Marc : Welcome to a special edition of LinkedIn Live: Who’s Your Daddy? And I’m your dad,
And Arnnei is the developer of LinkedIn Contact Manager, the best and leading software out there on the market and it’s free for all those LinkedIn users.
Arnnei, welcome to the show.
Arnnei: Oh Hi Marc, I’m glad to be here.
Arnnei: Well, I’ve been on LinkedIn I think now for about four or five years. When I joined LinkedIn I think there weren’t – I think there were less than a million people in LinkedIn at the time.
I currently have more than 7,000 connection and I keep getting invitations and I’m glad to have them as I think that invitations are the essence of LinkedIn. This is my opinion.
And essentially, I am a managing director of an Internet security company and the whole thing about LICM started as I was needing to contact my contact – to have a better facility for maintaining contacts with my LinkedIn close contacts.
And then I’ve made this option available for any other users that may want it. And it’s proven to be a very well accepted product into the LinkedIn community so far.
You can check out Arnnei’s LinkedIn profile. You can join our mailing list as well as our Yahoo Group where we can discuss the show and our host and ask questions and get answers and there will be plenty of links there where you can find out about LinkedIn Contact Manager and download the software and install it for yourself.
So Arnnei, if you have several thousand connections is it fair to say that you’re a LinkedIn whore?
Arnnei: Ah. No I wouldn’t say that. I’d rather be called a LinkedIn power networker or a much more positive way of putting it. I truly believe that making contacts within LinkedIn is actually what is the purpose of LinkedIn.
If you don’t have your contacts within LinkedIn, you don’t have the opportunity to actually use and make benefit with LinkedIn. In essence, the smaller the number of your contact is, the less you’re exposed to others, the less are your chances of being able to find the people that you actually want to connect to.
So it’s a self explanatory that you actually have to – in order make use of LinkedIn to all the time try to increase the number of your contacts within LinkedIn.
Either by actually getting your friends and the people that you are close to to register to LinkedIn. But that is not enough. You always have to make new friends, new contacts by joining for example, networking groups within LinkedIn or that are close to LinkedIn just like the DallasBlue or the other groups that you manage,
Because these are the places where you can make easily new connections within LinkedIn and increase your potential of making business or making new contacts within LinkedIn.
And it’s all the pay it forward mentality as well as the practical aspect of being able to make more direct contact with less intervening connections on LinkedIn. So you can more effectively use it to contact any of the 15 million users out there -assuming your network is large enough.
Thank you so much. Let’s talk a little bit about the LICM or LinkedIn Contact Manager – you’re really on – in terms of the evolution of the product, already on your second generation of the software.
Can you share briefly with our users the top three or four features of your LinkedIn Contact Manager software?
Arnnei: Well I said that the most important thing is about being able to actually gather all the information that you’ve invested within LinkedIn and put it in one place. Download it to your PC and being able to then to select groups of people within those contacts and contact them directly.
One of the problems that I have found within LinkedIn is yes it is a very good search machine. I can find all my contacts. I can find any individual that I am looking for using LinkedIn. But let’s say that I want to create an email and send it to a group of my contacts, I can’t do it within LinkedIn.
I actually have to download or find a way to extract those emails and send a group of emails to my contacts. Now LinkedIn does provide a download facility. But that download facility is a minimized facility.
You don’t have most of the information of the people that you would like to use. And let’s say that you’ve downloaded all your contacts. Let’s say that you have not 7,000 contacts, but say 500 contacts.
How would you find within those 500 contacts the group of people that you wanted? Because the information is lacking there – you’d say.
It’s only partial information and then let’s say that you wanted to – one of the other things that LICM is currently doing is it also gives you access to other information. Information that is on other networking sites – let’s say Plaxo or different other will be added as well to the LICM.
You will be able to contact or send email to more then just LinkedIn networkers even though LinkedIn is obviously the primary site that I am working with.
So if I’d say – if you’re saying the three most important things is one, being able to download the important information and put it in your position.
And the other thing is to be group those people and email them directly. And when email(ing) them, you can actually email them in a smart way. You can either send to a group of people, individual emails, or to a group of people, ONE email and you can manage those emails. You can see the history of it. You can save a template email – things that you can’t do with LinkedIn.
And the third one is as I say you can actually access more than LinkedIn. You can be able to access other sites as well as we grow with LICM.
And we have an issue right now where I’m using their logo on my website. It had been doing so for a few years. And it’s a little tiny hundred pixel logo. And instead of very nicely contacting me and say “
They actually took the act of suspending my account. And so I apologise to all of my connections if I haven’t been able to forward your connections. I’m resolving this with LinkedIn and we’ll get to that as soon as I can.
But most importantly when they suspended my account, I am not able to access my account. Those connections at LinkedIn they’re MY connections and I can’t get into them now. And even be able to send emails to them.
Now I was very lucky because I actually had used LinkedIn Contact Manager a day or two prior to LinkedIn suspending my account and I used LinkedIn Contact Manager to update and download the profile information from all of my connections.
And as a result, I am able to use that information which I own, which are my connections in MY network. And I was only able to do that because I had LinkedIn Contact Manager and had use that to update my LinkedIn contact database on my computer.
And so I thank Arnnei for his wonderful software. I want to let people know a little bit about – get a little more practical in terms of what it is that your software does and how they use it so they can get a feel for what it is that you do.
It’s a little bit nebulous when we’re talking here on the radio. But the way the software works is you start the software, the first thing that you want to do is to read in your contacts.
So you’ll provide information. You’ll provide your account information. It’ll go in and it’ll read in each one of your connections whether you have five or 5,000.
And then it can read in updated information on that which if you have you know 15,000 connection like I do, can take a few hours. But it’s well worth the effort
And then the next step once LICM has built its databases, you can run searches on that information. And then you can pull up the connections that you want to contact.
Then the third step is to be able to contact them and you literally from LICM can be able to- once you’ve selected a group of connections- is to send personalized emails to them.
So it’s a very impressive piece of software. I just used it a few days ago for a friend of mine. She is a paralegal here in Dallas. And I know her very well and she said “
So I started LICM. I had already updated it with all of my connections. I did a search on all of those connections who were in the Dallas area and who were attorneys or associated with legal firms or legal services.
And then I was able – once I created that list of about 30 people – then I was able to use LICM to compose an email in terms of a message, enter in my email account information, and then LICM automatically emailed all 30 people.
And so I was able to do all of that from within LinkedIn Contact Manager. It is an extremely useful tool.
Arnnei what is the most interesting use and application of LICM have you seen?
Arnnei: Well mostly it’s just like you described it. I can’t say that the usage is different from one person to another. Most of the people don’t use it for backup like you.
You were using it by chance in your case. It’s more like they’re using it because they would rather go directly to the contacts from their own emailing system rather than through a website.
When you discuss business, one of the issues is “Should I email or use one of the facilities at LinkedIn offer today in order to email a message through LinkedIn which is kept within the database at LinkedIn? And it is exposed to whoever reached this message?”
Most of the time when I do business, the business in essence is either secured or information that CANNOT reside within a public area like LinkedIn or somebody’s taking – can read those emails. I’d rather have all the emails down on my PC where I can communicate directly with my contacts in a secured way.
And this is one of the issues that I have, yes.
I wanted to add. One of the things that I teach on my workshops here in Dallas, in our online seminars and in the LinkedIn consulting that I do, and it’s a question I see all the time: “How do you do marketing on LinkedIn?”
And it’s not easy. LinkedIn makes it difficult to contact your own connections. It’s purely and specifically setup to facilitate networking and to search the database, but not to communicate with that database.
So the answer is quite simply a tool like LinkedIn Contact Manager. You market to your database. You send updates to them. And these needs to be you know, networking oriented updates – you know, here’s what’s new with me on you know, at my job, in my life. Here’s some LinkedIn tips.
So I highly recommend that you stay in touch with your contacts. It’s truly a fundamental part of networking. And you can’t do that through LinkedIn. And certainly not if you have over 200 connections because that’s the limit that LinkedIn uses.
So once a month I challenge all of our listeners and all of our readers who are reading our transcripts to make sure that you have an updated contact list on LinkedIn Contact Manager and to send out a LinkedIn update to people letting them know what’s new with you. Because that’s what networking is all about.
You can’t get people to help you if they don’t know what’s going on with you and how they can help you. So make it easy. Send out a LinkedIn update. Now remember folks, it’s not a commercial message here. If you do that, if you have jobs in Bangalore, if you have your own organization – just like I have DallasBlue, I’ve several list on DallasBlue, those are separate lists- so if you have a product like LinkedIn Contact Manager use it wisely; use it correctly; use the tools to send targeted messages whether it’s to – for example it’s attorneys in Dallas or whether it’s an update for all of your – entire network.
And stay in touch with your network. That’s what networking is all about. Arnnei well one last question for you. What is your number one -coolest tip or feature that people can use through LinkedIn Contact Manager?
Arnnei: Well I’ve been thinking about that. One of the thing is that I’ve used in my contact is that LinkedIn is very limiting in the number of connections – sorry that you can address at one time. For example I have a limit of five requests at a time.
Now what I’ve recently started using is that if I needed to pass a request to somebody, I actually find him first on LinkedIn, and see to who from my connection he’s actually connected.
And then I can send to my contact a direct request using my emailing system asking him to forward it to his contact that I already know that he’s connected to through LinkedIn.
Now, it’s a little bit bypassing what LinkedIn is offering but sometimes it’s necessary as I mentioned because of the secured business proposals that sometimes you want to pass forward through one of your contacts.
So, if you play the game smartly, you use LinkedIn and the information within LinkedIn but you also can use it direct from LICM to forward a request outside LinkedIn through one of your direct contacts. You’re actually bypassing some of the limitations imposed of you through LinkedIn.
And this is one of the ways to use BETTER the information that you already have.
So, I think it’s very important. There’s, you know, when you talk about bypassing LinkedIn that may carry the connotation that you’re doing something that LinkedIn doesn’t want you to do.
Folks, they’re your net, they’re your contacts. It’s your network. It’s your business. It’s your effort and work that pays your salary and provides benefits to your employer.
Don’t let LinkedIn stop you from being successful in business. It’s just the tool and it’s one of many tools. And an absolutely indispensable tool in your business toolkit should be LinkedIn Contact Manager where you can backup your contact, where you can directly contact those contacts.
I’ll share with you my coolest feature of LinkedIn Contact Manager. And that’s that it has a built in e-mailer. And so what Arnnei has done which actually is pretty cool is if you just want to send a quick message out, the default there is – he sets up, has its own SMTP account that you’re actually able to use and you don’t need to enter in anything. And you can automatically send out messages which is very, very interesting and very cool.
But what I think is even cooler is I can just enter in my own email account information and LICM acts just like a regular email software. It will send emails to all the connections that I’ve specified with the message that I’ve composed. It’ll even send me a copy of that email so I’ll get it in my regular email software and can archive that.
And it totally bypasses my having to use email. I don’t have to worry about exporting the connections into Microsoft Outlook or another product. I literally can use LinkedIn Contact Manager and LICM exclusively for everything I need to do to run search, run sophisticated searches on my connections and then be able to contact them and do LinkedIn updates — very, very, very cool.
So, Arnnei, the last question here – what’s the future of LinkedIn Contact Manager. You know, where do you see the product going and being in six months and in 12 months?
Arnnei: Well, one of the things that I’m trying to do is get more collaboration with LinkedIn. I’ve recently had some emails, oh sent some emails to LinkedIn and got an answer. I’m looking forward to LinkedIn implementing the new API that they’ve been suggesting – the open social API which will enable a lot more to do outside of LinkedIn with LinkedIn information.
One other thing that I have in mind and because we – most of us as business people are involved in more than just one network and we have contacts outside LinkedIn which are not part of LinkedIn. And maybe we would like to combine all that information for our business day-to-day usages and as a backup, just like you’ve done before.
So, I see in LICM more sites and not just LinkedIn to be able to combine more information – detailed information about your contacts from different sites and hopefully more collaboration with LinkedIn. And one of the things that I would have wanted to have with LinkedIn is the ability to provide added benefits services.
Even if in the future there maybe for LinkedIn some earned – if they would, may have or may want to charge for something like this in the future, I don’t know. But this is one of the way that we might be moving forward in order to convince LinkedIn to release more information.
So, knock yourself out. All Arnnei asks is that you share the product and the software with several of your friends and let them know about LinkedIn Contact Manager so they can enjoy the features and download it directly themselves.
So, again, if – to receive information on this, go to whosyourdaddyshow.com and sign up with our mailing list. We will be updating that with links to Arnnei’s profile as well as his website and his own Yahoo Group where you can ask questions and suggestions, get help if you have problems as well as download the software from his websites.
So thank you for listening to our special edition of LinkedIn Live: Who’s your Daddy? This is Marc
So, thank you again, and we will be at you later. And just remember, network but don’t network too much or you might have LinkedIn suspending your own account as well. Remember you own your network, not LinkedIn.