MMLGF 5: Your LinkedIn Groups at your LinkedIn home page

September 8, 2007

Showing LinkedIn Groups’ activity into your public profile is with no doubts something really useful as a way of marketing yourself. But doing marketing of yourself must be followed by some tool that let you manage, work and monitor the stuff you are trying to promote.

Accessing LinkedIn Groups you are member of into your home page (not your public profile) would make your home quite more useful and dynamic than now. For example, we can think about adding it:

· Specific group’s information, like details, questions, member list, etc. for each group

  • · Last questions asked in each or all groups.
  • · Links to questions you asked or answered to get direct access to them.
  • · List of group members who are more involved with it.

Accessing your LinkedIn groups from your LinkedIn home, getting some information about them and sharing some of your LinkedIn groups’ activity at your public profile should add great value not only to you but also to LinkedIn. You are adding value because you are promoting yourself better, and also having direct access to what you are interested about. LinkedIn is also adding value because offering a better access to your groups let you interact, participate and promote yourself better, and that cause more traffic, more information and more value to LinkedIn website.

 

This is post #5 of the (M)aking the (M)ost of (L)inkedIn (G)roups (F)unctionality (MMLGF) Series.


MMLGF 4: Showing your LinkedIn Groups activity at your public profile

August 27, 2007

LinkedIn public profile let users to show who they are, what they do and what are their interests and history. LinkedIn Groups are groups to collect and contact people with similar interests. So, if LinkedIn groups new version coming up in late September or my idea of LinkedIn groups I’m posting on this MMLGF series include some functionality like a Question and Answer section, why not to include each user activity into their public profile?

 

That way asking and answering into LinkedIn groups will not only help you and others in specifics topics you are talking about but also will let you promote the activity you have on each and every LinkedIn groups you are subscribed to. So, what are the benefits? Well, I think if you choose to publish that information into your public profile is because you have something positive about you and what you are doing to show there so anyone looking for you can see it.

 

I mean, the current version of LinkedIn groups just let you put you have some interests on something, but if you do something interesting into those LinkedIn groups you are subscribed to, why not to show you are doing something there? I guess doing that (including LinkedIn groups’ activity) will let you show more information about what LinkedIn public profile is about: show who you are, what are your interests and most important: what do you do.

 

I don’t know if this idea is good but with this, LinkedIn groups’ participation will help everyone into promote their own activity and, consequently, add quite more value to your LinkedIn public profile.

This is post #4 of the (M)aking the (M)ost of (L)inkedIn (G)roups (F)unctionality (MMLGF) Series.


MMLGF 3: Exporting information and generating alerts from LinkedIn Groups

August 24, 2007

Making websites with APIs and Feeds has its sense. When providing an API anyone could build great services over the website existing platform achieving benefits for themselves (offering new services for users on the existing website) and the existing website (promoting it). By providing Feeds, not only website’s information and data could be exported automatically by software components but also, and more important, could be read and used offline or at least, being disconnected from the source website.

Feeds give websites the chance to export information and consume external services automatically. Feeds consumers (web applications like netvibes.com or popurl.com and especially Feed Readers like Google Reader, bloglines.com or desktop feed readers like BlogBridge) let users a way to consume different website and applications information without going into websites but also, in some cases, exporting the information to see what they want or need.

As I mentioned in a previous post applied to LinkedIn.com Question and Answer section, filtering and combination of feeds is also very useful when thinking about LinkedIn Groups (or this “LinkedIn Groups” idea I have in my mind). But, wouldn’t be better for users to have Feed Exportation of specific user’s queries they need or want inside Linkedin, instead of going offsite with feeds URL and make that “filter and combine” onto other website?

Using Feeds from users’ queries and adding advanced search functionality to LinkedIn Groups would let find and export information like:

  • Questions from a whole Group
  • A particular thread (A Question and its answers)
  • A Threads list where some users had asked or answer (yourself, one of your connections or someone you just want to know what he is talking about).
  • Queries results I talked about on MMLGF #2 to get questions or threads:
    • Matching specific keyword search.
    • Asked/answered by your connections.
    • Popular threads.
    • Asked/answered today.
    • Asked/answered by some people you are interested in.
    • Tagged by you before.

But, feeds are not everything… we can think about receiving alerts into email inbox, LinkedIn inbox or even directly to our mobile phone. That way, we can be offline but completely online all the time reading feeds into our feed readers from specific queries we want and receiving some alerts into many different ways…

Definitely, with all this, LinkedIn Groups will be great!!!

This is post #3 of the (M)aking the (M)ost of (L)inkedIn (G)roups (F)unctionality (MMLGF) Series.


MMLGF 2: What we need to get and find on LinkedIn Groups

August 21, 2007

After the first post about features that LinkedIn or any other business social network group implementation should have, I will talk about how users use those groups what they need to find and get from there.

As you know, nowadays there are lot of applications (web apps and desktop apps) built based on great ideas, with fantastic features. But as you also know sometimes those great ideas are not well developed and users get some features they will never use and they don’t get some features they really need. I mean applications are built based on ideas without thinking about how will users need this idea to be built.

In my career I’ve seen quite a lot of groups’ websites and I think all of them have some important defects. Some of them don’t let users make a search, others don’t let look for members, some others don’t have the chance to export things from inside the group, others just don’t focus the navigation correctly and others just don’t let users search in other way than keyword search.

I think users using a group website not only need to have features I mentioned on the MMLFG #1 but also have some chances to get or find specific staff on the forum. Focusing especially on business social networks groups like LinkedIn groups I think users will need good ways to find topics (questions and/or answers) that:

  • match specific keyword search.
  • asked/answered by your connections.
  • with more than certain number of answers (popular topics?).
  • asked/answered today.
  • asked/answered by some people you are interested in.
  • tagged by you before.

As a conclusion, with advanced search possibilities like the ones I mentioned above and some others someone will need, I think users will for sure use those groups not only because they are interested in the topics groups cover but also because they can find and get what they really need. Advanced Search let users don’t waste time and look just for the information they want.

As a final word, if we make a last little effort then it would be great if we can save those advanced search we usually do for later use, and then just execute them.

On the next MMLGF post I will talk about “Exporting information and generating alerts from LinkedIn Groups”. Hope you go on reading me and please just leave any comment you want so I know what you are expecting from this MMLGF series.

 

This is post #2 of the (M)aking the (M)ost of (L)inkedIn (G)roups (F)unctionality (MMLGF) Series.


MMLGF 1: Features that LinkedIn Groups must have

August 17, 2007

To start this series of blog post about “Making the Most of LinkedIn Groups Functionality” or just MMLGF I choose an easy topic to talk about: desired (or needed) features.

Nowadays LinkedIn Groups just have a name that is written into each and every member’s profile so anyone looking at your public profile can see you have “something” in common with the LinkedIn Group’s intentions you are member of.

What if LinkedIn changes that and give us, users, the chance not only to show we have that relation with the LinkedIn groups we are members of, but also to participate, collaborate and promote ourselves there? And also, what if we think about in adding value to ourselves when participate / collaborate / promote / whatever in those group? That way the more you are on them the more you get from there.

Going back to the features, I think it would be great if LinkedIn Groups offers us:

  • An easy URL to access the group (for example: http://groups.linkedin.com/groupName/ )
  • A group home web page or small website with some important information for group members and non-members.
  • A forum like the Linkedin Q&A section or even better: a Forum where people can talk, ask, answer and communicate in a free way.
  • The chance to upload/download some files (documents, pictures or whatever) about the group or any specific topic.
  • See and Search members
  • Exporting groups information (like feeds in nowadays Q&A LinkedIn section) so users can read that information from their RSS readers, mobile phones or the way they want to.

With these features and many others you can imagine, comment or think about I guess LinkedIn will get lot of activity back to its website while now goes to Yahoo, Google or Facebook groups.

On the next MMLGF post I will talk about “What we need to get and find on LinkedIn groups”. Hope you go on reading me and please just leave any comment you want so I know what you are expecting from this MMLGF series.

This is post #1 of the (M)aking the (M)ost of (L)inkedIn (G)roups (F)unctionality (MMLGF) Series.


(M)aking the (M)ost of (L)inkedIn (G)roups (F)unctionality (MMLGF) Series…

August 16, 2007

As I mention last week I will start writing a series of blog posts I named: “Making the Most of LinkedIn Groups Functionality” or just MMLGF. I know MMLGF is difficult to say but I can’t find a best name 🙂

I haven’t written too much of it but I’m open to hear from things you‘d like to improve or change at LinkedIn groups functionality. I mean, this guide is not at all a guide about bad things on LinkedIn groups now, but a guide about what it will be great to have and use on them.

MMLGF 1: Features that LinkedIn Groups must have

MMLGF 2: What we need to get and find on LinkedIn Groups

MMLGF 3: Exporting information and generating alerts from LinkedIn Groups

MMLGF 4: Showing your LinkedIn Groups activity at your public profile

MMLGF 5: Accessing your LinkedIn Groups from your LinkedIn home page

MMLGF 6: Making Connections with LinkedIn Groups members

MMLGF 7: LinkedIn Groups activity included on Linkedin Search

MMLGF 8: Exporting your LinkedIn groups activity (Blogging?)

MMLGF 9: Linkedin Groups Privacy and Visibility

MMLGF 10: LinkedIn Groups API

I’ll be waiting your comments, ideas and thoughts about LinkedIn Groups and this MMLGF post series.


Imagine: Making the Most on Your LinkedIn Profile

August 1, 2007

Scott Allen wrote in his blog a post about some changes LinkedIn made about websites on LinkedIn profiles. He explained there with lot of details about this feature and how this feature can improve the look of our profile.

That post, make me remember that some time ago, while I was having a chat with one of my connections I asked him something like: “what if we can make links and put some pictures or just edit HTML into our LinkedIn profile?”

Can you imagine it? I guess that little change on our “edit profile” function can elevate our own profile quite a lot. Why? Because we will be writing on our profile just what we want. We would be putting images, links, links to brochures or projects in which you worked, editing text and marking as bold some text, putting titles or just whatever we want. So, we wil be having a chance to put on linkedin profile our business profile, and a cleaner way to sell, offer or express what we really want to.

 

I think… that will be “Making the most of your LinkedIn profile” 🙂