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The Problem With LinkedIn

One blogger has said LinkedIn is like the public library – People go there, but not often – and if they do, they don’t talk. 

This is a great analogy for potential pitfalls with LinkedIn.  If it’s a social network specifcally meant for business, many people enter the site for the wrong reasons.  Whether those reasons are simply because everyone else is, or to somehow gain an edge (if you’re not active I don’t see how) – it demonstrates that in order for a social network to fulfill its function, people must be channeling communications with each other in a way where function follows form (take that Louis Sullivan).

LinkedIn has strategically structured the site’s function to network for business connection purposes.  Sure, your data is your own, it’s personal, but make it work for you within LinkedIn.  It makes sense that the goofy games and add-ons found in facebook are absent.  However, it seems because facebook has had such a widespread growth across demographics, its platform has become synonomous with general users as to what a social network actually is and worse, how those users behave in it.  I wonder if users translate the general “rules” of business at the office when they log in to LinkedIn.

For the entrepreneur specifically, LinkedIn gives you potential to hundreds of professionals looking for a product or service you might offer.  You also have one place where the possibilities of contacting experts is very fast and easy.  It has the potential to be a powerful tool, but I’m skeptical many users are using the social network properly to its potential.

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LinkedIn Applications – Are they worth it?

Currently, there are a limitted number of LinkedIn applications, some of which include a reading list by Amazon, blog linking applications, file/document collaborating applications, slideshow applications, as well as a couple others.  There may be a benefit to using these applications, but how would you use them to make your LinkedIn profile more appealing.

There are many reasons that LinkedIn applications have not made a buzz in the online world.  First of all, LinkedIn was one of the last popular social media website to adobt an application development program.  Second, the applications have to be approved by LinkedIn and have too demonstrate a “clearly compelling value.”  Some people may have a great idea for an application that niche markets may be able to use.  Judging from the list of available applications, LinkedIn will not approve applications that fill a niche market…it will only approve those capable to add value to all users.

MoreLinkedIn applications may bring in more users with different needs, but how can we use the current applications to improve our profiles?  Jason Alba suggests a brilliant idea of using a slideshow application.  He suggests that we create a slideshow focused just on you.  Make the slideshow to compliment your profile and attract viewers to your page.

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LinkedIn: Tips, Tricks and Hacks for Your LinkedIn Profile

I gathered some tips and ways to take your LinkedIn profile up a level. Here are a few of them…

1.  Change the standard URL from linkedin.com/in/13?3a&3d  to a “vanity URL” so instead change it to this style: linkedin.com/in/blakeimeson This will allow you to rank for your name in the SERPs.

2. Use keywords you want to show up in LinkedIn search results for. Use these keywords naturally in your “summary” and list them in your “specialties”.

3. Great tips from Chris Brogan: For your summary…

  • Lead with what I do most.
  • Lead with the type of business I want to do.
  • Move into the reasons why you’d do business with me.
  • Move from there into all the nuances of what I do.

4. Put your LinkedIn URL in your email and forum signatures…

Cross-posted > Finish reading at blakeimeson.com21 LinkedIn Hacks, Tricks and Ways to Make Your Profile Better

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Will Linkedin Replace The Way Executive Recruiting is Conducted?

I like the idea of linkedin as a way to connect with others in the professional world in order to show your network and strength, but I also have many reserves about this principle. First off, I really do not want other people knowing everyone in my network because well my connections are my connections. It is almost like giving away your advantageous network for anyone that is friends with you to use. If you or your other connections abuse your contacts and connections then eventually they will not be their for you when need them.
Next, honestly you may be able to do the initial connection to the person with linkedin, but then all communications after should be a more formal way. Our society is becoming a society that is to informal and it is not a move in the right direction. Certain styles of communication are appropriate for certain things. Email is not not an appropriate form of communication for all business related activities. One of the reasons why face to face meetings as well as letter writing will never go away is the personal factor that gets added and gets appreciated by both sides.
Linkedin will aid in the way executive recruiting is done but it will never replace the old way due to its in-formalness. Linkedin is a grand idea on paper but I do not think it will pan out completely. Last I saw they had 9 million users which is impressive, but not sure how it is profitable as a company. In December of last year they brought in a new CEO formerly of Procter and Gamble in hopes of turning the company around. Only time will tell if they are successful, but I think a lot of these sites were developed out of side projects not as a business initially and that the plan never becomes truly profitable.

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LinkedIn: Facebook for grown-ups

In today’s age, there seems to be such a large desire to be able to communicate with anyone at the drop of a hat. With facebook taking over the younger generations, this leaves older folk wanting something for themselves. Of course why would they want something that merely serves as a form of communication though, when they can use so many facets of the internet to help them out.

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This is where LinkedIn comes into play. This website is like other job search websites in that it is an easy way for employers to find employees, but it offers so much more. You are able to connect with others that you may know, and the more people you know, the more job opportunities are available to you. At the same time though, you are able to communicate in many of the same ways as are offered by facebook.

This is a much more practical social networking website for older generations, and I predict it will become much more commonly used in the near future.

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