Small business owners: a LinkedIn resource just for you

LI small business


If you’re a small business owner wondering how to get more out of LinkedIn, there’s a new site exclusively for you.

The LinkedIn Small Business Resource Center includes tips on personal branding, marketing, sales, and hiring–and as you’d expect, there are also an ample number of plugs for paid LinkedIn products. For an overview, read this post by Harsh Mohan.

How to use LinkedIn to Build New Relationships: my guest post on the ALDE blog


“Handshake – Hard Times” by Spot Us on Flickr


In February, I presented at the Association of Lutheran Development Executives International Conference in Jacksonville, Florida. One of my topics was how to use LinkedIn to build relationships. To recap my presentation, I’ve written two guest posts for the ALDE blog that cover both enhancing existing relationships and building new relationships. The latter was published last week and can be viewed here.



Quick Tip Tuesday: How to block a LinkedIn user

Late last month, LinkedIn announced a much-awaited feature: the ability to block other users. While blocking has long been standard on most social media sites, LinkedIn was one the few remaining holdout…until now.

So, how do you block a LinkedIn user? Start by going to his or her profile. If he or she is not a current connection, click on the down arrow to the right of the “Send [User] InMail” button (see below) and select “Block or report”:

Block or report 2

If the user is a current connection, choose the down arrow to the right of the “Send a message” button, and choose “Block or report.” You’ll be prompted with a dialog box that looks like this (I’ve omitted the user’s details, of course):

Block 2

Check the box to the left of “Block,” click on “Continue,” and follow the prompts from there.

It’s also important to consider why you might block someone. There are a few obvious examples, but I’m interested in your thoughts. What would prompt you to block someone instead of just hiding them, disconnecting from them, or never connecting with them in the first place? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Quick tip Tuesday: LinkedIn resources for college students

“Hire Me mortarboard” by John Reiser on Flickr

College seniors are about three months away from graduation, and that has many of them thinking more closely about their careers. One of the topics that’s likely on their minds is how they can get started or ramp up their efforts on LinkedIn. After all, it’s the social platform most likely to help them find opportunities and get traction in building professional relationships.

If this sounds like anyone you know, here are a few resources designed specifically to help students make the most of LinkedIn:

Finally, it’s worth checking with your college’s Career Services department to see whether they have a LinkedIn group or other resources. Most Career Services staff are eager to help, and their services are free–a great perk to take advantage of before turning your tassel.

Three Ways to use LinkedIn to Enhance Your Existing Relationships: my guest post on the ALDE blog

I’m writing a series of guest posts for the Association of Lutheran Development Executives blog in advance of my presentations at their 2014 annual conference in Florida. The first is called “Three Ways to use LinkedIn to Enhance Your Existing Relationships,” and you can read it here. How are YOU using LinkedIn to make good relationships even better?

Rapportive helps Gmail users make relevant LinkedIn connections

Every day, you access a great source of additional LinkedIn connections: your email inbox. There’s a good chance that many of the people who send you email would be good additions to your network, but you may miss the opportunity thinking you’re already connected or just because LinkedIn is out of sight, and therefore out of mind. If you’d like to change that, and you’re a Gmail user, it’s worth taking a look at Rapportive.

Rapportive, which was purchased by LinkedIn in 2012, gives you a snapshot of an email sender’s social media profiles–including, of course, LinkedIn–from within Gmail. That means you can see at a glance whether you’re connected to a given sender and you can start the connection process right from Gmail. Rapportive provides information about more than just LinkedIn: you can also see whether you’re connected to a sender on Facebook or whether you’re following him or her on Twitter–and you can even see the sender’s latest Tweets. Rapportive also allows you to add notes about a given connection that only you can see, much like the LinkedIn Contacts app.

Here’s an example (see screen capture below): Jon Nelson had emailed me the other day, and I noticed he and I weren’t connected (see red arrow). I clicked on the “connect” button, and Rapportive allowed me to customize the message.


Is it likely that I would have connected with Jon had I not installed Rapportive? Possibly.  But using Rapportive reminded me of the opportunity a lot more quickly than I would have realized on my own.

Want to learn more about Rapportive? Check it out here–and let me know what you think.