About a month ago, I thought I was going crazy. A client performing a confidential job search e-mailed to ask if I could see his activity on LinkedIn. He was pretty sure he had selected all of the proper settings to prevent changes to his profile and status updates from being seen, but he didn’t want to take any chances. I viewed his profile and didn’t see his LinkedIn activity feed. I looked in the updates e-mail I got from LinkedIn. I had him make a change and looked on my home feed. Nothing. Success! He had followed my instructions perfectly - or so I thought. Here is where the crazy-making starts: When I visited profiles for other clients – who I was sure hadn’t made the same changes to their settings – I noticed I couldn’t see any of their profile page activity feeds either. They had all disappeared. What the heck? Was it possible that everyone was turning them off now? I went to my settings and made sure my activity feed was made visible. I still couldn’t see it. Was I doing something wrong? I was so confused. Then, I read on a group for LinkedIn experts that LinkedIn had decided to take that feature away. I was seriously bummed. I liked going to a profile page and seeing what that person’s last status updates were! “Doggone it! Why does LinkedIn always have to change this stuff on us?!” I grumbled. When I read the post on the LinkedIn help page, I realized that not all hope needs be lost. It looks like LinkedIn is just focusing on a new way to display people’s activities that will be better somehow. (Let’s just hope it is in reality...)
How To Promote Your LinkedIn Activity Without Your FeedIn the meantime, while we are waiting for LinkedIn to develop this better form of activity updates, here are some substitutes I recommend to promote your LinkedIn activity and keep your online image current:
1. GroupsBe active in LinkedIn Groups, especially those where you will reach a wide and engaged audience. The whole goal of social media is to create a personal brand and build relationships, right? What better way to do that than to share relevant articles and strike up conversations with people you would like to add to your network via LinkedIn groups. See my article "7 Ways to Get Noticed in LinkedIn Groups" for more ideas.
2. Other Social Media SitesI’m not telling you to give up on LinkedIn (I would not ever recommend that!), but you can direct people to other social media sites where your status updates continue to remain visible.
- If you use your Facebook account for branding purposes, customize the profile URL and add it to the websites that you have listed in your Contact Info section.
- Make sure your Twitter account is listed on your LinkedIn profile.
- If you have a YouTube channel, a blog, or other professional networking sites, add those to your LinkedIn profile somewhere.
3. “Recommended For You” SectionsLinkedIn gives you many options for listing what you are doing professionally. You want to detail any Projects/Publications/Honors and Awards/Languages/Test Scores/Patents you complete for SEO purposes anyway. Why not keep on top of these things periodically to give your network more to look at on your profile
4. Rich MediaI love how LinkedIn has given us more visual appeal on our profiles by using rich media. Learning how to take advantage of this feature can dramatically bolster your personal brand.
5. RecommendationsGetting recommendations is incredibly valuable for many different reasons, but it is even more so now that activity feeds are missing. Make it a point to get one new recommendation every week or two to add credibility and dimension to your profile.
6. SummaryYou are probably savvy enough to know how important a good summary is, I probably don’t even need to mention this, but without an activity feed, it is even more critical: people viewing your profile want to know what you are up to, so keep your summary is current. In addition to these tips, a word of caution: just because you no longer have an activity feed in your profile that does not mean that changes to your profile cannot be seen by your network! If you are in a confidential search, take a minute to refresh yourself on how to adjust your settings and do so carefully. By updating all of these sections on your LinkedIn profile, your network will know that you are still alive and well, and actively working on your career. You will instantly become a more attractive candidate. Here’s to your career in 2014! Enjoy this article? You've got time for another! Check out these related articles:
- Your Essential LinkedIn Guide: Harness The Awesomeness
- LinkedIn Cheat Sheet: 5 Tips For A Professional Profile
- 7 Phrases To Delete From Your LinkedIn Profile