Cool LinkedIn History and Story

November 14th, 2014

Check out this really cool write-up on Growth Hackers about LinkedIn… tons of interesting stuff:

LinkedIn Growth Engine: The Never Ending Viral Loop

The comments are pretty insightful, too.

This is, in my opinion, the Great American Dream playing out in real life.  The cool thing is that the Internet makes this anyone’s dream.  Yeah, there is the started out rich, had all the right network to begin and market, starting in Silicon Valley, etc.  But still, the Internet has brought down some significant barriers.

How to See New Hires at your Target Companies

November 13th, 2014

I got this question from Tom:

“I went on an interview at a company with a couple hundred people and then heard back that they are considering another candidate instead of me. I’d love to know who my competitor was that got the job so that I understand where I was deficient…. I remember in the past I could go to the company page and see a list of what companies people came from and went to before/after that company. Also who the new hires at the company are. However I can’t seem to find that information any longer. Was that done away with once companies could control their own page?
“Bottom line do you know of any way I can keep an eye on new hires at a company?”

In the olden days, you could go to a LinkedIn Company page and see some great information, including where people came from before and where they went to after (which could help you expand your Target Company list).  You could also see “new hires,” “new promotions,” and something else I can’t remember now.

That went away probably two or three years ago.  The Company page looks prettier, but it has much less interesting or relevant substance.  Where LinkedIn was once sharing with us great data, they are now giving companies a place to put their marketing, which is so sanitized that it rarely does us any good.  The research we could do on a Company is limited to not much more than a brochure.

Another sad change for LinkedIn users.

I tried to go into the advanced search and see if there was any way I could filter it down to a certain timeframe within company.. nothing.

There is no way, that I can tell, to see who is new at a company.  Maybe one of those fancy corporate accounts will let you do it… seems like a no-brainer.  Salespeople and recruiters would love that feature.

Am I missing anything?  Do YOU know how to see recent people at a company?


No Post is Done Until You’ve Shared It (LinkedIn Articles)

November 12th, 2014

I’m in the process of experimenting with LinkedIn Articles (aka, posts).  Unless you are an “influencer,” you MUST work to get your article in front of others.  Don’t trust that just by posting people will see it.

Case in point, I’ve had a number of articles that have done okay… my last one (written yesterday) has only 52 views.  This is because I wrote it but didn’t share it. You can share your articles on each of the social networks you want, but there is a super easy way to share them that I recommend.

Either before you have published your post, or anytime after you have published it, you can share it.  Look for something like this:


I only share through the LinkedIn icon… I click on that and I see this (scroll below the image and I’ll share what I do to get maximum exposure):


In the first box, I put a status update, which usually short, and one line.  There is a limit, and you don’t want this to be long.  Usually I just copy and paste the title of my article… quick and easy.

Notice I have the Twitter checkbox checked…. this means I don’t have to go to Twitter and do the same thing…. it automatically takes my LinkedIn update and puts it as my latest tweet.  As an added bonus, I have each of my Tweets become a Facebook update… so from this one thing I get an update on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook :) :)

In the second set of boxes I designate which LinkedIn Groups I send the post to.  This is critical, and probably where I get most of my views from.  You should be a member of a lot of Groups (45 to 47).  Know how many members are in each Group. If you are a member of a Group that has 100 people, it might not make sense to share every post with them through this mechanism.  However, maybe those 100 people are perfect evangelists for you, in which case you should share every article with them!

On the other hand, you might think big Groups, let’s say tens or hundreds of thousands of members are the way to go, since you share with one Group and a gazillion people will see your article.  This is flawed thinking, in general.  It might work, and that’s great, but:

1. You might get flagged as spam (there is an evil design referred to as SWAM – google it – it will affect ALL of your Group activity, not just from the one group.

2. If there are too many other posts/udpates on that Group, you might get buried in all the other posts, which are usually poor attempts to market “lookie at my blog post!!”

Big seems awesome, but to get the words out to the right group of people, small might be good enough.

If you really want to do the big Groups, I would suggest going to the Group and starting a discussion… less automated than the steps above, but it’s just for one Group – and customize your message for that Group!

Have You Written Articles on LinkedIn? Here’s How to Find Them…

November 10th, 2014

This has changed at least once… but here’s how I currently find articles I’ve written on LinkedIn.

Way 1

From Your Profile Page (the one everyone else sees):

Click on Profile at the top of any page once you are logged in:


Scroll down a little bit until you see the last three posts.  You can either click on a link to see all of your posts (#1) or you can click on any of the last three posts (#2) to see that individual post and the comments:


Way 2

The old way that I used to see posts was to click on the little pencil icon from my home page… in the box where I would put my update.  This isn’t as easy or elegant, but you can still do it.  First, click on the pencil icon:


Then, from that page you will be able to start a new post.  On the left you’ll see all of the posts you’ve written (it used to be on the right).  Click on the one you want to look at.  (don’t worry, even though it opens in edit mode, we’ll fix that)


If you click on any of those articles you’ll open it in the Edit mode… not what you are looking for.  It doesn’t show stats or comments… to see that, simply edit the URL and take out /edit, as per this image:


This is a lame way to do it, and different than how it has been… but oh well.  We roll with the changes.

LinkedIn Announcements Change: Yippee! Hurrah!

October 17th, 2014

In August I blogged about a dismal change LinkedIn had made: LinkedIn Announcement Change: Boo! Hiss!

Today I’m here to report that the either changed back, or fixed a bug…. whatever the reason, LinkedIn Group Announcments have become useful again.

The problem was that when you sent a “Group Announcement,” which is an email that members of your group get, the inbox subject would be:

[New announcement] ___________________________ (the name of the group).

You can seem an image on the August post.

Since then I was almost resolved to give up on Group Announcements… no one is going to read something that looks like a company promotion, and if we couldn’t have any control over what was in the subject box, I was guessing that the email would be opened up less than 10% of what it would be if we did have control.

Today I decided to send a Group Announcement and to my delight I saw what I was hoping I would see:


We still have the “new announcement” thing, which is stupid because that takes up about 18 characters (which is all you might see on a smart phone), but we now get the subject of the announcement as the title!


Wait… how awesome is this?  If you are a manager of a Group, and you don’t use the Group Announcements regularly, you are missing out on more than 1/2 of the value of being a Group manager. It’s just that powerful.

LinkedIn Articles: When You Can’t Reply To Comments

October 2nd, 2014

I wrote an article on LinkedIn that has upset some people because I said job seekers are stupid.

Actually, I didn’t say that. I said they can say something that makes them SOUND stupid.  And some people thought I was talking about an interview, which I wasn’t.  They got hung up on a few things, got mad, and left a comment.

Anyway, I went into the comments on the article, wrote a reply, and usually the reply got posted.  But sometimes the reply button did nothing… I click and click and click and nothing.

I had to switch from Chrome (my default browser) to Internet Explorer… and it worked okay there (with some poking around).

I’m not sure why this is a problem… it seems awfully quirky.  If you find you can’t do something (like click a button), try switching browsers and see if that works.

Annoying, but I finally got my comments posted.

Here’s a link to the article in question:


Best LinkedIn Job Title When Unemployed

September 26th, 2014

laura-smith-proulx_headshotCheck out this post on Job-Hunt from Laura Smith-Proulx: The Best LinkedIn Job Title When You Are Unemployed

The whole article is great – I want to focus on #1 and #2.

Most of the time I see the job title (and professional headline, or as she calls it in #3, the headline) as a brag statement.  It is a part of history.  It is something that happened in the past.

The problem with that is that a LinkedIn Profile (as well as a resume) is a marketing document.  Because of that, you shouldn’t necessarily focus on the past.  You should focus on what you want.  The future.  Why the employer should consider you.  This is a “look at me because I can ______” instead of “look at me because I did these things: _____.”

Yes, there is a time and a place to tell people all the great and wonderful things you’ve ever done.

But try and make your marketing message appropriate for where you want to go, and how you can help them.

Focusing on the past is usually saying something like “I did all these things, so you can see that I’m great and you can deduce why I am the right person.”

Don’t make them deduce, induce, or make any connections from A to B to C.

Tell them exactly why you are great.

I know that is uncomfortable to read, and to do… so get the book Brag! by Peggy Klaus.  It’s a great resource for anyone who things they are a professional.

So yes, read Laura’s article.  And make sure that your marketing material (that is, every single thing you put on your LinkedIn Profiile, is forward facing, with enough “what’s in it for me” for the reader, and not backward facing “boy, I really was something else (in the past)!”

Goodbye Introduction Requests? And EXCELLENT Advice from Donna Serdula

September 25th, 2014

donna_serdula_headshotI saw this on a LinkedIn group I’m on: LinkedIn Removes Introduction Requests to 3rd Degree Connections

Maybe people just weren’t using the Introduction requests. I had for a while, but LinkedIn had limited them, which was dumb.  I have a feeling people just weren’t using them much.  And those who did use them didn’t have much success.

I think the main reason they are gone, though, is that it forces people to upgrade.  Many of the changes LinkedIn has made in the last few years (since a little before the IPO) that have left people scratching there heads were to get people to upgrade. Limit the view on a 3rd degree profile?  Just upgrade!

Anyway, Donna breaks the news that this feature appears to be gone… but the best part of her post is something I don’t remember seeing before, in years of doing LinkedIn stuff.  Scroll down on her post to find this section: How Do I Communicate with 3rd Degree Connections?

My prediction that #2, join a group that person is in, will be another feature that bites the dust.  But I’ve been saying that for a few years and they haven’t taken the functionality away yet (although they have hid it and made it less easy to find and even know about).

The second #3 and the second #4 (which are really 5 and 6 in her list, but misnumbered) are pretty much useless to the people I talk to and train, since I say to not upgrade (there are loopholes to the upgrade, you just have to use LinkedIn smarter, and save around $200/year).

The main thing, for you, is to make sure you make it easy for people to communicate with you.  Her #3 says “do they list their phone number or email in their summary…”


My gut tells me people have lost money, business and opportunities because they make it hard for others to reach out to them.  LinkedIn already makes it hard – what if you make it easier by putting your contact info in front of someone who comes to your Profile… super easy to find?

Rapportive not dying, just getting cut off at the knees

September 18th, 2014

So LinkedIn is not discontinuing this feature, but it’s weakening it. Note: if you don’t use gmail, don’t worry about this :)

I guess it was inevitable that LinkedIn would put up high walls around Rapportive’s functionality, and cut off other systems.  Kind of a play from the 1990′s, imo.

Oh well, I had it, but didn’t use it that much.  The author of the article was, I think, too enthusiastic with this line:  If you’re unfamiliar with Rapportive, you don’t email enough.”


Goodbye Contacts, Hello Connected, CRM meets Artificial Intelligence (AI)

September 17th, 2014

So a “competitor” to JibberJobber, LinkedIn’s CRM, got “retired.’  Actually, it just got a name change, as far as I can tell, a natural evolution of features.

It’s an interesting twist, taking CRM to the next level. Applying the AI to CRM isn’t necessarily new, but it’s cool in this case because of all the data LinkedIn has at its fingertips.

Good move, LinkedIn.

Note 1: I wrote about policy issues using LinkedIn as a CRM a few times… this is a huge issue.

Note 2: I don’t think JibberJobber is a competitor to LinkedIn, although the conversations I’ve had with people at LinkedIn make it clear that they think we are competitors.  They think all relationship apps are their competition – check out this sad list of search results from CRM systems that lament LinkedIn pulling the plug on any integration (that they had).

(we’ll see if this is a feature they don’t pull the plug on, eventually :p)