Hi, I’m a LinkedIn Product Idea and I Guarantee You Will Want to Buy Me


What would LinkedIn say if it was a person…. “Hi, I’m LinkedIn. I’m great at making connections, not so good at managing relationships. Can you help me?



First, let me say I am a massive LinkedIn fan and among the earliest of users. I use LinkedIn every day to connect with my network, learn from great content shared across the community and make new connections with people of shared interests and professional expertise.

In my day job and beyond, I have trained literally thousands of client facing professionals on using LinkedIn, and hundreds of times I have received questions about capabilities that LinkedIn doesn’t currently offer.

I think it’s so great, I feel compelled to try to make it better… not just for me, but for all of us who use LinkedIn.

There are things I wish LinkedIn would do, there are work arounds I try to invent, but I’m frustrated by the friction.

For all of you who really ‘use’ LinkedIn, you will know just what I mean… Let me explain and outline a new product offering that I know you will want to have and happily pay for.

The Problem

As a daily daily user, I find LinkedIn to be an invaluable tool for finding, engaging and connecting across a broad global professional community. What I can’t do, is manage relationships with people.

I can’t see a central integrated view of all the interactions, engagements, likes, shares, comments, messages, recommendations, endorsements and referrals across my network. I can’t create subsets or groupings of people within a personal 1st degree network of thousands. I can’t see a portfolio of alerts and reminders that I set for specific days for specific people. I can’t see an integrated history of interaction with an individual, our history, our digital relationship.

Yes, LinkedIn used to have an open API that enabled other CRM applications to connect with and pull interaction data from LinkedIn to provide a cross-social 360 historical relationship view across touch points. With LinkedIn’s now closed API policy, I can’t use any other tools to do what LinkedIn doesn’t.

I need a LinkedIn Relationship Management Solution…


The Solution
As a daily user, I’m needing a LinkedIn Relationship Management Solution. I need a tool that allows me (and all of us who use LinkedIn) to centrally manage my important relationships in LinkedIn, relationships with clients, with partners, with new connections.

This is not about a problem, this is about an opportunity.

Let’s imagine using an Agile methodology to product design this application / service….


The Backlog User Stories

  • As a user, I want to be able to manage groups and segments of my LinkedIn contacts in a way similar to a full-featured CRM: by company, by city, by role, by custom tags, by custom defined groups, by triggers I define.

  • As a user, I want to see a personalized customizable dashboard of all my relationships, where I can see all the alerts I have set, notifications of action I want to take, reminders of relationships I want to remind myself to reach out to.

  • As a user, I want to see for an individual, a relationship view of our past interactions: likes, shares, posts, referrals, messages, comments, introductions, and so on. A complete 360 view of our LinkedIn relationship.

  • As a user, I want to be able to set and configure alerts to great specificity, with the ability to set it once and apply everywhere: for my laptop browser view, for my iPad app view, for my iOS app view, providing an integrated Relationship Manager customer experience. I want all my apps to be synchronized in every way, so as I invest in each relationship, I can continue that relationship building seamlessly across all my devices throughout my day, where I choose and when I am able to.

  • As a user, I want to be able to add notes to myself, which you can today for an individual, but I want to do this here centrally in the Relationship Manager Dashboard.

  • As a user, I want to see my daily relationship alerts and actions in two options, a) as a list or set of cards of alerts and actions or b) as a calendar view in a datebook-like agenda. I would like to have the ability to push out this calendar agenda to Google, Outlook, iCal calendars so that I can bring my LinkedIn relationship management as an overlay in my daily main central calendar. To interaction with my relationships, I can simply click/touch to jump into the LinkedIn Relationship Manager.

  • As a user, I want to be able to drag and drop relationship alerts around my Relationship Manager Calendar View to easily schedule my relationship building activities throughout the week.

  • As a user, I want to be able to also manage relationships, centrally in my Relationship Manager view, relationships I want to hide, block and exclude from shares and engagement, much like I can with Facebook personal contact groups. I want to have some control and privacy in my digital relationships.

  • As a user, I want to be able to use existing relationship building features right from my Relationship Manager view, such as making introductions between people or providing reference testimonials or making skills endorsements or see birthday reminders or new role notifications.

  • As a user, I want a LinkedIn cognitive advisor give me suggestions or highlight opportunities for me to build my relationships with intention and purpose. I want the cognitive advisor to learn from my activity and get smarter about suggestions that it makes. I want to call this service LIRA – LinkedIn Relationship Advisor.

  • As a user, I want my Relationship Manager to iterate frequently, improving through Agile, getting smarter, learning from my behavior and activity to provide a better more personalized experience, providing an increasingly frictionless relationship management experience.

What’s Next

As a user, I want to have a central view where I can manage a personalized customized relationship management experience across my network of connections. I want to make connections, I want to build relationships. LinkedIn… let’s do this.


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