Power Formula LinkedIn Blog

Recently I’ve been helping more and more organizations use LinkedIn’s massive database to find their next great employee. If you’re looking to add some quality people to your vacant seatorganization, here are some easy steps you can take to quickly fill your seats.

1. Individual Status Update Box.  Post a status update to ask your network if they know of anyone who is qualified for the position you are attempting to fill. After all, this is your network, and the people in your network know you well and understand the nature of your company. If someone in your network is aware of a prospective candidate, he/she should be able to quickly introduce you to the candidate.

This is the easiest and most efficient way to find your next hire. That being said, I would not post this question in your Status Box every day, but try to limit this question to a couple times per week at different times of the day, maybe even once on the weekend.

To get additional exposure, ask a few of your most connected coworkers or friends to “like” the post. That will get the post in front of their connections as well.

I know a president of a local company who found a new VP for his company in just five days after using the status update to ask his network for help. Think of the time and money that saved him.

2. Company Status Update.  On your company page, post a similar status update. This shares the information with all followers of your company page. Screen Shot 2015-04-11 at 6.17.55 AMJob seekers interested in working for your company are probably among your followers.

To get more viewers of this update beyond your company followers, ask all employees in the company to “like” this update so their connections may view it as well.

Consider “pinning” your status update to the top of the update feed.

3. Company Followers.  Review the list of your company followers periodically to look for good candidates. Several HR directors have told me they found people just by clicking the word “followers” on their company page (located on the top right of the page).

4. Jobs Discussion.  Start a jobs discussion in the groups you belong to, especially groups related to the specific industry your Screen Shot 2015-04-11 at 6.22.37 AMpotential candidate would work in. Consider joining new groups just for the purpose of looking for this candidate if you are not involved in groups where this person would usually hang out.

5. Advanced People Search.  Consider these criteria when building your Advanced People Search:

  • Title. Be sure to try some different words for the same job.
  • Keywords. Here you can get very creative, using things like specialty software, skills, specific industries, territories or regions of the country, etc. Find interview-ready candidates by including words like “pursuing,” “seeking” or “looking.”
  • Company field. Put your competitor’s name(s) here. You can choose current, past or both based on your desire to hire someone who is still there, has left their employ, or either.

This is really helpful. It’s how I found the last employee I hired.

6. Saved Searches.  Once you have landed on a search or searches that brought you some good potential candidates, save that search by clicking the words “Save search” on the top right of the results screen. Then on an ongoing basis LinkedIn will look for more potential candidates by regularly searching your network, including new connections people in your network are making.

7. Alumni Feature.  Use the Alumni feature to find potential candidates who attended a specific school. Fellow alumni of the schools you attended is a good place to start. Access this by clicking the name of one of the schools on your profile or by selecting Find Alumni under the Education tab on your top toolbar and then clicking Students & Alumni when you land on the University Page. Then click the blue Change University button and select the name of the school or typeScreen Shot 2015-04-11 at 6.24.47 AM the name in the Browse by Name box.

You can sort the individuals by:

  • Where they live
  • Where they work
  • What they do
  • What they studied
  • What they are skilled at
  • How you are connected

8. Field of Study Explorer.  This feature sorts users by the major they have listed in their profile. Access this by clicking Screen Shot 2015-04-11 at 6.26.12 AMField of Study Explorer under the Education tab on your top toolbar. Then select one of the majors listed when you click the Explore More button or type a major in the Browse by Name box.

You can sort by:

  • Where they work
  • What they do
  • Where they went to university
  • Where they live
  • How you are connected

9. Job Board.  Finally, the obvious one, post a job on LinkedIn’s Job Board. Currently this costs about $200 per month per posting. There are some multiple-job discounts. Find this by clicking the Jobs tab on the top toolbar and clicking the Post a Job button.

Armed with these steps, you or your HR department (be sure to share this information with them) should be able to fill those vacant seats in a hurry.

If you need specific help, contact me and we can set up a consulting call or you may want to attend one of my upcoming open-to-the-public classes, which includes my demonstration of these specific LinkedIn techniques and lots more.

Is the New LinkedIn Home Page Frustrating You?

Posted on March 28, 2015
Wayne Breitbarth

The masses are saying, Help, Wayne! I want my old LinkedIn home page back!

Sorry, my friends. I know I’m the LinkedIn expert, but I don’t have a simple solution. As a matter of fact, some of the home-page features we’ve grown to love JANE: Shot July 8 ... also, please mark for Vettaare no longer available. We can only hope and pray that they’ll return in some form or fashion. However, I wouldn’t recommend holding your breath until they return.

But let me share with you the new location of some features and a workaround for others. Then I’ll close with a review of one of my favorite features that appears to be long gone.

People You May Know

Hover over the Add Connections icon, scroll downScreen Shot 2015-03-26 at 3.01.08 PM to People You May Know, and click See all to see the full list. That list, by the way, goes on and on.

The list is generated based on information LinkedIn knows about you, and it’s still one of the best ways to find new connections.

Who’s Viewed Your Profile

This is now located in a more prominent place on the home page–center spot on the top of the page. It’s definitely deserving of that prime location, because it’s LinkedIn’s #1 rated feature based on my latest LinkedIn user survey. Be sure to check this often, especially if you’re on a free LinkedIn account, because you only get to see the last five people who checked you out.

For more information on just what you should do with this information, read my article  “Who’s Viewed Your Profile: LinkedIn’s Top Rated Feature.”

Total Number of First-Degree ConnectionsScreen Shot 2015-03-26 at 3.31.30 PM

This number is directly tied to your success on LinkedIn. Therefore, it’s hard to believe it isn’t displayed as prominently as it once was.

The best way to now find out how many first-level connections you have is to click Advanced on your top toolbar, check 1st Connections in the Relationship column, and then click the blue Search button in the left-hand column. Screen Shot 2015-03-26 at 3.34.40 PM

The number will then be displayed at the top of the screen.

Who’s Viewed Your Updates

Since I’m a numbers guy at heart, I loved the visual statistics we used to get on our status updates (views, shares, “likes” and comments), but for the most part it’s gone. Once in a while your top dashboard will display a single statistic for one of your updates, but it’s too inconsistent and random to be helpful.

So, there you have it. You can start breathing again and be confident that there’s one more thing you can count on in life besides death and taxes–LinkedIn is going to change.

Here’s How to Easily Attract More LinkedIn Company Followers

Posted on March 21, 2015
Wayne Breitbarth

Your LinkedIn company page is a great outlet to share, influence, educate, and attract your target audience—but only after people make the choice to “follow” your company. Here are the best ways to get more company pageSocial network concept: Follow us on digital background followers.

1.  Install a LinkedIn Company “Follow” Button on your website and blog.

2.  Ask people to “follow” your company in your other channels of corporate communication (mail, email, newsletters, advertising, etc.). And it’s kind of lame to simply say, “Please follow our company page on LinkedIn.” Instead, share with them what’s in it for them. For instance, explain what interesting information you are going to make available to followers, like special promotions, job postings, articles, video, checklists, events, etc.

3.  Get more employees from your company to join LinkedIn, Screen Shot 2015-03-20 at 1.21.38 PMand be sure they list your company as their current employer. Your company logo will then show up on their profile, and it will click through to your company page.

4.  Show your employees how to include a link to your company page in their email signature.

5.  Discuss with all employees the importance of “liking” “sharing”  and/or “commenting” on status updates that come from your company page. Your company’s updates will then go to each employee’s network. More views = more followers. (Note: Employees are automatically followers of their employer’s company page.)

6.  Mention and link your company page on your other social media platforms.

7.  “Follow” other companies on LinkedIn, and “share”, “like” and/or “comment” on their status updates. Clients, potential clients, and industry experts are a great place to start–and don’t be surprised if a good share of them follow you back.

8.  Refer to your company page when interacting with people in your LinkedIn industry groups.

9.  Share good, helpful resources and information via company status updates on a consistent basis. If you do this well, over time you will acquire lots of followers. LinkedIn has shared great information on what people want to hear about in “15 Tips for Compelling Company Updates” and “LinkedIn Company Pages: Status Update Best Practices.” 

10. Attract new followers by offering unique content that is only available to your LinkedIn company page followers.

In three weeks, I picked up close to 300 followers Free PowerFormula LinkedIn eBookfor my company page when I shared my free ebook 10 LinkedIn Mistakes Companies Make with that audience before I released it to anyone else.

If you haven’t gotten your copy of 10 LinkedIn Mistakes Companies Make (and how to fix them before they damage your company’s reputation), click here to do so.

Oh, yeah–as long as we’re talking about it, why not take this opportunity to follow my company pageYou never know what I’m going to send your way. Click here and then click the yellow Follow button.

Do You Want to Make Sure Your Next Trip REALLY Matters?

Posted on March 15, 2015
Wayne Breitbarth

Whether it’s travel for fun, work or maybe a little of both, iStock_000018934957Smallmost of us want to make sure that when we invest our hard-earned time and money to head out of town, we get the best bang for our travel buck. For me, that means trying to spend time with as many important people as I can fit into my schedule.

LinkedIn has some great ways to help you find those potential candidates who just might make a big difference down the road.

So grab your itinerary, your map, your calendar, and your LinkedIn account, and let’s go searching.

Find your connections

Click the Connections tab on the top toolbar, go down to the Filter by menu, and select Location. Type in theScreen Shot 2015-03-12 at 1.50.04 PM name of the city you’re interested in. (LinkedIn users choose a major metropolitan area in the Location part of their profile).

LinkedIn will display all of your first-level connections in that city or area. You can then message these people through LinkedIn either one at a time or in groups of up to 50 and let them know you’d like to make a real, old-school connection with them on your upcoming trip.

Find your connections’ connections

These are your second-level connections, and this step requires a little help in the form of an introduction from your friends (your first-degree connections). However, many times this introduction is exactly what makes the meeting so effective.

Click the word AdvancedScreen Shot 2015-03-12 at 1.48.02 PM on the top toolbar. From the Advanced People Search screen, select 2nd Connections in the Relationship column, and then scroll down to the Location box in the search criteria column on the left. Change that entry from Anywhere to Located in or near, and enter the zip code of the city you’re going to be visiting. Select the radius you desire.

Before you click the Search button, you may want to filter this list further by adding additional search criteria, like Company, Title, College or other keywords you are pretty sure your targeted audience would include somewhere on their profile.

Once LinkedIn serves you up this list of “friends of friends,” look through the profiles and decide whom you want to meet. Then contact your shared connection and ask whether he/she will virtually introduce you to this person prior to your trip. Once you’ve been introduced, you’re on your way to starting what will hopefully be a mutually beneficial relationship.

Find your classmates

Scroll over the down arrow to the left of the large, white search box on your top toolbar and select Universities. Type in the name of the school you attended. When you click the name of the school, you’ll be forwarded to the school’s University page. Choose Students & Alumni, and then go to the Where they live column and either click the name of the cityScreen Shot 2015-03-12 at 1.44.15 PM you’re visiting or type the name of the city in the search box that appears when you click the magnifying glass.

If you filter by date of attendance or year of graduation, you can narrow the list even further.

Find your fellow group members

If you go to the Members tab of your favorite Screen Shot 2015-03-12 at 1.53.43 PMgroups and type your travel destination in the search box, LinkedIn will display all the group members who live in that city.

Find people at your targeted companies

Scroll over the down arrow to the left of the large, white search box on your top toolbar, select Companies, and thenScreen Shot 2015-03-12 at 1.41.51 PM type the name of a company you’re interested in. When you click on the company’s name, you will be forwarded to their Company page.

If you click the number to the left of Employees on LinkedIn, you’ll be forwarded to the Advanced People Search page, which is a listing of all the employees. Screen Shot 2015-03-12 at 2.11.46 PMUnder Location, select your travel destination or click the +Add icon and type it into the search box. LinkedIn will then display all the employees at the company who have LinkedIn accounts and live in that city.  Feel free to use additional filters for Title, School, Keywords, etc.

After doing all this work, you may need to extend your trip a day or two!

Happy travels!

How to Find Your Most Productive LinkedIn Keywords

Posted on March 8, 2015
Wayne Breitbarth

Are you having trouble finding the best keywords to use in your profile? Are you struggling to find the right words to put in the Search box when you’re looking for new customers, great employees, or perhaps your dream job?

Well, you’re not alone! But I’m here to help. It’s a bit like a treasure hunt. It takes a little time, but it’s easy if you know where to look–and the rewards are well worth the effort. You may hit the jackpot!


Here are some places where you can find great keywords on LinkedIn:

Your competitors’ individual profiles

  • Headline
  • Summary
  • Experience titles
  • Experience description
  • Skills & Endorsements
  • Interests
  • Groups & Associations

Your competitors’ company pages

  • Company Overview
  • Specialties

Your industry groups

  • Group name
  • Group profile description

Search LinkedIn job postings

Click Jobs on the top toolbar, enter your job title or job position (or the title of people you are searching for), and then click the blue Search button. Review the details of the postings and look for critical keywords that you may want to include in your profile or in future searches you perform.

Search in the LinkedIn Skills database

Go to your Skills & Endorsements section and click the +Add skill button. Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 8.39.10 AMThen scroll down to the data entry box that states What are your areas of expertise and enter one of your known keywords, like accounting. Then LinkedIn will automatically display the other popular skills (a/k/a keywords) that you might want to consider using both in your profile and in your searches.

Search for skills using the Alumni feature

Click the down arrow to the left of your large, white Search box in your top toolbar and select Universities from the drop-down choices. Type the name of the college you attended (although you are not limited to your alma mater). Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 8.35.02 AM

When the school appears in the drop-down, click that entry. You should then be on that institution’s LinkedIn University page.

Click the Students & Alumni tab. Then select your occupation (or the occupation of the person you are looking for) from the What they do column. Then use the right arrow in the middle of the list to access the second page. Take a look at the entries in the What they are skilled at column.

If you want to try something that’s fun (and very helpful as well), try loading a group of the words you’ve just found into a word-cloud program. I use wordle.net.

Here are the word-cloud results from a LinkedIn job-seeker event I did the other day when searching for keywords for a group of people in the regulatory affairs industry. Screen Shot 2015-02-24 at 4.17.53 PMI cut and pasted the information (Headline, Summary and Job Experience sections) from the profiles of  three people who had the job these job seekers wanted. This helped them zero in on some of the words they should consider having in their profiles. The more prominently the word appears, the more often it appeared in those profiles.

For more free keyword and searching tips, check out the following downloadable resources in the Guides and Worksheets section on my website:

  • LinkedIn Keyword Worksheet
  • LinkedIn People Searching: Your Ticket to Improved ROI

Leave a comment if you’ve found other great ways to identify the keywords that have helped you hit the LinkedIn jackpot.

I Hope You’re Not Making This BIG LinkedIn Mistake

Posted on February 28, 2015
Wayne Breitbarth

How long has it been since you’ve thought about what location and industry you’ve selected on your LinkedIn profile?iStock_000025083802Small

Many people haven’t given it a moment’s consideration since setting up their profile many years ago. I suggest now might be a good time to reconsider what you have selected so you can be sure your choices are helping you accomplish your current goals and your goals going forward.

The options are limited but very important

LinkedIn allows you to choose only one industry and one location. Since many of us wear more than one hat and do business nationally or even globally, this can be quite challenging.

Secondly, these two fields may seem insignificant to many users, but they are very important in terms of how people search for us not only on LinkedIn but on Google and other search engines as well.Screen Shot 2015-02-27 at 8.22.34 AM

These two fields are tied directly into a specific search criteria in LinkedIn’s advanced people searching function. They are frequently used by people who are looking for your products, services, expertise, and–especially if you’re looking for a job–YOU.

How to choose the best location and industry

Start by putting yourself in the shoes of people who are searching for you or someone like you. What location and industry might they put in the advanced search boxes? Here are some strategies to help you get started:

  • If you’re a job seeker and thinking about relocating or working in a new industry, use the new location and industry.
  • If you’re a sales professional who sells your products and services in a certain part of the country or world or to a specific industry, consider using that location and industry. In other words, think about your customers’ industries and locations. This may take priority over your personal industry and location.
  • If you’re not seeking a new job and aren’t selling anything, select the broadest but still correct location (e.g., select Greater Milwaukee Area instead of Thiensville, Wisconsin).
  • Check out what other people in your current situation or industry are choosing.
  • If you have multiple industry and location choices that are equally good, consider changing them out from time to time to your alternative choices.
  • Consider mentioning multiple cities, Screen Shot 2015-02-27 at 8.33.18 AMregions or industries in other profile sections to improve your search ranking and your chances of being found. The sections that work well for this would be your Summary, Job Experiences, Job Locations, Interests, and maybe even your Headline if it’s important enough.
  • Share your thought process for your location and industry choices with others at your company, industry associations, networking groups, etc. and get their feedback. There probably isn’t only one correct answer; so getting opinions of other knowledgeable people who know your situation is a no brainer.

There’s a lot to think about, but remember–because of LinkedIn’s limitations, there’s probably no perfect answer. You simply need to make the best decision under the circumstances.

For more important profile strategies, pick up a copy of the second edition of my best-selling LinkedIn book

10 Easy Ways to Promote Your Events on LinkedIn

Posted on February 22, 2015
Wayne Breitbarth

You work hard to plan events for your company,  industry association or favorite iStock_000007449327Smallnonprofit organization, but filling the seats can be a challenge. Here are ten simple ways to use LinkedIn to get the job done:

1.  Send an individual status update.

  • Post several times, sharing details about agenda, speakers, venue, etc.
  • Post at different times of the day and different days of the week.
  • Always include a link to the registration site or attach a copy of the registration brochure to the update.
  • Encourage others involved in the event to “like,” “share” or “comment” for more traction.

2.  Send a company status update.

  • It goes out to company followers, so continue to grow this group.
  • “Pin” a status update to the top of your company feed, and it will stay at the top of your company page.
  • Encourage others in the company to “like,” “share” or “comment” for additional traction.
  • Attach a copy of the registration brochure to the update.
  • Consider paying to sponsor the company update so that it will show up in the feed of your targeted audience.

3.  Target specific first-level connections with a direct message.

  • You are limited to 50 connections at a time for a single direct message.
  • Direct messages are delivered to the recipient’s email account and LinkedIn inbox and are thus more likely to be seen and read.

4.  Share the event in relevant groups.

  • Share your information in the Discussion section in the form of a question.

5.   Upload a PDF or include a link to the event details or registration form in your Professional Portfolio, Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 7.51.30 PMeither in your Summary or the Job Experience entry that correlates with the event.

  • A good description will entice the reader to click and open.

6.  Upload a PowerPoint presentation or video in your Professional Portfolio with event details.

  • It could be as simple as one slide with event details.
  • This has high eye-catching appeal in your profile.
  • The video could include a clip from the previous year’s event or a promo from this year’s keynote speaker.

7.  Include the details of the event in your Summary section.

  • In addition to the event details, you can mention that more details are available in your Professional Portfolio.
  • Consider putting this at the top of your Summary as you lead up to the event.
  • You can include the registration website, but it will not be hyperlinked.

8.  For a period of time leading up to the event, include an event teaser in your Headline.

  • This can be very impactful, but don’t do this for an extended time.
  • Be sure to change back to your day-to-day, keyword-rich Headline right after the event.

9.  Use a special “Project” profile section to feature your event.

  • The title of the event is clickable right through to your registration page.
  • Consider moving this Project section to the top of your profile a week or so before the event.

10.  Use one of the three websites in the Contact Info section of your profile to link people to event details or registration page.

  • Reference the website link in your Summary section.
  • Describe the website link clearly (e.g., “Register for LinkedIn class”).

Follow these easy steps, and your event might just be a sellout.

Are You Curious About the Power of LinkedIn Mobile?

Posted on February 14, 2015
Wayne Breitbarth

Do you like and use the LinkedIn App?

Because I’m frequently asked this question during the Q&A portion of iStock_000051911996Smallmy LinkedIn events, I figured it might be on your mind as well. Thus, here are my thoughts on the opportunities and shortcomings of LinkedIn mobile.

LinkedIn mobile is not just the LinkedIn App

There are currently seven apps in the suite of apps (not all are available for all types of mobile devices):

  • LinkedIn. This is the light version of the LinkedIn site.
  • Connected. This is a daily listing of your connections who have anniversaries, birthdays, job changes, or are quoted in the news.
  • Job Search. This enables you to search and apply for jobs posted on LinkedIn, plus it has a few other job search goodies.
  • Pulse. This is your custom newsfeed from thousands of sources.
  • SlideShare. With this you can view millions of slide presentations in the palm of your hand.
  • Recruiter. This is only available to people who have upgraded to the Recruiter premium membership.
  • Sales Navigator. This is only available to people who have upgraded to the Sales Navigator premium membership.

LinkedIn mobile has real value

The LinkedIn app is very useful when I see people in a room or at the airport and can’t remember either their name or other important information about them. If I remember something about them (name, where they work, etc.), I can search and find their profile. Then when I approach them, I can say something like, Hi Joe. How are things at Harley-Davidson? It’s the perfect way to jog my 57-year-old memory.

In addition, I scroll through my update feed when burning time in waiting rooms or airports. Then I share, “like,” or comment on information I see–which is always a good thing to do.

I also consistently use it to check out company page information. While sitting in the company’s parking lot before a meeting, I can use the company page to see everyone at the company who is in my network. This has helped me launch into some great conversations and given me immediate credibility with the folks I was meeting with.

The Connected app is a very efficient Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 9.07.32 AMway to make sure you don’t miss the most important happenings of the people in your network. Once you’ve tried it, it’s easy to become addicted to this app!

LinkedIn mobile has its limitations

Okay. Let’s be real. Can we really expect to be able to do everything on our little phone that we can do on our laptop or desktop computer, especially the very complex things? I’m pretty sure some day we will, but in the meantime the biggest miss for me is the inability to do any advanced searching with the LinkedIn app.

Also, be careful when using the LinkedIn app in the following ways:

1.  Try not to use the app to send outgoing invitations to join your network. You can now customize the invitation, but it’s hard to figure out how to do it. Therefore, most people will simply click the green check box and send the standard invitation–and you know how much I despise the standard invitation! 

2.  There are lots of truncated sections on the mobile app; in other words, it says Click to see more. Thus, it’s important to be sure you put the most important information in the first sentence or two of each section. This is especially important for the Summary section on your personal profile and the Company Description section on your company page. Clearly describe what you and your company do. The fact that Grandpa started the joint in 1919 and then your dad took over in 1957 is great information and should be shared but not right up front in either of these sections.

3.  Even though you are now able to make profile changes using the app, I highly recommend you avoid doing this. It’s hard to tell what it will actually look like on the site, and grammar and spelling errors are more likely to occur. Stick to making profile changes on your desktop or laptop, and then be sure to check out how those changes look on the app.

4.  If you are using a tablet, I suggest you access the regular site and not the app, because the larger screen will enable you to see most of the information. However, sometimes buttons won’t work on your tablet (for example, when you try to “like” something). There are some inconsistencies that you just have to live with.

LinkedIn mobile is going to be an increasingly important part of the LinkedIn experience

With LinkedIn usage on mobile approaching 50%, you can be sure these apps will continue to be revised and improved, maybe even more often than the site itself. Keep up to date with these changes, and diligently spend time on the app and the site to be sure your brand is represented well no matter which tool people are using to check you out.  

Are You Wasting Your Valuable Time on LinkedIn?

Posted on February 8, 2015
Wayne Breitbarth

When I jump into something new, different or confusing (like LinkedIn), iStock_000019437192SmallI often wonder how other people are using it and how can it help me improve myself or my business. And that’s why I launched my LinkedIn User Survey way back in 2009.

Over the past six years, I have shared with you, my treasured audience, answers to questions like these (2014 results are in red):

  • What percent of the LinkedIn users are paying for a premium account? (18%)
  • How many hours per week are people spending on LinkedIn? (43% spend 0-2 hours per week)
  • How many LinkedIn groups do people belong to? (33% are in 1-9 groups)
  • What is the top rated feature on LinkedIn? (Who’s Viewed Your Profile)
  • What are people saying LinkedIn has helped them with? (74% said “Research people and companies)

Almost 1,000 people shared their opinions with me last year. If you’d like to see the complete results, click here.

2015 LinkedIn User Survey

Now it’s time to fire up the LinkedIn survey machine again, and I’d be honored if you would take iStock_000018913584Smalljust three minutes (I timed it myself) and complete the survey.

As an additional incentive to participate, five lucky winners will receive full access to my new online video-based LinkedIn course Explode Your Revenues Using LinkedIn ($297 value). Also, be sure to complete the check box if you’d like to get the full results of the survey when completed.

To participate in the survey, click this link or cut and paste it into your browser.


Thanks for your continued readership and support. The information you share in the survey will ensure that I can continue to share the most relevant information with you each week.