Archive for May, 2009

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Awhile ago, the history of the LinkedIn was the center of discussion. Now it is time to look forward and see what we can expect in the future. There can be some points of time where things are really slow in LinkedIn and may go as far as discouraging you from using the service. No need to be discouraged too soon because LinkedIn is constantly at work in bringing in more features that should convince more people to join and existing members to stay. Before we get into the heart of things, let’s take a look at LinkedIn’s current state.

LinkedIn has recently broke the 35,000,000 users registered barrier and the number continues to grow and remember that just about all these people are professionals with many of them having high earnings yearly. The number of industries that these users represent is also growing. LinkedIn doesn’t have any problems with growth and it is obvious that more professionals will give LinkedIn a shot because of its unique service.

Now it is time to see what to expect from LinkedIn in the future. Knowing the future is important for your career so you can plan and adapt to the changes immediately and keep your career in an upward direction.

More Mainstream Exposure

Give it a couple of years and you won’t need to tell all your friends and former colleagues about LinkedIn anymore. LinkedIn has gained so much exposure that people that are looking for job directories should bump into LinkedIn before trying other job directory websites. That shouldn’t stop you from using the invite system right now because it is a wonderful tool in growing your network. Several 3rd party applications like Digsby – an instant messenger client that was mentioned earlier also include Digsby support which is a sign of LinkedIn’s ongoing progress.

Additional Job Directory and Social Networking Improvements

Other social networking websites and job directories are constantly making improvements to keep up with the current trend and competition. Most of these websites aim to give users the best experience and LinkedIn won’t allow itself to be left behind. LinkedIn already did the major move by unveiling its API and a few useful applications. More applications should follow in the not-so-distant future making it a lot easier for existing members to be productive.

More Job Opportunities

Many countries around the world are doing everything they can in creating new jobs for people to get themselves into. Since LinkedIn’s popularity is rapidly increasing especially in the US, more people will lean on LinkedIn in finding their dream job. This will encourage employers to exert more effort in hiring people online using LinkedIn channels.

The future of LinkedIn is looking pretty bright from here. There is no way to tell what exactly will happen to LinkedIn in the future until some blog entries are posted highlighting developments. Considering their success from the launch, LinkedIn will most likely amplify their success and add more improvements that will benefit the users.

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There are so many businesses out there that started before the advent of the internet and are still going strong even today. But even the strongest businesses need to make changes to adapt to the online market or else competitors will gain the edge and these businesses that refuse technological change will end up fading away. With the current economic issues, more companies are striving to make that huge leap and take their business to the digital world.

Transitioning your business to the online world is by no means a simple task. You need to first analyze your current business flow and see how that can fit on the web. Then you need to a professional design website that represents your business for brand awareness. Some minor adjustments to your logo and branding may be needed as well. This is just some of the things you need to do to make the jump. Although it is not impossible to do, the whole process easily discourages business owners especially if they are not very computer literate or not willing to invest so much in making the transition.

Thanks to LinkedIn, many tools that are offered free from its service can be used to easily place your business on the map. Here are some easy tips for starters on how to set things up right away.

Fill up your Professional Profile

As a business owner, you are face of your business and people will be checking you out to see the person behind the business that you are trying to promote. Make sure all of your information is as complete and accurate as possible. Include things that will impress viewers like your history and the company history as well as major milestones that you have personally took part of. Logos and other elements that you used to promote your business always helps.

Network with all of your Current and Past Colleagues

Although your profile can make a great impression, not everyone will take your word for it and if you are new in LinkedIn, you need to do more than just completing your profile. There should be some people that are familiar with you professionally and the business that you are representing. See if those people are in LinkedIn by using its search facilities. Find any professionals that you know and trust to convince other people that your information is indeed true. If you can’t find anyone, you can invite them too and build your businesses together. Don’t limit yourself to just colleagues; reach out to your former clients and get them in your contacts list.

Join LinkedIn Groups

Even the newest LinkedIn users can be exposed to hundreds if they get into the LinkedIn groups. Join big groups that are similar to your business description and see how others think. Remember that you joined LinkedIn to set up your business and give it exposure.

These simple steps should already jumpstart your business and the steps never involved any complicated tasks like building a website. But if you want to make it big in LinkedIn, learning these skills will help greatly and can be surprisingly easy to do. Observe other businesses that are similar to yours and observe how they use LinkedIn and adapt.

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After a few months of constantly using LinkedIn, you can probably consider yourself a natural in LinkedIn. Your profile should be pretty complete by now and you should have several trusting connections that serve as your basic building blocks in launching your professional career online. Never stop there and don’t hesitate to move forward because LinkedIn is a lot bigger than you think. There are more experienced LinkedIn users that make use of all the features and the long term efforts really pay off in their career. Here are some ways to add some power to your business game.

Uplift your Profile Even More

There will always be room for improvement in your profile. Although you can say that your profile is complete and looks professional enough to please people, using strong adjective words in certain parts won’t hurt and may even deliver bigger impacts to professionals that have also made a good profile. If you cannot find the right words, try to learn from other power users and see how they do it. Sometimes you might end up starting your profile from scratch.  Your profile should never be static though because outdated profiles do not impress very well. Any changes or highlights that have taken place should be posted right away so others can track your progress.

Be Open with Your Information

You never know what others will ask you if they see some information lacking despite your claims that your profile is complete. Don’t wait for them to ask for these things, but try to bring the important information to them. Initiate invitations to people you are willing to connect to and make use of the LinkedIn badge so you can put it in your other social networking sites and blogs that you use. One of the goals in LinkedIn is making sure your full profile is seen by as many people as possible.

Join Several LinkedIn Groups

Some people view LinkedIn groups as a place where the common folks can get together make new connections. It can also be a place where new discussions and topics can be shared amongst each other to gain more experience and learn new things. Also, you are not by any means restricted to just a single group. Diversify yourself and join multiple groups to gain more exposure. With your updated profile, the chances of people contacting you are high.

Ask and Answer Questions

LinkedIn’s very own LinkedIn Answers is an excellent place to help other professionals get their questions answered. Helping people can be rewarding and may earn you some new partners that you can learn from. Spending even just a few minutes every day can really put your profile on the spotlight. Just be sure to answer questions that you are absolutely sure of. Understand your greatest strengths and use it to help others that are weak in the topic.

Once you have done all these things and stay consistent, more people should be contacting you which is always a good thing. When you are in that position, you can go even further by checking out the upgrade plans that LinkedIn offers so you can become more of a power user that helps power businesses all with the help of a special service.

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When you join a social networking site or online dating website, what is the first thing that you do right after you activate your account? Of course you’ll find the latest picture of yourself and upload it serving as your primary picture and find other nice pictures to back it up in case people are interested. Then you would proceed in filling up all of the fields available like your age, birthplace, birthday, interests, favorites, hobbies, and other things that would give others a better idea on the kind of person you are. Social networking sites and online dating websites have a common feature that allows others to match people with others based on the interests and other profile fields in order to connect with new people.

Not all people like to do it this way as the more private individuals would rather leave things blank or put bogus information. That is entirely up to them and there is no rule on how to use these types of services.

But when it comes to online job directories, filling up your profile with accurate information is an absolute must if you want to hire people for your business or be hired in another. The more information that you have, the more likely visitors will be impressed and decide to message you for productive reasons.

With LinkedIn, it is even more important since LinkedIn has the features of both social networking sites and online job directories. In addition, the network is full of millions of professionals around the world so your profile must be perfect and complete to give that huge impression.

Filling up your profile is as easy as reaching the 100% mark in filling up all the fields. But it doesn’t end there because the actual content of what’s written counts more than the completeness of everything. LinkedIn allows a 120 character description for your professional headline which will be displayed under your name in your profile. Don’t waste it by putting a simple and boring description of you. Perk it up by adding some action and depth to it to leave a quick impression inviting the viewer to read more including the description which also counts.

Your profile description should be told in a story format where the summary covers all aspects and highlights the best in you. Blend in both the professional and personal aspects of you in a nutshell. Avoid repeating stuff that is found in your resume as it will count as redundant information which is not professional.

There is also an update box where you can post small notes that all people connected to you can see. Make good use of this box and show that you are very active in LinkedIn and invite people to follow what you are going through. Active people are more likely to land new connections and tighten the relationship with existing connections.

Once you feel confident about your profile, you can continue building your network as it will reflect your profile as well. Don’t forget to update it regularly when changes are necessary. Having a fully built LinkedIn profile is very rewarding and should definitely put you on the center stage of professionals.

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I used the paid job listing service. I forwarded the job description to my entire LI network. One person, a good friend, saw it and passed it on to someone in his office.  At the time, the employee did not have a LinkedIn profile. Without LinkedIn we would not have hired her, so she benefited from LinkedIn even though she wasn’t a member!  (She is now!)

How I hire contractors on LinkedIn: I use advanced search. I select the industry “Events Services”. I sort by “Relationships and Recommendations”. I set the Location to “Located In or Near” and enter the specific information.  Then I browse the results.

On the results page I click on people whose headlines are relevant to what I am seeking.  When I search, I have found that sometimes people suppress their names. It will just show their headline, for example “Events Services Professional”. I am very unlikely to pursue that person for work. I like the transparency that LinkedIn provides and people should be showing me information about themselves.

Once I visit the potential contractor’s profile, I look for a few things: how they describe themselves, how closely are they connected to me, how many recommendations do they have, what is their educational background and what is their work experience.

Another thing that would make me say “next” is that the person has only a limited amount of information on their profile. I like to see complete profiles so I know more about the person and that they are diligent.

Top 3 LinkedIn Tips:

1. Add people you know and trust.

2. Spend the time to build your network.

3. Be clear about what you want when making requests.

Thanks to Andrew Long of www.criticalpathfinders.com for sharing his LinkedIn success in hiring.

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It is highly likely these days that people who are heavily into internet marketing or anything related to making money online in a professional fashion is familiar with LinkedIn. There could be a possibility that the person is already on LinkedIn as their site has over 35 million members and growing. Once you have finally joined the crowd and started getting comfortable with LinkedIn, you’ll notice that LinkedIn doesn’t offer any opportunities to make money online, yet if you observe some of the profiles there, you’ll realize that people are making money. How could this be?

Well making connections with other professionals isn’t the only reason why some people are using the LinkedIn service. People also go there to advertise their business opportunities and affiliate programs. LinkedIn doesn’t pay people to do it, but rather people use LinkedIn as a springboard in making more money in the programs that really pay. Actually, people utilize a variety of different grounds to boost their affiliate programs or online business. You can’t make money without people so you have to go where all the people are and LinkedIn is one nice place to be when you need people.

But what makes LinkedIn really different is the common ground that all these members are in. Other social networking websites like MySpace and Facebook also provide a decent springboard in connecting with others and possibly boosting income potential and there are far more registered users in both of these networks and some others too. However, LinkedIn is composed of professionals that have personal incomes over $150,000. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to have that income to be a member, but this general statistic gives you a great opportunity in bringing these people on your side so you can build your income and eventually be part of the many individuals that have found success in LinkedIn.

Just like other social networking sites, LinkedIn is by no means a ticket to getting you really rich overnight. You will still need to be patient especially if you have a small network and are still getting started. You also need to have good communication skills in supporting the people that you meet in LinkedIn as they may become your partners one day. Consistency is also a factor in making things happen if you wish to use LinkedIn to make your business grow.

You don’t need to have an online business or affiliate program to make a lot of money with the help of LinkedIn. If you are a blogger and you have Google AdSense, you can link your blog to LinkedIn and get your contacts to your blog. If you have skills at selling and actually have stuff to sell, you can also use LinkedIn as a gateway to your online store. There are plenty of profile options that can connect LinkedIn to anything online business related.

You will never know what the individuals are up to until you check out their profile. Some have aims to help people make money while others are seeking some professional help in growing their income. Find those people and team up with them and slowly make money in LinkedIn over time.

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