LinkedIn is one of the best places online to find and land your dream job.

Let me explain.

There are a number of sites that have you fill out a profile, upload your resume and then send them out to hundreds of employers for you.

However, most of these sites have so much competition that every employer is receiving hundreds (if not thousands) of resumes and applications.

This is the most inefficient way to spend your time looking for your dream job.

I’ve heard countless stories of individuals spending months trying this route and getting zero results or leads from it.

Don’t waste your time doing something that won’t get you results.

Instead, leverage the one thing that WILL provide you with warm job leads and proven results.

This one thing I’m talking about is LinkedIn.

The Power of LinkedIn for Your Job Search

Let’s break down why LinkedIn has helped thousands of job seeking professionals like yourself land the exact job they’ve always wanted (and during the most challenging economic times).

The LinkedIn Network.

This is the power of LinkedIn.  It’s not just about your direct connections, but your 2nd and 3rd degree connections and the entire 130 million person LinkedIn network.

You see, one of the reasons you haven’t landed your desired job is because you haven’t leveraged your network.

“Wait a minute Lewis… haven’t leveraged my network?  I’ve contacted all of my friends for months and still have no luck.  What do you mean by that?”

Maybe you have been asking all of your friends if they have any openings at the company they work for or if they can “pass your resume” along but you can’t rely on that alone.

You need to be more proactive and it starts with LinkedIn.

Your Online Brand

Currently 78% of respondents are using LinkedIn as their primary tool for recruiting.

That’s right; LinkedIn is a hub for finding qualified and trustworthy candidates.

This is much higher than any other social networking site or resume site online.

It’s simple.  You need to not only set up your profile on LinkedIn, you need to ensure that you build your brand on LinkedIn.

LinkedIn Branding 101

It’s not enough to just set up an account on LinkedIn.  There are 130 million professionals on the site ranging in every industry you can think of.

That may seem like a lot of competition, but really it’s not.  All you need to do is learn how to “market yourself on LinkedIn” and you will blow by your competitors.

A majority of the profiles on LinkedIn aren’t filled out completely, have boring information, and aren’t as enticing for recruiters as they could be.

Some even hurt the chances of getting a job as first impressions are lasting ones when it comes to a hiring decision.

First things first.  You need to complete your profile 100%.

Once you do this you can start with the rest of your LinkedIn marketing foundation.

The next thing you will want to do is add a video that automatically plays any time a recruiter lands on your profile.

This video will set you apart not just from your competitors, but from all of the other professionals on LinkedIn.  (See my profile for an example of how this video looks http://linkedin.com/in/lewishowes.)

Here’s what you should focus on in your video.  Tell people who you are, who you help, and how you help them.

Make it one to two minutes long, and focus on a clear message that leads the recruiter to take an action to email you or call you to set up an interview.

Remember this… recruiters don’t want to hire someone who is “Currently Looking for a Job”… they want to hire someone who is already doing extremely well at another company or on their own.

So don’t put anywhere in your headline or in your profile that you are “currently seeking employment” as everyone I talk to who has that in their profile never gets a job.  If they do get a job, it’s never the one of their dreams.

You need to showcase your talents on your profile; talk about your current work experience and the exact results you are producing for your business or the company you work for as recruiters want to find employers that produce massive results.

Another way to market yourself on LinkedIn and attract more job opportunities is to join targeted groups in your industry and answer related questions in the Answers section.

When looking to join targeted groups, first do a keyword search in the “Groups” tab, and find the groups that have that most members first to join.  This will give you greater exposure when interacting with members and decision makers inside the groups.

Second, search on the “Answers” tab for questions related to your expertise and industry.  There are individuals looking for industry specific answers on a daily basis, and they are looking to hire experts who can help with their business needs.

Become one of those experts!

Take Your Profile to the Next Level

There are a number of things you can do to optimize your profile to attract more recruiters and employers.  If you apply a few of these strategies in this email, then you are well on your way to getting the job you desire.

[ Ed. Note: Lewis Howes is the author of the #1 LinkedIn book and creator of the LinkedIn Training course. If you are looking for more LinkedIn tips sign up for his free LinkedIn video tutorial at LewisHowes.com.]