LinkedIn Help or should we say the lack of it when needed……..

Have you noticed that you have received the following on

‘Who’s Viewed Your Profile’ section of your LinkedIn profile :-

– Someone at ‘Company ABC’ has viewed your profile

– Anonymous viewer has viewed your profile

– Anonymous viewer, A LinkedIn member has viewed your profile

Who are you?

#IanCalvert #Ian-Calvert #IanMCalvert #Ian-M-Calvert #ServiceAddress #Service-Address #Anonymous #LinkedIn #Viewing #Members

Do I have something that you want?

#IanCalvert #Ian-Calvert #IanMCalvert #Ian-M-Calvert #ServiceAddress #Service-Address #Anonymous #LinkedIn #Viewing

What are you wanting to get from me?

#IanCalvert #Ian-Calvert #IanMCalvert #Ian-M-Calvert #ServiceAddress #Service-Address #Anonymous

Ever since I have been a member of LinkedIn, I have always had any of the above appear on the section of ‘Who’s Viewed Your Profile’ on my LinkedIn profile either on a daily basis or every two to three days. When you complain or raise the topic with LinkedIn via their Help Forum’s/Support Section, they always provide the standard stock answer:-

We do not have a way to block other members from viewing profiles, this includes anonymous members, I am sorry.  We are considering adding such a feature but I do not have release date to provide.  Should such a feature be rolled out there will be an announcement

More and more members are finding this to be totally annoying and in some cases a cause of concern as you don’t really who they are or why they are doing it. This can create immense distress sometimes, as one member placed in a comment, “I have a court order against someone but how do I know if it is these people who I have court orders or injunctions against?” Thus, this facility can distress them as they are unable to find out who or why they have been viewed. Examples of this topic being discussed include:-

http://community.linkedin.com/questions/83151/anonymous-viewers-1.html#comment-124781

or

http://community.linkedin.com/questions/32330/linked-in-member-or-anonymous.html#comment-121600

Both the links above, are just two of many questions that have been raised in their (LinkedIn) community groups, yet everyone seems to get the same standard stock response as mentioned above. So, what is there to be done? It would seem there is nothing that can be done except just keep asking and raising it to see if anything will be done….

Or is it……or should something be done?

Well the answer I would say is YES – something does need to be done and here is why…

LinkedIn recently lowered the age for joining LinkedIn from 18 (except China) as stated below:-

(details on the changes to their terms and conditions are here – plus here is the blog by Christina Allen on the reason behind the launch of  University Pages which then lead to the launch of lowering the age of joining LinkedIn to enjoy the benefits of “LinkedIn – Now for Education” )

With all the issues on the internet of stalking and trolling and together with stalking in the real world, we all have to be careful as to how we let and monitor our children on the internet. So, if I was allowing my two daughters to be on LinkedIn, and they came to me saying they were having lots of anonymous viewers, I would certainly want some answers and have to re-consider allowing them to be on LinkedIn.

When I raised this (on several occasions including this one) with other’s, they were of the very same opinion about their children too. In essence, whether it is teenagers who are the next generations of Professional Networkers, Woman or Men, the right to be allowed to view members should not be allowed in today’s modern society.

LinkedIn are clearly allowing people to operate like stalkers or trolls with their full support by continuing to allow this facility to continue. Yet why? Has LinkedIn not learnt anything from Twitter and the issues raised here:-

Whilst I can’t say that trolling or stalking has taken place here on LinkedIn (to my knowledge), I do think that LinkedIn really need to start thinking of not just the anonymous viewing but also the sign up method (example here about a 10-year-old?)

These are just my thoughts, but I would be glad to hear your thoughts on this topic of “Anonymous Viewing” or if you want to comment on “the new lower age for joining” via the reply section below or by completing this form:-

Who is right? Who should you follow? Informers or repeating informers?

#IanCalvert #IanMCalvert #Ian-Calvert #TSP #Service-Address #The-Social-Piggy

I know it is only Tuesday but what is annoying me already is that the week has started very repetitive already! Not naming names but I am amazed at the amount of “Experts“, “Influencers” or Social Media Experts” that several organisations such as Forbes amongst others promote in the “Top 10”, “Top 20” or “Top 50” tables – how can these people actually be taken seriously? OK, they may have ‘tens of thousands’ or ‘hundreds of thousands’ of followers, liker’s or subscribers but are they really that good? If you take for example their use of Social Media – they fall into two camps:-

  • Constant posting – once or twice an hour or more, creating at least 50 or more posts a day but nothing else

or

  • As above but with the odd personalised message or never ever actually taking part in a conversation

So, are these people who constantly post and share one way, real experts or influencers? Take a further a look at what they are posting, yes they are posting worldwide, but when you, say take a week, look at all the posts and you will have repetition! Furthermore, they are posting information for you read (and sometimes including New or Just Released in the message) and yet when you click on the link included in their post, you will notice that it is months old, from earlier this year or last year – in some cases two or more years old! Thus, based on the above – can these people be the actual people to learn and educate you or your business from? Constant posting and re-posting – is this educational to you? Virtually all one way traffic – again is this helpful?

I am not saying the information they provide is wrong but – you could say what tipped me over the edge! – when a message was received today, it was telling “X has just released this – learn how this can help by their new Y facility“, I thought this is going to be interesting. So, I clicked the link and was prepared to be educated and there it was, an article from last April about company X launching a facility on their Y service! Yet, this Y service is something that is widely known and used by everyone who uses that service. Furthermore, on checking, this post had already been posted several times over the past week previously – exactly the same and not with a single change or mention that it a repeat of previous post! Therefore, I ask you, who are you following and why? What do you expect to learn from them? I suggest that you look back over their posts for the last week and consider this:-

  • How many times an hour are they posting?
  • Are they posting every single hour?
  • Do any of their posts actually contain names?
  • If there are names, are they actually replying or engaging with their audience?
  • Or are they just actually replying by saying ‘Thank You for following me”?
  • How many of the posts are repeated?
  • Also, look at the links and then click-through and see the dates of articles – how many are older than 18th of November 2013?
  • Do these posts make reference to the fact they are old articles or re-posts?

So, now you have looked and discovered this, let me again ask you, are you really following the right Experts, Inspirers or Mentors? For me, I have taken a view to look further, are these people any good? Do they have a background and what have they done? When you look at most of those people, all they seem to have done is provide information but not really from a business background where they have had any real experience of running a business or the responsibility it carries? Now, I have re-evaluated who I follow and engage with, as I want to be learning and discovering new things from people who are constantly evolving – society and technology is evolving! So, I want to develop and evolve with them – can the people above be mentioned in the same way? The answer is NO! In my opinion, I would like to throw a few names to you all for you to consider and these include:-

Note – Name links are through to their entry on Wikipedia whilst Twitter and Websites go through to their respective sites

Whilst I may not agree with all their points of view, tweets, posts or comments, these people are ones that I have engaged with, happy to share their content and their comments are both educational and informative. All their comments are direct and fresh – no repeats (unless you count re-tweets) – so all covering the latest news and events to keep you both informed and educated too…. Thus, when choosing the people to follow and engage with, make sure they engage in a”Two Way Street” and “Are An Innovator and Educator” – so, don’t go for repetition, old news and a one way street, lead the way to put yourself on the path to success like these people have…..

When we speak to people – we communicate, but do you on-line?

There you are about to walk through or exit a place via the door and people are following you or entering in the other direction, you hold the door open for them and you exchange comments thanking each other…..

You bump into another person and you apologise……

Someone does something for you and helps you, you say thank you because they have assisted you

You do something for someone to help them or acknowledge what they have done by congratulating – a word or two of thanks is exchanged…..

Someone says hello and introduces themselves to you and answer back…..

Just four examples of what we do in our lives each and every day, we show our manners and are polite due to the way we have been brought up in society – so, what do you do on-line? Do you operate in the same way? If not, why not?

With the increasing use of Social Media and how we operate – are you behaving properly? Whilst there maybe not be defined rules as to how operate on-line, why don’t you replicate what you do in your normal day on-line? So let me ask two questions:-

  • You see something on FacebookTwitter, Google+ LinkedIn or Xing to name but a few, yet what do you do? You like the item, share it, re-tweet it, favourite it, Plus 1 it or comment on it – why do you do this?
  • Whilst using these platforms, you write or share something and in turn you get people who like the item, share it, re-tweet it, favourite it, Plus 1 it or comment on it – so why do you not thank them or acknowledge what they have done every time?

As I mentioned before, in normal every day life you do the first question as a matter of course and the second question, you do this automatically, so why can’t you do this on this on-line?

Just a simple piece of etiquette can go a long way and helps you to start on the road to:-

  • Engage and/or engagement
  • Interaction and/or interaction
  • Influence

Just by developing the mirroring of off-line and on-line of your activities, you will start to engage with your audience and thus starting to create interaction between you both. Once this interaction starts to take place, you are both starting to exert influence on each other. Once this influence starts to grow between you both become members of each other’s Circle of Influence – thus you are each other’s Key Person of Influence.

Should you be wanting to develop yourself, your work and/or your company on-line, you truly have to create the correct on-line presence and develop your credibility thus, your Circle of Influence will help you and hence why it is important that you interact.

Whilst the last few paragraphs seem to hint and revolve around the same points, you need to understand why this is crucial. In today’s fast-moving world of the internet, your presence and your performance is key.

Let me leave you with these four little tips, which whilst maybe little, but in the on-line community that is the internet and Social Media, these little tips are very powerful and crucial:-

  • Treat any part of Social Media like you would when applying for a job. The Curriculum Vitae you would handover or the Application Form you would complete, you detail everything and tell the truth – so why would lie or be false on-line?
  • As pointed out at the start, off-line you always thank people and exchange messages – so do the same on-line. When people engage with the items you share on-line, always try to acknowledge. Whilst you may not be able to answer every single comment, like or share made about your article, at least comment on it, thanking people as this will show that you are engaging with your audience.
  • When you are communicating, make sure you are doing this right and with the correct intention in mind as well replication too. For example, many people send tweets which are up to 140 characters and the reason for this, was that it was a facility to share and update your audience with what you are doing. So when writing your tweet, endeavour to keep it below 100 characters, so when people re-tweet it, at least it will a) have name in it so you get credited and b) the tweet is re-tweeted in full. Also, when you share items, say from Facebook to Twitter, make sure the message is there, two people send the message but it is just a link and people tend to skip this in the majority of occasions due to issues over the links being not secure or they can’t be bothered as they are scanning quickly over these messages.
  • What are the rules? Make sure you obey to stop you getting into trouble. Take the two most important Facebook rules – a) you must be over 13 (but many parents allow their children on below that age) and b) Facebook is personal, so have your page for personal use and create a business page. If you use a personal page and treat it as a business, Facebook will close it down and you have lost everything which can’t re-activated. The latter also applies to LinkedIn too.

So, I hope this article and the four points above have been of interest and help you with how yow behave, engage and interact with your audience on-line in the future…..

MLM – is it an opportunity or a scam?

At the end of the day, there are many MLM opportunities but which is the right one for your family or friends?

So what is MLM – an opportunity or scam?

What do people perceive about you?

In essence there are two areas of MLM – a credible one or a potential scam one – most importantly, it is down to you and how you come across…..

For example, one type of MLM is a straight forward one like Avon or Betterware which is very credible but why? Easy, you receive catalogues, you take them, you deliver them and them collect them with potential completed order forms. Very simple, straight forward and very credible! No pressure, no need to involve your family, friends or connections within your “Circle of Influence”.

Where a MLM network maybe considered a scam is where you have to sell a service, product or saving. Why can this be considered a scam? Simple, what do you do first when you join? You offer or introduce it to your family, friends or connections – these are your “Circle of Influence”, your “Key People of Influence”. So, if your MLM opportunity is not going as well as you hoped or desired, then you look for the next opportunity and then another and then possibly another….

I am not saying, stating or hinting that this a scam but asking you to think what your “Circle of Influence” think……

Which ever opportunity you choose, make sure it is the right one and stick with it as if you keep swapping and changing, your “Circle of Influence” will start to lose trust in you or begin to think that you have got involved with another scam – and there is that word…..

So, just make sure you choose the right opportunity that is right for you and if you aren’t sure which one is right, then ask the question or seek support as credibility is what you need and desire. This credibility leads to giving you the confidence to introduce or share this opportunity within your circle. So, with this air of confidence, you are able to share and influence your circle with is opportunity but with no confidence, this shows and people can see this, thus losing that introduction….

Scam or opportunity – only you can make that decision – but the rewards can be potentially huge. Once you have that confidence within this group, your ‘Circle of Influence’ will do one of two things, (a) buy from you or (b) ask to join your network – or if you are really lucky both!

So, to make sure you have that confidence within your “Circle of Influence” then seek advice and support. One person that can help you here is Carol Wildgoose or a group that can, is Smart Incomes Online via their website or via their LinkedIn Group

Is it time for an “Engagement” or do you hide away…….

One of the interesting things that we do when we go to breakfasts or lunches, is talk to someone and explain what we do, to each other……………………

You may talk about many things to that person but during the event/occasion, you will speak to many people and for instance, let’s take just one person…..

  • Now besides what they say and the business card you may receive, do you actually take this card due to being polite?
  • Or because you want to sell to them?
  • Or maybe buy from them?

Sometimes all you do is pay lip service and in the majority of cases, you don’t actually do much with their details (that is if you don’t leave it on the table) – be honest, am I right?

So, on this occasion, you take the card, do you actually do anything when you leave with the information? I guess if you do, you add it to your database and use their information to market and hopefully sell to them. You have more than this option you know – or do you?

Have you thought of engagement process?

The main area that majority of us don’t utilise is the “Engagement Process” which is one of the biggest forms of the generating a revolving sales cycle and this we can call the “Prospective Sale”

So how does the “Engagement Process” and “Prospective Sale” work? Simple it is all about creating the engagement between two prospective parties…

There you are, sat in your office, thinking of how to target that company that is sat on your prospective list but something is holding you back but you aren’t sure what it is.

So with them being a prospect, you have done all your homework on the company and you know what they do and what they purchase roughly. (Well all companies have to buy stationary, utilities, materials for what their product ranges are, etc, etc). Now this train of thought has now produced one side of the engagement – do you see where  I am going????

At your next business breakfast, lunch or evening event make sure you speak to and engage in conversation with as many people as you can to learn about them and their business (always best to try to have a pen to hand here), ask for their card, make the first move and take it. It doesn’t matter whether they can be a client of your’s or not, but with that, make a note on it as to what they are saying and think which we one of your prospective clients (remember what we did above about understanding what your prospective client does and buys?) could either sell to that person or buy from them.

Do you see what you have done?

You have found the other person in the engagement!

Well done you…..

So, you have the two parties in mind and now you need to get them engaged. How do engage them – simple….

COMMUNICATE!!

All you need to do is write an email to the person you are thinking of and say….

“I was at breakfast (lunch/dinner) today/yesterday and met X from company Z and they were telling me all about what they did. When I got back to the office and remembered you mentioning to me about Y and thought that it would be worth you both chatting.  So I have included X in on this email to introduce you both – a form of on-line networking I guess – so you both can have chat. Hope the introduction works well for you both…..”

See, you have created the engagement process and got the two parties engaged. Then (if it has happened before) either pick up the phone (or if you aren’t sure – call them) and see how they got on with X from company Z. Then, towards the end of conversation mention about being in the area next week (or say a fortnight) and wondered if you could pop in for a coffee?

What you have done, it has got both those sides engaged with one another and thus in turn built yourself some credibility with that company (and also X from company Z), so when you are looking to sell to them, hopefully they are more open and willing to discuss things with you.

With helping to get two parties involved in the Engagement Process, you have created the Prospective Sale – in summary, never dismiss a company that has turned you down and don’t dismiss a company selling to you as these two parties being engaged with each other could always lead to the Prospective Sale you are looking for….