Will LinkedIn Premium Bring You Job Search Success – or Is It a Waste of Your Money?

LinkedIn Premium is expensive. Is it really worth it?

Honestly, I think not. In fact, if you're subscribed to LinkedIn Premium, I think you're wasting your money – and here's why:

You Don't Need Those InMails

The main reason why people sign up for LinkedIn Premium is for the "InMails", which give you the ability mail someone who is not a direct connection – but there is a much easier way to do this! Watch this five-minute video to learn how:

LinkedIn is a massive database, full of valuable information. Most companies have LinkedIn pages on which you can read all about what an organization is up to. You can find out if a company has won any recent awards, made any new acquisitions, or launched any new processes or products. If you have a target list of companies you'd like to work for, you can find their pages on LinkedIn and easily uncover who the directors or managers are in the areas you'd like to work in.

You can then look at your own skills and decide who exactly within the business you should be contacting. There may be a little bit of legwork and savvy involved, but you certainly don't need to pay for LinkedIn Premium!

Once you know whom you need to contact, find them on LinkedIn and check if you have any connections in common. If you do, you have a route to the contact through your connection.

If you don't have any connections in common, look at the groups your company contact is in on LinkedIn. You may find that you're in the same group. If so, you can message them through the group! If not, join a group they are in and that is relevant to you!

Attract Employers With a Great Profile

You may think that being able to see who has looked at your profile is worth the cost of Premium. It isn't. What's far more important is having the perfect profile. The sad fact is that although you may be making an effort to find and connect with all the right people, you are probably still not putting your best self forward. Are you getting potential employers interested in you and what you do or could do for them?

Be honest with yourself. Check out your LinkedIn profile. If you were a hiring manager, would you be jumping to employ yourself based on what you see?

When I work with clients, I don't do average – you know, the C grade you may have received from your teacher back in the day. I am talking about the wow factor. If your profile is anything less than this, it's time to get back to the drawing board. Your profile should make me sit up and listen! Your profile should say, "Hey, hiring manager, you really want to check me out!"

Does your profile have that kind of impact? Are you selling yourself? Does it scream your personal brand? If not, you need to roll your sleeves up and get to work. Steer clear of the boring, self-motivated-over-achiever-responsible-for stuff. No one cares! Employers only care about results and what you can do for them – how you can solve their problems. Focus on this and keep reading your LinkedIn profile back to yourself to see if it actually tells prospective employers why they need you in their business!

If you have a killer profile, the right tagline, and you understand how to make contact with anyone you wish to – who needs LinkedIn Premium? Not you.

So, What Makes a Great LinkedIn profile?

A great LinkedIn profile is one that actually sells you! I'm sorry to say that I'm shocked by all the less-than-great profiles out there that people try to use to attract opportunities. You know what I mean: the selfie photo; the incomplete summary (because let's be frank – it's the most difficult part to complete, so you leave it blank); the job titles with no descriptions.

If your profile is like this, you're asking recruiters and hiring managers to grab hold of their crystal balls to work out what you want from a new job – because you've sure not said it on your profile!

Need a little more help evaluating your profile? Check out this video:

So head to your profile right now and ask yourself: Would you hire you, based on what you see?

Susan Burke is an award-winning global careers coach. You can connect with Susan via LinkedIn and grab a complimentary copy of her book direct from her website.