Friday, June 28, 2013

9 Steps To Getting Started With The New LinkedIn Contacts


For the last several months it seems like the world’s largest professional social network has had non-stop changes and upgrades. LinkedIn has been slowly rolling out some huge changes, not only to the look and layout, but also upgrading key features such as Advanced Search and the addition of LinkedIn Contacts.

I feel that this update could potentially be the most significant to B2B businesses in the short history of social media thus far. Contacts brings an intelligent experience with the needs of business in mind inside every feature and will feel like the missing link in your LinkedIn marketing strategy once you get your hands on it.

Here are nine things you should know about the new LinkedIn Contacts section and how it can benefit you.

1. LinkedIn Contacts – Getting Started

If you are unsure of which changes I am referring to, this is likely because the changes have yet to roll out to your region. As most new upgrades happen with the big social networks, these changes began as a very limited release in the US.

It will be sometime before it is fully released, but you can now speed up the process and add yourself to the wait list for the new LinkedIn Contacts. Once your name is on the list, you may have a wait of about week before you too can enjoy the new LinkedIn Contacts feature.
LinkedIn-contactsWhile logged into 
LinkedIn, go to and click the Get Started button to be added to the wait list if it hasn’t yet been rolled out to your profile.
Once the new Contacts section has been added to your LinkedIn account, you will find a message on the Contacts page telling you it has been added.
Click on the Get Started Button to get the New LinkedIn Contacts

Once you have clicked the button you will see a popup letting you know that your connections are being moved into the new Contacts section. Depending on the size of your LinkedIn network, this could take a while.

You may also notice that your Tags and Folders from Profile Organizer (if you are a LinkedIn Premium member) are missing at first. These will take longer to appear. You may need to wait a day or so, depending on the size of your LinkedIn network.

2. LinkedIn Contacts Page

One of the first changes you will notice is the banner at the top of the page. LinkedIn encourages its users to stay in contact with their connections by keeping important events such as birthdays and business anniversaries top of mind.
You can easily access this banner by clicking on Your Day, located below All Contacts on the LinkedIn Contacts page.
Say “Happy Birthday” or “Congratulations” to your contacts on their big day using the Your Day feature on the New Contacts.
Say “Happy Birthday” or “Congratulations” to your contacts on their big day using the Your Day feature on the New Contacts.

You can also filter your LinkedIn connections on this or any other page within Contacts using six different filters available, which include:
  • Recent Conversations
  • Newly Added
  • Alphabetical
  • Company
  • Location
  • Lost touch
linkedin contacts
Filter your contacts using six different filters.
There are a number of ways that you can interact with your LinkedIn connections on the page. You can modify your connection’s Tags, send them a message, add them to the hidden folder or remove them.
linkedin contacts
Tag, Hide, Remove or send a Message to your LinkedIn Connections on the Contacts page.

Benefits: Easily locate LinkedIn connections that you have communicated with recently using the Recent Conversations filter or find connections you have not connected with for a while using the Lost Touch filter.

Tip: Take advantage of the Your Day feature and use it to help you build your relationship with your existing connections by sending them a personal message acknowledging their special day or achievement.

3. LinkedIn Tags

LinkedIn remains one of the best places to make connections and develop relationships for B2B markets. The LinkedIn Tags feature helps you to take advantage of this by being able to save and categorize any existing or potential connections that would make either a great partnership or be an ideal client while searching your network.

The new Tags feature is a combination of the old Tags feature from Contacts and the Profile Organizer from LinkedIn Premium. Every member (free and paid) can now create up to 50 unique Tags to help them sort and keep track of their contacts. Great for not only organizing, Tags are an ideal tool to use for Outreach Campaigns. You can access the Tags from the Contact page as well as directly on any individual’s profile.
linkedin contacts
Use your Tags to sort and organize your connections.

Another way to access Tags is directly within a member’s profile page. On this page you can not only see and modify what Tags a connection is saved in but also your recent email communications, any notes you have added, how you met and daily, weekly, monthly or recurring reminders you have set.
linkedin contacts
See what tags you have saved a connection in, in the top right corner of the Relationship box.

Benefits: The new LinkedIn Tags include a feature that used to be available to paying members only in Profile Organizer. This feature is the ability to save and Tag people who are not already your 1st level connections. This allows you to create a list of people in your network that you want to send connection requests or InMail messages to.

Tips: Create an Outreach Campaign or LinkedIn marketing strategy to connect and build relationships with potential or existing connections. As you move through your strategy or follow up process with a connection, you can easily keep track of where you are in the process with them by moving them through a series of Tags created for that campaign. The Notes and Reminder features in their LinkedIn profile is also useful for this.

Steps 4-9 and the complete TopDogSocialMedia article

Thursday, June 27, 2013

10 essentials of LinkedIn etiquette

By Kevin Allen

This is the second installment of a series in which PR Daily looks at decorum for brands and individuals to employ on various social media channels and platforms. 

LinkedIn has become an extremely powerful social tool in our professional lives. It’s that word—professional—that is the essence of LinkedIn etiquette. Earlier, we pointed out 10 essentials of Twitter etiquette, we do so now for LinkedIn users. 

So whether you’re managing a brand or your own presence on LinkedIn, here are 10 etiquette rules: 

1. Is it LinkedIn or Linkedin? According to the AP Stylebook’s social media guidelines, it’s LinkedIn—with a capital I. It gets confusing because the company’s logo is a lowercase “in,” but until AP tells me to change it, I’m going with LinkedIn—and I encourage you to do the same. 

2. Don’t send a mass request for recommendations and endorsements. If you’re looking for people to recommend you in a public forum, make sure you’re tapping people who are familiar with your work. It helps if they like you, too. Reach out to those people individually and make the request. Rather than saying, “Can you endorse my social media skills?” leave it up to the other person. “Can you take a look at my skills when you have a chance and endorse any you think are appropriate?” is a stronger choice here. Do not give people a deadline for recommending you. I heard of this happening once, and I was appalled. 

3. No personal updates, cat pictures, or “thoughts and prayers.” LinkedIn is a professional networking tool. You wouldn’t walk into an important meeting and announce the hilarious thing your kid said over the weekend. OK, maybe you might, but leave the personal stuff for Facebook. If you feel that it blurs the line between personal and professional, err on the side of caution and don’t post it. It sounds ridiculous, but people can really lose respect for you if you post things that are generally reserved for more informal social media outlets. Although we’re all saddened by the tragic events that took place in (insert location here), LinkedIn just isn’t the forum for sending your thoughts and prayers their way. Those expressions, however benevolent, should stay on Facebook or Twitter. 

4. Funny’s OK; tasteless isn’t. It wouldn’t be outlandish to share an industry-specific meme or a funny post that’s work-related. But if it’s tasteless, controversial, mean-spirited, or negative in tone, stifle it. It’s not worth the risk of offending someone. 

Essentials 5-10 and the complete article

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Eight Reasons High School Students Should Be On LinkedIn

Susan Adams

Now that LinkedIn is a decade old and has 225 million members, its fastest-growing demographic –30 million and counting—is students and those who are three years or less out of college. Though LinkedIn’s user agreement says that members agree they are at least 18 years old, I am going to make a recommendation and a prediction: High school students should start LinkedIn profiles now. I predict that LinkedIn will soon drop its age threshold or eliminate it altogether. Consider that Facebook's  threshold is 13, and the site has hundreds of thousands, if not millions of kids under 13 using it every day. Unlike Facebook, LinkedIn has no place to enter a birth date.
Here’s an example of how teens can use it: Earlier this month, as she was applying for jobs, hoping to start after she graduates from high school on May 29, Genella Minot, a 17-year-old in Port Saint Lucie, Fla., realized that instead of sending a revised résumé for each new job, she could build a profile on LinkedIn and possibly submit that instead. She also hopes a potential employer will see her LinkedIn page and make a job offer. “I have all my information on there,” she says. “I’m hoping an employer comes across it.” Minot’s qualifications include CPR and first aid certifications and a 40-hour child care  course given by the Florida Department of Children and Families. She has also worked as a youth mentor and a volunteer at a regional health center. Her goal: a summer child care or health care job that she can turn into a part-time position when she starts at Indian River State College in the fall.
If I were Minot’s career coach, I would give her some pointers on how she could strengthen her profile. Most important, she should be linking with adults, including teachers and supervisors at her volunteer jobs. At this point she has zero connections, which means she’s forgoing one of LinkedIn’s greatest strengths, the ability to branch out from your contacts to other people you don’t know first-hand. Even if she were just to connect with relatives, she would put herself in a stronger position to do future networking. It’s possible, for instance, that her aunt has a friend at the daycare center where she wants to work.
Here are eight reasons I think high school students should be on LinkedIn:
1. To get a customized LinkedIn URL. This will drive your LinkedIn page to the top of Google searches on your name. The earlier you get this, the better. Here’s how to do it: On your profile page next to the rectangular grey “Edit” button to the right of your name, click on the drop-down menu, and then click on “Manage public profile settings.” Halfway down the page on the right side you’ll see a grey bar that says “Your public profile URL.” Underneath the bar, click on the blue phrase that says “Customize your public profile URL.” Plug in your first and last name. If that’s already taken, try your last name first, followed by your first name. If that’s not available, try adding a middle initial or city abbreviation like NYC. Now that LinkedIn is so heavily used, this can be a challenge for those with common names. But SusanAdams75 is better than the random URL the site assigns you.
2. To make lasting connections. Maybe your sophomore English teacher loves you and before he became a teacher, he worked in publishing at Simon & Schuster, where you want to intern. Or the director of the camp where you worked last summer has a close friend at New York Hospital, where you’re trying to get a part-time research position. Networking contacts like these can be extremely valuable. Do connect with as many adults as possible who know you and your work. Peer connections are also important. Your friends and friends of friends may wind up working where you want to be.
3. To get recommendations and endorsements. If you do a volunteer internship at a bike shop, get your boss to write you a glowing recommendation that mentions specific things you did well, like handling customers and always arriving early and staying late. A student like Minot should list her specific skills from the long lists that LinkedIn offers, like Childcare, Child Development and Child Welfare. Adults she’s worked with on her volunteer jobs will endorse her. Since endorsements accumulate over time, it’s good to start early.
4. To highlight awards. If you’re in a serious academic club like the debate team and you win awards, or your essay wins a nationwide writing competition, potential employers want to know. Create an Honors & Awards section on your profile and keep it up to date.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Creative Ways to Use LinkedIn in Your Job Search

Part one:  Look into Career Paths, Research People and Follow Companies

Are you guilty of logging in to LinkedIn to just look at people's profile pictures, check out the latest updates and browse? Not to worry, you are not alone. In my experience in career consulting many people tell me they have LinkedIn accounts but have no idea what to do on the site.  People tend to grossly underestimate the value of actively engaging on LinkedIn. Most use LinkedIn to search for jobs and network with others. I advise all my clients, if they are in the job market, to log on to LinkedIn several times a week, if not daily. With millions of users LinkedIn is an awesome place to gain information about career paths, skill sets and industry news!

How to discover career paths:
To learn about career paths on LinkedIn
  • Search your connections for people who are doing what you aspire to do and review their profiles.
  • Read their profile in reverse to determine what they did prior to their current job. This will help you see how they attained their current position.
  • Make note of what qualifications they have, the keywords used in their profile and what types of activities they've been involved with.  
While everyone's career path will be different, use this approach to gather ideas for new ways to find the job you seek.

If you do not have any connections with people who hold positions which you aspire to, search for new connections in relevant industry specific groups. LinkedIn has a fantastic “groups feature” which provides a place for industry professionals or people with similar interests to discuss business, share content, ask/ answer each other's questions and sometimes post jobs. If you join the right groups, you could learn about industry trends, and have current information about the industry for which you are interviewing. This will aid you in arriving to your interview prepared to discuss the work and ask good questions.

Research People and Follow Companies:
Another best practice for using LinkedIn while job searching is to follow companies which you plan to (or desire to) interview with to research the company. This is a strategy I have personally employed, here’s why:
  • Companies will often share different information on their LinkedIn Company page than what is presented on their website.  
  • You can also see their current and former employees and read company status updates.
  • Prior to the interview, find out whom you're interviewing with
    • review their profile on LinkedIn
Most people go to interviews with no information about who they will be meeting; while the prospective employer has read your resume and likely Googled you. With the access that LinkedIn provides, this should no longer be the case. Go into the interview armed with a little knowledge about what led your interviewer to their current position.  You may even have a few shared connections!  Use the information you find about your interviewer to “break the ice”.  Should you make it to the second or third round of interviews this will prove to be helpful as you will be introduced to more people at-varied levels within the company. If possible, make a habit of finding out who you will be speaking with and get to know each person that will interview you.

LinkedIn is an invaluable tool that could be used to give you leverage as you job search, network or consider learning a new skill or career.  When using the site, think of it as a free career counselor with endless information, right at your fingertips!

Part Two: Learn Skills and Read the News - Read Part Two and the complete Simply Hired article

Monday, June 24, 2013

10 Savvy LinkedIn Networking Tips for Entrepreneurs

2. Share unique content on LinkedIn.

“Many companies believe they should only post content that is company news or sales [related]. If you [own a] web design company, share relevant articles and tips about your industry. If you are a lawn care company, offer advice about different flower landscapes for each season. People will tune you out if your company’s LinkedIn page is playing the ‘Me Show’ all the time. You’re the expert; keep your customer base informed and give them something they can use.”
- Sabrina Ram, Founder and President of Blu Lotus Public Relations: @BluLotusPR

3. Don’t forget about LinkedIn keywords.

“This is especially true for the skills and description areas [of your profile]. Those skills are each a keyword that can help people find you. Also create keyword rich descriptions of what you do to build on that once visitors hit your profile page.”
- Stacey Harris, Head Rock Star of Hit the Mic Marketing: @TheStaceyHarris

6. Remove the generic LinkedIn “request” text.

“Don’t miss an opportunity to authentically communicate, even while sending a ‘request to connect.’ Delete the generic text and think of this request as your first impression, your entrance. Are you clever, bold, and memorable in your invitation, reminding the prospect how you met and [offering] a positive interaction you had or a mutual connection? Be unique at all touch points on LinkedIn.”
- Julie Dennehy, President of Dennehy Public Relations: @dennehypr

8. Utilize LinkedIn for post-event follow-up.

“As a small business owner that has had a lot of success with LinkedIn, I believe it’s about connecting. After every event that I attend (online or offline), I search for the people I met and connect with them via LinkedIn. I send them a personal message about our interaction. Then I take it a step further and see if there’s anyone that I can recommend to them, any way that I can help connect them further. Taking this extra step really makes me stand out and become memorable.”
- Kathrine Farris, Owner and Virtual Professional of Strategic Office Support LLC: @StrategicOffice

Read all 10 tips and the complete YFS Entrepreneur article 

Friday, June 21, 2013

Is Your LinkedIn Profile Awesome?


As the saying goes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Or, in more practical terms, your audience determines your message. To see if your LinkedIn profile has all the right stuff go through the list below.

Check List - 20 items

1.       Headline
Your profile headline is the first thing someone sees after your name. Make it memorable. It should help someone understand the role you want to do next and/or contain key words important to your profession.
2.       Photo
Choose a professional, high quality headshot for your photograph. Having a picture is recommended.
3.       Email
List all your email addresses so they are associated with your LinkedIn profile. You can set the default email which will be viewable by your connections and the account that receives InMail and updates from LinkedIn.
4.       Vanity URL
Your LinkedIn profile has a URL (an Internet address). You can and should edit this by adding your name ( This also looks more professional when you include it on your resume, business card, or email signature.
5.       Other Web References
If you have a personal website, professional Twitter account, or links elsewhere on the web, you can add them to your profile within the “contact info” section at the top. You should change the label from “other” to a short, descriptive title.
6.       Summary
Consider this section a mini bio. Highlight the best of your background, experience and skills. You could also provide insight into your leadership style, personality, values, longer term goals, or outside interests. Keep the reader’s attention by using short paragraphs. And make it more personal by writing in the first person by using “I”, “Me” or “My”. You may want to include your email address to make it easy for people who are not connected to contact you

Thursday, June 20, 2013

7 LinkedIn Photos That Can Keep You From Landing a Job


As a job search coach and executive resume writer, I’m consistently astounded at the ways job seekers can stand in their own way of landing the perfect position.
Nothing exemplifies this better than the LinkedIn photo.
You might find putting your headshot on a public forum to be daunting. However, if you’ve resorted to using any available photo, disastrous results can follow.
Don’t blame it on the economy, your age, or experience! Failing to display a professional image online WILL affect your job search.
If your LinkedIn photo shows ANY of the following, employers may refrain from reaching out to you – especially if your target job requires a professional demeanor:
1 – Your pet.
However much you love your dog, cat, or tarantula, employers don’t need to see their shining faces next to yours.
Keep Fido, Fluffy, and Fearless out of your professional life, the same way you’d refrain from taking them to an interview.
2 – The inside of your car.
Want to convey that you’re serious about your career? Then look the part – deliberately – instead of using a random photo that includes a headrest.
Even a great shot of you behind the wheel isn’t enough to make employers think you can drive a new project or team. (pun intended)
3 – Excessive (or white) beards.
While neatly trimmed facial hair is common, some employers react to beards on candidates. Facial hair, especially when it’s white, can age you. My clients consistently report better results when they join the ranks of their clean-shaven counterparts.
Still not convinced? Read this article from CBS News, or do your own online research. The evidence overwhelmingly points to a successful job search for candidates who take the hint and eliminate the white beard.
Unless you’re applying for the position of Kenny Rogers (or Santa Claus), white hair in your LinkedIn photo will not be an advantage in your job search.
4 – Your spouse or children.
Family photos aren’t LinkedIn fodder, because your Profile is all about YOU. Unlike Facebook, where family matters are frequently shared, your LinkedIn Profile is the place to separate work and home.
Show employers you understand this divide by keeping your LinkedIn persona strictly about your professional image.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Are You Well Connected On LinkedIn?


Many LinkedIn members wonder how to increase their number of connections in a short period of time. Others wonder if it’s a question of quantity versus quality.

The truth is quantity and quality both matter when it comes to leveraging the power of social media for your job search.

Let’s start with quantity. Quality doesn’t matter much if you only have two or three connections. You’re not likely to get very far with your networking efforts if your number of connections is miniscule. By the same token, having 10,000 people in your network doesn’t mean much if you don’t have relationships with any of these people, and none of them would be willing to help you if you ask.

One way to grow your number of total connections and increase your reach across LinkedIn is to actively seek out very well connected members to invite into your network. Someone who is a LinkedIn Open Networker (LION) with thousands of connections can boost your total number of connections exponentially because the people who are in that person’s first level of connections automatically become your second level connections.

If, for example, Michael M. is a LION and has 7,000 first level connections, those 7,000 connections become your 7,000 second level connections once Michael M. becomes a part of your network. If you connect with just five to 10 LIONs, your total number of connections will explode very quickly.

With a large number of total connections, you now have the power to connect with an even larger number of people and reach out to them for assistance with your job search. So, if you want to reach Manager X at Company Y, it is very likely that someone in your network will be connected to Manager X.

You can find out how well (or not so well) connected you are on LinkedIn by hovering over the Contacts tab and clicking on Network Statistics. LinkedIn will tell you how many people are in your first, second, and third level connections.

Read the rest of the Careerealism article

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Sanctity of LinkedIn Contacts

As a business professional, what is your most valuable asset: Your MBA, your years of experience or the awards on your shelf? Or maybe it's the profit your business made last quarter or the last successful projected you delivered? Each of these is important and each is valuable, yet none are your most valuable asset. A business professional's most valuable asset is his or her contact list and the relationships fostered with each person on that list.
You may be the top operational, marketing or sales exec at your firm today, earning the big bucks and lunching with the CEO. One buyout, restructuring or economic downturn and you're out pounding the pavement. Your key to the executive washroom no longer works.
It's at times like this that you realize the value of your network. Can you turn to your LinkedIn contacts to ask for referrals in your efforts to gain another job?
You Are Who You Connect With.
Growing up, my father often shared this nugget of wisdom: "Tell me who your friends are and I'll tell you who you are." We tend to associate with those who have similar personalities, culture, and/or points of view. In fact, we're highly influenced by those we're maintaining a relationship with so it's no surprise that our personal and professional contacts often reveal quite a bit about us.
Professional contacts are similar. On LinkedIn, your network is there for the world to see and says as much about you as the details in your profile. What does yours say? What is the quality of your contacts? How aligned are they with your personal brand and professional experience?
The LinkedIn Rules of Engagement
Do you have a strategy for connecting with others on LinkedIn? Given the importance of networking to business professionals, having a clear strategy here is more important than on other social media channels, such as Twitter for example. Twitter is truly a mass communication tool where we can follow and engage with a wide audience, eavesdrop on others' conversations, and engage with people we've never met or hope to meet.
Do you connect with anyone who sends you a request? Many do, justifying the connection to a person they don't really know or have worked with as "community building." However, LinkedIn is not Twitter. The purpose of LinkedIn is professional networking. There's an unwritten rule that your professional contacts are those you know or have worked with. People that you can either recommend or not -- and provide a reason for in either case.
Arguably, what wasn't planned by the founders of this growing social network is what your connections -- and your engagement with them -- say about you. A large LinkedIn network of people whom you don't really know is counterproductive and a poor reflection on the quality of your network and networking skills.

Monday, June 17, 2013

The 6 Biggest Mistakes Jobseekers Make on LinkedIn

by Stacy Donovan Zapar

LinkedIn is a fabulous resource for jobseekers everywhere and, when used correctly, can make all the difference in a job search. But if you don’t use LinkedIn effectively, you could be missing out on great opportunities or even do your job search more harm than good.

Here are the biggest mistakes that I see jobseekers make on LinkedIn:

1. Having an Incomplete Profile.

Aside from the obvious disadvantages of looking inactive, unprepared, technically challenged, or worse – lazy!, having an incomplete LinkedIn profile can really hurt you since LinkedIn’s search algorithm sorts results by “relationship” (1st level connections, then 2nd level, 3rd level, group members and everyone else) as well as “profile completeness.” If you want to show up at the top of those search results (and, believe me, you do!), then you need to have a robust network (see #2 below) as well as a complete profile. Being buried on Page 19 of a recruiter’s search is the same as not showing up at all!

To do: Definitely include a profile picture. Customize your headline with something relevant, memorable, and keyword-rich. Include relevant details throughout your profile, making sure to complete each section in its entirety.  Add some of those nifty new visual components to your profile. Make it look nice! What’s the point of creating a LinkedIn profile if employers can’t find you or there’s not much for them to see once they get there? This step is a must.

2. Only Having a Handful of Connections.

Aside from the distinct disadvantages from a search perspective (see #1 above), if you have a small network and aren’t connected to every possible lead, then you are greatly limiting yourself and your networking abilities. Every connection is a potential lead to any number of job possibilities. It’s all “who you know” and, with LinkedIn, you are not only connecting with those people, you are also gaining access to everyone they KNOW and everyone THOSE people know!

To do: Connect with everyone you know, even if it’s just peripherally. This includes friends, family, coworkers past & present, clients past & present, neighbors, professors, classmates, etc. And remember, this isn’t Facebook. It’s not as personal as a Friend Request and it’s perfectly acceptable to connect with business contacts, even if it was a coworker from another department or someone you met once at a conference or networking event. Be strategic and grow your network!

3.  Waiting Until it’s Too Late.

We’ve all seen this one before and it’s probably the Number One Mistake I see jobseekers make. All of sudden, somebody you used to work with has invited you and 85 of your former coworkers to connect on LinkedIn. They’ve gotten 6 recommendations in the last week (yes, those ARE date-stamped). They’re updating their profile, following companies left and right and joining umpteen groups. Ding ding ding! We have a jobseeker! :) It’s painfully obvious what’s going on, whether you’ve gotten a pink slip, seen the writing on the wall or simply decided that you hate your job and can’t work there another day. Rome wasn’t built in a day and you can’t build an engaged LinkedIn network overnight either.

To do: Dig a well before you’re thirsty! Build your network when times are good so that it will be there for you if times get bad. Don’t wait until you’re in need to suddenly engage on LinkedIn and take, take, take… asking everyone for help with job referrals, references, recommendations, etc. Be engaged on LinkedIn beforehand, helping others, giving recommendations, making introductions, giving back. Your network will see how helpful you’ve been and will be that much more receptive to helping you in your hour of need.

Tips 4-6 and the complete article

Stacy Donovan Zapar is a 15-year recruiting veteran and CEO of Tenfold Social, providing social media training for recruiters, jobseekers, and business professionals.  She is the Most Connected Woman on Linkedin, where she has 30,000+ first-level connections making her the #8 most connected person in the world. She served as Technical Editor for Wiley’s LinkedIn Marketing: An Hour a Day and is a regularly-featured blog contributor on  Feel free to connect with Stacy on LinkedIn and follow her on Twitter.

Friday, June 14, 2013

3 Ways The New LinkedIn Contacts Can Help You Find A Job


LinkedIn Contacts

Tip: Your more important contacts should hear from you at least once a month. Other contacts might not need to hear from you more than once per quarter. Go into your contact’s list and set yourself these reminders.

2. Pick Up Where You Left Off

With LinkedIn contacts, your e-mails sent to that person can be found in their profile, like this:
LinkedIn Contacts

This means you can pick up where you left off in your last conversation.
For example, three years ago, this friend of mine and I were talking about building a website together. The project never moved forward but our idea seems to have become popular, kind of an ironic and fun shared experience.

Tip: By linking together past conversations with your latest correspondence, you help your contact see the context of your relationship. They are busy too and may need some gentle reminders about how they know you.

Way #3 and the complete Careerealism article

Thursday, June 13, 2013

10 LinkedIn Headline Examples of Recruiters

Most of us have realised the importance of the LinkedIn headline by now. It is your 120 character hook to people finding you in a LinkedIn search, it should be about what you do as opposed to what you are. It should be memorable and enticing enough for someone to click on your profile and not your competitors.

I have compiled a little list of a few recruiter’s headlines on LinkedIn, partly because we do a lot of work with recruiters (see our LinkedIn Training for Recruiters) and partly because recruiters are all over LinkedIn like a cheap suit.

1. The Informative Headline

Greg Savage does a number of things and has therefore opted for describing himself and his business Firebrand, it’s functional and informative.

2. The Keyword stuffer

Search for SAP recruiter, SAP headhunter or just SAP on LinkedIn and you will get Daniel Patel at the top of the search results – evidence that keyword stuffing works. He even has sap in his customised URL :-)

3. The Overachiever

Stacy Donovan Zapar is a very well connected woman and she wants us to know it. I don’t know about you but I did remember her profile from the first time I saw it.

4. The Numbers Man

Glen Cathey is an analytics man and his subtle numbers indicate he knows what he’s doing – just like anyone reading his blog Boolean Blackbelt can attest to.

5.  The Basics and the Great Pic

Melanie Benwell has opted for a very simple description here but her picture is very good and surely gets her more clicks than your average recruiter?!

Profiles 6-10 and the complete LinkHumans article

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

LinkedIn: When To Say No To Connecting

Debra Donston-Miller

Should you accept LinkedIn connection requests from strangers? Before deciding, make sure you understand the security and reputation risks.

Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and the like make sense professionally for some people, but not for others. Presence on LinkedIn, on the other hand, is a no-brainer.
Although LinkedIn has gone through lots of changes lately, for the most part it is what it is: the leading social network and collaboration space for people who want to make and develop professional contacts and their own careers. What's less clear about LinkedIn is how far your network should extend. Sure, having lots of connections looks good on your profile, but is any connection a good connection? Can some connections actually hurt you?
There are two schools of thought on this issue, according to Ari Lightman, professor at Carnegie Mellon University and director of its CIO Institute. "If you're an open networker, it makes sense to connect to as many folks as possible -- that broadens your network and gives you reach which might come in handy and provide greater visibility," he said. "The other camp says if you do not know the person you should not connect with them."
Lightman said the arguments for being more selective about the people you connect with are focused on relevance and security. "More people make it more difficult to receive information that really might be of value," he said. "Another argument for no is that you open up yourself to spam from folks who want to sell you products and services. This is commonplace, and many people simply tune it out. But when there is malicious intent -- say, a phishing attempt -- then clicking on a link can load a virus onto your system. There have also been several fake connection requests infecting the unsuspecting user with virus attacks."
And as LinkedIn and other social networks soak up more and more of our personal information, people may be looking to connect to perpetrate identity theft.
"There is plenty of information that someone could mine if they wanted to try and recreate your identity, including work history," said Lightman. "Exposing your information to a wide community gives them access to lots of data about you that could be used maliciously. LinkedIn, as well as all other social networks, are trying to get this under control by allowing people to adjust their privacy settings. It comes down to the classic trade-off of openness/transparency versus risk mitigation."
In addition, indiscriminate connecting isn't just a threat to you; it could be a threat to your company and your colleagues, according to security consultant Brad Causey.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

LinkedIn profiles for the out of work - A guide to keeping profiles honest without sounding desperate

By Jonnelle Marte

There are no good euphemisms for unemployment. Job seekers often suggest they are “in transition” or “looking for the next great opportunity,” but experts say such phrases don’t really sugarcoat things.

This dilemma has become even more important since the advent of LinkedIn, which has turned resumes into public, living documents. Career coaches are divided on how much job seekers should describe their joblessness. Some argue people should instead showcase what they’ve accomplished and what their goals are. And when the euphemisms are included, many suggest they should be part of a longer sentence about one’s experience. When people broadcast their joblessness “it just sounds desperate,” says Pete Leibman, author of “I Got My Dream Job and So Can You.” “I think they’ll be better off if they say something about what they’ve achieved in the past and how they can help employers going forward.“                                          

The headline field on a LinkedIn profile, which career pros say should be a kind of mission statement as well as a job title, can be an especially challenging slot to fill in when a person has no current employer. Leibman recommends writing a line that says what you’ve worked on and who you’ve helped. For instance, even a recruiter in between jobs can use the space to say they’re “an executive recruiter who helps IT companies find top talent,” which would give insight on what they do and what kind of clients they serve. It might also help to list some previous clients or projects you’ve worked on to give recruiters an idea of the scale of the work you’ve accomplished, he says. “You need to stand out from the pack,” says Donna Serdula, author of “LinkedIn Makeover,” a book that offers tips on how people can optimize their profiles.

hose overwhelmed by the idea of crafting their profiles in a way that maximizes their chances of catching a recruiters’ attention can turn to professional help from people like Serdula, who will create a person’s profile for a fee ranging from $300 to $1,000. (The more expensive package includes LinkedIn group connections and mentoring support, among other services.)

Unemployed job seekers can use the “summary” field, often left blank by light LinkedIn users, to say more about their top career accomplishments, says J.T. O’Donnell, chief executive of, a career-advice and job-search site. Job hunters should avoid vague platitudes about themselves that don’t offer specific examples about their experience or how their project impacted their last employer, says O’Donnell. And they should sprinkle in keywords that appear frequently in the job descriptions they’re interested in, a move that could improve their chances of showing up on recruiters’ searches, says O’Donnell.

Another warning: never, ever, talk about yourself in the third person. A summary starting with “Bill is an aggressive self-motivated worker,” might make a recruiter cringe, says O’Donnell . Instead, use the space to highlight major skill sets and career accomplishments. If you ramped up a company’s sales, or headed a revenue-generating campaign, say so and provide figures, she says. And be concise, making sure your entire summary takes up no more than two-thirds of a computer screen, she says.

More advice and the complete MarketWatch article                                          

Monday, June 10, 2013

7 Must-Haves to Grow an Audience Via LinkedIn Groups


In our digital paced culture, there are countless ways to grow an audience. But which ones really work? I recently had great success leveraging LinkedIn Groups to boost my subscribers and blog readers (you may be one of ‘em!). Here is how I did it and how you can leverage LinkedIn Groups as your next generation catalyst.

LinkedIn Groups provide a place for professionals in the same industry or with similar interests to share content, find answers, post and view jobs, make business contacts, and establish themselves as industry experts. I leverage LinkedIn Groups to connect with like minded individuals who can collaborate over new ideas. I have joined 46 different groups, started my own group and actively contribute to most groups. I post to my blog twice a week and if any of my content is applicable to a particular group, I will post a link to the blog post along with a thought-provoking discussion question.

I usually get a few likes or comments per discussion post. However, I posted my article “What Everybody Ought To Know About…The Myth Of Experience“ into the “Future Trends” LinkedIn Group on Sunday April 28th and (to date) it’s generated 32 likes and 101+ comments. The next closest article in the group has only 39 comments.
I do not share these stats to impress you but rather impress upon you how valuable LinkedIn Groups can be for your brand or business.

7 Must-Haves To Grow An Audience Via LinkedIn Groups:
  1. Value-Add Content. The content that you share must bring value to your intended audience. If the content falls flat, you’re sunk. Nothing else will matter.
  2. Catchy Title. Ensure the title of your discussion is succinct and attention grabbing. My title was: “Is experience irrelevant these days?” And if you choose to add additional details, use it to create more interest. I used: “Before you answer that…consider these trends.”
  3. Relevant Content. The content shared must relate to the theme of the group. For example: Don’t post “How To Perfect Your Golf Swing” in the Future Trends group.
  4. Concise Content. You will capture more readers if your content is scannable, scrollable, and skim-able. Stay clear of long and heavy content. Shoot for less than 500 words.

Tips 5-7 and the complete B2C article

Friday, June 7, 2013

5 Tips For Using The New LinkedIn Contacts Feature


LinkedIn is in the process of rolling out LinkedIn Contacts. In addition to several new features that are giving it a new look and feel – if offers enhanced functionality for better managing your relationships and social engagement.
There is no question that all of the major social networks want you to use their service as your social dashboard. However, many social networkers prefer to use an independent tool such as Hootsuite to effectively manage their social networks and build relationships.
One of the challenges is there is a disconnect between public social networking and private means of communication that often lead to sales conversion – namely email. This is where services such as Nimble are leading the way, by bringing social and email into one dashboard, and one reason why I especially like LinkedIn Contacts.
What gets even more interesting is that concurrent with LinkedIn’s rollout of LinkedIn Contacts, Nimble has launched Nimble 3.0, and there are some interesting contrasts and similarities. (More on Nimble in a future article).
For now, here’s how to get the most out of LinkedIn Contacts.


You have always been able to import your contacts from other sources into LinkedIn. However, now with LinkedIn Contacts there are multiple options for doing this – while also tracking where the source of those contacts. To get started, just go to contacts in your LinkedIn profile, and then settings.
2013-05-23 Linkedin Contacts

Some of the possible sources for importing contacts into LinkedIn
What is especially useful is the refresh button. So, let’s say you imported your friends from Facebook a month ago, just hit the refresh button to bring in the new ones.
Incidentally, while Facebook does not let you export the email addresses of your friends, there is a workaround using Yahoo Contacts to import your Facebook contacts into LinkedIn. Since Facebook is not prone to sharing, I suggest doing this now to avoid the risk that this capability will be blocked in the future.
Know that you won’t get all of them, because not everyone has an email address publicly linked to their Facebook profile.


It’s easy to make that first connection, but anybody that has ever attended a live networking event knows that often nothing happens after that. In the old days, business cards got pushed into a drawer. Today, connections are made and forgotten days later.
So, a great solution is to use LinkedIn Contacts to set a reminder to follow-up with your connections a few weeks or so later. At the very least, your new connection will be impressed with your organization, and if you can also share some useful information, better yet.
 LinkedIn reminders, tags, notes, and conversation history

LinkedIn reminders, tags, notes, and conversation history


Many people unknowingly or not set up multiple profiles on LinkedIn. As a result, you may find yourself connecting with their abandoned profile because they did not delete it.
Now LinkedIn pulls up what they believe to be all duplicate profiles so that you can merge them. You simply unclick those on the list where the same name is actually two different people. Then just click merge and just like that – you have cleaned up your database