When I wrote recently about using social media for your job hunt, I mentioned the critical role LinkedIn plays in hiring at most companies. I’ll repeat myself here and say there is absolutely no better tool for job hunting today than LinkedIn — and now the online professional network has gotten even better by opening its publishing platform up to everyone.
In October of 2012, LinkedIn launched a native content platform and invited “influencers” to contribute original work that would be hosted and promoted by LinkedIn. The program became wildly successful with over 500 thought leaders contributing to the site.
It went so well that LinkedIn just announced that the platform would be available to all users (with an initial roll out of 25,000 this week; you can apply here for early access), saying “Starting today, LinkedIn is opening up our publishing platform to our members, giving them a powerful new way to build their professional brand. When a member publishes a post on LinkedIn, their original content becomes part of their professional profile, is shared with their trusted network and has the ability to reach the largest group of professionals ever assembled.”
Of course, publishing on LinkedIn isn’t a paying gig. I’m not normally someone that believes in writing for free, but publishing on LinkedIn can help establish you as an authority in your field. Here’s why you should consider it.
1. Anything You Publish On LinkedIn Is Automatically Included In Your Profile
This can be great — if you’re a specialist in blogger outreach, for instance, writing a brief post about how to avoid offending bloggers can absolutely convey that you know your industry. Taking the time to write a great, well-researched article (include case studies if you can) that’s between 600 and 800 words will add gravitas to your digital resume.
However, if you share a poorly written, badly researched article, it won’t be an asset to your experience — quite the opposite, in fact. So be sure to make that article great.
2. It Can Build Your Influence
Influence is a slippery ideal, and most folks aren’t looking for the kind of digital influence that bloggers and other weblebrities have. But if you’re job hunting, having influence in your industry can be extremely helpful. Having the opportunity to show your chops as well as connect to other professionals in your field is a great way to deepen your professional network.
3. You Can Be A Mentor
I’m betting that there were plenty of people that guided your professional journey — and sharing your expertise allows you the chance to mentor people that are just starting in your industry. Sure, you might not get hundreds of comments asking you questions, but the article itself can be a guiding light to the newcomers in your field.
As you can see, making use of LinkedIn’s publishing platform can be really great for your professional endeavors. And don’t worry — if you’re apprehensive about the downside of the internet (as, frankly, I am), LinkedIn has also begun to allow you to block users so you don’t need to worry about former co-workers seeking that outlet to vent. So sign up for the platform, and help launch the next phase in your career.