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Doing Business on the Go

August 2014

Which LinkedIn Apps Make the Most Sense

Colleen McKenna, LinkedIn Expert

Colleen McKenna, LinkedIn Expert

I’m an app junkie. If someone recommends an app focused on productivity, time management and hacks, I’ll download it, play around with it and see if it works for how I work. The best apps make whatever you are attempting to do easier.

Every day we download more and more apps – they have increasingly become the way we interact with a product or service. Sarah Perez from TechCrunch reports that at the Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference in San Francisco, the company announced that the iOS App Store has now reached 1.2 million applications – a staggering number that puts Apple neck-and-neck with competitor Google, which is currently estimated to have roughly 1.2 million.

It’s important to remember that apps are a version, a light version of a full product. It’s not always a full view of what you can do through the full website. This is important to keep in mind when thinking about LinkedIn and its apps.

According to LinkedIn, now more than 41 percent of LinkedIn’s members access LinkedIn through their iPhone or iPad mobile apps. This number continues to increase every day, and LinkedIn continues to improve their mobile experience. At some point down the road, it’s likely your LinkedIn mobile experience will match your LinkedIn full site experience.

Right now though it typically comes down to personal preference. I don’t recommend LinkedIn mobile apps for working on your profile, connecting with others or participating in Groups. Why? It’s just too hard or is not supported.

The LinkedIn app is a bit wonky for building your profile (especially if you don’t have a wireless keyboard or stylus). You don’t want mistakes in your profiles because you worked on the mobile version.

As of this writing, you cannot personalize an invitation on LinkedIn. You want to personalize your invitations as often as possible; it’s a best practice and makes a difference to how you are seen by the recipient.

On the other hand, LinkedIn’s mobile apps are great for researching, remembering and checking in to see what’s happening on your network when you are on the go and getting ready to have a conversation with someone. You will notice that many of LinkedIn’s apps are focused on a particular area. This makes sense for LinkedIn and for members – it does just want an app is supposed to do, simplify the activity.

If you work from your iPhone or iPad, take a look at the basic apps and some new ones that link to LinkedIn:
• LinkedIn – This is the standard LinkedIn mobile app for phones and iPad, and brings most of the features from LinkedIn’s website to members’ mobile devices.
• Pulse – LinkedIn acquired Pulse and its mobile newsreader app for $90 million back in April of 2013. The app aggregates popular news and feature articles from the web, to provide news curation technology. You can customize your Pulse based on your interests.
• LinkedIn Recruiter – The Recruiter app was released in October 2013 and is primarily for recruiting professionals. It brings tools used to monitor and discover new employees on LinkedIn to a standalone mobile app. The company recently announced an Android version of the app.
• LinkedIn Jobs – LinkedIn’s mission to create economic opportunity extends to this app and makes searching and applying for jobs easier and quicker.
• LinkedIn Contacts – Contacts extracts LinkedIn information such as calendars, profile alerts and profile details from your connections into a standalone app.
• Refresh – syncs effortlessly with your calendar to find people you’re meeting and provide tailored insights to help you either make a lasting first impression or quickly get up-to-date with those you already know.
• Rapportive – A LinkedIn-owned Gmail extension, Rapportive shows you everything about your contacts right inside your inbox. It highlights their LinkedIn profiles, which is super helpful if you use Gmail.

Use LinkedIn’s apps wisely to enhance your LinkedIn experience with others. Don’t overdo it and don’t miss an opportunity.

After a lifetime in business development and marketing, Colleen McKenna launched her own business in early 2011 focused on helping business professionals use technology to reposition themselves and grow their business with a strategic focus on LinkedIn. She has worked with more than 3,500 business professionals to help them craft and navigate their professional brand for awareness, business development and recruiting. Contact her at colleen@interoadvisory.com or www.linkedin.com/in/colleenmckenna. I95

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