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Way to go! You finally got that meeting or phone call set up with a person you've been looking forward to talking with. Whether it's a sales call, job interview, donor information session, or just a casual coffee with someone who might be able to help you, you've taken the first step.

But how can you best prepare for this important meeting? Go straight to the person's LinkedIn profile. It's a virtual goldmine of insights about him/her. And knowing this information will significantly increase your odds of getting the results you're seeking.

**Note: You may not be able to do some of these steps on the LinkedIn mobile app.
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10 tips to discover golden nuggets of information

In just a few short minutes, you'll be able to get a pretty good idea about who this person is and what's important to him/her—and you're sure to find an icebreaker topic or two as well.

1.  About (previously called the Summary section). After reading this, you may know precisely what other profile sections you'll want to concentrate on.

2.  Articles & Activity. Check out the content they're writing (articles) and sharing (activity), and you'll surely know what is top of mind to them and what they consider important. This information should help you put together a few discussion topics for your meeting that will really get the conversation rolling.

3.  Media items. If they've uploaded media items, watching a video they're in, reading a document they wrote, viewing a slideshow they prepared, etc. can give you insights into who they are and what's important to them.

4.  Recommendations. Read a few they've received and also some they've written for others. This is priceless information. You'll gain great insight into what people think about them and what qualities they appreciate in people.

5.  Education. If you find a fellow alumnus here, it's usually a home run.

6.  Mutual connections. Take a look at the friends you have in common. You may even want to get ahold of one or two of them to get the scoop on this person. If you're already connected to the person on LinkedIn, do a filtered search into their network to find interesting people in their network to talk about. Click here for a detailed article on how to do this.

7.  Groups. By scrolling through the full list of the person's LinkedIn groups, you can quickly get a feel for their personal and professional interests. To view a list of their groups, click See all at the bottom of their Interests section (which is near the bottom of their profile) and then click Groups.

8.  Accomplishments. In this section the person lays out on a golden platter what he/she is most proud of and/or interested in. These are perfect conversation starters.

9.  Volunteer Experience. This may give you even more insight into where someone's heart is. Don't be afraid to mention this in your discussion with the person. People usually love to talk about the organizations they support.

10.  Experience. Look for companies, careers, etc. that you have in common and thus can leverage when starting a new relationship. You may also find significant volunteer experiences listed here that are great conversation starters.

Keep this list handy and use it as a checklist for all of your upcoming meetings with strangers. Perhaps they won't be quite as "strange" after you're done checking them out!
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SPECIAL OFFER

If you'd like me to help you capitalize on this and other money-making LinkedIn strategies, plus provide an in-depth critique of your LinkedIn profile, sign up for a one-hour, one-on-one consultation with me for the significantly reduced rate of $197.

Book your personal session today at https://www.powerformula.net/one-on-one-linkedin-consultation

This Video Will Help You Crush Your 2019 Goals

Posted on August 10, 2019
Wayne Breitbarth

It's not too late to make a plan to crush your 2019 goals—and LinkedIn can help you do it.

This video and the detailed article below outline five LinkedIn strategies that bring big results—and they can all be accomplished with a free LinkedIn account.

A big thank you to my friends at Patina Solutions for co-hosting and coordinating the webinar event.

Enjoy!

Five LinkedIn strategies that bring big results

After the broad comments, you'll find a link to an article with step-by-step details for executing each strategy.
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1.  Reach out to targeted members of your network

This strategy works well if you've done a good job of building a network that includes some people with whom you have a high level of trust and will thus be more likely to respond to your request.

Do a search of your first-level connections, and use filters like location, title, industry, current company, etc. Then you'll have a great list of people you can contact with a LinkedIn direct message or by email, phone, etc. and invite them to an event, share important industry news, let them know you'll be in their area, or ask for help with your job search.

I find that many people don't take advantage of this strategy because they don't know how to use LinkedIn's advanced search function. Learn how simple it is with this resource:

Additional Resource:  Are You Ignoring Your LinkedIn Connections?

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2.  Leverage the networks of your current clients or other referral sources

This is the ultimate referral strategy on LinkedIn. Once you see who knows whom, you can ask for an introduction.

Start by identifying your connections who are well networked and love connecting people with each other. Next, do filtered searches of their networks, and put together a list of six to twelve people you think could improve your chances of landing a new client or that new job. Then contact your connections and ask them to introduce you to the people you've discovered.

Additional Resource: This LinkedIn Feature Will Really Wow You

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3.  Set up LinkedIn search alerts

I refer to this strategy as your free, 24/7 LinkedIn virtual assistant. When you do advanced people searches and get productive results, set up search alerts. Then you'll receive weekly emails from LinkedIn that will include new people who meet the exact criteria of your saved searches.

The most difficult part is picking the right combination of filters and keywords that will result in the perfect list of targets. But once you've found it, it works like a charm.

If you'd like help executing this powerful strategy, sign up for a virtual, one-on-one consultation with me by clicking here.

Additional Resource:  How to Build a Free LinkedIn Prospect Machine

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4.  Revise your profile to include specific calls to action

Most people's LinkedIn profiles look like resumes—and many times they aren't even good resumes. Don't be one of those people!

Start by thinking of your profile as your main online marketing tool or your weapon to win the professional battle. No matter what your current LinkedIn objective is, you should have several specific calls to action strategically placed in your profile to move readers from being interested to taking action—visiting your website, downloading resources or your resume, viewing video, listening to a podcast, etc.

Additional Resource:  So You Viewed My Profile...Now What?

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5.  Engage directly with LinkedIn users who have viewed your profile or invited you to connect

You'd be surprised how many people do absolutely nothing when others attempt to engage with them on LinkedIn. Granted, there will be spammers who check out your profile or invite you to join their networks, but most people are legitimately interested in engaging with you.

If you're already connected to people who viewed your profile, you may want to send them a note to ask how you can help them.

If you notice that interesting people outside your network have viewed your profile, invite them to join your network and offer them something of value (free quote, white paper, informative video, etc.) or ask if they'd be interested in a phone call or meeting with you.

When you receive an invitation to connect from people you'd like to have in your network, accept their invitation, thank them for reaching out, and propose one of the next steps outlined in the above paragraph.

Additional Resource:  Are the Right People Waiting to Hear From You on LinkedIn?

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Now that you know how easy it is to use LinkedIn to reach your goals, get busy and put some of these strategies into practice. Then on New Year's Eve 2019, you just may be celebrating one of the best years you've ever had.

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SPECIAL OFFER

If you'd like me to work with you on any of these LinkedIn strategies, plus provide an in-depth critique of your LinkedIn profile, sign up for a one-hour, one-on-one consultation with me for the significantly reduced rate of $197.

Book your personal session today at https://www.powerformula.net/one-on-one-linkedin-consultation

 

Are total strangers inviting you to join their LinkedIn networks? This will begin to happen with greater frequency as you become more active on LinkedIn, expand your network, and join larger LinkedIn groups. Some people assume that because you're members of the same group or you have mutual connections, you'll want to connect with them on the first-degree level.

If your LinkedIn strategy is to only connect with people you know and trust, you may choose to immediately ignore invitations from strangers. But I suggest most LinkedIn users should at least take a look at all of their inbound invitations—from strangers, acquaintances, and friends—to see if there might be an opportunity to begin or advance a relationship that could lead to a new business or career opportunity.

First, to see who wants to join your network, click the My Network icon in your top toolbar and then choose See all [number] in the top right corner.

This next step is critically important but often overlooked. Scroll down through your outstanding inbound invitations and look for the people who took the time to write a personal note. Typically, if someone writes a note to me, I will reply, and I have subsequently done business with some of those people. And I'd suggest you respond right away, rather than hitting the Accept button and potentially forgetting to respond later. Do this by clicking the words Reply to [name]. 
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How to respond to an invitation

In addition to sending a personal response, there are two other ways to respond to a LinkedIn invitation to connect. You can:

1. Accept. If you click the Accept button, the person will immediately become a first-degree connection. This is the perfect time to invite him or her to do something that is likely to move your relationship forward. For instance, as soon as I accept someone's invitation, I send a thank-you-for-connecting note and ask if the person would like to begin receiving my free weekly email that provides LinkedIn tips and strategies. I have added literally thousands of people (with their permission) to my weekly email list.

2. Ignore. If you click the word Ignore, the invitation will be deleted from your Inbox and not saved in an archive file of any type. Before deciding to ignore an invitation, I suggest you check out the person’s profile to determine whether there might be a reason to meet him or her.

Consider these options when you decide whether to accept people into your LinkedIn network. Then your network will be made up of only the people you are truly interested in communicating with and potentially doing business with in the future.
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SPECIAL OFFER

If you'd like me to show you other important LinkedIn strategies and help you formulate your personal LinkedIn strategy and also provide an in-depth critique of your LinkedIn profile, sign up for a one-hour, one-on-one consultation with me for the significantly reduced rate of $197.

Book your personal session today at https://www.powerformula.net/one-on-one-linkedin-consultation/.

 

What Are the Best Features of LinkedIn Sales Navigator?

Posted on July 27, 2019
Wayne Breitbarth

Because LinkedIn is putting more limits on the better features of their free accounts, business professionals who use those features to grow their networks and get results are asking me, Is LinkedIn Sales Navigator really worth the $79.99/month?

I've been using Sales Navigator for about five years. Since it's a fairly expensive upgrade, I've put together some facts, figures, and personal thoughts to help you figure out if it's right for you.

Note: These comments do not address all of the Sales Navigator features but merely the ones I feel might justify the significant monthly investment.
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What is Sales Navigator?

It is LinkedIn's stand-alone business development platform that works in conjunction with your regular LinkedIn account. LinkedIn says that Sales Navigator will help you "target the right buyers, understand key insights, and engage with personalized outreach."

Users don't have a separate profile or separate login. You access Sales Navigator by simply clicking the Sales Nav icon, which will appear at the far right of your top toolbar after you upgrade your account.

There are three levels of Sales Navigator, with increased features and capabilities, beginning at $79.99/month. A free, 30-day trial is typically available. Click here to check out the differences between the three options. I pay $79.99 per month, and my comments here relate to that version.
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You should consider upgrading to LinkedIn Sales Navigator if:

You're tired of LinkedIn limiting your people searches each month. If you're taking advantage of LinkedIn's expansive database and doing lots of searches, you've probably reached the commercial use limit. No one outside of LinkedIn seems to know how many searches you can do before reaching the monthly limit, but it sure seems to have been reduced since the Microsoft acquisition. This is the number one complaint I get from people who are hanging onto the free account but should probably consider upgrading to Sales Navigator.

You can avoid the commercial use limit by upgrading to Premium Business ($59.99/mo), but I'm not convinced this upgrade is valuable enough to justify the investment. You cannot avoid the commercial use limit by upgrading to Premium Career ($29.99/mo).

You want more helpful filters when searching for people. As part of Sales Navigator's Lead Builder function, there are currently 24 very specific filters available—and they're adding new ones all the time. This is one of the main reasons you might want to upgrade.

In my opinion, the best filters to help you find just the right people are: Company headcount, Postal code, Years in current position, Years at current company, Posted content keywords, Changed jobs in last 90 days, Posted content in last 30 days.

Searching for people with the free account, where you need to use Boolean search rules, can be quite challenging, but it's very easy with Sales Navigator.

You'd like to save more than three people searches. Once you've done a good job of figuring out the right filters for a people search, it's usually helpful to save those search criteria for future searches. With Sales Navigator, you can save fifteen searches, and LinkedIn notifies you daily, weekly or monthly when new people meet your preselected search criteria.

This is, hands down, one of the most useful Sales Navigator features. It's like having a virtual assistant who's looking for the right people for you 24/7.

You want to send messages (InMails) to people who aren't first-degree connections. Sometimes you just don't want to connect with someone in order to send him/her a message. A Sales Navigator subscription includes an allotment of InMails. I get fifteen InMails per month, and they carry forward if I don't use them all before month end.

You'd like to track only certain people (leads) or companies (accounts) and avoid extraneous information. On your Sales Navigator home page, there is a feed that looks similar to the feed on your regular LinkedIn account but with one big exception—the only information in that feed relates to people (leads) or companies (accounts) you've designated.

In other words, there's no advertising and a lot fewer posts that really don't interest you because you handpicked the people or companies, and you get everything they share because there's no feed algorithm where LinkedIn decides what you want to see.

Also, you can designate people or companies that aren't part of your network. In other words, they don't have to agree to connect with you, but you can still monitor their activity. Then, if you use some of the information you've learned about them, you might be able to convince them to engage with you.

So, as you can see, the answer to the question of whether Sales Navigator is worth the $79.99 or more per month is yes, no or maybe. For me, it's definitely worth it, because I do a lot of searches for prospecting purposes.

If you'd like a personal tour and evaluation of Sales Navigator, sign up here for one of my specially priced $197 one-on-one, one-hour LinkedIn phone consultations. I will share my computer screen with you during the call.

Also, before the call, I will critique your profile and send you a marked-up copy of it, and we can discuss it during the call.

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

 

Are you Seeing Poor Results From Your LinkedIn Company Page?

Posted on July 18, 2019
Wayne Breitbarth

Over 31 million companies have LinkedIn company pages, and that's a great place to start, but you may not get the results you desire from your company page alone. The road to real corporate marketing success begins with company employees presenting a consistent branding message on their personal LinkedIn profiles.

But if you're company management, how can you help your employees share the responsibility for promoting your company's products or services?

It starts with creating LinkedIn best practices guidelines and sharing them with all employees. The guidelines should include profile standards as well as simple LinkedIn activities that will be helpful for the employees as well as the company.

A LinkedIn training session is a quick and easy way to share the guidelines with your employees—and they will be more likely to follow the guidelines if they understand the strategy behind them and see the personal value in addition to the corporate value.

Of course, I've provided LinkedIn training for hundreds of companies and would be happy to assist you and your company as well. Click here to see how I help companies grow their business, make more money, and attract great talent. You can also view testimonials of my many satisfied clients.
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What to include in your company's LinkedIn best practices guidelines

The first six items below are typically one-time profile updates that all employees can quickly and easily perform. The last item includes activities employees should be encouraged to engage in on an ongoing basis.

1.  Photo. Bring in a photographer and get professional headshots. You only get one chance to make a great first impression, and the photo is the first thing people see when they view someone’s profile.

2.  Background photo. Design a standard company background image that all employees can put on their personal LinkedIn profiles. This could include your website address, physical address and phone number, photos of your products or facilities, etc.

3.  Keywords. These are critical on LinkedIn, and if you expect your people to show up in a search, you have to give them a list of five to ten of the most searched-for terms for the company—these are usually your products, services, brands, etc.—and then encourage your employees to place them in the right spots on their profiles.

4.  Standard company description. Share with them one succinct paragraph to be included in their profile's About section (formerly called the Summary section) and two or three more detailed paragraphs to be included in their job description for their current job at your company.

5.  Add media to current job experience entry. Give them videos, slide shows, photos of your best work or products, customer testimonials, etc. that they can display on their profiles by uploading a file or linking to the information.

6.  Each employee’s job entry correctly attached to your company page. Make sure your company logo shows up on every employee's job entry for your company. This is must-have branding.

If it doesn’t show up, it means (1) they added this job entry prior to your business having a company page with a logo attached or (2) they selected the wrong company or no company when adding this entry to their profile.

This is simple to fix. The employee simply edits that job entry and selects the correct company page when LinkedIn autofills as (s)he is typing in your company name.

7.  Sharing, “liking” or commenting on company status updates. This is a bit hard to monitor because it is ongoing and not a one-time profile change. But the more it’s done, the more sets of eyes your company updates are seen by, and I think you'll agree that's a good thing.

For additional LinkedIn company branding ideas, be sure to download my FREE eBook 10 LinkedIn Mistakes Companies Make and How to Fix Them Before They Damage Your Company's Reputation by clicking here. 

Start by creating a dynamic company page, but take it further by getting your employees on board. Then get ready to watch your LinkedIn results soar.

 

There’s Still Time to Make 2019 Your Best Year Ever

Posted on July 13, 2019
Wayne Breitbarth

Are you frustrated with your results thus far in 2019—or have you had a great first half and want to keep rolling through year's end?

Well, I've got good news for you. If you follow these simple LinkedIn tips, 2019 just may be your best year ever.

And these suggestions are not just for salespeople and business owners. If you're looking for a new job, in need of volunteers or donors for your nonprofit, or interested in growing a strategic network to accomplish your professional goals, these tips are perfect for you, too.

And here's the really good news. You can do it all with a FREE LinkedIn account.

These are the "low hanging fruit," the strategies that will produce the most significant results in a short period of time. "Pick" a few and get started today.
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Five LinkedIn strategies that bring big results

After the broad comments, you'll find a link to an article with step-by-step details for executing each strategy.
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1.  Reach out to targeted members of your network

This strategy works well if you've done a good job of building a network that includes some people with whom you have a high level of trust and will thus be more likely to respond to your request.

Do a search of your first-level connections, and use filters like location, title, industry, current company, etc. Then you'll have a great list of people you can contact with a LinkedIn direct message or by email, phone, etc. and invite them to an event, share important industry news, let them know you'll be in their area, or ask for help with your job search.

I find that many people don't take advantage of this strategy because they don't know how to use LinkedIn's advanced search function. Learn how simple it is with this resource:

Additional Resource:  Are You Ignoring Your LinkedIn Connections?

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2.  Leverage the networks of your current clients or other referral sources

This is the ultimate referral strategy on LinkedIn. Once you see who knows whom, you can ask for an introduction.

Start by identifying your connections who are well networked and love connecting people with each other. Next, do filtered searches of their networks, and put together a list of six to twelve people you think could improve your chances of landing a new client or that new job. Then contact your connections and ask them to introduce you to the people you've discovered.

Additional Resource: This LinkedIn Feature Will Really Wow You

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3.  Set up LinkedIn search alerts

I refer to this strategy as your FREE, 24/7 LinkedIn virtual assistant. When you do advanced people searches and get productive results, set up search alerts. Then you'll receive weekly emails from LinkedIn that will include new people who meet the exact criteria of your saved searches.

The most difficult part is picking the right combination of filters and keywords that will result in the perfect list of targets. But once you've found it, it works like a charm.

If you'd like help executing this powerful strategy, sign up for a virtual, one-on-one consultation with me by clicking here.

Additional Resource:  How to Build a Free LinkedIn Prospect Machine

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4.  Revise your profile to include specific calls to action

Most people's LinkedIn profiles look like resumes—and many times they aren't even good resumes. Don't be one of those people!

Start by thinking of your profile as your main online marketing tool or your weapon to win the professional battle. No matter what your current LinkedIn objective is, you should have several specific calls to action strategically placed in your profile to move readers from being interested to taking action—visiting your website, downloading resources or your resume, viewing video, listening to a podcast, etc.

Additional Resource:  So You Viewed My Profile...Now What?

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5.  Engage directly with LinkedIn users who have viewed your profile or invited you to connect

You'd be surprised how many people do absolutely nothing when others attempt to engage with them on LinkedIn. Granted, there will be spammers who check out your profile or invite you to join their networks, but most people are legitimately interested in engaging with you.

If you're already connected to people who viewed your profile, you may want to send them a note to ask how you can help them.

If you notice that interesting people outside your network have viewed your profile, invite them to join your network and offer them something of value (free quote, white paper, informative video, etc.) or ask if they'd be interested in a phone call or meeting with you.

When you receive an invitation to connect from people you'd like to have in your network, accept their invitation, thank them for reaching out, and propose one of the next steps outlined in the above paragraph.

Additional Resource:  Are the Right People Waiting to Hear From You on LinkedIn?

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Now that you know about the "low hanging fruit" on LinkedIn, get busy and put some of these strategies into practice. Then on New Year's Eve 2019, you just may be celebrating one of the best years you've ever had.

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SPECIAL OFFER

If you'd like me to work with you on any of these LinkedIn strategies, plus provide an in-depth critique of your LinkedIn profile, sign up for a one-hour, one-on-one consultation with me for the significantly reduced rate of $197.

Book your personal session today at https://www.powerformula.net/one-on-one-linkedin-consultation

One of the highlights of my work week is helping people improve their LinkedIn profile and formulate a strategy for engaging in the kind of LinkedIn activities that will produce real results (see Screen Shot 2017-09-13 at 9.59.28 AMspecial offer below to book a phone consultation with me).

More often than not, one of the LinkedIn features we talk about (and it applies to both profile optimization and activity strategy) is the People Also Viewed profile section.

This optional section (that's right, it's optional) shows up in the right-hand column of your profile and tells you who people are looking at in addition to you.

Now, LinkedIn doesn't share exactly how the list is generated (other than this interview from a few years ago with a LinkedIn data guy), and you have no control over who appears on your profile. The default setting will put the list on your profile, but you can take it off your profile if you prefer.
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How to take advantage of People Also Viewed

If someone is interested in you and looks at your profile (e.g., prospective client, employee, donor, etc.), it's likely they'll scroll over to People Also Viewed, where they'll probably see a target list of people who are very much like you.

Personally, I got tired of my competitors showing up on my profile, so I decided to adjust the People Also Viewed setting to remove the list from my profile. I feel pretty good about my decision, because I can still see the People Also Viewed list on other people's profiles (unless they've also changed from the default setting). And if my competitors haven't changed their setting from the default, I can still show up in the People Also Viewed list on their profiles.

It seems like a no-brainer to me. Click here to learn how to change your setting.

Over time, if more and more people do what I'm suggesting, this feature will become less helpful. But, trust me, LinkedIn will probably change something before we get to that point. Take advantage of it while you can.

Another way to take advantage of the People Also Viewed feature is to check the list often on your clients' and prospective clients' profiles, and add some of these names to your master prospect list. And, hey, why not try to connect with the ones you're not connected with—and be sure to use a customized invitation in which you tell them what's in it for them if they accept your invitation.

LinkedIn is all about helping others—but that doesn't mean helping your competitors. Get a leg up on your competitors by removing the People Also Viewed list from your profile. You'll be glad you did.

If you'd like me to show you other hard-to-find, "can't miss" LinkedIn features, help you formulate your personal LinkedIn strategy, plus provide an in-depth critique of your LinkedIn profile, sign up for a one-hour, one-on-one phone consultation with me for the significantly reduced rate of $197.

Book your personal session today at https://www.powerformula.net/one-on-one-linkedin-consultation/.

How To Build A Free LinkedIn Prospect Machine

Posted on June 30, 2019
Wayne Breitbarth

If you've got five minutes, you can create a first-rate list of prospects, plus have LinkedIn notify you when new people match your prospect criteria—and you don't even need a premium membership to do it.

But I'm always amazed at just how many self-proclaimed experienced LinkedIn users do not know how to do this. Therefore, I'm going to show you just how simple it is to do it with the current free LinkedIn user interface.

When using LinkedIn on your desktop, there are currently fourteen search filters (e.g., title, locations, current and past companies). These will help you quickly narrow down the 600+ million person LinkedIn database to the exact right list for you.
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Building a highly targeted LinkedIn prospect list

Whether you're looking for new customers, donors for your nonprofit, or a great new job, these simple steps will help you build the perfect list of prospects to reach your personal or professional goals.

1. Put your cursor in your top toolbar search box and select Search for People from the drop-down menu.

2. Click the words All Filters in the white toolbar that appears below your top toolbar.

3. Put the words you'd like to search for in the appropriate filter boxes or check the box if your desired word(s) already appears under a filter category. Use LinkedIn's Boolean search rules so you get the best possible list.

For instance, if you search for executive vice-president, you'll get people who have executive and/or vice-president on their profile. If you search for "executive vice-president" (with quotation marks), you'll get only people who have executive vice-president on their profile. When you've entered all your words and checked any applicable boxes, click the blue Apply button.

If I'm looking for people who work at Harley-Davidson in the greater Milwaukee area and have a current title that includes purchasing or sourcing, my entry would look like this (see screen shots).

LinkedIn then gives me a list of 76 people who meet those search criteria. Everyone who does this search exactly as I've done it will get a list of 76 people, but the order of the list (LinkedIn calls this relevancy to the searcher) and access to full profiles (currently you can view the profiles of 1st degree, 2nd degree, 3rd degree and fellow LinkedIn group members) will be different for each person who performs the search.
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Setting a search alert for your targeted list

Once you get a list that looks great, be sure to set a search alert. Then each week LinkedIn will notify you of all additional people who meet your specific search criteria. 

This can be done by clicking All Filters and then copying the words you've put in the Title search box and pasting them into the search box in your top toolbar. After clicking <return>, the list will be the same as before, but now LinkedIn will display the Saved searches box in the righthand column. Simply click the Create search alert button in that box and then the Save button.

Check out my recent article How to Improve Your Chances of Getting a Response on LinkedIn to learn tips and tricks for capitalizing on the list you receive.

Follow these simple steps, and your LinkedIn prospect machine will be up and running, bringing you new prospects each week.
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SPECIAL OFFER

If you'd like me to show you other hard-to-find, "can't miss" LinkedIn features, help you formulate your personal LinkedIn strategy, plus provide an in-depth critique of your LinkedIn profile, sign up for a one-hour, one-on-one consultation with me for the significantly reduced rate of $197.

Book your personal session today at https://www.powerformula.net/one-on-one-linkedin-consultation/.

 

How to Make Sure Your LinkedIn Profile Really Sounds Like You

Posted on June 22, 2019
Wayne Breitbarth

"Before I meet someone for the first time, I send them a link to my profile. I think that—when we meet someone—the entire first meeting (as well as the rest of the relationship) is a confirmation (or correction) of our pre-existing expectations. I send my profile in advance because I think it will establish the right expectations. Looking at my LinkedIn profile is a lot like meeting me."
Artie Isaac (Vistage chair, CEO coach, and  creativity trainer—convening CEO peer groups)

When my friend Artie Isaac said that, I had to stop and ask him to repeat it. Then I realized, holy cow, this is one of the best overall LinkedIn profile strategies I've ever heard—and I was bummed I didn't think of it myself!

If you aren't using this brilliant strategy, it just might be the reason your LinkedIn profile is not generating the profile views, connection requests or, more importantly, meeting requests/phone calls/emails, etc. you'd like to see from the right people.

However, if you're going to direct people to your profile, you need to be certain it adequately reflects not only your experience but also your personality and passion—in other words, exactly what makes you tick.
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8 quick and easy profile updates

You only get one chance to make a powerful first impression. These eight simple profile tweaks will help you put your best foot forward and engage with the people who look at your profile.

1.  Profile photo. Be sure your profile photo is current and you're wearing your typical business attire, because you want them to recognize you when you meet.

2.  Background photo. If you're going to replace the default background, make sure it presents a positive image that reflects your personal brand. The other day I had a job seeker whose background photo was a beach view, a drink, a palm tree, and his sunburnt feet. I have a feeling prospective employers might think he's more focused on his PTO than their job.

3.  Headline. Are headlines important in the articles you read? Of course, they are, and the same is true of your LinkedIn headline. Don't let this powerful branding section consist of just your title and current company name (this is the LinkedIn default). Make the most of the 120 characters (or try this LinkedIn hack to get up to 220 characters), and include not only your professional occupation and skills, but consider using some of the space to showcase a personal interest or passion.

Visit the Free Resources section of my website to download my Definitive Worksheet to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile Headline. It includes more tips on this important profile section.

4.  First person. Write your profile in the first person, because that makes it easier to draw people in and quickly put them at ease. Third person can make you appear distant.

5.  Tone. Be sure the tone of your profile reflects your personality—such as friendly, funny, helpful, etc.—while still keeping in mind that LinkedIn is a professional site.

6.  Concern for others. If you share your time and talents with nonprofit organizations, you may wish to include a reference to this in your About section (formerly called the Summary section) or add separate Job Experience entries to share more specific details about your involvement with particular groups. You can also use the Volunteer Experience special profile section. Adding media to these profile sections can make them more interesting—and you can also request recommendations. These references can be great conversation starters.

7.  LinkedIn activity. Any status updates or published posts you originate or like, comment on, or share will be a reflection of your personality and style. Therefore, be sure to think about how it might be perceived before clicking any of those buttons.

Your current activity is prominently displayed in the Articles & activity box toward the top of your profile, and thus it grabs your viewers' attention. This will give readers of your profile a good feel for the information and type of audience you're passionate about.

8.  Accomplishments. Add the Accomplishments section to your profile, and include your most important personal interests (without "going all Facebook"). These can also be good conversation starters.

After you update your profile, ask a close friend or business associate if it's a positive and accurate representation of who you are—or, as my friend Artie said, does it feel a lot like meeting you. Make a great first impression, and it's sure to improve your LinkedIn ROI.

LinkedIn: A Stealth Job Seeker’s Best Friend

Posted on June 14, 2019
Wayne Breitbarth

Are you stuck in a dead-end job? Not making the money you deserve? Just need a change but afraid your boss will find out if you start looking for a new job? LinkedIn to the rescue!

Obviously, you don’t want to use words like seeking, pursuing or looking in your LinkedIn profile—that’s the quickest way to the unemployment line. But sprucing up your profile, adjusting a few of your settings, and creating targeted search alerts are a few of the easy steps you can take when looking for a new job “under the radar.”
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Spruce up your profile

If you have used your LinkedIn account sparingly and all of a sudden there’s a flurry of activity, this might be a red flag to your boss. Therefore, if you plan to make edits to your profile, be sure that the Share with network button is toggled over to "No" to turn off the notifications to your network about the profile changes you're making.

Keywords. Use plenty of the keywords hiring managers and recruiters might use to find people with your specialties and skills (e.g., job duties, titles, industry certifications, software expertise, etc.).

For help on this, download my worksheet Keywords: The Key to Being Found on LinkedIn by clicking here.

About (formerly titled Summary). This is tricky. You need to look like a happy employee while at the same time touting your expertise and accomplishments. Keywords are definitely important. For example, “Johnson Company always puts the customer first, and my attention to detail and ability to provide excellent customer service make me a good fit at Johnson.”

Experience. Include a detailed description of your accomplishments for every job entry you include in this section. You’re trying to differentiate yourself from other job applicants, so don’t skimp here.

Headline. You only get one shot at a first impression. Make it a good one. It’s short—only 120 characters on the desktop—so you’ll need to be creative. But if you input this section using your LinkedIn mobile app, then you get 220 characters. A note of caution: This hack seems to work almost 100% of the time when using an Apple device but inconsistently on non-Apple devices.

For additional help on this critical section of your profile, download my free worksheet The Definitive Worksheet to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile Headline by clicking here.

Skills. LinkedIn members will give you endorsements for your skills, and you’ll want to focus on including the skills you hope to use in your new job.

Completing this profile section correctly is critical, but it can be a bit confusing. Check out my article Have You Taken Advantage of the Changes to LinkedIn Skills? for a detailed discussion.

Accomplishments special profile sections. Options include Publications, Certifications, Patents, Courses, Projects, Honors & Awards, Test Scores, Languages, and Organizations. These are a terrific way to impress readers of your profile and differentiate yourself from other candidates.

Education. In addition to your general educational background, include any specialized courses you’ve completed. Describe them in detail and use lots of keywords.

Recommendations. Outside corroboration of the information on your profile is extremely important. Your two most recent recommendations will be prominently displayed on your profile, so try to get at least two current, impactful recommendations. You probably don’t want to ask your boss for a recommendation, but customers, vendors, and college professors (for recent grads) are great options.
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Be proactive

Once your profile is in tip-top shape, you’re ready to start actively looking for a job.

Jobs Tab. Be sure to set your career interest preferences. Also, use the job search function here to laser focus your search for job postings that fit your desired positions. You can set up to ten job search alerts in the Jobs tab. It’s like having a 24/7 virtual assistant. LinkedIn will alert you when jobs are posted that meet your criteria.

Create search alerts. With a free LinkedIn account, you can create up to three Advanced People Search alerts. Use these for your target companies—the places you’d most like to work.

Alumni. Access this by clicking the name of one of the schools you attended on your profile. Then click the Alumni tab on that university's LinkedIn page. Use the available filters to find out if any fellow alumni work at the companies where you're interested in exploring a new opportunity. This is a great way to get the inside scoop on jobs posted and not yet posted.

“Follow” companies. Go to the company page of your target companies and “follow” them. You'll then be notified of job postings and employment changes at the company.

If you follow this advice, HR professionals and recruiters will start discovering your profile. But don’t just sit around and wait for a job offer. Be an active part of the almost 600 million member LinkedIn community, and before you know it you’ll have landed the job of your dreams.

If you'd like to have an individualized LinkedIn strategy session with me to discuss your LinkedIn job-seeking activities, along with loads of advice for amping up your LinkedIn ROI, sign up for a one-on-one session with me by clicking here.

This consultation includes a full profile critique and takes place via phone and screen sharing. I typically have time for only four to six of these $197 sessions each week, and there are some weeknight and Saturday time slots. So check out the details and book your session here.