Despite its numerous utilities having nothing to do with finding or filling a professional position, LinkedIn still remains in the minds of many a resource primarily for job seekers. With nearly 2 million active job listings and thousands of major corporations investing in the company’s Talent Solutions services to find and recruit top candidates, it’s no surprise LinkedIn is still first and foremost a place to launch or advance careers.
Public relations professionals who are happily plugging away in their current roles may not see any reason to spend valuable (billable!) time reviewing open jobs on LinkedIn. But there are some surprising things PR pros can learn by spending some quality time on the platform. Here are four things you can start doing right now:
1. Keep an Eye on the Competition
If your chief rival is on a hiring spree, it could mean that the company is growing, which is good to know if the growth is in a sector that represents a potential threat to your own business. Alternatively, it could mean the organization recently experienced a mass exodus of staff, indicating that there is top talent available or there are clients left without account teams. This tip-off should prompt some additional research that can help you understand the risk or the opportunity.
2. Monitor Media Moves
Did you know that NPR is currently looking for a co-host for its political blog? Or that the Huffington Post is hiring a new tech reporter? Knowing what moves your key media targets are making can be a good way to identify new areas of coverage or new contacts to meet once they are in place. LinkedIn can be your early warning system for staff updates that will appear in Cision later on.
3. Identify New Business Leads
The average tenure of a Chief Marketing Officer is 45 months, meaning every four years or so there is a changing of the guard in a position that is responsible for or influences a company’s public relations initiatives. Noting when a client prospect is filling the position of CMO, CCO, PR Director or other high-level communications position will indicate when there is an opportunity to connect with new leadership and potentially lead to new business.
4. Uncover Skills You Should Develop
Reviewing job postings for positions at or above your level, and noting which skills are required, will help you determine whether or not your capabilities are in line with market demands. This is particularly important for professionals who have worked for the same organization for a long time and may not analyze their skills with a critical eye. Understanding the key skills required of your peers can help you stay competitive.
How do you use LinkedIn’s jobs feature in surprising ways? Add to the comments please!