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Why You Should Backup Your LinkedIn Connections – & How To Do It !

Whether you are using LinkedIn for free or paying for a Premium account: the data is theirs – including all your LinkedIn connections! Read this post for instructions on how to back up your LinkedIn Connections- better safe than sorry !

Why You Should Backup Your LinkedIn Connections

You could loose everything!

Over the last few weeks I’ve heard the same story three times: 

“I received an email that LinkedIn has shut down my LinkedIn account because I’ve supposedly not respected the user agreement” 

In all three cases people were able to reinstate their LinkedIn account, but it is not only annoying to have to go through that, it’s also quite scary to think that all those years of building a network just disappeared into thin air!

In at least 2 of the cases I knew there was not any particular contract breach, no spammy behavior, no mass messaging people, adding contact details in the name field etc…

One person was using a third party scheduling tool and LinkedIn answered that this was the reason for shutting their account. What? Nowhere in the User Agreement does it say we’re not allowed to use a 3rd party tool for scheduling!! 

So you see, there’s definitely a risk and just like on Facebook you don’t own the data on LinkedIn!


So how do I Backup My LinkedIn Contacts?

Exporting and backing up your LinkedIn contacts may seem like a daunting or unnecessary task for some. But, rest assured that the effort is well worth it.

Keep in mind that the .csv file of your connections will include only the following information:

  • First and last name
  • Title
  • Company
  • Email

With that in mind, here are the steps you need to take to export and backup your LinkedIn contacts.

  1. First, click on My Network tab at the top of your profile. A new page will open where you can see the latest invitation you’ve received, recommendations, and so on. On the left side of the page, there’s also the number of connections you have on LinkedIn. Click on the number and a new page with all of your contacts will open.

  2. From this page, click on the Manage Synced and Imported Contacts tab on the top right. If you contact aren’t synced, a message will appear.
  3. On the bottom right of the new page, you will see a tab that reads Advanced Actions. Click the Export Contacts button from under this tab. 
    You can choose to download all of the individual files or pick the type of information you are most interested in, such as connections, messages, profile, articles, recommendations, and so on.Once done and you click the download button, make sure to request an archive.

  4. Shortly after, you will receive an email with a link to your privacy and settings section from where you can download a zip file that includes your document with all your LinkedIn connections.

As you can see, exporting your LinkedIn data doesn’t take more than just a few clicks. Take the time to backup your data at least twice a year, especially if your network is growing at a fast pace – thank me later! 😉

Just because you can extract your contacts doesn’t mean…

My friend Denise Wakeman left me a really good comment. She reminded us that ‘just because you can extract your contacts from LinkedIn, doesn’t mean you can add them to your email list!’

So true! Read this post if you need a reminder on How to Use LinkedIn to Get More Email Subscribers – & how not to!


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About the Author Sarah Santacroce

I’m a LinkedIn Specialist & Online Presence Mentor and help you convert your presence online into paying customers. I’m also the creative brain behind the LinkedIn Challenge, an event that has helped 1700+ people so far to improve their knowledge about using LinkedIn for business. I live and work in beautiful Switzerland and have helped hundreds of clients from all over the world breathe life into their LinkedIn profiles. I also work with local companies here in my little country to increase their visibility on this powerful professional platform. And finally it’s no coincidence that my business is called Simplicity: I’m known for my simple, no-nonsense Swiss efficiency, mixed with a good dose of Californian ‘yes we can’ attitude!

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Leave a Comment:

Denise says 5 March 2018

I would add, that just because you can export your connections, it doesn’t mean you can add them to your email list. 🙂

    Sarah Santacroce says 6 March 2018

    so true, Denise. Thanks for reminding me of that important point. I’ll add it to the article!

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