Ask for recommendations

Recommendations will help you get to All-Star status!all star status on LinkedIn

If you have ever attended one of my LinkedIn classes you have heard me speak about the advantages of placing your personal branding keywords in your profile to help you show up more prominently in searches done without using your name. One of the lesser known areas that can really benefit that search algorithm is your recommendations. LinkedIn wants you to have three recommendations from your connections. Many times, people will write a recommendation for you, but they are based on what they want or choose to say.

Let’s see how you might make these recommendations work to your “keyword” advantage. Afterrecommendation1 you determine what your keywords are and you have placed them in your profile in the right places, the additional area you want to include is the recommendation. Follow these steps:

  1. Select a keyword upon which you want to focus.
  2. Select a person that knows you well enough to write a recommendation about your expertise in that keyword area.
  3. Find the recommendations section on your profile.recommendation2
    1. Hover over Profile in the menu bar,
    2. Select Edit Profile,
    3. Scroll down to the Recommendations section,
    4. Hover over the section to recommendation3reveal the “Ask to be recommended” button.
    5. Click it.
  4. Follow the steps in the Recommendation sequence.
    1. Pick a position
    2. Pick a person
    3. Select relationship
    4. Select person’s position
    5. Write your message
  5. The message should never be the generic message generated by LinkedIn. Whenever possible always try to personalize any of those messages. For the purpose of your recommendation, you are even going to offer them some suggested language. Why make the person have to add more work to their busy day when there is really nothing in it for them to write you a recommendation. Here is my suggestion – Use the keyword that you want to highlight in the recommendation. Write 2-3 sentences about how you demonstrate that keyword. If you need help tooting your own horn, work with a someone who knows your work. It is very difficult to sell yourself. Think about what you would write if you were writing your own performance review.
  6. Repeat this process to request a review from different individuals to cover each of your most prominent keywords.

In most cases, the person will use your words in the recommendation. In one situation when I was working one-on-one with a client, we used this technique and the person from whom we requested the recommendation went above and beyond what we had used in the request and wrote a couple of paragraphs.

I would also recommend that as you add a new skill, or as your recommendations “age” you may want to request recommendations to keep the keyword fresh on the top of your list of recommendations. A good rule of thumb is obtain a new one every four to six months. Remember, if you pay it forward, it will come back to you!

 

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You need endorsements AND recommendations

Endorsements vs. Recommendations

In September of 2013, I wrote an article about endorsements and recommendations. Since that time, LinkedIn has does some remodeling and the part of the article that addressed product recommendations is no defunct.

Let’s revisit endorsements and recommendations.

Who gives endorsements? Have you written any recommendations? Have you ever shared someone’s profile with another connection? Do all three from a visit to one of your connections profile. Pick the down arrow next to the “Send Message” box.Endorse Recommend Share Profiles on LinkedIn

Endorsements

LinkedIn’s search algorithms use keywords from three locations to help boost you in the search results. One of those areas is your Skills and Endorsements. If you aren’t using the endorsements feature, you could be missing a valuable part of your ability for people to find you in a keyword search on LinkedIn.

I would caution you to carefully choose the items for which you endorse others.  I suggest that you only endorse them for the skills they have selected instead of suggesting skills for them. I would also encourage you to endorse them for the skills that you know they possess. I hear from attendees in my class that they don’t like when people endorse them for things about which they have no knowledge whether the person owns that skill or not.  If you are one of those people, take a look at this post about managing your endorsements https://time2mrkt.com/linkedin/linkedin_endorsements/.

Recommendations

Recommendations are harder to come by.  Many people find it difficult to ask someone to say kind words about them. In our hectic lives, we often forget to say kind words about others. Use the recommendation feature to write a sentence or two about someone with whom you have worked.  The recommendation just needs to include a few of the keywords that the person has used on their profile.

If you are seeking a recommendation about a particular thing, you could send the request and include the keywords in the body of the request. Heck, you may even want to include an example sentence or two that the person could just copy and paste!

Sharing

One feature that I think is often overlooked is the Share Profile option.  Endorse Me for LinkedInThis lets you send the profile of your connection to another connection.  So many times, I am asked who do I know that does X. I go through my list of connections (that I have tagged) and share the profile.  Other times, a connection will ask me to recommend them to a group of my connections. I go to their profile, select share, and send it off with a short message about why I am sending the profile to them.

So many options from which to choose.  Which one do you need? All of them!

By the way, if you are feeling the urge, I could use a boost on my profile for just one of my skills. If you feel inclined, please visit my profile at http://linkedin.com/in/deereinhardt and click the Plus next to the word LinkedIn.

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Top 5 LinkedIn Business Page Tips – Recommendations

Top 5 LinkedIn Business Page Tips – Recommendations is next in the series for business. Topics for your business page previously covered include: Products & ServicesImagery, and next will be Activity

Top 5 LinkedIn Business Page Tips – Recommendations

Most people are aware that word of mouth will get you, sometimes, as much business as paid advertising. So how do you get that word of mouth promotion on your LinkedIn company page?  The answer is to ask your clients to recommend specific products or services on your companies’ business page.  Let’s take a look – Use LinkedIn Products to your company's advantage.

On the right side of this image, you see that there are 3 recommendations for this particular product.  Those recommendations equal word of mouth.  Below the number of impressions is a spot where you can request recommendations. Once you click on that, a box pops up that you can send a request for a recommendation to anyone to whom you are a first degree connection.

LinkedIn product recommendation

The next bit of advice is something that I recommend for every component of LinkedIn that gives you a prepared message. DON’T USE IT!  You can very easily personalize the messages that LinkedIn offers, so please do so!  Additionally, when asking for recommendations for your products or for you personally, don’t make the person do all of the work.  Offer some language that you would like to see in your recommendation.  Perhaps it is the keywords associated with the product or key marketing phrases that you use to brand your products or services.

The pay-it-forward concept works here as well.  If you wish to express your positive experience with a product or service by a company, don’t wait for them to ask – write! Who knows, depending upon your own skills and products, this could forge a great working relationship!

Hopefully, you will be able to give and receive with this Top 5 LinkedIn Business Page Tip by participating in the recommendation process.

Need more information on your personal profile? Read the LinkedIn – Top 5 Tips – series on the following: PhotosCompleteConnectionsInvitationsParticipate

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LinkedIn Recommendations

How do you approach LinkedIn Recommendations?

Recommendations are one of the areas where you can “Pay it forward” by writing one for people you know well on LinkedIn.  Previously we have discussed the benefits of Endorsements, but let’s chat a bit about the how-to of writing or requesting a LinkedIn recommendation.

Asking for LinkedIn Recommendations

To request a recommendation – go to:
Profile > Edit profile
Scroll to where your recommendations block is
Click the pencil
Find the Ask to be recommended
Remember that you can only request LinkedIn recommendations from 1st degree connections.
LinkedIn ask for recommendation

Writing LinkedIn Recommendations

If you want to write LinkedIn recommendations for your 1st degree connections:
Find their profile
Hover over the “Send a Message”
Select the Recommend
Write the recommendation
Give LinkedIn recommendations
Sometimes the best way to get LinkedIn recommendations is to give one, but if the person for whom you write a recommendation, writes one for you right away, wait until you have accepted a recommendation from someone else in between before you accept the reciprocal recommendation. Otherwise it looks like recommendation love. <3 <3
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LinkedIn Endorsement vs. Recommendations

One of the most frequently asked questions that I receive is “What are endorsements?  What good do they do?”.  I thought I would put an explanation into words for you.

Endorsements – are a way to give your connection LinkedIn Endorsementsa thumbs up for the skills that they have listed without going through to much effort. Some people think they are a waste of time, but I would tend to disagree. Here are a few reasons:

  • The act of endorsing someone gives you a “post” without having to think of anything to say;
  • Endorsing someone’s skill let’s them know that you think they “own” that skill. I don’t endorse someone for a skill  that I don’t know they possess and I don’t add skills to their profile by endorsing them for something they have not included.
  • Endorsing others might give you an idea for a skill that you possess that you hadn’t thought about including in your skills.

Read more about managing endorsements in this article: LinkedIn Endorsements.

Recommendations – The best part of recommendations is that you can give one to your firstLinkedIn recommendations degree connections without having to be asked. Recommendations are much more thoughtful and descriptive than endorsing someone. This is a way to speak to the quality of someone’s work more than just the skill that they possess.  My caution here is > don’t give someone a recommendation as soon as they have written one for you.  It just looks like “recommendation love” and that isn’t so good.  “Paying it forward” is the thought to keep in mind when you are writing recommendations.  Remember, just because someone writes you a recommendation, doesn’t mean that you have to return the favor.  Perhaps you “pay it forward” to someone else.  LinkedIn used to require 3 recommendations from first degree contacts before they would consider your profile complete.  It is still advised to try to obtain them for your current and past positions.  Just remember, that to write a recommendation or request one, you must be first degree connections with the person. AND by all means, don’t invite them to connect and ask for the recommendation in the same communication!

When you recommend someone, they must approve your recommendation to appear on their profile.  Use your best grammar and punctuation.  Not only will it reflect upon the person about whom you are writing, but it reflects upon you as well. The recommendations that you give, as well as, receive show in your profile for everyone to view.

Product/Services Recommendations – Now if giving and getting endorsements andLinkedIn Product Recommendations recommendations weren’t enough, we have the third option of recommending the company product or service for which the person you are thinking about recommending offers.  This is a great idea if the company is a one-person or small operation. While searching LinkedIn, a company page may appear before they run across the person.  In my case, I am my company so when someone recommends my company, they are recommending me.

I would love to hear your thoughts on endorsements and recommendations.  Tell me what you think!

 

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