Hacking LinkedIn – Getting Thousands Of Connections And 99+ Skill Endorsements
LinkedIn, the professional social network where you can show *cough* brag *cough* about your skills and career. It’s also the place where you can connect with random people for no reason at all and your won’t come across as creepy. Because you know… it’s all about the business.
On a more serious note LinkedIn is the employers’ and job hunters’ go-to place for finding qualified employees. It’s also a good place to find potential co-founders.
Of course as with most things in life competition is fierce. So in order for you to get found you need to be on the top of your game. This means tons of connections and endorsements for the skills you consider yourself an expert.
Let’s get something straight – you can’t have too many connections and you can’t have too many endorsements. Your profile looks far more impressive when you reach a certain level of credibility.
To put it simply – the more the better.
Most of you are probably well-familiar with LinkedIn, but if you are new to the game I will briefly mention that your profile gets to another level after you reach certain numbers for connections and endorsements. Those numbers are 501 and 100 respectively.
To the outer world it doesn’t matter whether you have 1,000 or 10,000 connections because LinkedIn shows 500+. You may have 200 endorsements for a particular skill, but the maximum number is 99+.
Only you know the real numbers.
So our goal here is to reach those numbers as quickly and effortlessly as possible so that we can stand next to the big boys.
Hacking LinkedIn Connections
Obviously the most natural way to get tons of connections is to work your butt off and keep pressing the “Send” button for hours. However, we are after efficiency so here are the steps to follow.
1. Search For People – You don’t want just random people added to your list, rather you should target those that meet a certain type of criteria. I am in the marketing industry, so I will look for people who have listed Digital Marketing as a skill.
2. Filter People – after you do the search you will see some of your current connections. We don’t want that, so we will filter the results by selecting 2nd degree connections only. You can’t connect to 3rd degree people, so there’s no point selecting it.
Narrow down the search results even further by selecting specific locations. I am most interested in the UK, US and Canada. You can keep segmenting the results based on your preferences, but for me that’s good enough.
3. Run The Script – time for some hacking. The script you will find below will automatically do the following:
- Click Connect
- Paste the text that you’ve written down
- Send the message and go to the next person
- Refresh the page when it has gone through all the people
The cycle repeats until you refresh or close the page.
To run the script open the browser console by pressing Ctrl+Shift+J (Windows) or Cmd + Opt + J (Mac) and paste the following:
The introduction that I’ve used is this:
Hi “+s+”, we’ve never met, but your profile came up when I was looking for people with digital marketing skills. Since we work in the same industry I was hoping we could connect? I would love to learn more about what you do and if I could be of any help.
Change it in any way want, but keep the “+s+”. This will be replaced with the name of the person you are messaging. It makes it more personal.
My introductory email is rather simple and informal, but I want a message that is short and straight to the point. Once the person accepts the request I can follow up with a more detailed and personalized message.
For standard LinkedIn accounts I suggest going through no more than 4-5 pages a day (between 40 and 50 people) so that you don’t raise any red flags and get banned. If you have a recruiter’s or some other kind of premium membership then those numbers can increase.
It takes the script 20 seconds to go through a page. For 6 pages that’s 2 minutes. The results in just over a month?
Once you connect with enough people that match your criteria LinkedIn will start suggesting 2nd degree connections somewhat relevant to your search. You will find those under My Network and then People you may know.
Each page gives you 20 results and you can connect with them straight away without sending them a message. Depending on how quickly you click you can send connections to 100 people (5 pages) in less than a minute. However, you are sacrificing some of the quality for the quantity.
Hacking LinkedIn Skill Endorsements
After you have thousands of connections it’s time to focus on endorsements. Again you can do it manually by going through each of your connection’s profiles, scrolling down and clicking the “+” button on a few skills. Or we can automate this… again.
This time we won’t use a script. There used to be one that worked like a charm, but that was before LinkedIn changed the layout and how you endorse people. You know, because some people were gaming the system.
For this task we will use a Chrome extension called LinkedHelper, which you can install from the Google Web Store. It’s like a Swiss Army knife for LinkedIn. You can:
- Get thousands of targeted contacts by sending personalized invitations
- Visit profiles and export CSV file (Google Sheets / MS Excel)
- Build targeted mailing list
- Endorse your contacts automatically to get endorsments in return
- Automatically add your signature to messages
It really is an amazing tool (no affiliation with the guys whatsoever). Here’s what it looks like when installed:
Some of you are probably wondering why you should use the script above when you can just use the extension.
Because it’s paid and not everyone wants all of those features, including the endorsement part… in which case I am wondering why you are still reading the article.
The free trial runs for 7 days. After that the price is $15/m, but the more months you subscribe for the cheaper the price per month is. You can check all the prices here.
It really is up to you whether you want to continue using it, but if you are a recruiter this tool is priceless. You would be a fool not to.
Hacking LinkedIn Stats
I want to end this article with a little added bonus about building an All Star profile. Social selling index (SSI) measures the impact of your social selling efforts via LinkedIn.
You need to understand that building a powerful profile takes time and while you can automate the process you can’t force it. You can connect to 100 people every day, but if you try to speed up the process to 1,000 people a day it won’t be long until you get kicked out. Persistence and patience my friend.
Some of the factors that are taken into account are:
- Bio – fill as much relevant information as possible – education, volunteer experience, accomplishments, positions, interests, etc.
- Skills – endorsements play a big role in how you will be perceived. Make sure that the three most relevant skills are on the top. Rearange the rest accordingly.
- Content – regularly posting content and contributing to groups will increase your SSI. You will also be seen as an authority and people will follow you.
So go and check your Social Selling Index here. Then start work on improving it.
I am aware that some of you will see this hacking LinkedIn as spam. Or unethical.
It doesn’t really matter. You can grow in a slow and steady manner, but this takes time. A lot of time, which most of us don’t have.
This is why we implement growth hacking techniques and tools to speed up the process. You have to be bold in order to succeed in this game.
Thanks for reading and I am looking forward to your thoughts in the comment section below.
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