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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
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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!

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                  Natalie MacNeil, She Takes on the World

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                  1 7 Effective Ways To Motivate Employees in 2021 2 How a Project Management Mindset Boosts Your Productivity 3 5 Values of an Effective Leader 4 How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them 5 The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

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                  Last Updated on July 21, 2021

                  The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

                  The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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                  No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

                  Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

                  Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

                  A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

                  Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

                  In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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                  From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

                  A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

                  For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

                  This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

                  The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

                  That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

                  Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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                  The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

                  Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

                  But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

                  The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

                  The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

                  A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

                  For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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                  But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

                  If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

                  For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

                  These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

                  For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

                  How to Make a Reminder Works for You

                  Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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                  Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

                  Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

                  My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

                  Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

                  I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

                  More on Building Habits

                  Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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                  Reference

                  [1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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