Seelio vs. LinkedIn
When I talk to students about Seelio, some questions I often get are “How is Seelio different than LinkedIn?” and “Why should I use Seelio instead of LinkedIn?” After spending 2 years helping students, faculty and administrators at our partner universities use Seelio, I have a lot to say on the topic. I love LinkedIn and use it regularly; in fact, I used to work in career services at the University of Michigan and helped students learn how to use LinkedIn. But the two sites are very different from one another, and Seelio has some very distinct strengths that LinkedIn doesn’t share.
So I’m writing this blog post to clear up any uncertainty. Here are three main reasons college students should be using Seelio.
No. 1: Seelio provides a deep, three-dimensional picture of skills, projects, and passions. LinkedIn is an online resume.
Resumes are a necessary evil. No one likes them, but employers need a quick way to flip through 300 candidates so that they can filter down to 10 who they want to phone interview, and resumes give them a way to do that. But your resume doesn’t show any evidence of what you can do, and it doesn’t give employers a sense of your personality and passions. No one actually gets to know you by looking at your resume. And LinkedIn is essentially just a resume online. It’s a great networking tool, but it usually does only a marginally better job of showing your skills and passions than your resume does.
Seelio, on the other hand, allows you to easily show real evidence of your skills, so that employers don’t have to take you at your word that you have the skills your resume says you have. Let’s be clear, when you’re one of 300 or more applicants for a job, an employer may not take the time to look at your portfolio. But once that list has been whittled down so that you’re now one of 5 or 10 applicants that are going to get a phone interview, having a Seelio that shows evidence of what you claim on your resume can be a big differentiator between you and other candidates who can’t show examples of their work.
When is the last time you went to someone’s LinkedIn profile and watched a video of a robot they created for their engineering class, browsed photos of them doing work for a student group that they’re passionate about, or clicked through a Prezi that they created during their internship at a non-profit? Seelio lets you easily and beautifully showcase these kinds of experiences, giving viewers a dynamic first-hand look into your skills and passions, in a more multidimensional way than LinkedIn or your resume.
No. 2: Seelio is designed to help students showcase what they can do. LinkedIn is designed to help professionals showcase the jobs they’ve had.
From the very beginning, we designed Seelio specifically for college students. LinkedIn is designed for working professionals, and as a result your work as a student doesn’t often fit very well on LinkedIn. Let me prove it to you.
Q: What kind of work have you spent the most time on since coming to college?
A: Work for for your classes: assignments, reports, projects, presentations, etc.
Think of the class work you’ve completed while in college that you’re most proud of. How many of those projects are on LinkedIn? Probably not many, since LinkedIn isn’t designed to show off that kind of work. Most of the projects you do in school would never make it onto LinkedIn or a resume. And that’s an enormous waste of the time and effort you’ve put into that work! You learned and demonstrated important skills in those assignments, and you should have a way to show them off. Seelio lets you do that.
Lots of college students know of LinkedIn, and know that they need to use it eventually, but haven’t started yet. Most often this delay is because LinkedIn can be intimidating if you’re a student! You don’t have a big network to connect with yet, and you probably get the sense that you don’t have the right kind of experiences to make a compelling profile. I’ve seen many students struggle to fill up a one-page resume because they just don’t have enough job experiences yet. The same problem exists for a LinkedIn profile.
But 93% of recruiters are going to look at someone’s social web presence before hiring them, so you need a way to showcase your skills online. We built Seelio to help you solve this problem, so that you have a safe place to build your professional identity starting with your academic work. Best of all, it integrates easily with your LinkedIn profile when you’re ready!
No. 3: Seelio has classroom features that let students share work privately with their professors and classmates so that they can get feedback and improve before sharing publicly. LinkedIn doesn’t.
Seelio is a great platform for learning how to build your professional digital identity. Our classroom features let you share your work in a private, safe space for your class, so that only your classmates and professor will see it. This lets you get feedback through class comments or private messages about how to improve your work, so that you can put your best foot forward when you’re ready to show it to employers. Many professors use Seelio for exactly this reason; they want to help coach their students in how to present themselves professionally online, because they know how crucial this skill is in today’s job market.
And last but not least, when you add exceptional work for your classes on Seelio that you want to share publicly, your university can choose to feature your Seelio work on their social media accounts, website, or Seelio gallery so that you get more exposure. Again, this kind of social sharing that gets your work as a student more exposure isn’t happening on LinkedIn!
So there it is, my three-pronged (like a trident!) explanation for why you should be using Seelio if you’re a college student, and should stop making the excuse that you’ll start using LinkedIn someday in the future. Get started today at seelio.com, so that you don’t fall behind the competition. And if you don’t agree, I’d love to hear why on Twitter at @askcareerwizard.