Top 10 LinkedIn Changes going into 2019

Blink your eyes and LinkedIn will change.

Ok, maybe not that fast, but the application changes routinely and there is no expectation this will slow down. Actually, I expect significant changes throughout this year, some we will appreciate, some we won’t.

Here are 10 new changes you may not have noticed yet this year (2019):

#1 – LinkedIn Search results of LinkedIn Members who are ‘Connections of’ are limited to 1000, regardless of the filters you apply (or don’t).

LinkedIn says they are doing this to reduce server requirements from LinkedIn Searches.

#2 – The PYMK (People You May Know) has been redesigned into Recommendations for You.

This section of LinkedIn is still on your MyNetwork Page, below any pending invites. This section now includes People, Groups, COmpanies and Hashtags (Communities and content).

Teddy Burriss LinkedIn Recommendations for You Page

The content in these areas is displayed in a Gallery form, vs the older listing of People. More graphically appealing presentation.

#3 Group Navigation Column

LinkedIn Group NavigationWhen you are viewing any of your LinkedIn Groups, owned or just a member the left column of the LinkedIn page shows the Management button (if a manager) and your Recent as well as all LinkedIn Groups.

This makes LinkedIn Group engagement easier as you move in and out of numerous groups.

The top of the column has your LinkedIn Profile access.

The bottom of the column shows your Communities (Hashtags) and the Discovery button.

 

#4 & #5  – Email Address Privacy changes

There are two changes here.

LinkedIn Email Privacy

The first is you can make your email address visible to no one, your 1st level LinkedIn Connections, 1st & 2nd Level Connections or Anyone on LinkedIn. The default is your 1st level connections.

Email Address in LinkedIn Export

The second change is now when you export your LinkedIn Connections (alone or in the Data Archive function) you no longer get LinkedIn Member’s email addresses. LinkedIn Members have to opt-in to include their email address in this data. Only 3 of my clients opted-in to include their email address in this export.

#6 – Home Page Navigation Column

LinkedIn Home Page Nav

The left column on LinkedIn continues to change. Now you can see your entire Headline and the top three Analytics (per LinkedIn).

You also have your LinkedIn Company page access and basic analytics.

Below this is your LinkedIn Groups, most recent accessed and the entire list (via ‘show more’)

Lastly on the bottom of this navigation column are the #hashtags or LinkedIn Communities you are following.

This makes moving around LinkedIn just a little easier to do.

#7 – Group activity in your Newsfeed and Notifications

LinkedIn has committed to rejuvenating LinkedIn Groups. One task towards this goal is to include your LinkedIn Group activity in your LinkedIn Home Page Newsfeed as well as in your Notifications. Of course you could always turn this off, however, I encourage if you like the groups you are in, accept the notifications so you can engage in them.

#8 – LinkedIn Company Page Content Suggestions

LinkedIn Compay Page Mgmt

 

 

This is a rather interesting new feature of LinkedIn Company Pages. You can filter these content suggestions by Topics, Industry, Location, Function, Seniority, content from all LinkedIn Members, Page Followers, or your employees. This is a great way to find relevant and useful content for your Page followers, beyond your own content.

#9 – LinkedIn Communities

Followed HashtagsI’ve referenced #Hashtags and Communities a few times now. #Hashtags are getting new attention in LinkedIn in Posts, Articles, Company Page Posts, Comments, and even Group discussions.

I believe the term Communities is being replaced by Followed Hashtags.

If you want to be included in these topics, start using relevant #Hashtags in your posts.

I feel this functionality of LinkedIn may have some stickiness.

 

#10 – LinkedIn Search Home Page

LinkedIn Search PageIn their new theme to use gallery images, the LinkedIn Search page has three areas on it:

  1. My Connections
  2. People in my Company
  3. People who also went to the school I went to

I like the new gallery layout, easy access to their LinkedIn Profile, to send a message and see the first part of their headline and shared connections.

Pay attention to the changes occurring with LinkedIn. Some are an improvement, some may not be. However, understanding the changes and how to work with them can help you to be more efficient using LinkedIn as the application morphs.

Teddy

 

 

 

Top 10 LinkedIn Wish List for 2019

Teddy Burris LinkedIn Wish List

As an unofficial Ambassador of LinkedIn, I publicly admit to you I have a Love & dislike relationship for the application. This is not so unusual and I’m sure I’m not the only one. However, I can’t do my business without this tool, regardless of the fact that my business is teaching people how to use this tool.

Here are 10 areas of LinkedIn, that if improved upon, my appreciation for this business tool would be far greater:

#1 – Merge LinkedIn InMails and Messages into a single page for Sales Navigator users.

It’s difficult sometimes to see all the messages from a lead, especially when we used LinkedIn to send messages to Members before we began engaging with them in Sales Navigator or if we use both LinkedIn and Sales Navigator to send messages to these leads now. A single screen of messaging for a lead would be a beautiful thing

#2 – LinkedIn Groups need to either be resurrected or shut down.

I know there’s a roadmap to resurrect LinkedIn Groups. However, this conversation started nearly a year ago and there have been no serious improvements in LinkedIn Groups for Group Members. I would prefer to see LinkedIn Groups survive and create a renewed environment for engagement, ideation, networking, and collaboration. Here’s a wild idea, maybe buy Slack and integrate it into LinkedIn instead.

#3 – Company Page Followers

Give us access to our Followers again. Let us see who they are and engage with them directly. Either via LinkedIn Messages or InMails. Let LinkedIn Members opt In or Out for this messaging. Most Importantly, let us see who our followers are again.

#4 – Add Block with Ignore or Accept on LinkedIn Invites.

Many of us who network purposefully will Ignore an invite and then either months or years later get a new invite from these LinkedIn Members. Today, once we Ignore an invite we can no longer message with those LinkedIn Members who have new pending invites to us. We need this changed. One way to do this is to add Block to the LinkedIn Network Manage All page like this (Accept | Ignore | Block). Put the responsibility back on the LinkedIn Members, rather than making a decision to block invites we Ignore. Give us the ability to engage when we want with our new pending connections.

#5 – Searching ‘Connections of’ needs to be improved.

Recently (1/2019) this function of LinkedIn Search has not been working as it should be. The number of search results of our 1st level connections via ‘Connections of’ is nowhere near complete, or even close to the purported  1000 result limit. The reduced search results are far too extreme to be a result of LinkedIn Member privacy setting functions. Even with Filtering, I have experienced search results that appear incomplete with no known reason.

#6 – Increased Engagement Features on Sales Navigator.

We can Like or Comment a lead’s content from Sales Navigator. However, there are no @Mentioning options at all when commenting. Furthermore, there are no Share functions. Both of these additions would help us engage with our leads at a higher level, which is important when nurturing the relationship with these LinkedIn Members from Sales Navigator.

#7 – Expanded LinkedIn Dashboard

The LinkedIn Dashboard that displays on our LinkedIn Profile page is useful. However adding other KPIs such as Network Size, Most engaging Post, Most engaged LinkedIn Member, Most connected Company, Most connected Role and/or Industry could give better insights into our actions on LinkedIn and help us make more informed decisions.

#8 – Add Region to Company Search

I know Sales Navigator is the LinkedIn tool we should be using for our prospecting. However, I never use LinkedIn Search for Companies because it’s only by name. Adding at least Region to this search page would give us some value in this search result page.

#9 – Data Export needs improvement.

I recently downloaded all of my content using the Data Archive Feature. It was by no means a Complete download of all of my data. There were no images and no videos from either Rich Media on my LinkedIn Profile or from Posts. It appeared to only include a few months of posts and none of my data from Sales Navigator was included.  I hope we can eventually download All of our Content, especially since the LinkedIn Terms of Services say this is our content.

#10 – Share the product roadmap with us.

At the very least it would be great if LinkedIn would give us alerts when they make permanent changes to the application. Not know why something that worked yesterday does not work today can be very frustrating for many LinkedIn Members. It would be a true sign of customer appreciation if we were given even a little warning of application changes. Heck, even a blog notice about the changes (beyond huge changes) would be nice.

Again, I have a strong Love/dislike relationship with LinkedIn. I truly enjoy working with the application and training others how to get value from this business tool.

I hope some of my Top 10 items on this wishlist were considered by LinkedIn.

Teddy

12 LinkedIn Hacks of 2018

I produced a video on this topic as well.  Video 12 LinkedIn Hacks of 2018

Hacks increase our performance, productivity and the results we achieve using LinkedIn. Here are 12 Hacks I use regularly that improve my performance and results.

#1 – Headline Hack


If you are an iPhone user you can increase the number of characters in your LinkedIn Headline to approximately 220. Write your headline in a text editor, check the spelling and grammar and send it to your iPhone (text or email message). Then open your LinkedIn Profile in the LinkedIn App and Copy/Paste this text into your headline.

Note – you can not edit/save your Top Card in a Web Browser (desktop) unless you reduce the headline back to 120 characters. You’ll need to repeat the copy/paste actions on your iPhone to recover the extended headline after editing on a desktop.


#2 – Manage your Invites from the Manage Invitations page.
There are two pages you can view incoming LinkedIn Invites. The initial My Network Page and the Manage Invitations Page.

Manage all of your invitations from the Manage Invitations Page because you can do so much more from that page. You can Right Click on the profile and view it in a new tab, Accept or Ignore the invitation and most importantly Reply to the invitation request, even if you are not connected. You can also manage your sent invites from this page where you can Withdraw invite that has been out there too long.


#3 – Saved Searches


Most LinkedIn Members can have 3 saved searches of people who meet predefined search criteria. The trick to accessing LinkedIn Saved Search is to put something in the search bar and click on People in the search results window. Once you create a great saved search you will get a weekly email from LinkedIn with a list of the new LinkedIn Members who meet the search criteria.


#4 – The Power of the Three Dots


The three dots (…) is where additional options are available on posts in the newsfeed, on LinkedIn Company Pages and in LinkedIn Groups.
The tree dots (…) are also used on LinkedIn Profiles of third degree LinkedIn Members. LinkedIn currently uses More on 1st & 2nd level connections. Check out the More or three dot (…) options.


#5 – Two-Step Verification


As with many social media or online accounts, hackers are looking for ways to hack or worse, hijack your LinkedIn Account. This is a serious problem and LinkedIn, as many other platforms have has implemented Two-Step Verification to help you protect your account. In order to set up this security option go to Two-Step Verification under Settings and Privacy. Each time you access your LinkedIn account from a different device, or after you flush your browser cache, the application will text an access code to your phone.


#6 – LinkedIn Message functions

On the LinkedIn Mobile App there are new messaging features. Beyond the basics of attaching an image or an app provided GIF, you can:
A) @Mention other LinkedIn Members in your message which puts an encrypted link to their LinkedIn Profile
B) Record up to a 60 second audio recording in the message.
C) Send an address via Map in the message.
The Mobile App also saves your message drafts in the event you move away from a message you started to another LinkedIn Message (this is not completely tested yet)

The desktop and Mobile App also let you Accept or Ignore invitations from the LinkedIn members who sent you an invite after you have messaged them. (See Hack #4)


#7 – Native Video

From the Mobile App you can capture video and post to either your LinkedIn Profile (from the LinkedIn Home Page) or to any LinkedIn Company Page you manage (via the new LinkedIn Company Page Admin view).

You can switch cameras while recording and add stickers before you post the video with your text. This is a neat way to share quick video stories with your network.

Be purposeful and focus your messages on your target audience.

 


#8 Your Dashboard
View your own LinkedIn Profile and directly below the top section (called Top Card) is Your Dashboard. This is a quick view of a few key LinkedIn Stats; Profile views, the last post views and the number of times you show in LinkedIn Searches. Each of these stats includes hyperlinks to even more analytical information. It’s worth viewing a few times a month and evaluating.


#9 – Right Click is your Friend

I love using Right Click from web pages I don’t want to lose while working. Also, browser performance when you’re working from a LinkedIn Search results page is better when you right click on a result (Profile or Company page) and Open in a New Tab. Doing so keeps your list in tack and lets you perform your process on the result and then simply hit the X on the browser tab and work the next result. I often open as many as 5 new tabs from the results page before I view/work the record in the new tab.


#10 – Animated Company Page Logo

Dang – It doesn’t show as a GIF

If you want to create a little sparkle on your LinkedIn Company Page and where your company logo is displayed, you can use a GIF as your logo. Too fast of a GIF may be overly annoying, however, I think it’s at least worth exploring.

 

 


Bonus #1 – Text Expander

Maybe, not a LinkedIn Hack, but a great tool.
This little app runs on Mac and PC and has improved my performance using LinkedIn significantly. It does not violate the LinkedIn Terms of Services, however, it does save a whole bunch of keystrokes. It saves me lots of time from the snippets I create for the many repeated phrases, sentences, URLs, contact information, etc. etc.
Get your license here – My Affiliate Link


Bonus #2 – WordCloud my LinkedIn Profile

Creating a word cloud of your LinkedIn Profile is a great way to visualize the overall message you are sharing based on your keywords.
There are lots of WordCloud tools available. I’ve been using www.wordart.com for some time now and find it to be easy, flexible, and quick at producing nice looking word clouds. I can also use them in my LinkedIn Posts, Articles, Instagram Posts, Facebook Posts, and Blog posts.


Bonus #3 – I want to help where and when I can.

If you want to get more out of your investment into LinkedIn and/or Sales Navigator maybe we need to talk.

I love to help people who want to master LinkedIn as a business tool and grow their business using LinkedIn.

336-283-6121 or Skype: TLBurriss

info@burrissconsulting.com


Here are a few ideas that may help you:

Get my Free Ebook gift and Follow my blog
Subscribe to my YouTube Channel for lots of videos on LinkedIn tips, tricks, best practices, hacks.
Follow me on Quora. Weekly I answer questions about LinkedIn.

5 Ways to help others using LinkedIn

I listened to a 30 minute YouTube video from Simon Sinek today. He got me to thinking about what I am doing to grow my business.

He must have used the word “ME” a few dozen times in his speech as he worked to drive home a few important points. I feel I heard him loud and clear.

One of the points I took from Simon’s message is not really new. I’ve heard it many different times in different ways. Simon has even given this ‘message’ to me before in his other talks.

I won’t distract from the video anymore. I encourage you to go watch it yourself – Simon Sinek: If you don’t Understand People, you don’t Understand Business.

The point I took from Simon’s message that I will share here is basically; ‘How are you helping others?’

My philosophy behind LinkedIn is based on 4 areas:

  1. Presence
  2. Network
  3. Reputation
  4. Prospecting

Two of these areas of LinkedIn, as well as in life, are directly impacted by how we help others. One of the problems with our fast-paced world is we don’t allow enough time to stop and do something for others. I suffer from this challenge myself.

Here are 5 ways to help others on LinkedIn that can be quick and easy, yet very impactful for the other person:

#1 – Endorsements – We can acknowledge someone for their specific skills and experiences by simply clicking on the “+” symbol in the skills section of the LinkedIn Member. Fortunately, LinkedIn also gives us the ability to show how serious we are by asking us for a level of skill and our relationship with the LinkedIn Member when we Endorse them. This is optional for those who don’t want to click three more times.

#2 – Recommendations – If we really want to show someone how much we think of their skills, experiences and/or business value we can write a LinkedIn Recommendation for them. This way to help allows us creativity in our recommendation with personalized words.

#3 – Introductions – A powerful feature of LinkedIn is the ability to get introduced to people who can help us in our business or career journey. To help others, we could accept a request to get introduced or be proactive and consider, ‘Who should I introduce to each other today?’ This is a powerful way to help other people on LinkedIn.

#4 – Like/Comment/Share – LinkedIn Members who write and share their own content on LinkedIn are appreciative when other LinkedIn Members engage on their content in meaningful and relevant ways. A Like is one click, a Comment takes a few clicks and words and a Share may cost us 15-30 seconds. This is another powerful way to help another person on LinkedIn.

#5 – Public Accolades – LinkedIn has a feature called #Kudos built into the LinkedIn Post function. If someone did something fabulous, kind, friendly, nice, useful, etc, we can consider publicly acknowledging them with a #Kudos Post. Public acknowledgment is a great way to help others on LinkedIn.

Bonus – A few more simple ways to help others on LinkedIn using kind and friendly words include:

  • @Mention them in a relevant post or comment
  • Public acknowledgment of their birthday, career anniversary or new job/role.
  • Send them a private message when you can thanking them, encouraging them or just to say hello.
  • Call them or visit them when you are in their town and have a few moments to say hello.
  • Consider them for their skills, experiences or business services.
  • Refer or better yet, recommend them (when you can) to others who could benefit from their skills/services/products

As I wrote in my first book, “Networking for Mutual Benefit”, there are two caveats to helping others:

  1. You must Give with no Expectations. What you get from giving cannot be defined or required.
  2. Give sincerely thinking of only the other person.

As I listened to Simon’s speech I was reminded we must understanding people and care for others in order to be truly successful in our businesses and lives. The rewards from giving can not be measured by dollars or a P&L.

Do you have any other ways to help others using LinkedIn? Please share with us in the comments.

Teddy

2019 – Year of Growing

I so much want to yell out loud, “Stop wasting time trying to use LinkedIn. Get help to Master it NOW, or just close your account.”

I know the value of using LinkedIn with purpose, focused on my business goals. I wish all of the 585, 691, 334 members (as of 12/21/18 11:20 AM EST) did as well.

Imagine the missed opportunities, the wasted time connecting, pushing out content, and trolling LinkedIn Groups and the newsfeed haphazardly trying to generate business, the wrong way.

When you don’t know how to integrate a business tool into your business processes, how to use it with intention and purpose, or you don’t understand the philosophies related to social networking, your efforts trying to use LinkedIn can be a waste of time.

For this reason, we are restarting our LinkedIn Seminars immediately. We held one on 12/19/18 and it was well attended by people who said this:

“Wow, I can see how I’ve been doing this wrong for so long.” DF

“I had no idea I could do that.” PP

“This is such an eye-opener for me.” DB

“This will be a great game changer for me.” MM

and my favorite

“Dang, I can’t wait to share this with my team.” SM

If you are located anywhere near Winston-Salem NC, we want you to stop wasting time trying to use LinkedIn and join us so we can help you master this business tool.

A new session every third Wednesday of the month – 8:00 AM EST at FlyWheel Coworking, 450 Design Ave, Winston-Salem, NC 27101

Register for LinkedIn Seminar

Join us if you want to become more successful focused on your business goals.

Register for LinkedIn Seminar

 

Lead with Give when using LinkedIn

Recently someone asked me, what do you mean by “Lead with Give” and how does it help you grow your business.

I am very purposeful to focus my Lead with Give activities on my Most Important Viewers, i.e. my target audience. However, whenever possible I will use these philosophies and tactics with anyone in my LinkedIn Network.

I started developing this philosophy after studying Dale Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People.

A few of Dale Carnegie’s principles that impacted me in a positive way, outlined in his book, are;

Principle #2Give honest, sincere appreciation. This is a form of giving that’s easily applied to LinkedIn. One way I do this is with my first message after we connect. I always thank my new connection for accepting my invite or sending me an invite to connect. I also use sincere appreciation after receiving endorsements, recommendations, and introductions.

Principle #4Become genuinely interested in the other person. In LinkedIn, this can be done by purposefully reviewing your new connection’s Profile, and/or asking them questions about themselves, their business role and/or their business in a phone call, coffee meeting and/or in a message. This is an easy way to give.

Principle #6 – Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language. When you use someone’s name in the conversation, even in your messaging, it shows you care enough to address them properly. When you message on LinkedIn use their name. When you are in a phone or face-face conversation confirm the pronunciation of their name if you are even the slightest unsure. It’s a simple, but a purposeful way of giving.

Principle #7 – Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves. Encouraging your LinkedIn Connection to share about themselves, their role and their business show’s you care about them beyond simply a connection. This is easily done with your LinkedIn Connections in a phone conversation and or in person.

Principle #8 – Talk in terms of the other person’s interests. How do you feel when a LinkedIn Connection jumps into the conversation or messaging, all about themselves, before you even inquire about them or their business? It can be frustrating. Rather than be this person, start the conversation in context to your LinkedIn Connection and you’ll quickly get permission to talk about your self and/or your business. This is another simple way to give using LinkedIn.

Principle #9 – Make the other person feel important – and do it sincerely. Being attentive, listening to understand and asking your LinkedIn Connection open-ended questions is an easy way to make your LinkedIn connection feel important. Doing so can lead them to reciprocate as well.

I’ve also incorporated other tactics into my “Lead with Give” philosophy when using LinkedIn. Here are a few:

A – Pay attention to your target audience’s birthdays and their career pivots. Not everyone’s, just your Most Important Viewers. Send them a direct message, call them or send a card when appropriate. Most of your LinkedIn Connections will be appreciative of this.

– Engage on your Most Important Viewers content where relevant. Those of us who share stuff on LinkedIn appreciate having our content Liked, Commented on and/or Shared forward.

C – Share content your LinkedIn Network will find useful and interesting. Not just about your business or products/services. When you bring content and/or a relevant conversation to LinkedIn, your Most Important Viewers will be appreciative.

D– Introduce your LinkedIn Network to each other when relevant and mutually beneficial. We all love to be introduced to others when we can find potential benefit from the introduction.

E– Invite your Most Important Viewers to lunch, coffee or after work networking events when appropriate. Moving the LinkedIn Connection to IRL (in real life) is a powerful way to network and give.

F– Alert your Most Important Viewers to the upcoming community and industry events. Especially when they can benefit from the events.

When you “Lead with Give” using LinkedIn, it develops trust, respect and even to some degree Like, from your LinkedIn Network. These relationship-building activities are what create new and uncover hidden opportunities for us.

Lead with Give as often as you can when using LinkedIn as a business tool.  It can create great rewards and feels good to do as well.

I hope this article is helpful to you.

/Teddy

15 Best Practices of LinkedIn Networking

Networking on LinkedIn is an important practice and must be done correctly and consistently in order to create real business results.

It all starts with knowing who you want to connect with. Who, in what companies, industries, and regions?

As you connect on LinkedIn you’ll create opportunities to connect with even more people you want to connect with.

I love the old adage, “6 degrees of separation from Kevin Bacon.” This is so old school. Today it’s “3 degrees of separation from anyone who connects with purpose and intention on LinkedIn.”

I ‘preach’ this regularly and am obliged to do so again here:

“There are two people you need to connect with on LinkedIn, those you can help and those who can help you.
Consider the invites from those you can help, as you purposefully send invites to those who can help you in your business or career.”

 

  1. As you connect on LinkedIn remember to smile and be friendly. You’re networking with other real people.
  2. Follow the Dale Carnegie principle; ‘make the conversation all about the other person.”
  3. I’ve added a spin to this philosophy in my Networking for Mutual Benefit; “Make the conversation all about the other person until you get permission to talk about yourself or your business.”
  4. As you connect you never know who knows who, and who can introduce you to who. This could be considered mysterious, however, for me, it’s one of the coolest things about networking.
  5. Keep connecting, and as long as you are doing it correctly, with purpose and intention, focused on your goals, trust the magic of networking will work.
  6. Don’t just network on LinkedIn, find opportunities to meet in person or have a Skype or Phone conversation. “Digital Face to Face is better than never face to face.”
  7. People want to do business with people they trust, respect and like. Get into open conversations, this can help you achieve greater trust, respect, and relationships.
  8. Listen to what your connections say or ask. Don’t listen to respond, but rather, listen to understand first and foremost.
  9. Remember to Give to your LinkedIn Network. When you give ideas, information and/or new philosophies that are relevant to your target audience, this adds to the trust, respect, and relationship.
  10. Don’t confuse barfing out brochures and case studies as a form of Giving. Give your target audience what they want, need, & are interested in, even if it’s not about your business.
  11. Help your LinkedIn Network, including your target audience, to connect with others who can help each other. Do this with no expectations of anything in return.
  12. Pay attention to your LinkedIn Network as you continue to grow your network. Show empathy and bolster their self-esteem when and where you can. You will always be remembered for caring for your network.
  13. If you lead with Give and care for your network, they will be acceptable to introduce you to others who you need meet. Ask for introductions when you can.
  14. Pay attention to who your network is connected to, and to whom they can introduce you to. Again, as you get permission, ask for appropriate introductions.
  15. Networking is a life style, not something you do once a week or when an urgent need arises.

I discovered years ago that my Network is my most important asset in life. This includes my LinkedIn Network.

Never disrespect your LinkedIn Network, continuously build your LinkedIn Network, develop a diverse LinkedIn Network, help your LinkedIn Network, care for your LinkedIn Network, share your LinkedIn Network and Give to your LinkedIn Network with no expectations.

It’ll return great dividends if you do.

Read more of my articles about Networking on LinkedIn on my blog

If I can help you and/or your team with your LinkedIn Networking practices, let’s talk.

/Teddy

336-283-6121

An Influencer Tribe Rocks

Those of us who love to write, on our blogs and on LinkedIn, do so to impact our networks in positive ways, usually relevant to our businesses.

Ask any author and they will tell you, “the greatest reward is having our target audience eager to read our ‘stuff’.” For me, a side effect of being an author is the positive impact my content has on the growth of my business.

I am no different than any other author. I write my content to help my target audience, to impact them, to get them to discover a new idea, a perspective or a tip that can help them in meaningful ways. This often creates business opportunities for me.

Unfortunately publishing content does not ensure our target audience will find, read and appreciate what we write. We need engagement on our content to get it indexed higher by Google and LinkedIn. This is one of our biggest challenges to getting our content discovered.

There are lots of tactics we use to ‘push’ our content out and to get it discovered by others. Some of these tactics work and some can be detrimental to our professional brands and to our networks.

Here are 4 that can work, however, could lead to diminished results over time.

Over-Sharing: This is when we repeatedly re-share the content on LinkedIn, LinkedIn Groups, Twitter, Facebook, Facebook Groups, etc. One of the problems of over-sharing is that eventually, our networks become numb to these posts and then begin to ignore all of our posts on these venues. Over-sharing can also appear to be desperate and/or needy. Appearing needy can cause our networks to look in other directions for interesting or useful content.

Manic-Tagging: This is the act of tagging people on our social posts in an effort to draw their attention to our content. I see this happen often when new authors try to create a firestorm interest in their posts. They will tag as many people as they can on their post, often regardless of the relevance to the individuals they tag. Manic-tagging, especially when the content is irrelevant, can cause unhappiness for those you tag inappropriately and move them to also begin to ignore your future posts.

Click-Bait: This is when the author uses an irrelevant image, title or headline, as an attention grabber. Often the article is either irrelevant to the bait or the topic is so distant to the bait that the reader becomes disinterested in the article and again, future content you share.

Influencer Pods: This is a growing practice where a group of people agrees to share each other’s content. There are four potential problems with influencer pods:

1. The newsfeed algorithms of social media sites are designed to ‘feed’ you content similar to what you share and engage on. This will impact your newsfeed and flood it with the content you are sharing from the pod, and potentially reduce content you are more interested in.
2. If the pod you are involved is primarily people who are in the same industry or business you are in, then sharing content from your pod mates can distract your target audience from your own brand.
3. Sharing pod content that is not relevant to the work you do can cause your target audience to be confused as to what your true brand is. You want to be careful not to distract your target audience from your professional value by sharing too much irrelevant content.
4. Another potential problem with influencer pods is if you were to make a huge mistake sharing an article that may have a negative impact on your professional or personal brand. It’s important to vet the author, their purpose and their message before sharing their content.

Another problem with active influencer pods is often the authors become addicted to their content getting views from highly influential pod member’s networks. Sometimes they miss out on building a reputation and professional brand for themselves through their own networks.

A best practice that may provide more value is to create an Influencer Tribe.

Influencer Tribe: This is a group of people who are in your target audience and who have expressed appreciation for the content you share because it is relevant and useful to them. They trust, respect and like you enough and are happy to share your content with their networks, often with praise and unsolicited accolades.

One way to benefit from an influencer tribe is to personally invite them to review the content you publish and then if they appreciate the content, ask them to share it forward to their network.

I build influencer tribes through face to face conversations and/or through personal phone calls. I sometimes email them the content I would like them to review & share. You have to be respectful of their time and not overwhelm them with content, however, you also have to be consistent in order for them to stay aware of new relevant and useful content you publish.

One problem with an influencer tribe is over time even those who really appreciate you and your content will become less engaging and helpful because of other demands on their time. This requires you to keep looking for and inviting new members to your influencer tribe.

A benefit of using an influencer tribe is if you build your tribe correctly, your content will be relevant to their networks as well.

Building your brand and a dynamically growing network of people who trust, respect and like you for your ideas, perspectives, and content, takes a lot of work. However, it can be rewarding in many ways.

Success as an author occurs when you consistently publish meaningful, relevant and useful content your target audience looks for as quickly as you publish it.

I remember one of my favorite bloggers who published a post every Monday. I followed him for years and on one Monday I did not see his post. I called him to find out what had happened. He told me I was the third person to call him and that he had failed to hit the publish button on Sunday night. This author did not need to use Over-Sharing, Manic-Tagging, Click-Bait or an Influencer Pod to get his content read. He had organically built an influencer tribe by consistent publishing great content they wanted to read and then share forward.

Consider who your target audience is, what content they want to consume, and get serious consistently publishing content for them. You’ll see real organic success if you focus your content on their needs and interests. Who knows, you could also organically build your own influencer tribe.

Teddy

10 Ways to Engage on LinkedIn

Having an absolutely fabulous LinkedIn Profile is a great step towards using LinkedIn as a business tool. Congratulations if you have a fabulous profile.

Growing a highly relevant and meaningful LinkedIn Network is another great step towards creating value using LinkedIn as a business tool. Congratulations if you are building a great LinkedIn Network.

However, it’s engagement in and beyond LinkedIn that provides the greatest benefits.

Here are 10 ways to engage in LinkedIn (and beyond) and the benefits of each:

#10 – Birthday notifications. Many ask, “Why does LinkedIn think it’s useful to notify us of our connection’s birthdays?” I believe the LinkedIn birthday notifications are a great way to engage with our primary LinkedIn Connections.

I won’t acknowledge every birthday, however daily I look at these notifications to see if there is someone in the list I want to talk with, who may be using LinkedIn and will get my birthday note.

I also will not use the default button ‘Say Happy Birthday’  That is not real engagement, it’s just button pushing. I always go to their LinkedIn Profile and either send them a message, an email or I call them, depending on my relationship with them.

Done properly acknowledging a prospect or client’s birthday can be a good way to start or restart a conversation.

#9 – New Job/Role notifications. This notification can be inaccurate sometimes, however for my prospects and important clients, I will take the time to confirm the notification and then acknowledge the change in their career or business.

As with the birthday notification, I’ll either use a LinkedIn message, email or phone call based on my relationship with the connection.

I verify the job/role announcement from their LinkedIn Profile and depending on the change and my relationship with the LinkedIn Member, I will use either a LinkedIn message, email or phone call to contact them and chat about the change.

Again, this is a great way to start or restart a conversation with our LinkedIn Connections.

#8 – Like, Comment, or Share their Company Page content.  Typically LinkedIn Company Page content is published and monitored by the marketing department. However, I follow the LinkedIn Company pages of my prospects and my clients, mostly to stay aware of any business updates or activities of these companies.

Seeing interesting posts from my target companies gives me the opportunity to engage on this content and even to @mention my prospects or clients in comments or shares of the content, which will notify them when I do this.

This engagement can show my prospects and clients that I care enough to pay attention to their companies and as indicated before to create an opportunity to start or restart a beneficial conversation.

#7 – LinkedIn Messages. LinkedIn messaging is the least useful direct 1:1 communications method to engage with our LinkedIn Connections. However, these messages can still be useful engagement, when used properly.

I’ll test the response from a new LinkedIn Connection by sending them a LinkedIn message regarding a company success or press release I discover online. If they respond then I know they are paying attention to LinkedIn messages. If they don’t respond then I know LinkedIn messaging is not as important to them.

I try not to use LinkedIn messaging with a connection if they did not respond to my last message.

Some of our LinkedIn Connections will not engage in LinkedIn messaging. Some won’t use email or text messaging either. What we need to do is discover what communication method is the best for different LinkedIn Connections and when we need to message them, use the platform they prefer.

The benefit of LinkedIn messenger is it’s quick and easy, however only truly useful if the other person uses it as well.

#6 – Introduce your LinkedIn Connections to each other. Engagement with our LinkedIn Network should not be all about us or our business. Engaging with our connections in ways that help them is important to do. One way to do this is to make introductions.

I enjoy introducing my LinkedIn connections to each other, for meaningful reasons. Done properly these introductions can create business, career and/or community value for the LinkedIn Members we introduce to each other.

If you purposefully introduce two people to each other and something great comes from the introductions, these connections could be greatly appreciative, and they could reciprocate in the future. Remember though, never help someone else with the explicit expectations of something in return. This will not work well at all.

I usually make these introductions through email, not LinkedIn messaging.

#5 – Like, comment or share their personal shares/comments. When someone acknowledges us for the content we share by engaging on it, we are appreciative.

Furthermore, when we engage on our LinkedIn Connection’s content we create the opportunity to be discovered for our own expertise, skills, opinions, and perspectives.

There are three ways to engage directly on content we find in the LinkedIn newsfeed and in LinkedIn Groups:

1 – Like – Liking content and comments in the newsfeed or in Groups is a simple way to let your LinkedIn Connection know you saw and appreciate the content or comment.

2 – Comment –  Commenting on content or replying to a comment is a good way to actually join the conversation. Doing so creates the potential to be discovered as an authority in the conversation when you engage in meaningful and useful ways.

3 – Share – Sharing the content your LinkedIn Connections posts creates the potential for the rest of your LinkedIn Network to discover this content. This is a great way to provide value to the author of the content and to help your network at the same time.

You can also share your LinkedIn Connection’s content outside of LinkedIn as long as they made the post public. If there is a share button on the post, it’s public and shareable.

Remember, never engage on any content that could diminish your professional brand.

#4 – Immediately Engage upon connecting on LinkedIn. Just as when meeting someone new in real life, we don’t exchange business cards and then walk away. We should strive to strike up a conversation.

Networking on LinkedIn works best when we engage immediately. I do this a few different ways.

If I get an invite to connect from someone I do not know, I message them with this message:

“Hello {NAME}.

Thanks for the invite to connect.

Please remind me, have we met or talked yet, or has someone referred me to you.

If you are interested in LinkedIn training or coaching, please let me know what type of support you need, individual or group.

I look forward to your reply.

Thanks,

Teddy Burriss”
###

BTW – I give them 1 week to respond to my query. If they don’t then I ignore the invitation to connect.

Once I accept the invitation from another LinkedIn Member, I follow up with a phone call, email or a LinkedIn message.

I’ll call the new connection if I can easily find their phone number and they are highly relevant to my business goals. I’ll make the conversation all about them until I get permission to talk about myself. I may invite them to a follow-up conversation if they would like.

If I don’t have a phone number, I’ll send hem an email again, making the conversation all about them, possibly with the offer to talk later if they would like.

If I don’t feel the new LinkedIn Connection is highly relevant to my business goals, I’ll send this LinkedIn message:

“Thanks for the LinkedIn Connection {name}. I appreciate this.  

Feel free to message me on LinkedIn with any question about using LinkedIn as a business tool. The questions I get, and answer, often allow me to create a blog post or video on a new topic.

Have a great day

Teddy Burriss
Burriss Consulting, Inc.
LinkedIn Coach & Trainer
skype: tlburriss
xxx-xxx-xxxx
me@me-again.com”
###

The reason I invest this time in the initial messaging is so I can move a connection into a basic relationship, where possible and relevant.

#3 – Email Messages. Every engagement with our prospects or clients does not need to be done within LinkedIn. We need to communicate with our network in the ways they want. Today, email is still considered a primary business messaging tool.

Email messages can be useful for sharing ideas and information your LinkedIn network could benefit from seeing. Use email in the process of developing a relationship, prior to moving into the sales steps.

Again, remember to make the email message in context to your connection until you get permission to move the conversation to about you and your business. You could end the message with a call to action to continue the conversation later if they would like.

 

#2 – Phone Calls. I will periodically call my LinkedIn Connections if they are highly relevant to my business.

Sometimes if my call is the first one with a specific connection, I’ll start the conversation with these words: “Hi {Name}, I looked at my notes and do not see that we have talked yet, so I decided to call and say hello. Do you have just a moment?”

I’ll ask the other person a few questions about themselves, their company and their role in the business. If I don’t get invited to share about myself, I’ll end to a conversation with an offer to contact me directly if they ever want to talk about how I could help them in regards to my business.

I do this to ‘poke’ my LinkedIn connection and to look for opportunities to move my connections into a meaningful conversation, hopefully, business related.

#1 – Meet IRL (in real life). I firmly believe the best manner of engaging is what I call, knee cap to knee cap, i.e., face to face, or in person.

Therefore, where possible and relevant I’ll ask my prospects and clients to meet in person.

One way I do this is when I travel out of town, I’ll look to see who I know in that town and I’ll let them know I’m coming to town and ask if they have a few minutes to meet.

I’ve discovered for myself that asking 15-20 people each time I travel if they want to meet will usually get at least one person to accept the invite.

Summary:

There are two primary reasons I invest time in these activities.

The first reason is for relationship development with my most important viewers, aka prospects and clients. Engaging with them, about them and their business and/or their interests is a great way to nurture the relationship.

The second reason I invest time in these engagement activities is to develop my reputation in context to what I engage on. Getting into conversations with my prospects and clients and sharing my ideas and perspectives allows me to demonstrate my experiences and skills, thus position myself as an authority in the space I engage in.

Build a professional LinkedIn Profile.

Grow a highly relevant LinkedIn Network.

And, don’t forget to engage with your prospects and clients in many different ways, relevant to them and the work you do.

/Teddy

 

 

Should I subscribe to LinkedIn Sales Navigator

Watch the YouTube Video that answers this question, or read below:

Here is my written response to this question:

The quick answer is this:

If you are serious prospector who needs an application to do focused searches and track prospecting activities, you should consider LinkedIn Sales Navigator.

A Serious Prospector uses LinkedIn Search tools multiple times every week and wishes there were just a few more filters available and features available.

Hitting the Commercial Use Limit too early in the month is not a reason to use Sales Navigator. You could use Business Premium to overcome that limitation.

If you think you need Sales Navigator, I recommend committing to a two month evaluation of the application, subscribing month to month rather than for an annual plan. You’ll get the first month for free if you do a 30 day eval. Give yourself two months to validate your needs and that you will consistently use the application.

Then become highly familiar with the application.

Here are a few features you will want to experiment with to get the greatest value from LinkedIn Sales Navigator:

  1. Saved Accounts – If your prospecting focuses on businesses, save accounts and then focus on the people in the businesses you are tracking.
  2. Saved Leads – Research the people in accounts who are relevant to your prospecting. Save the ones you want to pay attention to in Sales Navigator.
  3. Build structured Tags – Do this up front. Having a tagging philosophy helps you manage your prospecting activities easier.
  4. Experiment with Sales Navigator navigation. It is somewhat different than LinkedIn and you will need to switch back and forth between the two. There are also cool functions hidden behind windows and the various three dot menus (…)
  5. Experiment with Sales Navigator Filters and the integration of Boolean Strings in appropriate filters. Building powerful search strings is one key value of LinkedIn Sales Navigator
  6. Experiment with Saved Searches in Sales Navigator and LinkedIn. You can have up to 3 saved searches in each interface. Create unique saved searches across both platforms. Use the search results.
  7. Experiment with Sales Navigator and LinkedIn messaging. They are currently still stand alone systems. Messages sent via SN do not show up in LI, and visa versa.
  8. Experiment with the Mobile Apps. You’ll want to be able to efficiently use these apps. Learn what you can and should do using them and what you should not use them for because of compressed functionality.
  9. Build the use of Sales Navigator into your sales processes. You should be using Sales Navigator and LinkedIn within all of your sales processes, including calling and emailing targets, prospects and/or clients.
  10. Pay Attention to your Social Selling Index. Yes, it’s primarily a sales tool to get you to subscribe to Sales Navigator, however your SSI Score and other LinkedIn KPIs are a good measure of your activities.

If you want to discuss the benefits of using Sales Navigator as a prospecting tool and how I could help your sales team create success using these tools, grab a slot on my calendar and let’s talk about your goals.

Teddy