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Yes, Mark, a subset of the connections will be useless. But as one who has
worked trade shows and job fairs, what kind of a return do you get on all
of the printed collateral (e.g., business cards) you distribute? In
pre-Internet marketing, you were considered at the top of your game if you
got a 2% return. As I wrote earlier, I'm careful about connecting with
those who are working professionals within the industries I've worked (and
would like to work), as well as the regions in which I'm interested in
working now or in the future. For example, I don't cultivate connections in
Mid-America (e.g., Iowa), as I'm not interested in ever working or living
there. (An exception to this rule might be an opportunity to connect with
Warren Buffett of Omaha... you get the drift.) I also avoid the obvious
aggressive product/service marketers and those running a sole
proprietorship (e.g., photographer, nail salon owner) who don't meet my
criteria and have little or nothing to offer in the way of networking.
To paraphrase another forum member just wrote, "You never know where your
next assignment is going to come from." It's been my experience that this
is 100% true, and I've had both short-term contracts and multi-year,
full-time gigs come to me in the strangest of ways.
If you want to limit your LinkedIn marketing exposure and lose out on this
most valuable aspect of being a member, by all means do so. But if you are
actively managing your career and are always on the lookout for your next
opportunity, then you might want to take a longer look at all that LinkedIn
can do to help you further your advancement. This includes the numerous
video tutorials they offer, showing you ways to work their system you may
not have previously considered. In Harvey Mackay's vernacular, it's "How To
Swim With the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive."
On Tue, Jul 22, 2014 at 10:38 AM, Mark Giffin <mgiffin -at- earthlink -dot- net> wrote:
> I've been thinking about Chris's post below. Especially this part:
> "The more connections you make, the more your name (brand) appears on the
> scrolling Updates feed."
> This fits in with what I perceive LinkedIn to be. Chris also says he sees
> it as a numbers game, which also makes sense. It's obvious to me that many
> people are doing this. So it's a form of advertising, which is fine with
> me. But it also means that connections you make on LinkedIn tend to be
> pawns to get you advertising and have only short term value. And then you
> have a big pile of apparently useless connections. I guess you can just
> continue on and collect many thousands of connections. I have trouble
> seeing long term value in many of these connections. Is there any?
> It seems to have characteristics of a "bubble" or of monetary inflation,
> where something with actual value is at the bottom, but it's covered with
> mountains of useless stuff.
> On 7/21/14 8:29 AM, Chris Morton wrote:
>> That you are "tending to the backlog of LinkedIn invitations that Iâve
>> received" suggests that you may not be a LinkedIn regular. Is being a
>> LinkedIn member important to you? Do you think it might help you advance
>> your career?
>> Having a LinkedIn profile is a far cry from Facebook and should be treated
>> as such. LI is not a social club. Its purpose, in my view, is to help
>> professionals connect with one another, much as you might have exchanged
>> business cards at a job fair or trade expo. The difference is now you can
>> tell your whole story on your LI profile.
>> The more connections you make, the more your name (brand) appears on the
>> scrolling Updates feed. If you're looking for a new assignment and are
>> regularly making new connections, this equates to seeing "Drink Coca-Cola"
>> subliminally flashed onscreen at the theater. Does this work? I have no
>> stats regarding its success, but I don't believe it hurts. I believe
>> pounding LinkedIn for work is a numbers game. This is especially true, I
>> believe, as recruiters work the system looking for candidates. Your LI
>> profile, along with the frequency of "so-and-so connected with John Doe"
>> messages scrolling on the Updates page, help advertise your availability.
>> If you aren't making new connections, you're losing out. To think of your
>> LI connections as being restricted to only those you truly know is to
>> the usefulness of your participation.
>> When I get a non-personalized invitation, if the person appears to be
>> someone I may want to connect withâbased on fairly lenient criteriaâI'll
>> accept the invitation. That person must fit into some professional realm
>> loosely associated with what I do. For example, a person who does nails
>> a living would be rejected. Any invitation must fit my geographical
>> constraints, too. I do not accept invitations from those living in Russia
>> or India, for example, as those connections are of no use to either of us.
>> But I've connected with many Indians living in California, most of whom
>> I've had the pleasure of working with. Connections like these may yield
>> future assignments, and having a glance at their connections may be of use
>> in a job search. This morning I also rejected an invitation from a young
>> woman who clearly is only interested in marketing her mail lists.
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