Small but useful changes on LinkedIn (Feb 2015)

LinkedIn Share Button - site updateAs many of you will aware, the start of 2015 has brought with it a raft of really quite big changes on LinkedIn with search restrictions and Inmail process changes at the top of the list.

Aside from these, there have been some smaller ones going on … little things that might prove valuable and which I wanted to ensure you were aware of. Like all modifications on LinkedIn, these may well be in roll out phase at the moment, so you may or may not have them as yet … but they are coming!

Equally normally, they have not actually been announced in any way so here are some that I think might need a little bit of looking at.

1. Company Page Pop Ups

company-popupAs those of you who have attended my courses will be aware, on the Company Page, the first 200 characters of the Company Overview text are particularly important to get right because they appear just under the main banner on the Company Page by way of an introduction and, until recently, on our individual Profile pages as a pop up box when we hover over the company logo or name. The latter is no longer the case.

LinkedIn has rejigged this “pop up” to build in a follow button and replicate the banner image into it – doesn’t massively work in my opinion with a lot of the colourful banners (that look like a colorful Thanksgiving Banner) out there because they have plonked the logo and follow button on top. Importantly, they have also cut down the text to circa 85 characters so, if you can be super imaginative, get something which conveys your key message within 84 characters (for the Personal Profile pages) and a fuller version with 200 for the Company Page itself. Oh dear, the life of the marketing professional is never easy!

2. Sending attachments with messages

attachmentsSomething that has long been requested has been the ability to attach and send files with the messages that you send within LinkedIn. Well, now this has been added in the latest roll out as LinkedIn deepens its commitment to information based marketing and sharing.

It sits in the “send message” screen via the ubiquitous ‘paperclick’ symbol allowing you to attach up to 5 files with a combines size of anything up to 2Mb – you can even do so when sending to multiple recipients (perhaps using the tagging feature) but still don’t forget to untick the box at the bottom or you’ll copy everyone allowing them to see the others’ details rather than blind copy them. This is currently only available on the desktop version and not on the mobile App – here the files can be viewed but not attached.

3. Published Posts highlighted in Search Results

search-results-postsLinkedIn is pushing the long form posts now and they are a great opportunity for publicising expertise, events and so much more. LinkedIn is now helping the whole marketing deal by highlighting the long form Publisher Posts that we are making – you can not only see these on the person’s profile but the last two posts now also appear underneath people’s names in the search results page. It helps to give an insight into the more active people who are looking to build up – so, if you are writing posts on your own blog / website, consider re-posting some of those on LinkedIn as well.

By the way, the usage of long form posts / publishing has also re-activated the “follow” function in LinkedIn for people – you have always been able to follow companies for example but following people was a feature essentially hidden away in the Groups section and seldom used in all honesty. People can now follow you if they wish to be made aware of information you are posting even if you are not connected – and if you wish to see who is following you then you can via

4. Common connections highlighted in Invites

invite connectionsAn extra dopllop of information has been built into the invitation notification that you receive in your LinkedIn inbox – whether you use the newer interface (with the “tick” and “cross”) or the older version like myself, in both instances, you now have the option of seeing who you and the person inviting you to connect have in common.

In particular for those people who insist on still refusing to personalise the invitation they send to people they are looking to connect with, this might at least give us some indication of whether we have sufficient elements in common to warrant accepting them or indeed where the overlap may occur.

5. See your own Updates more easily

menu - your updatesFinally for this quick fire installment, I imagine that it won’t have escaped your attention that the menu structure has been extended slightly. A “Your Updates” link has been added under the ‘Profile’ menu item which takes us to a screen where we can see our latest activity and published posts – not all activity it has to be said, but a good chunk of it.

It’s true that we still have to use the link on other people’s profiles if we want to see theirs but now finding a bit of our own back history is easier and that little bit more visible.

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