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Ask the Entrepreneurs: 8 Ways to Use the New LinkedIn Contacts Feature for Your Business

Ask the Entrepreneurs: 8 Ways to Use the New LinkedIn Contacts Feature for Your Business

Ask The Entrepreneurs is a regular series where members of the Young Entrepreneur Council are asked a single question that aims to help Lifehack readers level up their own lives, whether in a area of management, communication, business or life in general.

Here’s the question posed in this edition of Ask The Entrepreneurs:

What is one way that you’re actively using the new Linkedin Contacts feature to be a more effective entrepreneur?

1. Using TripIt

Andrew Schrage

    The new contacts feature is integrated with TripIt, which allows users to get reminders of contacts located in an area they’ll be visiting on an upcoming business trip. It even offers a form letter you can use to contact fellow members and let them know when you’ll be in town.

    Andrew Schrage, Money Crashers Personal Finance

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    2. Remembering to Stay in Contact

    Thursday-Bram

      I try to stay in close contact with my connections, but it’s hard to remember to do so on my own. With the contacts feature, however, it’s easy for me to see when last I talked to a person. Whenever I have time, I scroll to the bottom of my contact list (the people who I haven’t contacted in the longest time) and start sending out messages.

      Thursday Bram, Hyper Modern Consulting

      3. Reaching Out to Contacts When Expanding

      Chuck Cohn

        When we consider expanding to a new city, I check my contacts in that city and set up a call with them to pick their brains on their views of the city, suburbs we should target, local universities or high schools we should know and any other information that could increase our success when we launch our tutoring services there. It gives you a reason to stay in touch with your contacts.

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        Chuck Cohn, Varsity Tutors

        4. Connecting With Other Entrepreneurs

        Manpreet Singh

          Whenever my company Seva Call launches in a new city, I check the city on LinkedIn for my closest contacts. Then I can talk to these contacts about what might benefit my launch in that city while also seeing what opportunities I can provide them. It’s a win-win and keeps me in touch with other entrepreneurs trying to expand.

          Manpreet Singh, Seva Call

          5. Saving Time With the Daily Rollup Email

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          adam lieb

            I love the daily rollup email I get from LinkedIn Contacts. By having my meetings and contacts emailed to me first thing in the morning, I save the time looking up contact information and meeting times. It isn’t a huge time saver, but it sure feels efficient.

            Adam Lieb, Duxter

            6. Using ‘Warm Calling’

            Jared Reitzin

              I love LinkedIn, and to me, it’s cold calling 2.0 or what I like to call “warm calling.” I reach out and request that someone connect with me. I would say this works 75 percent of the time. After they add me to their network, I follow up with an email I get from their vCard or another message through the site. I have won some very big deals starting from a simple message on LinkedIn.

              Jared Reitzin, MobileStorm Inc.

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              7. Merging Contact Info

              doreen-bloch

                LinkedIn Contacts allows me to efficiently manage my connections and create new ones through the merging of all contact information stored in my emails. I can now easily sort and search through all of my contacts to find that one connection for a press release or new joint campaign. As an entrepreneur in a digital world, it’s smart to stay organized, and LinkedIn Contacts helps me keep it all tidy!

                Doreen Bloch, Poshly Inc.

                8. Organizing all My Contacts

                Natalie McNeil

                  With well over 1,000 people in my LinkedIn network, it was getting difficult to actively maintain relationships and remember where I met each one. Now I can organize my contacts by tags and use those tags to search for people when I need to reach them. After an event I just spoke at, I tagged the contacts I met there so I can segment that group. Now I’m on a mission to organize all my contacts!

                  Natalie MacNeil, She Takes on the World

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                  Last Updated on November 18, 2019

                  How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

                  How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

                  Everyone of my team members has a bucketload of tasks that they need to deal with every working day. On top of that, most of their tasks are either creativity tasks or problem solving tasks.

                  Despite having loads of tasks to handle, our team is able to stay creative and work towards our goals consistently.

                  How do we manage that?

                  I’m going to reveal to you how I helped my team get more things done in less time through the power of correct prioritization. A few minutes spent reading this article could literally save you thousands of hours over the long term. So, let’s get started with my method on how to prioritize:

                  The Scales Method – a productivity method I created several years ago.

                  How to Prioritize with the Scales Method

                    One of our new editors came to me the other day and told me how she was struggling to keep up with the many tasks she needed to handle and the deadlines she constantly needed to stick to.

                    At the end of each day, she felt like she had done a lot of things but often failed to come up with creative ideas and to get articles successfully published. From what she told me, it was obvious that she felt overwhelmed and was growing increasingly frustrated about failing to achieve her targets despite putting in extra hours most days.

                    After she listened to my advice – and I introduced her to the Scales Method – she immediately experienced a dramatic rise in productivity, which looked like this:

                    • She could produce three times more creative ideas for blog articles
                    • She could publish all her articles on time
                    • And she could finish all her work on time every day (no more overtime!)

                    Curious to find out how she did it? Read on for the step-by-step guide:

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                    1. Set Aside 10 Minutes for Planning

                    When it comes to tackling productivity issues, it makes sense to plan before taking action. However, don’t become so involved in planning that you become trapped in it and never move beyond first base.

                    My recommendation is to give yourself a specific time period for planning – but keep it short. Ideally, 10 or 15 minutes. This should be adequate to think about your plan.

                    Use this time to:

                    • Look at the big picture.
                    • Think about the current goal and target that you need/want to achieve.
                    • Lay out all the tasks you need to do.

                    2. Align Your Tasks with Your Goal

                    This is the core component that makes the Scales Method effective.

                    It works like this:

                    Take a look at all the tasks you’re doing, and review the importance of each of them. Specifically, measure a task’s importance by its cost and benefit.

                    By cost, I am referring to the effort needed per task (including time, money and other resources). The benefit is how closely the task can contribute to your goal.

                      To make this easier for you, I’ve listed below four combinations that will enable you to quickly and easily determine the priority of each of your tasks:

                      Low Cost + High Benefit

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                      Do these tasks first because they’re the simple ones to complete, yet help you get closer to your goal.

                      Approving artwork created for a sales brochure would likely fit this category. You could easily decide on whether you liked the artwork/layout, but your decision to approve would trigger the production of the leaflet and the subsequent sales benefits of sending it out to potential customers.

                      High Cost + High Benefit

                      Break the high cost task down into smaller ones. In other words, break the big task into mini ones that take less than an hour to complete. And then re-evaluate these small tasks and set their correct priority level.

                      Imagine if you were asked to write a product launch plan for a new diary-free protein powder supplement. Instead of trying to write the plan in one sitting – aim to write the different sections at different times (e.g., spend 30 minutes writing the introduction, one hour writing the body text, and 30 minutes writing the conclusion).

                      Low Cost + Low Benefit

                      This combination should be your lowest priority. Either give yourself 10-15 minutes to handle this task, or put these kind of tasks in between valuable tasks as a useful break.

                      These are probably necessary tasks (e.g., routine tasks like checking emails) but they don’t contribute much towards reaching your desired goal. Keep them way down your priority list.

                      High Cost + Low Benefit

                      Review if these tasks are really necessary. Think of ways to reduce the cost if you decide that the completion of the task is required.

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                      For instance, can any tools or systems help to speed up doing the task? In this category, you’re likely to find things like checking and updating sales contacts spreadsheets. This can be a fiddly and time-consuming thing to do without making mistakes. However, there are plenty of apps out there they can make this process instant and seamless.

                      Now, coming back to the editor who I referred to earlier, let’s take a look at her typical daily task list:

                        After listening to my advice, she broke down the High cost+ High benefit task into smaller ones. Her tasks then looked like this (in order of priority):

                          And for the task about promoting articles to different platforms, after reviewing its benefits, we decided to focus on the most effective platform only – thereby significantly lowering the associated time cost.

                          Bonus Tip: Tackling Tasks with Deadlines

                          Once you’ve evaluated your tasks, you’ll know the importance of each of them. This will immediately give you a crystal-clear picture on which tasks would help you to achieve more (in terms of achieving your goals). Sometimes, however, you won’t be able to decide every task’s priority because there’ll be deadlines set by external parties such as managers and agencies.

                          What to do in these cases?

                          Well, I suggest that after considering the importance and values of your current tasks, align the list with the deadlines and adjust the priorities accordingly.

                          For example, let’s dip into the editor’s world again.

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                          Some of the articles she edited needed to be published by specific dates. The Scales Method allows for this, and in this case, her amended task list would look something like this:

                            Hopefully, you can now see how easy it is to evaluate the importance of tasks and how to order them in lists of priority.

                            The Scales Method Is Different from Anything Else You’ve Tried

                            By adopting the Scales Method, you’ll begin to correctly prioritize your work, and most importantly – boost your productivity by up to 10 times!

                            And unlike other methods that don’t really explain how to decide the importance of a task, my method will help you break down each of your tasks into two parts: cost and benefits. My method will also help you to take follow-up action based on different cost and benefits combinations.

                            Start right now by spending 10 minutes to evaluate your common daily tasks and how they align with your goal(s). Once you have this information, it’ll be super-easy to put your tasks into a priority list. All that remains, is that you kick off your next working day by following your new list.

                            Trust me, once you begin using the Scales Method – you’ll never want to go back to your old ways of working.

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                            Featured photo credit: Vector Stock via vectorstock.com

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