Posted by: waynebreitbarth | February 20, 2011

Most Helpful LinkedIn Features

I am just one week away from the official release date of my book “The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success: Kick-start Your Business, Brand, and Job Search.” My good friends at The Business Journal of Milwaukee (along with Charro Restaurant) are sponsoring my first big book signing event in Milwaukee on Thursday, March 3, 2011, from 5-7pm. I hope you will attend! You can RSVP to Whitney Maus at 414-908-0566 or wmaus@bizjournals.com. Be sure to register soon since the event is limited to 100 guests.  I want to sincerely thank Mark Sabljak, Sandy Wysocki, and the rest of the great staff at the newspaper for this and their ongoing support of my LinkedIn training efforts. 

 

One other book note:  Check out my “retro” video book trailer. This guy was me just three years ago!

 

Enough of the commercial. Let me get back to the review I started last week of the results of my 2011 LinkedIn User Survey. Be sure to grab your complete copy of the results on my new website in the free resources section.  

 

Let me remind you that the information included in this tip is a summary of the most significant results, along with my personal comments and specific business application ideas. 

                 Graph going up 

 

TOP RATED LINKEDIN FEATURES 

(% of respondents who selected this feature as helpful)

 

#1:  GROUPS  (82.4%)  

 

I think this feature has risen to #1 because the more time you spend in groups, the more you figure out what groups to join and how to be active (or inactive) in each of them based on what your strategy is for joining that group.  

 

Download my worksheet titled “LinkedIn Groups-Ca$h in on This Powerful Tool,” and it will give you some strategies to use to find the right groups to join. 

 

It is great to be in large groups for the searching capabilities and the number of eyes and ears you can potentially reach. However, on the other side of the coin, sometimes the real discussions can be hard to find because of the vast amount of people who are spamming their marketing messages.

 

#2:  PEOPLE SEARCHING  (60.5%)

 

This was the #1 rated feature in every one of my past surveys, and it is still worthy of its high ranking.  If you aren’t using this several times a week, you haven’t figured out LinkedIn.  It’s as simple as that.  

 

I give you lots of guidance in my worksheet titled “LinkedIn People Searching: Your Ticket to Improved ROI.” The winner of the searching game on LinkedIn is typically the person who has lots of connections and understands how to use Boolean search logic. 

 

A quick note on a related feature: If you couple Advanced People Searching with Saved Searches (only 5.7% ranked Saved Searches as helpful), I would call this the dynamic duo that is a can’t miss in your daily and weekly routine.

 

#3:  PEOPLE YOU MAY KNOW  (56.7%)

 

This is a great way to find new connections. Check the full list often for lots of “gold in them thar hills.”

 

#4:  COMPANY SEARCHING  (54.4%)

 

This is getting better all the time. The capabilities are unbelievable. Don’t miss these features within the company profile section: Follow Company, People Also Viewed, Hiring, Departures, Insightful Statistics, Careers, and, of course, the most helpful–Your Network.

 

#5:  STATUS BOX  (41.8%)

 

This is the best way to stay in front of your connections with timely information, events, links, ideas, questions, comments, suggestions, and on and on. When was the last time you posted anything here? Can’t remember? Every day is a missed opportunity you won’t get back.  

 

BEST IDEA ALERT:  Set up a calendar to post timely information about your industry, region, expertise, and other interests, and watch the comments and “likes” come your way. 

 

By the way, LinkedIn just came out with a really cool add-on to this feature called Search Updates. It is right on your home page and has tremendous potential. Stay tuned as I will give you some powerful uses for this in an upcoming tip. In the meantime, try it yourself and let me know how you like it.

 

#6:  WHO’S VIEWED MY PROFILE  (41.8%)

 

The only purpose I have found for this is to check it frequently after an event or a reach-out (phone call, email, connection request) to see who has interest in you.

 

#7:  REVIEW OF NETWORK UPDATES  (40.6%) 

 

The more connections you get, the tougher this gets. If you look at this every day, you will find several people and/or situations that you should dig into, inquire about, comment on, etc.  Checking it every day is really hard to do, I gotta confess.

 

#8:  REVIEWING “WHO KNOWS WHOM” IN YOUR 

FIRST-DEGREE NETWORK  (39.1%)

 

I have several diligent connections who make this their #1 habit on LinkedIn–reviewing the connections of the most active/most connected/most helpful people in their networks. They usually follow up this review by using the Introduction feature, which, by the way, only 22.6% of the respondents said they found useful. Together I would call these two features another very worthy dynamic duo.  

 

 
OTHER SOCIAL MEDIA SITES USED
(% of respondents who selected
  • Facebook (78.8%)
  • Twitter (43%)
  • You Tube (16.6%)
  • Blogging (15.2%)
  • Plaxo (13.2%)
  • Flickr (6.0%)
  • Foursquare (6.0%)
  • MySpace (3.3%)
My survey question was directed toward business use versus personal use, but I am not sure it was understood in that way. I say that because, I must confess, I am still having lots of problems trying to consistently go on my Facebook account. I get so bogged down in all the personal postings that I just can’t get to the business-related information. This survey result and the smart people I talk to remind me I have to keep trying to make Facebook part of my daily routine. I would certainly appreciate hearing about your business successes on Facebook.

 

Twitter continues to be the social media site that many people try after LinkedIn for their business uses. However, I sometimes hear complaints that it can really suck a lot of time and become very addictive. But once you figure out how to best use it for your business purposes, it can be extremely helpful. 

 


THE TOP 3 WAYS LINKEDIN HAS HELPED PEOPLE
  • Researching people and companies (72.2%) 
  • Reconnect with past business associates/colleagues (65.1%)
  • Build new relationships with potential customers (48.2%)
I know we all wanted to see “generating identifiable business opportunities” (26.3%) as the big winner but not just yet. Keep in mind that we sometimes forget what started a relationship that a few months or years later turns into a customer. 

So I am going to keep believing that the top three answers here will ultimately lead to increased business. Like traditional networking, it takes time, and if you don’t have the time, forget it and do some other form of marketing or branding.

 


THE TOP 3 LINKEDIN STRUGGLES 

  • Understanding the ways which advanced users are using LinkedIn
  • Developing a specific strategy for LinkedIn
  • Strategically placing keywords in my profile
It is my goal to help you with these “pains.” So stick with me for more solutions to these struggles. In the meantime, feel free to page through or search old tips which are included on my blog for great suggestions to address some of these LinkedIn pain points.  
What is so interesting is that these struggles are the same ones people have been sharing on all of the past surveys. I guess I am just going to have to write another book! My wife will love to hear about that (NOT!).

 


HOW IMPORTANT IS LINKEDIN TO YOU? 
(5=Extremely, 1= Not important at all)

 

5= 27.0%
4= 33.1%
3= 25.8%
2= 11.4%
1=   2.7%

 

What amazes me about this answer is that most of us were not using this tool two, three, four years ago, but we now consider it an important part of our business routine.  That is pretty impressive.

 

Since over 60% of the respondents gave this a 4 or 5, you can count on me hanging in here and being one of your trusted resources for all things LinkedIn.  Thanks for that honor. 
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Responses

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by SourceCon, Richard Dassow. Richard Dassow said: Most Helpful LinkedIn Features: http://t.co/vtU5Pcm […]


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