by Bob Woods
on June 7, 2016

Close Deals With LinkedIns Version of Caller ID


Potential Client

As I coach and train in Social Selling, one of the big tips I teach my learners is the concept of using LinkedIn as “Caller ID.” Just like any business or salesperson who receives phone calls, you can (and should) return calls to the people who call you…even when they don’t leave messages.

LinkedIn provides a very similar function to Caller ID, and it’s one that many people don’t equate it to. It’s the “Who’s Viewed Your Profile” feature. I believe “Who’s Viewed Your Profile”—we’ll shorten that phrase to WVYP for the purposes of this article—is both one of LinkedIn’s greatest features, and at the same time one of the most underutilized ones. I also think that if you don’t use it to its fullest, you’re losing out on a huge lead generation source.


Above are my stats for the day this post was published. If you’re like me, you follow pretty closely just how many times your profile has been viewed. You might be a bit obsessive with your rank for profile views, too. I’m more than a bit competitive, so I tend to hit that “obsessive” nail pretty squarely on the head.

When you go to WVYP, you may feel a little bit like a voyeur because you can see who has viewed you (assuming the person looking at you has their profile set so you can see them). If you’re a free LinkedIn member, you can only see the latest five people who have viewed you; if you pony up for a Premium level, you’ll be able to see the last 90 days of your viewers.

Another advantage of a LinkedIn Premium-level membership is that you’ll be able to view your visitors, even if you are set to anonymous. Free members can’t do this. However, you still won’t be able to see other members who have set themselves to be anonymous even with a Premium-level membership.

Believe me, having access to this kind of information is worth it. Depending on how many Profile views you receive, it may even be worth it to move up to a paid LinkedIn membership.

Before you use any of your hard-earned money for a Premium-level subscription, though, you should know how to use it properly. And even if you choose to stay at the free level, the tips below will help you to expand your connection base and maybe even pick up a new client or two. Here is an overview of the strategies I teach to use WVYP to its fullest extent:

  1. Go to the “Who’s Viewed Your Profile” section (under “Profile” in the top navigation of most any LinkedIn page) to see who’s done just that.
  2. Identify with whom you want to connect.
  3. For each individual, don’t click on the “Connect” or “Message” links at the bottom of each Profile; instead, click on the person’s name to be taken to their Profile.
  4. From their Profile, send a message (for 1st-degree connections) or a connection request for 2nd and 3rd degrees.

Here’s the start of a message you can use for your 1st-degree connections:

XXX, I noticed you had checked out my profile and realized it has been some time since we have talked. I thought we should set up a time to chat and explore ways we might be able to help each other out. I have xxx morning or xxx afternoon free for coffee/a phone call…

Easy peasy. And because they’ve just viewed your Profile, you should still be fresh in their mind.

The real magic, though, comes from those people who view you and are 2nd-degree or 3rd-degree connections. They don’t know you as well, and yet they checked out your Profile. There has to be a reason, right? Find out why! Here’s a copy-and-paste connection request for people in these groups:

XXX, Thank you for checking out my profile. I looked at yours and believe that there may be some synergies between us. Let’s connect and explore ways we may be able to work together.

The key in using this strategy is time; in other words, you need to “strike” while the iron is still hot and you are still fresh in their minds. If a Profile view is more than five business days old, your chances of succeeding in gaining a phone call with them (1st-degree) or connecting with them (2nd-degree and 3rd-degree) go down considerably.

If you devote just a few minutes a day or week towards checking your LinkedIn Caller ID, you’ll greatly expand your network… and even potentially grab a sale or two (or three or four, or even more).

A version of this article originally appeared on LinkedIn.

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