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Posts Tagged ‘LinkedIn’

Have you ever paid for a professional account on LinkedIn. Jesus, talk about expensive. A small account – which really doesn’t offer much more than the free account – is $20/month. Making this expense $240 a year. Not bad.  But not really worth your money.

But while we’re talking about things not worth your money, the professional account costs $200/month. Yup, math wizards are now gasping at the $2,400 a user pays for a professional account. I mean good god, I do not have that much money to use a simple service.

For those unfamiliar with LinkedIn, it’s a social network dedicated to allowing business professionals to build connections and introduce your current associates to new people.  Basically, everything you do at a conference. You can upload your pic, current position, experience, skills, resume, and connect to third party apps.

The golden $200/month professional account (as well as the smaller paid accounts) allows you to send messages to people….cool? Er, and the professional account let’s you only send 50 of those per month.. Use ’em wisely. Plus you get more search results when looking for people…..yay, more search results…. And send requests for introductions.

So, actually, the features are pretty sh***y at $200/month.

But there’s something else going on. Some of you might have guessed it.

Perceived value.

If you’re a Fortune 500 business person, why on earth would you use Facebook? There’s no value to it, or I should say no gates to control who gets prominence.

So, there are all these business people, a lot of them unfamiliar with social networks in the first place, who are willing to throw their money at LinkedIn because it costs some coin.

By all means, it’s inferior to Facebook’s ability to control privacy and integrate with 3rd party applications that assist business networking. But Facebook is free, has a bunch of teenagers, and has that goofy bumper sticker app. LinkedIn, on the other hand, is somber and costs money.

This is why I’m starting my social network, RICH AS F*CK. It’s open to the first 3 people who give me a million dollars each. And premium features include the abillity to message the other two members of this super exclusive network. Anybody wanna sign up?

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^It’s common to see reviews that slam an app. If we’ve learned anything from social marketing, the review is vital to your story. You develop the about page to make the best sale, but users will look at the reviews to learn the truth. Here are 5 reason why you might get a sucky review:

///Less is More///

The newest apps have accounted for this. In the early days, some apps had complicated pages to do simple things. The app Romantic Gifts frustrated me the first time I used it. It’s supposed to be a fun application to send gifts to friends, but they created a point-based rewards system. I couldn’t send some gifts unless I had accomplished certain goals. Did I go through the trouble? Nope. I just used the app Free Gifts, where I could…well…send gifts. I click a gift, type a name, type a message, and click send.

I’m sure the Romantic Gifts people wanted to create a fun way of sending gifts, but they overlooked the fact that the act of sending a goofy or meaningful gift is already the fun part. So, they instead added a complication. I couldn’t send a “box of chocolates” gift until I had earned points…

Now some people will like apps like Romantic Gifts. The best point comes from an earlier post of mine where I recommended some Facebook apps to make life easier. I said the Professional Profile app was great because it would upload your resume from LinkedIn, help you build connections, find you recommendations from coworkers. Great, but sounds a little complicated… Here’s proof that the complications hurt the app:

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^ The application on the left is Professional Profile, which we can see gets 2,191 active users at this time. It also got some tepid reviews. Now, the app on the left is doing much better. Why? Well, it’s simple. Literally. On the left we have the My LinkedIn Profile app. The beauty of the second app is that the user enters their LinkedIn profile url, selects a badge linked to that profile, and slaps it onto their profile. Then other LinkedIn users will see it, click on it, and they still get your resume, recommendations…all the lovely things I thought Professional Profile had…

Let’s go back to Romantic Gifts, which has nearly 8,000 users. It sounds like a great number until you see the number of users for the app Free Gifts:

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///Kinky///

The picture from the beginning of the post has bad reviews for an app that doesn’t work. It might work for some users, but they won’t save you from a bad review. Facebook users have had several experiences with bad apps from the early days. Now, an app with kinks is intolerable because it clutters our precious profile space (even on the new profile design).

I avoid apps with two things: several discussion topics on why the app doesn’t work and bad reviews about the app not working. It makes sense, right? But apps don’t work like normal experiences. The first impression can kill your chances with a user.

It’s an easy problem to avoid. Stay in developer mode longer. Then build slowly from there. If you launch it too soon and the users discover the kink in your code, you might suffer some harsh reviews.

Of course more users equal more complications beyond your code. Use your sense of customer service: apologize, say you’re working on it, and then fix it ASAP. Box.net’s Files, a great app, ran into a problem and they made sure to address it. Check out their about page in the pic below. You’ll notice that they post a notice and make a comment on their wall. You’ll also notice that despite some bad reviews, the app still 6,000+ users. It might not work for everyone, but Box.net has addressed the problem in a fight to keep users.

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Update: I want to point to Sean’s comment as the best example of showing the vigor to resolve a problem. He took extra time from his work day to repeat that people are working hard to get this fixed.

His comment also makes me want to talk about a separate issue. On the other side, as a user, I believe you shouldn’t give bad reviews to apps with kinks. Developers work hard to make sure you have a great app that makes your life easier. It’s why, in an earlier post, I put the Files app as one to watch. Once it’s fixed, it will be a great replacement for your thumbnail drive. There are real people behind these innovations, and reviews should be for posting your reaction to the app to share with others. If there’s an error, message the creator to find out the progress of resolving the issue. They’ll be happy to update you, and it opens a better discourse.

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