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LinkedIn Premium Accounts: Worth It or Not? PDF Print E-mail
Written by Amy Scalia   
Monday, 07 November 2011 06:08

LinkedIn Premium Accounts: Worth It or Not?
LinkedIn now offers several new options, including paid Premium Account options. We talk with local LinkedIn experts to see which paid upgrades are worth it - for job seekers and recruiters.
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With more than 100 million users, LinkedIn is arguably the dominant online networking platform for business. But just how useful are the new Premium Accounts?

 

The best way to compare the feature variables for Premium Accounts is to log in, go to your Settings page and click on "Compare account types." There, you will find:

  • four different Premium Accounts for Business users
  • three different Premium Accounts for Jobseekers
  • four different Premium Accounts for Recruiters

 

As expected, there's a Bronze-Silver-Gold price level for each. But it's still not clear on whether or not these features actually work in practice. So, we asked several local experts who have tried out these new features and accounts to see what they think.

 

Michelle Beckham-Corbin, Owner and Principal of C3: Creating Connections Consulting, LLC, says it depends on how you're using LinkedIn and what your strategy is. "Someone in a job search who is targeting a broad role outside of their home base area would most likely benefit from the job seeker premium features," she explains. "[It's] definitely a must for recruiters as well due to the increased functionality."

 

Joanne Westwood, owner of Westwood Virtual Associates, agrees. She says the Premium Accounts are worth it if you are using LinkedIn to broaden your reach. "Many times you are limited in searches to close connections. If you are being assertive and using LinkedIn to build your client base or develop a new market, you might need the added benefits of the upgrade," she says. "For instance, I recently was doing some research for a Cincinnati firm wanting to develop Columbus and Lexington in their business expansion. The searches and connections were very limited as they are registered in the Cincinnati Network and most of their existing connections are in Cincinnati. When they upgraded it opened the entire LinkedIn network to them and fully expanded their search results and efforts."

 

Andrea Dale, owner of To The Point Marketing & Writing says she's found these Premium Account features most profitable:

  • InMails (you can send a LinkedIn InMail to anyone without worrying about connections)
  • Broader search parameters to find referral partners, prospects, research for clients, etc.
  • That little IN icon next to your name, gives you a tad more cache.

 

However, Dale says, a poor profile and/or a lack of responsiveness to LinkedIn queries or InMails from other members, often cancels the benefits of the upgrade. So, make sure you invest the time to keep your account active if you invest the money in a Premium Account.

 

Otherwise, Beckham-Corbin says, your "average" user doesn't need to pay for the premium features as they stand now. "The key is educating yourself on the ins and outs of LinkedIn," she adds. "Truly learning the applications and functions and leveraging them by being actively involved and expanding your network of connections."

 

Beckham-Corbin says the new mobile version is "totally on target" however. "It allows users to really explode their use of LinkedIn," she says excitedly. "I have taught LinkedIn workshops for several years now, and I can't begin to tell you how many people can't log onto their profile during our computer lab class because they use LinkedIn primarily at home or the office and have their passwords saved on that particular PC and don't know them!"

 

One of the best uses for the mobile version, according to Beckham-Corbin, is the ability to tap into your connection list to send messages. "You can grab their phone number or check out profiles before meeting that 'I want to pick-your-brain-over-coffee' person to check out their backgrounds to help facilitate the meeting," Beckham-Corbin says. "The ability to stay in the game on a hot discussion occurring in a LinkedIn Group is really beneficial as well."

Amy Scalia -

 

Amy Scalia, a Cincinnati native, is the editor in chief and publisher of Cincy Chic. Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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Last Updated on Monday, 07 November 2011 10:25
 

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