For most users, LinkedIn Premium is a sound investment, thanks to the tools and insights it offers.
Mike O'Neil, who has paid for LinkedIn Premium since the day it was initially offered, says the most valuable tools you get with LinkedIn Premium are InMail messages, advanced search and additional results in search queries. O’Neil has built a business around the platform, as president of Integrated Alliances, where he consults with and trains managers, marketing teams and sales professionals.
The benefits of LinkedIn Premium aren't always immediately apparent. They can be "very long term, but it depends on how you use it and how you keep up with it," O'Neil says. "Once you close your first deal as a result of LinkedIn, it changes everything."
LinkedIn Premium's biggest barrier to adoption is cost, according to O'Neil. "The packages being offered now are overpriced in terms of what people are expecting," he says. O'Neil suggests the market would be more receptive to a $20-a-month baseline business package.
LinkedIn Premium's disjointed levels of service are dizzying, even for O'Neil, who hopes LinkedIn addresses that point of confusion, introduces new features and promotes a lower, entry-level price for premium services.
Jack Martin, CEO and founder of Technology Jobs NYC, says LinkedIn Premium is an "incredibly valuable tool" in his line of work. Martin especially appreciates the capability to search LinkedIn's entire database and quickly send InMail messages to job candidates.
"The biggest downside is that some individuals are overwhelmed with requests, and it can drive very smart and talented people away from the service," Martin says.
Anthony Kirlew, co-founder of digital marketing agency Imagine Wow, also agrees that LinkedIn Premium is worth the price. Kirlew says LinkedIn Premium can quickly pay for itself for anyone in a business development role. "Many users, especially at the executive level, maintain privacy settings that restrict users from connecting with them," he says. InMail messages help facilitate connections with these people.
David Coher purchased LinkedIn Premium a year ago, and he says it provides value for him almost every month. In his role as principal of reliability and cybersecurity at Southern California Edison, Greater Los Angeles's electric utility, Coher says it's important for him to make new connections and elevate his profile among people with whom he shares a mutual connection or interest.
"I find that people are more likely to respond to a LinkedIn InMail message than to a traditional email," he says.
For this reason and others, Coher encourages his peers to sign up for LinkedIn Premium, and it is one of the first things he suggests when someone comes to him for career advice.
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