Why LinkedIn Recommendations Are More Important Than Ever

With all the recent emphasis on LinkedIn endorsements, is it still important to have recommendations displayed on your profile?

This is currently a very common point of confusion on LinkedIn, and I'm here to clear up the confusion. The answer is you better believe it!
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LinkedIn Recommendations: The Secrets Revealed

This will not be the standard discussion of LinkedIn recommendations—how important they are and how you should strive to get a couple for each job entry on your profile. For "Recommendations 101," I suggest you pick up a copy of my book that includes an entire chapter on recommendations.

Here are some winning strategies relating to recommendations on your profile that you might not have considered.

1.  Your name appears on other people's profiles.

What better place to have your name and your job title show up than on the profile of a very important, well-respected individual in your town or industry. Talk about personal branding and increasing awareness of your brands—this really hits the target.

2.  The recommendations displayed in the Recommendations section of your profile can be used in other profile sections for increased exposure.

Currently LinkedIn displays the two most recently received recommendations in their entirety, which I really like, but the rest of them are typically not viewed because the reader needs to click Show more to see the entire list.

Action steps: Review all of your recommendations. Grab the most impactful quotes/statements, and include those in the Description section of any Job Experience entries to which they apply.

Another idea is to put together a document with a page full of your best quotes/statements, and add that as media in your Summary or applicable Job Experience entries.

Both of these strategies will encourage more people to read your very best recommendations and could move you ahead of your competitors.

3.  The number of recommendations you have and the keywords included in those recommendations are part of LinkedIn's search algorithm (their "secret sauce").

LinkedIn has shared that a couple of the important components of their "secret sauce" recipe (who gets picked up in a search and how high he or she appears) are the number of recommendations and the keywords that people are searching by and for. You don't have to like this or agree with it—just understand it and then make it work for you.

Action step: Go out and get lots of recommendations loaded with your most important keywords. This will help you move up in the search rankings when people are looking for someone like you.

4.  Recommendations can give you insight into how people think.

This one is from one of my former job-seeking friends (notice I said "former").

Prior to an interview, she reviewed the recommendations the interviewer had written for others. From this she learned that the interviewer appreciates attention to detail. Armed with this insight, my friend made a point of sharing with the interviewer all the wonderful real-life examples she had that pointed out her attention to detail. She got the job!

This process can also be used to learn what attributes are important to your potential customer, vendor, donor, employer, etc.

5.  Recommendations are one of the fuels of this new trust economy.

Pre-Internet, selecting the vendor of choice included lots of phone calls, meetings, brochures, proposals, interviews, presentations, more interviews, more presentations, etc. by almost every potential vendor in the market. Now think of how we do it in the Internet age: Google, Google, and more Google.

I am not saying that all the steps I mentioned are no longer part of the process, but by reviewing company websites, business and product review websites, comparison shopping websites, blogs, and all the other social media sites, we are able to eliminate vendors before we ever actually contact them.

You may be thinking, sure, Wayne, but all those recommendations you got are written by people who like your products and services. No one ever writes a bad one—and if they did, who would let it be posted on his or her profile anyway.

That may be true, but would you want all those recommendations on your competitors' profiles instead of yours?

So get busy and seek out some impressive recommendations from your customers, clients, vendors, professors, anyone who can attest to how great you and your products or services are. It will make you stand out from the crowd and help you land your next business or career opportunity.
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SPECIAL OFFER

For more simple strategies to improve your LinkedIn ROI, along with a detailed critique of your profile, be sure to take advantage of my limited time offer: a one-hour, one-on-one phone consultation for just $197 (this is a significant reduction off my regular fee).

I will share my computer screen with you during the call and send you a marked-up copy of your profile prior to the call.

Whether you’re using LinkedIn to find your next high-impact customer, raise your organization’s profile, or land the job of your dreams, this session is for you.

There are limited spots available, so don't delay. Book your session today by clicking here.

 

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The Job-Hopping Generation: Young Professionals Are On The Move

Change is in the air. More than 40% of professionals are interested in making a career pivot, whether that’s to a different industry or a different function entirely. And of those that do pivot, 50% move to a different industry, and more than 60% change functions entirely. While this behavior is common across the board, Gen Z is taking the cake as the most mobile professional generation. Young professionals making moves Gen Z is more than 3X more likely to change jobs, with 20% of them...

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Here Is How To Make LinkedIn Part Of Your 2019 Success Plan

Are you starting to put your game plan together for 2019? Is LinkedIn part of that plan? If not, it's probably because you don't know exactly what to do each week to get results.

Well, it's your lucky day. I recently revised and updated my LinkedIn Game Plan for Success: Your One-Hour Weekly Playbook for Results. It's received rave reviews from my recent audiences, and I know you're going to love it, too.

Start following these steps this fall so that by the start of 2019 they become part of your weekly routine.
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2019 LinkedIn Game Plan for Success

You can download Power Formula for LinkedIn Success 3rd Editionthe full worksheet below, but here's a quick summary of the weekly process that's sure to kick-start your business and career in the new year.

Page number references in the worksheet refer to the 3rd Edition of my book The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success. Pick up a copy at your nearby book store or Amazon.com to learn more simple ways to acquire lucrative new customers, land a great new job, and, of course, substantially boost your income.

1. Start by checking out profiles of people you're considering connecting with, taking specific note of the things they're posting and sharing.
 Consider mentioning them using the "@" sign before typing in their name when sharing one of their updates. Then be sure to keep an eye on your "Who's Viewed Your Profile" section to see if they check you out. That would be a good sign.

2. Use a custom invitation and invite ten people in your target audience to join your network. This will take about 15 minutes per week, but strengthening your network is bound to result in more future business.

3. Send a follow-up thank-you note to ten people who have agreed to join your network. This should only take about ten minutes, and it gives you an opportunity to request a meeting or phone call that could lead to new business or lucrative referrals.

4. Engage with your audience. Like, share or comment on status updates, published posts or company page updates made by ten of your most important connections. This, too, should only take about ten minutes, and it's a great way to stay on the radar of your target audience.

5. Post ten helpful status updates each week. This might take you 20 minutes per week, but it will go a long way toward establishing yourself as a rockstar in your field—and it also gives you an opportunity to promote your products and services.

Use my 6/3/1 rule when making your posts. Six posts can provide useful content from others, three posts should include helpful content from you and your company, and one post can promote your products or services.

You're now prepared to hit the ground running in the new year and make it your best year ever.

 

Download (PDF, 2.66MB)

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Your Guide to Winning @Work: FOBO – The Fear of Better Options

Picture this - you were just offered a new position at work, or even a new job. Initially, you’re thrilled by the opportunity, but then thoughts of possible better options flood your mind. “Is this the right fit for me? What if I could find a role that offers more pay, a different title, more flexibility, the option to work from home?” Now you are struggling to make any decision. You are experiencing FOBO - the fear of better options - and you’re not alone.   More than 2 in 3 employees today...

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Hiring Growth Shows Signs of Leveling Off: LinkedIn Workforce Report October 2018

Nationally, across all industries, gross hiring in the U.S. was 1.1% lower than in September 2017. Seasonally-adjusted national hiring remained steady, with no change from August 2018. This may be an early sign of hiring growth starting to level off, after rising at a decent clip through most of 2017 and 2018. The industries with the biggest year-over-year hiring increases in September were transportation & logistics (7.5% higher); energy & mining (4.6% higher); and manufacturing (3.1% higher)....

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Your Guide to Winning @Work: Decoding the Sunday Scaries

You know the feeling. It’s Sunday and the start of the work week is only a few hours away. For some, it's time for a new chance to chase your goals, but for many of you, worries about the week ahead are making their way front and center. It’s called... the Sunday Scaries. If this sounds familiar, you’re in good company. According to new LinkedIn research, 80% of professionals experience the Sunday Scaries, with over 90% of Millennials and Generation Z reporting they feel it. So what causes the...

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Are You Finding that No One is Listening to You on LinkedIn?

"Lately I seem to have a much lower level of engagement (views, likes, comments or shares) on the articles I'm writing and the things I'm posting on LinkedIn."

I hear this frequently from my consulting clients as well as people in my LinkedIn network. They want to know why this is happening and how they can get back to "the good old days."

First, more people are writing and sharing than ever before on LinkedIn, so the news feed is getting more crowded. Secondly, because LinkedIn has set up an algorithm to decide what information goes into people's feeds, not everything you share goes into every one of your connections' feeds. Check out this article to get more details about how the algorithm works.

Because fewer people are receiving your articles and status updates, it's more important than ever to share the type of information your network is most likely to find useful and thus share, like or comment on—or, better yet, directly engage with you.

Because I understand that might be easier said than done, here are some ideas and resources that have worked for me and my clients and may help you, too, get the amount of engagement you got "back in the day."
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Strategies to increase engagement with your LinkedIn posts

In addition to the suggestions below, feel free to check out LinkedIn's helpful guide Sharing Content on LinkedIn–Best Practices.

Make sure your content is relevant and interesting to your target audience. The topics or questions you've discussed with your clients and professional associates this week are probably on the minds of your network as well. Therefore, this is the type of helpful information you should be sharing. Personally, this is how I choose the topics for my weekly LinkedIn email and blog.

Be sure your post is visually interesting and appealing. When you share something on LinkedIn, make sure you post an image—or if you're sharing a link, be sure the visual that is populated from the web page is interesting. Also, LinkedIn seems to be giving feed algorithm preference to video right now; so sharing any form of video will typically result in higher engagement than simple text.

Take advantage of hashtags. Hashtags are like a filing system for all content shared on LinkedIn. Thus, if you don't include them, your content may not be included in the mix. Be sure to include several relevant keyword hashtags at the end of your comments or weave a few into the comments themselves. LinkedIn will also suggest hashtags you could select that may apply to the topic of your post.

You can find more details about the use of hashtags here.

Draw individuals to the post by mentioning them. LinkedIn now allows you to tag or mention (using the "@" operator) individuals or companies that may be mentioned in the article or video you're sharing or that you want to be sure see your post. Because the individual or company is notified when you use the Mentions feature, they may be inclined to engage with your post.

You can get more information on the specifics of LinkedIn's Mentions feature by clicking here.

Respond to their engagement when it is your turn to do so. If you get notified that someone commented on or shared your posts, be sure to "like" their comment or share and thank them for doing so. Don't just type "Thanks for sharing, Wayne" but use the Mentions feature, and grab their name as part of the thank you by adding the "@" sign ahead of their name. Then when their name shows up on the drop-down list, click it, and LinkedIn will populate their name in the comment. In addition, that populated name is now a hyperlink to their profile, and they'll be notified that you mentioned them.

Ask a question or elicit an opinion. That sounds pretty simple, but I've found that if you ask people their opinion on something you've shared, you'll get responses from some of the people in your audience.

Sharing is caring. If the information you are sharing is something that comes with a very high value at a fairly low or no cost (e.g., a free webinar, download, etc.), then why not simply ask readers to hit the Share button and share it with their network—and don't be surprised when they do.

Implement these strategies, and watch engagement with your posts increase—and hopefully it will result in lots of calls, meetings, and productive email exchanges like in the "good old days."

 

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New LinkedIn Features in Office 365 Help You Build Relationships and Better Collaborate

When I talk to people about what they love most about their jobs, the answer I hear most is that it’s the people; nothing is more important than working with people you know and appreciate. And when I ask what they love about their community on LinkedIn, I actually get the same response: it’s the people in your professional community and the relationships you’ve formed with your connections.   That’s why I’m excited today to show how LinkedIn and Microsoft are making it easier to collaborate...

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Protect Your LinkedIn Data Now for Free!

LinkedIn giveth and LinkedIn taketh away—and that's why you need to protect your data.

For instance, LinkedIn is finally rolling out its much anticipated new Groups feature, which I personally haven't seen yet, but the comments I've heard are mostly negative. I'll cover this change in detail once I've received the updated version and have had some time to digest and work with it. The negativity revolves around the loss of a couple significant functions related to how group managers communicate with their members.

Personally, this past week LinkedIn eliminated a very important advanced people search filter from my Sales Navigator account (for which I pay around $1,000 per year). I can no longer search by a radius around a specific zip code. When I contacted the Help Center, they said it was eliminated because it wasn't being used by enough people to justify maintaining it—and they'll consider adding it back but can't promise anything.

LinkedIn giveth and LinkedIn taketh away.
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Easy steps to protect your data

Because LinkedIn (and social media sites in general) can change or disappear at any moment, you need to protect your data as much as possible. Then you can use your data to build out other databases and populate new or additional profiles on other sites or online spaces.

For instance, if you publish a newsletter, you can contact people to ask if they'd like to subscribe to it because LinkedIn will give you a list of the emails of every one of your first-degree connections.

It only takes a few minutes to protect yourself if you follow these simple steps.

Request a free archive of your data. The zip file you'll receive from LinkedIn via email will include a complete data dump of many of the things you'll want to have in your possession, including a spreadsheet with all of your first-level connections' names, current companies, titles, and their primary LinkedIn email addresses.

How to get yours: Go to the Me icon in your top toolbar, and select Settings & Privacy in the drop-down menu. Next, select Privacy, scroll down and click Download your data, select The works, and then click the Request archive button. You'll then receive a zip file in less than 24 hours.

Save a pdf of your profile. The pdf file will include words only. It won't include anything that has a visual element to it, like your photo, your company logos, graphics from your published posts or the media you've added.

How to get yours: Go to your profile, click the More... button beneath your headline, and then select Save to PDF.

Print a copy of your profile and your company page using your browser print function. I recommend this step in addition to the previous one because you'll see all the graphic components of your profile that aren't included in the pdf. If you're in charge of your company's page, I suggest you print that as well.

How to do this: Go to your profile (and company page if applicable) and select File from the browser toolbar, and then select Print.

Don't delay. Follow these tips today (and I would recommend repeating this every month or so), because you never know when the next LinkedIn change will come and possibly eliminate your ability to get some of this valuable data.

 

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