How to Use LinkedIn’s “People You May Know” Feature to Expand Your Network


Get Shift Done: Tips and Tricks

With the right approach, using the “People You May Know” tool on LinkedIn can help you greatly expand your network and professional opportunities. But how?

First things first, let’s recap where to find it. Once you’ve logged in to your profile, hover over “My Network” and click the third option down.

Once there, the “People You May Know” feature populates with recommendations based on people who have similar work experience and/or people whose contacts you’ve imported from your email.

Click on one of the contacts that appears, and you will be taken to their LinkedIn profile page. In the middle of the right hand side of the page, LinkedIn will show how you are connected. The diagram, below, provides the perfect opportunity to demonstrate your first tactic for relationship building: mention who you know in common.

Bruce Bixler’s LinkedIn Tips & Tricks. WordPress.

In this case, you and Christine know three individuals directly in common (Patty, Robert, and Rosemary), which gives you infinitely more leverage when you reach out to try to reach out to her.

For example, you could draft a LinkedIn InMail to introduce yourself. In the mail, mention the three people you know in common, and why you’re reaching out. This approach will result in a be far more positive reception than a random mail that seems to come out of nowhere.

By making the time to establish shared contacts, your prospective connection feels like you’re already in their network, and paves the way for a new, and stronger, business relationship.

What else can you do to nurture this new relationship?

Find Common Ground.

On the middle of the right hand corner of the page, right below the “How You’re Connected,” diagram shown above, you’ll find a caption that says “In Common with (Name here).” The diagram, shown below, reveals the causes, skills, expertise, companies, and even locations you and your prospective contact have in common.

Even one common link, especially one that that seems particularly compelling like say, a shared passion for education, can be used as a basis for introducing yourself when you send a LinkedIn InMail to connect.

Once you have these two basics down, you’ll start building the network you need to achieve your professional goals. Remember, a new connection should never be taken for granted. Like you would with your family and friends, invest in your business relationships so that they can strengthen and grow.

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