Cool new stuff to chew on with LinkedIn

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Just like everyone loves a puppy – everyone loves new functionality on applications they are already using (and you are already using LinkedIn aren’t you?).

I actively use Twitter, I reluctantly use Facebook and I’m constantly trying out a lot of the other social media and social network platforms, but I will admit I’ve got a strong bias for LinkedIn as the best place to start (and spend a lot of your valuable time) when it comes to using Social Media for your business.  It’s a great extension of the real world networking you already do (you are networking aren’t you?).

Beyond being professional, easy to use with lots of powerful features, LinkedIn has done a great job of consistently adding new functions and features.  Here’s 3 of the latest additions I thought were interesting.

Follow Company

One of the features / drawbacks of Social Media is the automated ability to become a ‘stalker’ of people.  LinkedIn has ramped up this concept recently for individuals (I can get a summary of questions you answered, groups you posted to, status updates, profile changes, etc.).

Now they’ve added a similar concept for company profiles.  You can select a company to follow (do a search on the company tab to find the profile of the company you’re interested in and ‘Follow’ the company).  Then you’ll be able to choose the kind of information you want to receive and how often you’ll receive it.

Why would I care?  With company follow, you can find out new jobs being posted, changes to the company profile, who they’re hiring, who’s leaving…potentially lots of important things you’d like to know about your clients, prospects or competitors!

Updated Status Updating

LinkedIn has had status updates for a long time, but they were pretty basic and didn’t really stand out as a useful feature.  However they’ve made several recent changes that make it easier to communicate effectively.

You can now add in a link with graphics and an article excerpt, making it more likely people will click through to see what you’re sharing.  You can also share what others have posted (kind of like re-tweeting in Twitter).  Finally, with the status update you can choose who you share with – the whole world, your connections, a specific group or even just an individual.

Why should I care?  Status updates are a great way to stay top of mind and let people know what you’re up to, sharing content, blog posts, events, and things that you’re interested in.  By making it a more fully featured option, you’ll have a lot more control over what you share and who you share it with…all good things!

Sharing Videos on your Profile

There are over 2 Billion YouTube views per day!  Video has clearly become a major way to share ideas and communicate with customers or prospective clients.  However until recently you could share those videos on YouTube, your website, Facebook and lots of other places, but you couldn’t share them on LinkedIn.

Now you can!  Slideshare has added the capability to share videos in the same way you could previously share presentations.  And you can add Slideshare to your LinkedIn profile (just like you could before)…only now it supports videos.

Why should I care?  If you haven’t yet, at some point you will create a video that explains who you are and what you do.  That’s the perfect kind of thing to post on LinkedIn to let people know what you’re all about.

What functionality on LinkedIn do you use the most?  Have you noticed anything new?  I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments below – share them when you get a chance.

Shawn Kinkade  Kansas City Business Coach

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