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What Are LinkedIn Endorsements?

Have you been asked to endorse someone on LinkedIn? Has one of your colleagues endorsed you? Do you wonder — what is this all about?

Well, let’s take a step back and deconstruct the language of LinkedIn.

  • Your profile is like a resume.
  • You can (and should) connect with people on LinkedIn. A connection doesn’t mean anything except your profile is electronically linked to another profile. NBD.
  • A recommendation on LinkedIn is much like a recommendation given during a background check. Many companies don’t allow you to give verbal recommendations for former employees so you may want to check with your HR department to see if LinkedIn recommendations are allowed.

An endorsement? It’s a way of telling the world, Yeah, sure, I think this person that I know on LinkedIn is sorta skilled in a vague way. Whatevs.

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But guess what. LinkedIn is trying to develop a smarter algorithm that tells the world who you really are based on your entire social graph. Much like Klout, LinkedIn wants to use the data you provide on your profile — plus your connections, recommendations and endorsements — to help create a targeted price point for recruiters and advertisers who either want to advertise on your profile or buy access to your profile.

So the more information you give LinkedIn about yourself and your connections, the smarter the algorithm gets and the better they can price you as a product.

So go ahead and endorse people. It may help you get found during a job search. It may help your buddy get hired. And it helps LinkedIn earn more money as an organization.

Capitalism. That’s what social media marketing is all about!


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