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6/5/2014
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LinkedIn Tips: 5 New Ways To Stand Out

LinkedIn added features for paid users, including a redesigned profile, a keyword optimization tool, and more prominent search placement. Here's a deeper look, plus details on a new paid account option.

LinkedIn Tips: 10 Steps To A Stronger Profile
LinkedIn Tips: 10 Steps To A Stronger Profile
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

After launching a number of updates -- including redesigned Groups and a "How You Rank" tool -- LinkedIn has shifted its focus to paid members, announcing today a handful of new features exclusively for them.

"Whether you're a new graduate or a seasoned professional, how you are viewed professionally matters," LinkedIn product manager Dmitry Shevelenko said in a blog post. "Starting today, we've sweetened the pot for all new and existing premium members with additional functionality to help you stand out from the crowd and drive the right and relevant opportunities to you."

LinkedIn offers a number of paid accounts with varying price points and capabilities for recruiters, job seekers, and sales professionals. All paid account users -- both current and new -- will have access to these new features.

[Improve your LinkedIn profile and position yourself for what's next. Read LinkedIn Tips: 10 Steps To A Stronger Profile.]

In addition to the new features for premium users, the professional social network announced Premium Spotlight, a paid account option geared toward novice users. At $10 per month, Premium Spotlight is LinkedIn's most affordable paid option; other accounts range from $75/month for job seekers to $720/month for corporate recruiters.

Here's a look at the five new features coming to paid LinkedIn members.

1. Upload a cover photo

Following in the footsteps of Facebook, Google+, and Twitter, LinkedIn will launch a profile redesign that features a larger profile photo, an expanded profile header, and a cover photo. If you're a premium LinkedIn user, you'll be able to upload a cover photo before the feature is rolled out to all LinkedIn users. Premium users will also have exclusive access to a gallery of stock cover photo images.

2. Incorporate keyword optimization suggestions

To help premium users appear in the right search results, LinkedIn has added a profile optimization feature. A LinkedIn spokesperson told InformationWeek that this popup will show you personalized suggestions for words and phrases to include in your profile, based on your information and that of similar LinkedIn users. Including these optimized words and phrases in your profile will help you appear in related search results.

3. Bigger placement in search

When premium users appear in search results, LinkedIn will display their profiles twice as large as other results to help them stand out. When you appear in search results, users will also see more information from your profile than from non-premium users, LinkedIn said.

4. Accept messages from anyone with Open Profile
Typically, LinkedIn members can contact you only if they're connected to you or if they have purchased InMail messages. If you're a paid member, this will change. According to a LinkedIn spokesperson, premium users will be automatically opted in to an Open Profile setting, which lets anyone message you for free. If you want to opt out of this feature, visit your Privacy & Settings page to turn it off.

5. Track more views and rankings
Premium LinkedIn users can access a full 90-day list of Who's Viewed Your Profile, along with the top 100 results for How You Rank among connections and coworkers. Free LinkedIn account holders have access only to the last five people who have viewed their profile and the top 10 How You Rank results.

What do Uber, Bank of America, and Walgreens have to do with your mobile app strategy? Find out in the new Maximizing Mobility issue of InformationWeek Tech Digest.

Kristin Burnham currently serves as InformationWeek.com's Senior Editor, covering social media, social business, IT leadership and IT careers. Prior to joining InformationWeek in July 2013, she served in a number of roles at CIO magazine and CIO.com, most recently as senior ... View Full Bio

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Li Tan
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Li Tan,
User Rank: Ninja
6/5/2014 | 10:35:21 AM
5 new ways to find new job
I believe that the original positioning of LinkedIn is for professionals to establish and develop personal network. But nowadays LinkedIn is becoming more and more like a human resource market - many people find the new opportunity via LinkedIn. This is nice - with the 5 new ways to stand out, we have 5 new ways to find new job. By the way, I just got a good offer via the job posting on LinkedIn.:-)
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
6/6/2014 | 2:18:27 AM
Re: 5 new ways to find new job
Even though LinkedIn has consistently -- and, in many ways, successfully -- marketed itself as the social network for professionals and for professional networking/job hunting/recruiting/etc., it does not have a monopoly on this -- even among the major social networks.  With Facebook's new find features, it's easy to run similar searches on friends, "2nd-degree connections," and others who have various work or educational backgrounds.

And even before these new features were released, I got work/clients through Facebook.

LinkedIn's nice, and I'm not knocking it here, but leverage all of your platforms.  :)
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
6/6/2014 | 3:10:35 AM
Maybe it's just me, but...
...Am I the only one who finds these new "enhanced" profiles with the huge background picture annoying?  What happened to having streamlined interfaces?

Instead, it's all personalization upon personalization and customization upon customization of personal profiles.

ChrisMurphy
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ChrisMurphy,
User Rank: Author
6/6/2014 | 4:42:41 PM
Re: Maybe it's just me, but...
I do like those big pictures, Joe -- though I gotta say, I don't see myself paying LinkedIn in order to have these stock photo options.
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
6/6/2014 | 4:45:25 PM
Re: Maybe it's just me, but...
> I don't see myself paying LinkedIn in order to have these stock photo options.

I sometimes consider paying LinkedIn to stop emailing me. Social networks can be really annoying.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
6/7/2014 | 7:38:29 AM
Re: Maybe it's just me, but...
I filter most of my social network email, so it all goes into folders that I can just ignore.
jgherbert
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jgherbert,
User Rank: Ninja
6/7/2014 | 12:23:16 PM
Re: Maybe it's just me, but...
*smiles* Yeah, it can feel like that's the best option sometimes :)

I don't care much for pictures, but the keyword tweaking was interesting. Of course, by offering this kind of help, more people start using those keywords, this weaking their power in searches. Kind of a circular thing really.

Either way, LinkedIn has developed a lot since it was first just an overgrown contact book, and the activity stream is kind of nice, along with seeing how your own posts are read and shared. I tend to use LinkedIn as a first port of call when I'm going to interview somebody for a job. It's also tremendously useful for keeping in touch with people after they change jobs.

Regarding Facebook, I guess if I maintained a "professional" Facebook profile, perhaps I might find work there, but I keep Facebook pretty much entirely personal; I have no work colleagues friended, for example.
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Ninja
6/8/2014 | 2:36:19 PM
Re: 5 new ways to find new job
LinkedIn is vastly different from its competitors in Twitter and Facebook. As such, it's not surprise that they are starting to differentiate heavily between its free and paid products. 

LinkedIn has a much smaller userbase, but it's important to keep in mind that this particular userbase is happy to pay for premium features. That's exactly what we're seeing here. 
Justin Belmont
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Justin Belmont,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/8/2014 | 4:29:03 PM
Post Comment
Interesting article, Kristin. LinkedIn is a really powerful professional tool. We at www.ProseMedia.com use LinkedIn for a lot of different purposes, and hopefully these new features will greatly increase the its effectiveness in social media. Thanks for sharing!
asksqn
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asksqn,
User Rank: Ninja
6/10/2014 | 4:13:58 AM
Deeply flawed and thoroughly idiotic
Because paying for placement of the user's CV in front of the approrpriate eyeballs is what counts, don'tcha know.  Cos. don't actually want the right candidate with requisite knowledge, skill sets, abilities & education, just deep pockets to pay LinkedIn.  
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