Rumor has it that recruiters are on the hunt for talent, but your LinkedIn profile may not be getting the attention you seek (or any attention at all). So, what’s wrong with your profile? Are you using LinkedIn correctly? Here, we’re going to show you how to use LinkedIn to get noticed by the right people.

Turn On “Open To Finding A New Job”

The first thing you need to do if you want recruiters to find you is show that you’re available. And I don’t mean adding a “searching for a new job” quote to your title. Thankfully enough, LinkedIn allows you to select an option so that you appear on specific searches to recruiters from outside your company. All you have to do is select your profile picture and then click “view profile.” At the top of your profile, just under your introduction card, click the “Open” button and provide the requested information. You can then choose whether all LinkedIn members or only recruiters can see you are open to opportunities.

But don’t stop there – take advantage of the customization features LinkedIn offers. Write a note to recruiters and select specific job titles, industries and locations that match what you’re looking for. This will help you not only get noticed, but also attract the right type of opportunities.

Optimize Your Profile

Being available on LinkedIn makes you more searchable, but it’s not the only thing. If you don’t set up your profile correctly, availability won’t matter. To increase your chances of coming up in a recruiter’s search, you need to optimize your profile. Just as you would when writing a resume, try to incorporate keywords throughout each section. For example, if “Project Management” is one of your skills and it matches the qualifications required in the jobs that you are looking for, it should appear several times throughout your profile. Make sure you add it to the Skills section (LinkedIn allows up to 50 skills, so take advantage), your job descriptions and summary. These keywords should match your experience and the experience required in the roles you aspire to have.

If you’re unsure what keywords to use, check out a couple of job postings that you’re interested in. Notice the top five skills they have in common and weave them into your profile. Want to take it a step further? The paid version of LinkedIn Job Seeker shows you the top 10 skills the recruiter (or poster) is looking for and how they rank on each job posting.

Update Your Headline

Your headline is the first thing recruiters see when you come up in search results. LinkedIn pulls your latest title, but don’t leave it at that. Your headline should reflect what you do and what you can do. If you have a specific niche that you’re focused on, don’t be scared to add it. For example, let’s say you’re a Graphic Designer with experience in logo design, but want to move into web design. Rather than just “Graphic Designer,” your headline could read: “Graphic Designer with experience in Corporate Branding and a passion for Web Design.” Consider taking a few LinkedIn courses to expand your knowledge in areas you want to grow (and to show off on your profile).

Add a Professional Picture

You’ve added a summary, keywords, top skills and job descriptions. Your profile is set to “open,” but you haven’t put a face to the name. Without a picture, you won’t get noticed People in general don’t trust a profile without a face they can relate to. Your picture should embody the kind of professional you are. You don’t have to schedule a session with a photographer, but you do need to look to look the part. Make sure you are smiling, wearing professional attire and there isn’t a lot going on in the background. Present yourself as the professional you want to be.

Build Your Network

Last but not least: network, network, network. Join appropriate groups and add professional remarks on what others are saying. Post news that’s relevant to your industry. Reach out to the recruiters posting jobs you like. Send a message to those in a position to offer advice and feedback on how they got where they are in their career. Who you know can get you further than you think and in a digital era like the one we live in, LinkedIn is most likely your place to meet the right people. Take it from someone who has gotten several offers and my current role by networking through LinkedIn!

Ready to get noticed? Be sure to avoid these 3 LinkedIn mistakes as you job search.

This article was updated September 29th 2022, originally posted March 15, 2018.