There is a new “one-click kid” on the block. It's called Endorsements, and it is the Facebook “Like” of LinkedIn. One click and you can give a very powerful nod to the skills and professional experience of another person in business. One click and you can be endorsed for what you are good at. Like?
Will Endorsements Have Any Weight on LinkedIn?
It is still early days, and I still believe you can't go past an original, personal “written” Recommendation on LinkedIn. However, there is no doubt that a list of people who have endorsed you (especially in the visual format used by LinkedIn) has to be a good thing. If you have many people endorsing you for one or more particular skills, those skills are likely to gain the attention of people visiting your profile. Only time will tell if it has some weight on LinkedIn Search. With Endorsements still being very new, I say that it is a great time to get some runs on the board with a few clicks on the skills you want to be known for!
How can you take advantage of Endorsements on LinkedIn?
1 Set your profile up to get endorsed – How long has it been since you checked the “Skills and Expertise” section of your profile? Are the skills listed the ones that you want to be endorsed or “known” for. It's time to do an audit! Click on EDIT PROFILE and then edit the skills listed under SKILLS & EXPERTISE. You might like to add some skills, remove some or modify some. Whatever you list, make sure that those skills are the ones that represent you best – and even better if they include the key words and phrases that you want to be searched for.
When someone comes to your profile they will be asked if they want to endorse you. Make it easy for them by editing your “Skills and Expertise” to the ones that you most want to be endorsed for. At least initially, as they grow. The skills you have the most endorsements for are shown at the top if the graph, as follows:
I have said it before, and I will say it again: a picture (or graph) tells a thousand words. This initiative by LinkedIn is brilliant in my book, because it gives a visual representation of your skills and endorsement. Whereas a Recommendation takes some time for a person to write a summary about you, an Endorsement is quick and just involves one-click. This is why I love them so much! Think it might catch on? Much.
2 Start Endorsing!
Endorsements breed endorsements. Don't wait to be endorsed. Get out there and start endorsing the people you know are good at what they do. Start with your close network. Trust me, if you endorse someone for a few skills that you value them for, in most cases, that person will eventually endorse you back. It's human nature to return a favour and it is human nature to respond to a picture of a smiling face sitting next to their listed skill – your face…endorsing them! Try it and see! Set aside 15 minutes this week and go to as many people as you can on LinkedIn and endorse them for a few skills. It is as quick as a click of a button for each skill. Super fast!
3 Focus on what you want to be known for
As you start to get some endorsement “runs” on the board, think about the skills and key words you want to be known for. If you want to have one particular skill as being most important then make sure it is getting some endorsements. If not, then maybe this is the time to call in a few favours with friends/colleagues that you have a good relationship with. Try sending them a personal message (yes, personal…not a template) asking them to endorse you for xyz skill. Even better, explain why you want some help with it – maybe you are wanting to do more speaking (so ask for endorsement for your speaking skills), maybe you want to get more freelance writing gigs (so ask for endorsement for your writing skills). Use your inner circle, LinkedIn contacts, Facebook Groups or good old email to contact people you know will be happy to guide the endorsements for you, by focusing on a particular skill and clicking “endorse”.
It's your turn. Are you using LinkedIn Strategically? Would you like more tips for LinkedIn on this blog? Are you endorsing others, and what would you like to be endorsed for?
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