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5 Mistakes Hurting Your Chances of Getting Found by Recruiters

A quick search for Medical Sales, Pharma, or Medical Device recruiters reveals over 170K recruiters with accounts on LinkedIn. There are many more that conduct talent searches using LinkedIn and other platforms. 

Combined with hundreds of millions of people who have LinkedIn Accounts (and more growing every day), it’s more challenging than ever to stand out and get found. 

Moreover, it’s all too easy to make innocent mistakes that may hinder how often your profile appears in talent searches and hurt your chances of medical sales recruiters finding and seeing you on LinkedIn and through search engines like Bing or Google. 

Below are 5 goofs, and the fixes you need to make to give your LinkedIn profile it’s best shot at getting found: 

#1 Don’t Hide Your Name

As part of its privacy settings, LinkedIn lets you choose between sharing your full name, your first name with the first initial of your last name (i.e., Virginia F.), or appearing completely anonymous. 

While this won’t keep a well-written, keyword-optimized LinkedIn profile from popping up on searches, the latter settings give the appearance that you are not interested in being found or being contacted. 

If this isn’t the case, I recommend going to your Privacy settings and change your name to “Full” so that both your first and last name appear. 

#2 Don’t be an Observer, be a Participant

Did you know that by posting and commenting on LinkedIn, the greater your chances of showing up in the feeds of others? 

While the AI behind this, and its impact on LinkedIn’s algorithm, is not completely understood – power users of LinkedIn recognize that activity (particularly engagement in the form of comments and posts) drives views to profiles.

Another sure sign that LinkedIn values engagement is the fact that your recent activity appears toward the top of your profile in searches. 

#3 Don’t Hide Your Photo

LinkedIn’s privacy settings allow you to choose to have your picture seen by your connections, network, all LinkedIn members and the public. The public is defined by those not signed in and who find you through search engines like Google. 

To figure out the settings for yours, select “Me” from the home page, click on your picture and select “Visibility.” 

The LinkedIn stats around having a profile picture are powerful, in that it attracts up to 21X more profile views, 26X more direct messages, and 9X more connection requests. Equally powerful, other publications note that medical sales recruiters may ignore, or at least not prioritize, profiles that lack a picture.

For purposes of job search, I recommend making the headshot public. From a stats perspective the ROI is clear. From an anecdotal perspective, I’ve heard of too many stories where people were left to wonder why the user selected the default gray avatar in lieu of a picture. 

When people are left to wonder, in my experience, they tend to fill in the blanks with the wrong info. A profile picture will ensure this doesn’t happen!

#4 Don’t Have Your Job Title Do Double Duty as Your Headline

When you go to update your job experience, if you inadvertently check the box that reads “Update My Headline” you are missing out on a golden opportunity to maximize the 220-characters that LinkedIn gives you to optimize your headline and increase your searchability.  

To increase your shot of bubbling to the tops of searches, when crafting a headline, I recommend including the keywords that someone would need to enter in a search bar to find someone like you. 

Here’s an example: 

Mary works as a Director of National Accounts and is targeting a role in global medical device sales. By creating a custom headline rather than defaulting to her current title, Mary’s headline contained several additional keywords that led to increased profile views and outreach. 

Here’s what we wrote for her: 

Director of National Accounts | Global Medical Device Sales – EMEA, LATAM, APAC | Award-Winning Growth Strategies that Expand Distributor Networks | Quality & Compliance to Increase Market Access 

In this example, we included her current job title while also working in several keywords based on her job target. 

To be exact, by customizing her headline she added 10 keywords (GLOBAL, MEDICAL DEVICE, SALES, EMEA, LATAM, APAC, DISTRIBUTOR NETWORKS, MARKET ACCESS, QUALITY & COMPLIANCE) while also including some description about her success. 

#5 Don’t Hide Your Public Profile 

Medical sales recruiters often search from outside the platform using other tools to increase the talent pool. By making your public LinkedIn profile private, it won’t appear on any external searches including those on search engines like Bing or Google. 

This can be averted by making your LinkedIn URL visible. Select “Edit your public profile” from Privacy Settings 

Edit your public profile's visibility

and toggle to “Public” so that all aspects of your profile appear both on and off the platform. 

Make Yourself Easy to Find

With so many recruiters operating on and off LinkedIn to search for talent online, and even more competing for coveted medical sales roles, it’s more critical than ever to be easy to find! 

These 5 quick fixes to common LinkedIn goofs will help the algorithm work in your favor on the platform and increase your visibility off it. 


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Virginia Franco

– By Virginia Franco, NCRW, CPRW

Virginia Franco Resumes | www.virginiafrancoresumes.com | VAFrancoResumes@gmail.com

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