You have probably seen it before when you have been on your LinkedIn account. LinkedIn Premium is the step-up from your free and basic LinkedIn account. I currently use the basic LinkedIn account, but have also used the Linked Premium account a couple of times because they offered a free monthly trial. I am not going to say that you should upgrade, but I will let you decide for yourself by the end of this post.
If you are familiar with LinkedIn, there is the free and basic account and the Premium account. Chances are you have been invited to upgrade, seen the gold “in” on someone’s profile, or taken advantage of a free upgrade. Of course, we all like free so it may be hard to justify upgrading when you are content with the free account. Allow me to lay out a few reasons why you should upgrade and then you can decide if it is worth it for you! DISCLAIMER: I am not being paid by LinkedIn to promote this feature.
Getting in touch with connections and other business professionals is key to finding a great starting point in your career. The Premium feature gives you access to InMail Messages, which allows you to send a message to anyone on LinkedIn. This puts you at an advantage to anyone using the basic account, because you can contact the contacts and recruiters that they cannot. Another great feature of Premium is the “Who’s Viewed Your Profile” feature. With the basic account you can only see the five most recent people that have viewed your profile, but with Premium you can see who has viewed your profile over the past 90 days. This allows you to follow-up with possible connections without having to worry about them moving to far down your list of who viewed your profile.
Getting noticed could easily be just as important as getting in touch with someone; the difference is that getting in touch typically relies on you taking initiative. It should be noted that employers like a person with initiative. I personally have not used this feature, but the “Featured Applicant” feature is one that will put you at the top of a list of 10 applicants or 100 applicants. Either way, you are going to get seen before other applicants and you will also get to see what other type of people are applying for the position. The other simple, but effective way of getting noticed is that you will have the gold “in” next to your name on your profile. Everyone will see that and interpret it differently, but to me it would signal that the person is seeking a job or has a high interest in using LinkedIn to its fullest.
The cost may sound a bit pricey, but allow me to put it into perspective. If you graduate in 4 years, which not everyone does, college will cost you at least $80,000. Now, if you look at the graphic below, you will see that the highlighted feature is $30. That $30 sounds like a lot, but even if you used that for a full year you would only add $360 to the cost of college, or a .45% increase. Being a college student I know full well that an extra $30 every month is not easy to come by, but I think we can all think of a few things that could be dropped from the budget, or at least reduced.
The LinkedIn Premium feature is great and I personally feel that all students could benefit from upgrading to it. It allows you to reach more people, let more people see you, and it puts you at the top of recruiters’ lists when they are hiring. The increased insights and visibility make the upgrade a logical choice for any job seeker, but I will let you be the decider of that. Thanks for reading and best of luck in your job search!