Its all about me! Actually, that is YOU! LinkedIn Settings and Privacy are found by clicking the drop-down arrow next to “Me” underneath the tiny picture of your gorgeous self (in the menu bar). There are three main categories with twelve subcategories: 48 SETTINGS TO DEAL WITH! Not going to bore you with all of them, but there are some you really have to look at! Advertising Preferences, Representing your Organisation, and Profile Viewing Options for example.
ACCOUNT – PRIVACY – COMMUNICATIONS
As we know, LinkedIn continually develops, meaning features come and go. This isn’t always noticeable in everyday use. It doesn’t hurt to add a repeat reminder to your calendar, to check your LinkedIn Settings & Privacy quarterly. The three main categories are Account, Privacy and Communications. They each have subcategories which each have multiple items. Dizzy yet? Not to worry, it is all very organised and easy to review. I’ll explain some below the screenshot. Not all, not even half, as I pride myself on short blogs that just take minutes to read.
LET’S LOOK AT SOME OF THOSE 48 SETTINGS…
Representing your organization, this is a tricky one. In the olden days, if the company you work for advertised on LinkedIn, your profile picture and name could be displayed with it. To be honest, I have not been able to find if this is still the case. You do show up in “company insights” to users with a Premium Business, Sales Navigator or (some) Recruiter accounts. That can look like this:
Other insights are: Total Employee count, New Hires (with profile pic, name, clickable link to profile), notable company alumni (with profile pic, name, clickable link to profile). Up to you to weigh up professional visibility against privacy.
Advertising preferences: I’ve always put this on ‘no’, but once again it comes down to personal preference. You will get to see advertisements regardless. Unless you install the “Adbock Plus” extension in your browser (highly recommended, no affiliate). If you leave this setting on yes, you’ll see targeted ads based on your interest. If you set it to no, you’ll get random advertising.
Profile viewing options: This is where you decide to openly smile at someone or secretly check them out.Occasionally there are good reasons to stay under the radar. If you are a therapist and checking out LinkedIn profiles of your clients, they might feel creeped out. Not sure why, as it is only your PROFESSIONAL life displayed. If you are open to a new position or new clients, be open! Let people know they sparked your interest enough to check out their profile!
HAVE A GOOD LOOK AT THE COMMUNICATIONS TAB
How many emails a day to you delete without opening? I suggest if you are on LinkedIn daily, you can turn off all e-mail notifications. You will see the little notification bell on LinkedIn anyway. Just if you are a member of groups you don’t visit daily, set the email notification for those groups on a weekly digest, to quickly scan what is happening.
Download your data: this is a pretty nifty feature. I know you would never download your connections to then add them to your newsletter or otherwise spam them. It is handy to have your network in Excel though, a lot easier to analyse your network by: First Name, Last Name, Email Address, Company, Position, or Connected On date. More ore fun (for the ego) it is to download your recommendations! In the olden days, you could only download your full data archive, now you can pick and choose, go have a look!
>>> Please go to Settings and Privacy and walk through each option. If you have ANY questions, pop them in the comments below!”<<<
How up to date and complete is the contact section on your LinkedIn profile? When I took a screenshot for this post I found out – shock horror – that the 3 links to my website, the information with address, and Skype were all missing. Yikes. Especially since I did something clever with 2 out of those 3 entries.
THERE ARE 8 HIDDEN GEMS IN CONTACT
- Profile URL (make it clean and lean)
- Websites (add description)
- Phone (more on that later)
- Address (here I got real clever)
- Email (more on that later)
- Twitter (remember twitter?)
- IM (I put my Skype name here)
- Birthday (if you like congrats)
LET ME WALK YOU THROUGH
LinkedIn Profile URL
By default, LinkedIn adds some gibberish after your name. Not a pretty sight. Please clean it up by just typing in your name.
You can add THREE websites to your profile. They can all link to the same website! Link to the home page, the services page and the contact page for example. Make sure to go for “other” instead of “personal” or “company” the other field allows you type a short description that appears after the URL (in brackets).
If you are happy to be contacted to by phone, do add the number. Now remember: these gems are HIDDEN. The contact bit sits in the right sidebar AND people need to click “show more” double whammy hidden. Add the phone number (with a call to action) to your summary as well.
Sure, you can add your business address. But it is a free text field, so you can just type any message you like here! Whoppaaa… get creative and clever people.
Same story as the phone number. Nuf said.
If you are on Twitter, add it here. It becomes a clickable link on your profile AND it is visible ABOVE the contact section as well, without having to click on “show more”
Here you can add ONE messenger service. Options are: AIM, Skype, Yahoo!Messenger (do people use that?), ICQ (whoohoo its back! Born in 1996, 7 years before LinkedIn, WordPress or Skype), Google Hangouts, QQ, WeChat (cannot be serious about Chinese market if you are not on WeChat).
This is so cool! You connections send you messages. True, often just the default LinkedIn one, but hey, they DO put in the effort to click that. Or (makes me feel real special) people use the LinkedIn trigger and then replace the default message with a personal birthday wish!
>>> Tell me (in the comments) are you using all 8? Why/why not? <<<
Why on earth would you want to manage LinkedIn Invites? Great question. Mind you, we weren’t able to, so I never gave it much thought. Two things changed. Firstly I decided to only deal with my LinkedIn Invites once a week, so I can properly engage with the people who took the time to invite me. Secondly, LinkedIn added options to filter your invites.
WHY WOULD YOU FILTER INVITES?
Since I only deal with my invitations once a week, there are more than 1 or 2 to deal with. At times, this can feel a bit overwhelming. Nothing too bad, until I wrote that ONE post on LinkedIn that went wild. 80K views (it is a bit embarrassing, as the post didn’t even contain any great tip, just a bit of fun). Now those views lead to quite a few invites. Obviously, this had to happen when I was barely online for two weeks due to some obnoxious lurgi that refused to leave my house. Faced with a large list of invites, I wish I could filter them. Low and behold, today I noticed I can!
5 CLEVER THOUGHTS ON MANAGING LINKEDIN INVITES
- You can now filter your invites to display only invites from people in your company. Not very useful for a sole entrepreneur, but quite handy when working for a large corporation. This way, when you don’t have time to properly deal with all invites, at least accept those from your colleagues, so they don’t feel snubbed.
- You can filter by people who attended the same school (college, university) as you. This could potentially lead to a fun blast from the past, so by all means apply this filter when you are bored.
- You can filter by people who have mutual connections. This allows you to give priority to second-degree connections over third. But then again, isn’t it much more fascinating to find out why those 3rd-degree connections want to get a closer relationship with you?
- I would LOVE to be able to manage LinkedIn Invitations by filtering out the invites with a personal message. I love responding to those first, as these people put in some effort to start building a relationship, which is what networking is all about.
- Another one high on my wishlist… sorting by country. For some people local contacts are most valuable, others try to establish their network in specific reasons. When pressed for time, wouldn’t it be great to be able to prioritise that way?
>>> Please add to the list by adding your clever thoughts in the comments <<<
The other day I asked my connections on LinkedIn to join me in a little LinkedIn search experiment. I asked them to hit search without typing anything in the search box and tell me how many hits they got. The results ranged from 200K to 11M.
See experiment here.
HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?
Conducting a LinkedIn search with an empty search field, you get quite a variety of results. You are not searching the full LinkedIn Database (all members), but just YOUR network. It would be easy to assume that this has something to do with the number of connections, but it is more complicated than that.
YOUR LINKEDIN NETWORK
Your LinkedIn Network consists of 1st degree, 2nd degree, 3rd degree and group members. This puts quite some importance on 1st and groups. If you connect to 10 people with 200 connections each then you add 2010 people to your network (for argument’s sake they have no overlap). If you connect to 5 people with 1000 connections each, this grows your network by 5005 people. Members of the groups you belong to are also part of your network. So it makes a difference if you are a member of 10 small groups or 5 large groups. It doesn’t hurt to become a member of the largest two groups in the region that you focus on.
BOOLEAN LINKEDIN SEARCH
Just like on Google or any old search engine, you can use Boolean expressions. Searching for: Petra AND Amsterdam will give you results that contain both words. Searching for Petra OR Amsterdam will give you all results that contain at least one of the two words. Now I am doing a lot of math these days. The joys of living with a teenager! So I am totally into formulas (actually, I’ve always loved formulas; before LinkedIn my passion was Excel).
CHECK THIS FORMULA
Petra OR (NOT Petra). Got it? You will get all profiles that either contain the word Petra OR that do NOT contain the word Petra. Yup THIS will more or less show you the full LinkedIn database. (533,518,415 at time of writing). Now use the filters on the side to narrow the results to what you are really looking for. BAM!
>>> Got any search questions? Pop ’em in the comments!<<<