I have to admit that I was hesitant to upgrade to the Premium membership from my free account. I also had a difficult time justifying the cost when I was barely getting any return on the investment of my free account.
I was much the same social butterfly on my free account as I am on the paid account. I commented on articles, I joined groups and participated in conversations, but I also used LinkedIn the way it was meant to be used: I researched companies, I applied for jobs through here, made sure my profile was updated, and where I thought it was worthwhile, I sent a professionally worded InMail to recruiters and hiring managers to express interest in a position.
I saw three barriers with the free profile:
- I was only shown a short list of those viewing my profile.
- I couldn’t perform the deeper level searches and explore 2nd and 3rd level connections.
- I was limited to a few InMails.
After you conduct enough social activity, LinkedIn will send you emails soliciting their Premium membership. Sometimes they will also offer you a trial membership of it. Considering my grievances, I decided to give it a chance.
I will also tell you that I have cancelled my membership twice: The first time was due to being unemployed and the second time was a difficulty in seeing the worth of having the membership where I wasn’t getting much of a return.
What brought me back: I attended some workshops, read up on the differences in the paid accounts, and realized that I wasn’t fully utilizing it fully.
Many things about Premium have made my professional time on here easier (and I hope that with the merger that it only gets better):
- I can now see the entire list of who is viewing my profile so that I can engage in reciprocity and potentially reach out to the viewer for a connection.
- It’s nice to see who knows who and how we’re all connected. If I see that a recruiter that I am connected with has a mutual connection with an employer I am applying with, it makes the InMail easier to write.
Far more InMails. I’m no longer hesitant in sending InMails to recruiters or hiring managers. Granted, I do make sure they’re substantial, but I don’t have to worry about whether I have enough.(Edit: JSP only gives a few more InMails than the free profile. 2/11/17)
- The Job Seeker Premium Group. There is always someone in the group that is offering advice to job seekers, asking for advice, celebrating their successes, and keeping the rest of the participants updated on current trends.
Even though this article was written in 2016, it is the transition for my goal of writing an article per day in 2017.