Being able to check out the recent updates that people had posted on LinkedIn or a list of the articles they had “liked” or “shared” with their connections is hugely important … it also used to be really simple. There was a section on everybody’s Personal Profile page called ‘Activity’ where it appeared and this was visible to everyone (if you allowed it in your Settings page), giving people the perfect way to keep up to date with what you’ve been sharing.
This was, however, removed in December last year to make way for the ‘Posts’ section where the articles that you publish through LinkedIn Publishing will appear, a new feature that is the extension of the LinkedIn Influencer programme and which is being rolled out to all members over the next few months.
However, LinkedIn has thankfully now re-instated the ability for us … albeit, you need to know where to find it!
As it happens, once you do know, it’s very quick to reach – simply go to the person’s profile page and click on the down arrow that appears to the right of the button which will show:
“Send a message” – if you are connected to the person
“Connect” or “Send InMail” – if they are in your network but not a connection
Once you do that, you get a mini menu of items and the “View Recent activity” option should appear at the top of that list as shown below:
That’s the one you want!
LinkedIn appears to be rolling this out but I think that it is fairly widespread now so if you haven’t already got it, it shouldn’t be loo long!
Why so important?
The reason this is so critical is the key aspect of engagement – something that is core to really using LinkedIn to best effect from both a general networking and, from my perspective, from a social selling perspective in particular. Having identified someone that you would like to contact, there is nothing more useful than being able to see the type of content that the person is interested in and sharing.
Taking it one step further we also have the ability to leave a comment on the update which is a perfect way to show interest and, one hopes, insight through the comment you leave. We need to engage in this way … it’s how we show interest and interaction on a site such as LinkedIn and to try to recreate the type of face-to-face engagement that is natural when talking in person but is even more important online.
Equally, if we turn this around, then also consider that people can see what you are producing and sharing, allowing you to demonstrate knowledge and reputation, as well as give an insight into key areas for you. As an aside, you used to be able to determine who could see your updates but, while this might change in the future, at the moment the setting which used to control this does not seem to be active, so updates are open to everyone, connections or not.
Either way, whatever your reason for being on LinkedIn, I would encourage you to check out the Updates that someone you are in contact and perhaps more importantly of anyone you wish to connect with. Show interest in what they have to say (and do it sincerely) and you are half way home!