Connect With LinkedIn
LinkedIn is one of the most powerful platforms available to connect you with professionals from across the world. It can serve as your “professional Facebook,” online portfolio, and career search tool, all in one.
Most individuals create a basic profile and stop there, but LinkedIn can be used for much more. Learn how to set up a strong profile, grow your network, receive updates about your field or industry, and get noticed for future opportunities.
Learn how to practice #SafeSearch and avoid online job fraud so you Don't Get Scammed.
Develop Your Presence
Managing Your Digital Footprint
LinkedIn is not the only platform that impacts your professional online presence. Additional tools and strategies can be leveraged to develop yourself online and increase your professional reach.
When employers search for candidates online, they typically search widely. To see what is visible about you, open a fresh browser and Google your name along with keywords such as the location, schools attended, and organizations on your resume.
Which social media accounts appear first? Is there any information about you within news articles, forums, or community announcements? To someone who has never met you, which characteristics are being portrayed?
It is important that you have a strong sense of your digital footprint as you create your professional online presence on platforms like LinkedIn and many others.
Click below to explore various ways to develop your presence further.
When employers find your social media accounts, they are not simply hunting for reasons to reject you, but also for reasons to find you more interesting as a candidate.
Sometimes, social media accounts reveal characteristics you might not want a future employer to see (e.g., engaging in social partying, substance use, unprofessional use of language, or highly personal images and opinions). At other times, social media can portray you as a very valuable candidate (e.g., engaging in a relevant interest, online community, or unique knowledge about a specific topic).
What is most important in your social media activity is to be intentional. Scour your past activity and ensure that you are satisfied with it from the viewpoint of a prospective employer. You can adopt this perspective moving forward, to use before you post new content on any public-facing accounts.
If you have more content to share, consider creating a personal website to showcase your experiences, projects, and skills in the ways that best suit your goals. A website or blog can be a powerful way to express your thoughts and personality, and even serve as a portfolio for your best work.
To learn more, check out our Communications + Arts page for initial considerations when creating a professional website or blog.
With thousands of online publications actively trying to engage their audiences, there are endless opportunities to contribute an article, post, or other form of written content to a third party publication. If you have an interest or skill in writing and you know a specific topic that you would like to write about, you can pitch your article concept to a relevant publication and see if they are willing to publish it. Many publications offer a means of contacting them for this specific type of request.
When you offer your content to a third party, it is important to review the terms and conditions to understand how the content will be used. Typically, the publishing party will retain all ownership rights of the content (i.e., you, the author, will not own it) under the agreement that your name and byline (e.g., a brief bio) is published alongside it.
Many writers use this as a strategy to reach new audiences and drive them to their personal website or social media account through their byline. Monetary compensation is typically negligible, so you can consider this more as a means of developing your online presence professionally, than a means of earning sustainable income.
Getting involved in an organization associated with your field can both equip you with extra knowledge and advertise your presence. Whether the organization is on-campus, local, or nationwide, there are often opportunities to contribute online. This can demonstrate communication, leadership, commitment, and other in-demand skills to future employers.
Contributing to the community in which you work can include involvement with professional events (such as forums and conferences), socials, or even services in the community outside of work. Expanding the community to include more than just your colleagues can create connections for you to follow up with via LinkedIn, and it provides you with events or content to publicize online.
If you want to write, choose the method that works best for your goals. The choice is often between writing articles on your personal website or social media account (i.e., you own the content, but you also have to publicize it) or writing articles for third party publications (i.e., you do not own the content, but you get free publicity).