7 Amazing but Hard-to-Find Free LinkedIn Features

Most LinkedIn users (79% according to my latest LinkedIn user survey) are not Screen Shot 2016-09-01 at 9.58.24 AMpaying anything to use the site. That's why most of what I teach in my book, my online training course, and in my live corporate and individual sessions focuses on becoming a skillful user of the free account.

Here are seven simple ways you can capitalize on powerful, hard-to-find LinkedIn features without spending a cent.

1.  Save Advanced People Searches. This is like having a 24/7 virtual assistant who's always looking for the right people. Once you've completed anScreen Shot 2016-09-01 at 9.21.27 AM Advanced People Search that gives you a list of just the right folks, click the words Save search (top right corner). Then each week LinkedIn will automatically show you new people who meet your defined search criteria. This is absolutely priceless. For more information on this feature, click here.

2.  Find fellow alumni. It's hard to explain the warm, fuzzy feelings fellow alumni have for each other, but LinkedIn makes it very easy to find and contact your fellow alumni--and many times they'll be quite willing to do business with you. Screen Shot 2016-09-01 at 9.23.38 AM

Select Universities from the drop-down menu and type the name of your school in the search box. Choose your school when it shows up on the list, and then select Students & Alumni. Choose your filter columns or keywords, and LinkedIn magically shows you just the right fellow alums--smiling faces and all. Ka-ching! For more information on the Alumni feature, click here.

3.  Add media to your profile. To create a compelling profile, you need to strategically tell your professional story. A simple way to enhance your written story is to add links to important websites and upload media or other files. Screen Shot 2016-09-01 at 9.26.44 AM

Click the Add media button to add your best stuff to your Summary, Experience, and Education entries. Viewers will then be able to watch, download, and read your most important work samples, company information, personal testimonials and recommendations, and so much more. For more information about adding media, click here.

4.  Download your connections database. Who wouldn't want a spreadsheet of their first-level connections' first and last name, current company and title, and primary LinkedIn email address? Screen Shot 2016-09-01 at 9.28.03 AM

Simply select Connections under the My Network tab on your top toolbar, and then click the Settings icon. Next, click Export LinkedIn Connections on the top right, and then enter your user name and password. Within minutes LinkedIn will send you a zip file with that information and much more.

Screen Shot 2016-09-01 at 9.38.50 AM5.  Use the Relationship tab. All of your first-level connections have a Relationship section at the top of their profile where you can make confidential notes, set follow-up reminders, and use tags to file their names in your predetermined file drawers. This could be the easy-to-use CRM (customer relationship management) tool you've been looking for. For more information about this feature, click here.

6.  Send messages to fellow group members. Unless you have a premium account, you cannot send a direct message to people who are outside your network without incurring an InMail fee--with one exception. Each month LinkedIn gives you 15 free direct messages you can send to people who have agreed to accept messages from fellow group members. Screen Shot 2016-09-01 at 9.32.17 AMInMails typically cost $10 each, so this is a $150 gift from LinkedIn.

You can join a group just long enough to send someone a free InMail. Under the group name, click the number of members, and enter the person's name in the Find a member box. Then select the envelope icon to the right of the person's name.

7.  Search your connections' connections. This is an easy way to look for potential customers, employers, etc. whom your connection can introduce you to.

Start by clicking the magnifying Screen Shot 2016-09-01 at 9.34.30 AMglass in the Connections section of one of your first-level connection's profile. After clicking, in place of the magnifying glass, a box appears where you can enter keywords. LinkedIn will then provide all the people in your connection's network who have those keywords included on their profile. To learn more about this valuable feature, click here.

There you have it--seven features that would certainly be worth paying for, but they're totally free.

For step-by-step video lessons on these features and many more, check out my advanced LinkedIn online course by clicking here.

The post 7 Amazing but Hard-to-Find Free LinkedIn Features appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

10 Best LinkedIn Secrets & How You Can Leverage Them

With all the LinkedIn changes recently, even a full-time LinkedIn guy like me can get confused. Thus, I think it’s time to share with you ten of the best and oftentimes hard-to-find LinkedIn features.

But first let me invite you to join me for a FREE live video streaming event this Tuesday (4/26/2016) from 8:30am-9:45am CT. I will be presenting in front of a live audience in Madison, Wisconsin all ten features as well as iStock_000050983604_Smallexamples, testimonials, and a good share of Wayne humor. You don’t have to register in advance to watch the video nor do you need to attend the entire presentation. It will be available for just 24 hours after the event has aired on both Twitter and Periscope.

To join the event live or watch the replay:

  • Follow me on Twitter @waynebreitbarth, and the live video will be playing in my feed during that time slot.
  • Download the Periscope app to your mobile device, follow me (waynebreitbarth), and set your notifications to alert you when I go live or click the app during this time slot and view the event.
    Once you follow me on Periscope, you’ll be notified whenever I’m broadcasting on Periscope–and I typically share live LinkedIn tips five days per week.
  • On your computer, log into my Periscope TV account during the time of the event: https://www.periscope.tv/waynebreitbarth/

10 LinkedIn secrets

Some of these features may be hard to find, but I promise that you’ll have improved success on LinkedIn if you take advantage of these hidden gems.

1.  15 free direct messages per month to fellow group members. There used to be no limit on direct messages, but it’s still a significant value (15 InMails cost $150). Therefore, use your 15 freebies before using your allotment of InMails.

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 11.37.13 AM2.  Expand the reach on your three free saved Advanced People Searches. By using the “OR” Boolean operator or the LinkedIn “+ Add” in the search fields for keywords, company names, industries, locations, etc., you can make sure your saved searches are scooping up lots more people than a simple search without those additions.

3.  Download your connections. Just click on Connections below the My Network tab on your top toolbar, and then click the Settings icon (top right). When you select Export LinkedIn Connections, you’ll receive a spreadsheet that includes first name, last name, current title, current company, and each connection’s primary LinkedIn email address. Ka-ching!

4.  Commercial use search limit workaround. If you’re running into the free search wall each month, try this simple tool built by Shane McCuster. It may help you avoid upgrading to a premium account. Here’s the link to access: http://bit.ly/searchworkaround.

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 11.39.30 AM5.  Review your inbound customized invitation messages and consider replying to them. Since last fall, when the messaging interface was revised, it has been difficult to monitor your inbound invitations, especially the ones that have custom messages that might include important information. If you hover over the double word cloud on the invitation, you can read the message. If you want to reply without connecting to the person, just click the left-pointing arrow.

6.  Unlock the LinkedIn keyword treasure chest. Here’s how it works. If I’m interested in information about marketing, I would enter http://www.linkedin.com/topic/marketing into my browser, and I’d get a plethora of information about marketing, including information about people who have the word marketing on their profile, published posts on the topic of marketing, Slideshare presentations on marketing, groups to join relating to marketing, and marketing-related jobs.

Come up with your own keywords and enter them after the topic/ in the link above. If you want to search for a phrase–for example, search engine optimization–you would enter search_engine_optimization. Happy treasure hunting!

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 12.20.55 PM7.  Search your connections’ connections. Just click the magnifying glass in the Connections section of your connection’s profile and type in a keyword(s). Then click advanced search and use all of the available Advanced Search filters. I typically refer to this as the “LinkedIn Referral Machine.” Enjoy this one while you can because LinkedIn sometimes decides to make the best features available to premium subscribers only.

8.  Get your LinkedIn mobile strategy in order. When you make changes to your profile, always check them out on the LinkedIn mobile app to be sure your most important information has not been truncated or requires the viewer to click See more to get to your best stuff.

Also, when using mobile, be sure to personalize your invitations to connect by clicking the horizontal dots in the top right corner of a person’s mobile profile and selecting Personalize Invite. It’s especially important to personalize your invitation when reaching out to people you don’t know. Use my Essentials of a 5-Star LinkedIn Connection Invitation tip sheet to improve your chances of engagement.

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 12.27.15 PM9.  Take control of the Skills section of your profile. Your Skills section and the endorsements you receive for those skills are very important, but it seems like they have a mind of their own. Click the + Add Skill button to get control of this feature. Delete the skills that strategically don’t fit. Add additional skills that really matter for searching and clarity, and reorder those skills, listing them in order of importance. You can list up to fifty skills. Don’t miss out on this critical opportunity.

10. Capitalize on the View Recent Activity feature. Click the small down arrow to the right of the Send InMail or Send Message button on someone’s profile, and then click View Recent Activity.

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 12.30.02 PMOn the top right of this page, you can see the number of followers the person has. This number includes everyone in the person’s network as well as other people who have chosen to follow him/her. These followers receive his/her posts and updates, and the amount of activity gives you an idea of how active the person is on LinkedIn. The more followers someone has, the more likely it is that he/she will accept your invitation to connect.

If something in the person’s feed would benefit your network, then share, “like” or comment on it.

This is also a good place to use LinkedIn’s Mention feature. For example, if you’re sharing Louis Young’s post with your network, you might say, “This post by @louisyoung is brilliant.” Using the @ symbol causes LinkedIn to notify Louis Young that you mentioned him, and @louisyoung becomes a live link. If someone sees your comment and clicks on @louisyoung, he/she will be sent directly to Louis’s LinkedIn profile–and I’m sure Louis will appreciate the extra traffic to his profile.

There you have it–ten terrific LinkedIn features that should improve the results you’re getting on LinkedIn. Good luck using them!

The post 10 Best LinkedIn Secrets & How You Can Leverage Them appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

Have You Ever Called on the LinkedIn Dynamic Duo?

iStock_000023222888_SmallI just saw the movie Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. It takes me back to my childhood when I was an avid Batman comic book reader/collector.

But you’re probably wondering what in the world does Batman have to do with LinkedIn? Has Wayne finally lost his marbles?

Actually, I’m just fine–at least I think so–but here’s the connection.

This week I’m going to share with you what I fondly refer to as LinkedIn’s dynamic duo of lead generation features. Just like the dynamic duo of Batman and Robin, they’re great on their own, but together they’re much more effective.

So, come meet LinkedIn’s lead generation dynamic duo: Advanced People Search and Saved Search.

Simply put, these two features together will automatically serve you up a list of targets who meet your defined criteria –and I use the word target very positively. This could be customers, vendors, donors, employees, strategic partners, future employers, and experts, to name only a few of the endless possibilities.

How to get the Dynamic Duo working for you

Follow these simple steps:

1.  Click the word Advanced to the right of the blue magnifying glass on the top LinkedIn toolbar.Screen Shot 2016-03-29 at 2.44.00 PM

2.  In the search filter boxes (lefthand column and center column), enter the keywords, job titles, company names, geographic areas, etc. that your targets would use to describe themselves on their LinkedIn profile.

3.  Review the list of people your search uncovers, making sure they actually look like people you’d like to meet, and see which of your connections already know these individuals.

Screen Shot 2016-03-29 at 2.47.09 PM4.  Click the words Save search on the top right of this list of search results.

5.  Decide what you want to name this target list and how often you want LinkedIn to notify you of new results.

From this point forward, LinkedIn will deliver to you–at whatever interval you choose and without any further work on your part–an updated list of your best and most qualified leads. And, maybe more importantly, you’ll see which of your connections might be able to make that all-important introduction to these potential customers.  

Oh, are you wondering what I thought about the movie? I gave it 2.5 out of 5 stars, and that rating is coming from a guy who grew up on Batman–so not exactly an impartial reviewer. Does anyone know how to get ahold of Adam West?

The post Have You Ever Called on the LinkedIn Dynamic Duo? appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.