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In episode 13 of the Tech Product Review podcast supplement, guest expert Andrew Jenkins chats with host Bill Banham talk about LinkedIn Mobile Apps - a great solution for social sellers on the go. These tools give salespeople faster ways to tap into their professional world; offering news and info that matter for your professional day. Listen as Bill Banham and Andrew Jenkins consider such apps as LinkedIn Learning, LinkedIn Elevate, LinkedIn Learning and LinkedIn Lookup.
Listen to the show here.
Read the transcript:
Bill Banham: In this episode of the CPSA Product Review podcast show, we're talking about LinkedIn mobile apps. As always, we are joined by the wonderful guest expert, Andrew Jenkins. Andrew, welcome to the show.
Andrew Jenkins: Thanks for having me.
Bill Banham: Firstly Andrew, tell us about the LinkedIn mobile apps. What are they and what do they do?
Andrew Jenkins: They do a range of things. There's the basic LinkedIn app, and I don't mean 'basic.' It's the core Linked In app that most people would be familiar with given their use of LinkedIn.com. Then, there is the job search app, there is the ... They've introduced a specific LinkedIn mobile version of Sales Navigator. There's their recruiter solution. There's LinkedIn Elevate, which is an extension of their employee advocacy platform for content sharing by employees and from employees. ... Yeah, Recruiter, Sales Navigator, LinkedIn Learning; now since the acquisition of Lynda.com.
Yeah, they've kind of got all the bases covered whether it's from the core LinkedIn, to sales, to recruiting, to learning, and to employee advocacy.
Bill Banham: Okay. Now, can you expand upon that a wee bit and tell us about some of the major benefits?
Andrew Jenkins: Well, increasingly, we are a mobile-centric society. Most of our social activity is driven by mobile. Because of that, more and more LinkedIn is making mobile a priority. They're introducing functions and features on the mobile platforms first. I remember being at the LinkedIn for Financial Services conference in New York a few years ago. They had a product was there, talking about something they noticed when they introduced their iPad app; the larger version of their mobile suite.
What was interesting was normally they saw a particular spike in traffic between 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. on LinkedIn.com. When they introduced the iPad app, they saw a secondary spike in traffic through their iPad app between 7:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. because people have gone home from work, or from their work day, and were at home sitting their couch, or wherever they might be relaxing. They were perusing LinkedIn and consuming content from their iPad app.
The introduction of a new mobile-based app, a new form of behavior surfaced. They found that to be an interesting insight. They continue to build on that ever since. With their acquisition of Lynda.com, and the tremendous engagement levels that video drives, you're seeing more and more people basically consuming learning content and educational content via mobile. LinkedIn has its own podcast for sophisticated marketers. Again, that's not so much a LinkedIn app, but you're going to listen to that more likely from your phone.
The other one I wanted to mention, LinkedIn has its own SlideShare app as well. If you wanted to consume some content via the SlideShare app, you can do that, too. They pretty much have all the bases covered.
If you're a sales person, putting on my sales hat for the moment, having the mobile solutions makes me more productive. I can quickly learn a bit about one or more people that I'm going to be meeting with ahead of the meeting. I can reach out to them after the meeting and invite them to connect. I can maybe learn a little bit about their competition. People in similar roles, again, before my meeting or after. Or, I can message people through the platform.
I'm just ... All that insight and information is in the palm of my hand.
Bill Banham: Well, ladies and gentleman, the cat is now truly out of the bag. Now you all know that there are other wonderful podcasts out there for sales, and marketing, and business development folk. I was trying to keep that under wraps.
Andrew Jenkins: No, it's the sophisticated marketers podcast. If you want sales podcasts, this is the place to go.
Bill Banham: Okay, great. Lots of great things there. What about the shortcomings, Andrew? Anything that you'd like to see? Anything you think should be improved?
Andrew Jenkins: Well, I mean Sales Navigator is only useful if you're on the paid Sales Navigator account. Some of it's a more robust sales prospecting and account management capabilities. LinkedIn Learning is something you subscribe to, but if you have a Sales Navigator account, then you get access to it regardless. There are some ... I'll call it gates that are ... You can't get through unless you're on a paid program. Those would be some of the shortcomings that I would say.
Also, if you're accustomed to the functionality of the desktop, there's a bit of a ... I won't say a huge learning curve, but a slightly different learning curve for the mobile versions. They've improved it, but whenever you're inviting someone to connect, now you have a more ... It's a more easy way to customize the invitation, so you're not sending the default messages. That's been an improvement that I would like to highlight.
The other thing, from my personal point of view, I would like it to be easier to save articles. Sometimes it's not ... They have a little flag you can tag, but sometimes it's a little cumbersome to save some articles that have been shared by others.
One thing I just want to highlight just overall. With the rise of video, their mobile app now enables you to broadcast video. You can't do live like some other social networks, but you can record and share to your network. You're seeing more and more people just record something on the fly. Again, not much more complicated than taking a selfie.
Bill Banham: Okay, so you mentioned that if you've got a Sales Navigator account, most of the apps are free. What about if there are any sales people out there-
Andrew Jenkins: You have to pay for a Sales Navigator account.
Bill Banham: Yes.
Andrew Jenkins: If you want to have a Sales Navigator account that you access via your desktop. Then, if you want to extend that capability to the mobile, and you have the Sales Navigator account, or sorry, app, installed on your phone; then it's going to confirm that you have a Sales Navigator. You can't use the Sales Navigator mobile app without having a paid account on the desktop or on dot com.
Bill Banham: So you can't use these mobile apps unless you've got some kind of paid account?
Andrew Jenkins: No.
Bill Banham: You can't pay separately?
Andrew Jenkins: That only applies to LinkedIn Learning and Sales Navigator. Those are the only ones that require ... that are fee-based. If you are subscribing to Sales Navigator, then you get LinkedIn Learning as part of that.
There was a period of time when they were making ... You could trial LinkedIn Learning for a 30 days for free; but the default LinkedIn app is at no charge unless you've subscribed to a premium account. The recruiter solution, while recruiting solutions is the bulk of LinkedIn's revenue, so that has its own unique subscription model. Then, elevate is part of their employee advocacy. The core LinkedIn app if you're on a free version of it, it's free to you on the mobile as well.
Bill Banham: Okay, perfect. Usually around this time in the interview, we ask about competitors. Now, obviously this is all within the LinkedIn ecosystem; excuse me. Let's change that question a wee bit. Are there alternatives out there, outside of LinkedIn and its mobile apps which you feel are maybe as powerful or have got the potential to be as powerful?
Andrew Jenkins: Not so much for as powerful, but just a different angle. There's an app created by one of the former co-founders of Tinder called Bumble, which is a professional networking solution predominantly targeted at women to facilitate a safe and professional environment for networking ... with a zero tolerance for hate speak and so on. It's done quite well.
The other two that I would mention would be beBee; B-E-B double E. You don't so much connect with someone as you choose to follow them or become part of their hive, because their mascot is a bee, a bumble bee. This founded by someone who came out of Spain. They're double digits millions in terms of members, like 10+ million members.
If you want to be a big fish a smaller pond, rather than a small fish in a big pond of LinkedIn, that might be where you want to gravitate. It does skew towards entrepreneurs rather than people that are in a management role. If that's your target audience, then there might be a fit there.
Then, the last one I'll mention is Shapr, S-H-A-P-R. Again, more of a networking facilitation solution. It will do it by proximity. It will find people that are like-minded for you that are in your area, and facilitate making a connection.
Anyway, if those sound like they might be of value to you, they're worth checking out.
Bill Banham: Okay, thank you very much. Shapr sounds very interesting. I often look for different tools which help me find people in my area for different reasons.
Anyway, just finally, as always, Mr. Jenkins, let's get your rating out of five.
Andrew Jenkins: Well, you know what? I'm going to ... It's rare that I have done this, but I'm going to give LinkedIn a four and a half out of five simply; because I won't bore the listeners with my story but they can look me up on LinkedIn. They can look in my articles. I share a success story from October of 2014 when I was featured as one of the ten success stories by LinkedIn members in Canada when LinkedIn Canada reached ten million members. All that to say I owe the career I've had for the last decade plus to LinkedIn and my use of it. That's why I give it four and a half out of five. It is one of the most valuable tools in my kit bag, and I owe it a tremendous amount.
Bill Banham: Anybody from LinkedIn, if you're listening, the CPSA are open to sponsorship of their podcast. It sound like this one might be a good one for that. Okay, well that just leaves me, as always, to say- [crosstalk 00:12:42] ...
Andrew Jenkins: Oh sorry to interrupt; but by the way, I make nothing for that glowing review of LinkedIn. I'm not on their payroll.
Bill Banham: Sure, Andrew. We believe you. Andrew Jenkins, thank you very much for being our guest today.
Andrew Jenkins: My pleasure, thanks for having me.
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