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Leverage LinkedIn with RSS

RSSWhat if your number one competitor took away your number one client?  How much would you pay to know that they might be in conversation with one another?  Well, if you use LinkedIn and combine it with RSS you can discover a wealth of information about your friends, your clients, and your colleagues that might have otherwise gone unnoticed – and it will cost you nothing.

Sure, you read the latest updates part of your LinkedIn home page when you visit, but what about the rest of the time.  Certainly much is transpiring while you are away – some of which is important to know.  Here is an easy solution – RSS.  You can very easily use an RSS feed, which is built into LinkedIn, to track each and every change that takes place in your LinkedIn network.  Then you can review and catalog everything at your leisure.

It is as easy as this.

  • Go to and sign up for an account
  • Go to your LinkedIn homepage
  • Look in the address bar and click on the little orange (blue in Firefox 3) box with the dot and 2 lines.
  • Subscribe to the RSS feed.

Now, every time someone makes a change you will receive an update, which will appear as an unread item in your RSS feeds in Google Reader.  Now, you can quickly scan through the entire list of updates in one or two minutes.

As you proceed through them, you can mark items of particular interest with a star.  This might apply for people who have been promoted or changed jobs – at which time you might want to send along a nice note of congratulations.

This aggregation of information makes it simple to generate intuitive information from your LinkedIn Network.  Whether you seek competitive intelligence, personal information, or just want to make sure who are keeping up with who knows who, RSS makes it easy.  Did your #1 competitor just connect with your #1 client?  Using this method would let you know.  Is your best employee looking to leave your company?  Again, this might give you some clues if that is the case.  Best of all, you might find out early enough to actually do something about it.  Personally, I can tell you of several people currently in the job market simply based on watching my connections.  They have not contacted me saying “I’m looking” but it does not take much to connect the dots when you pay attention.  This give me an opportunity to help them without having been asked, and to discover more about what is going on in the market in the process.

RSS has so many uses, and using a feed reader like Google Reader, Bloglines, or others can save you valuable time and deliver important information to you that would have otherwise been missed.  Give this LinkedIn tip a try and see if you feel more connected to your network.  I hope this helps.