incentive to sign up for your mailing list. (I just recently uploaded a bonus -- 35 tweets you can use to promote your free LinkedIn report.) You can edit it to remove the very basic sign-up information and leave the information about importing contacts, joining Groups, participating in Answers, and following Companies and give it to clients who have purchased your LinkedIn profile development or enhancement services. You can use the report as a script and handout for a LinkedIn workshop, teleseminar, or webinar -- it's a great "getting started" guide. Or you can break it apart and use it on your blog in a series of articles on how to build your network on LinkedIn.

The "Getting Started With LinkedIn In Your Job Search" guide will only be available until Dec. 5 in the Paid Member Resources section. After that date, I'll make it available for sale on Resume Writers' Digest's Store, but the cost will be substantially more than the $10 you'll pay to get it now on (Plus, your $10 also gets you access to "Resume Writer's Online Marketing Guidebook: A 21-Step Guide to Taking Your Resume Business Offline to Online," which retails for $14 itself on the Resume Writers' Digest store. You'll also get access to the complete back issue archive of Resume Writers' Digest, Expert Interview recordings and transcripts, and much more.)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Marketing in a Down Market: Expand Your Network

From the July/August 2008 issue of Resume Writers' Digest:

Fourth in a series on Marketing Your Resume Writing Services in a Down Market

Resume writers tell their clients to network, but don't always follow their own advice. Yet there are more opportunities for business-to-business networking than ever before.

Traditional methods include professional associations (especially if you specialize in a niche, making contacts with these associations as well as contacts in academic programs turning out new graduates, is vital), plus business leads groups, alumni groups, and Chambers of Commerce.

Your return on your investment here will depend on the time you are willing to commit. Participating in organizational activities, writing for their publication and website, and volunteering to chair committees (membership recruitment and event planning are two in particular), can pay dividends.

Another growing area is using online social networking sites to cultivate referrals and build your credibility. Having a profile on LinkedIn or Facebook is quickly becoming essential. If you currently don't have a profile, create one!

Next up: Small-Space Advertising.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Best of Today: 9/14/10

Here are my "favorite" articles from today --

Interesting article from US News & World Report, via @AvidCareerist (retweeting @ErinKennedyCPRW and @JobHuntOrg! “Beware the Interviewer in a Soft Chair

The Real Power of Networking is in the Second Degree? – via Kristen Jacoway – “How to Find a New Job with LinkedIn”
– Great video explaining the process!


@GayleHoward: Careers are linked to your life stages. Work situations perfect for one period of your life may be completely wrong for the next.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Best of Today: 9/9/2010

This was an easier task today. I just kept track of cool & interesting stuff as I came across it. (Oh, and just so you know,  I looked through about 10x as many articles as I posted links ... I'm trying to "edit" the volume of stuff for you guys.)

Today's question is: Do you want me to provide some commentary with the articles? Like a sentence or two on what it's about, and why I thought it was cool/interesting? Let me know. Comment below.

Jason Alba blog post on I’m On Linked In – Now What? "Who Owns Your LinkedIn Profile" 

"Hire Me: Your Employment Prospects for 2010 (Results of Manpower Survey)"

Great example of an online “Resources” guide for clients – courtesy of Donna Svei, AvidCareerist

Love Wendy’s Humor – Wendy Terwelp Blog Post (Rock Your Career) – “I Don’t Kiss on the First Date – LinkedIn Tips”

Bonus content from me --
Quote of the Day (QOTD):

Via @TheJobQuest RT @steviepuckett: Your job security no longer lies in having a job. It lies in knowing how to work the job market.