A few months ago I attended the National Career Development Association (NCDA) conference. I brought home fifteen professional business cards from valuable career development contacts with whom I hope to collaborate on this or that project.
I decided to invite each of them to join my LinkedIn network as a way of reaching out for further contact. Sadly not one of those professional business cards had a LinkedIn address on it. And, to my dismay, I realized I had committed the same mistake: I'd handed out a gazillion of my own professional business cards that didn't have my LinkedIn address on them! That's when I said to myself sternly:
"You need to make your professional business cards work as a LinkedIn tool, not just an in-person networking card."
Of course LinkedIn has People Search, which I used to find almost everyone on those cards, but it took a good four or five minutes per card. Four or five minutes may not seem like a long time but multiply that by fifteen business cards and you'll see that that search-and-find project ate up more than an hour of my time. On a really busy day I would have put that chore off for later, which could have meant weeks.
Most employers and recruiters are too busy to spend that kind of time searching for someone on LinkedIn, unless the job seeker has already shown he's worth the investment.
Do you have your LinkedIn address on your professional business cards?
If not, think about putting it on there. (I added my LinkedIn profile address to my cards!) Doing so will make it quicker, easier, and therefore more likely for recruiters and employers to use it as a LinkedIn tool to find and connect with you online.
More posts on LinkedIn and your job search:
The Power of My LinkedIn "Update" -- Easy One-Minute Networking!
Important Social Network Tool: How to Write an Email of Introduction
How to Say "I Do" to a LinkedIn Invitation
How to Upload Your Resume to LinkedIn