If you're one of the 400 million people who use LinkedIn, you know the social media network is an invaluable resource for keeping up with old business contacts. It also makes it easy to build up a list of present and future business connections. These are people who you're doing business with, may do business with, or who might become a future employer or employee.
To build your network, you can invite people to be your connections or accept their invitation. Just be sure they're real first. Plus, you can put your LinkedIn contact information on your email signature and on your business cards. That way, when you're sending everyday email, or passing out business cards, you can rack up more contacts. Of course, with all that work going into building your contact network, you don't want to lose it.
That's why making a backup on your computer is a good idea. Plus, having your contact list separate from LinkedIn means you don't have to log in to find someone. Fortunately, LinkedIn makes it easy to export your contacts to a regular spreadsheet.
Once you have all your contacts' information in a spreadsheet, you can print it out and run your finger down the list or search to find who you need. Or, you can copy and paste one or hundreds of email addresses from your LinkedIn spreadsheet to your email or Webmail. Of course, you can also export LinkedIn contacts directly to your email, if you want. Still, a spreadsheet is a bit more versatile.
HOW TO EXPORT LINKEDIN CONNECTIONS TO A SPREADSHEET
If you heard that LinkedIn got rid of its export-to-a-spreadsheet feature, it did for a while. That was to prevent unsavory businesses from scraping LinkedIn users' email addresses. Scraping is when companies use people's email addresses to market their products to them, or sell those email addresses to other companies.
However, enough people complained that LinkedIn brought the feature back. Still, it's one of several reason you want to be careful what email address you give out on LinkedIn. With that cleared up, let's talk exporting.
To export your connections to a spreadsheet, go to your LinkedIn profile. From near the top of the page, select My Network>>Connections. Then click the Settings gear icon in the upper-right corner.
Under Advanced Settings on the right side of the page, click on
"Export LinkedIn Connections." Then from the "Export To"
drop-down menu, select the .CSV file for Outlook or Yahoo Mail.
A .CSV, or Comma Separated Value, file is nice because it will open in any spreadsheet program, like Excel or the free LibreOffice. If you're using Mac, you can also select the .VCF file type to use with Mac's Address Book.
Once your file type is selected, click the Export button and
save the file. Open the file in an Excel or another spreadsheet program, to start making the most of all those LinkedIn connections you've made over the years.
While you're looking at your contacts, you might realize that
there are some you don't need anymore; they're just bogging down the rest of your list. That's why it's good every once in a while to go through your contacts and get rid the ones you're sure you don't need anymore.
Here's how: Near the top of the LinkedIn homepage, select My Network>>Connections. Highlight a connection's photo and choose More>>Remove Connection (it might say, Remove from Contacts). Just be sure you back up first, in case you accidentally delete someone.
On the Kim Komando Show, the nation's largest weekend radio talk show, Kim takes calls and dispenses advice on today's digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data hacks. For her daily tips, free newsletters and more, visit her website at Komando.com. Kim also posts breaking tech news 24/7 at News.Komando.com.