List of U.S. Location Phrases on LinkedIn

United States Puzzle MapLast week I was assisting a team in building an exhaustive sourcing strategy for identifying, contacting and pipelining a consistent and continual weekly flow of highly specialized software engineers and 13 other hiring profiles that all allow for nationwide relocation.

If you’ve never been faced with such a challenge – imagine sourcing the entire U.S. (or any large country) on LinkedIn.

How would you begin?

Aside from the fun of ensuring that all of the searches returned less than 1,000 results per search, or at most ~3,000 provided I was able to use facets to divide up the results into sub-1,000, mutually exclusive result sets, I had to think about how I would enable a team to methodically and systematically uncover every potentially qualified candidate in the entire United States.

I quickly abandoned the idea of trying to use zip code searches – it’s an impractical and poor approach for many reasons. Systematically searching all of the metro areas on LinkedIn is a better approach, ensuring maximum inclusion, as I am fairly confident that regardless of zip code, everyone rolls up into a metro area.

Of course, to accomplish this, it would be helpful to have a list of all of LinkedIn’s metro area location phrases so I would not have to ask the team to perform exploratory search and type in cities and see what LinkedIn brings up, or search a wide radius from specific zip codes and make note of all of the metro areas that appear on profiles within that radius.

I decided to ask the fine folks in my networks on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter if anyone already had built or possessed such a list.

A few folks quickly replied that if I did get such a list, they would be very interested in seeing it.

As it turns out,  only 1 person in my network produced a list – Zac Paeth, and he graciously gave me permission to share it with anyone who would benefit.

Thanks Zac!

LinkedIn Location Phrases

After some quick research, I can verify that this isn’t a 100% complete list (e.g., it doesn’t mention the “Pocatella, Idaho Area” – ha!).

However, it does have over 90 location phrases and it seems to have most, if not all of the major metro areas.

If you have a list that differs from this one and and you’re willing to share, please do!

  • Scott Alexander

    Hi Glen. Thank you for the list. Another search methodology we have used in the past for geographic candidate search is by including major universities in a given state. Considering that 90% of our clients want a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree this has worked very well for finding not only local talent but candidates that are willing to relocate back to a specific area that they have a connection to.

  • Alice Owens CIR,CSSR

    Hi Glen – I have the complete list of areas. There are 282 locations – including “Pocatella, Idaho Area”. Send me your email address and I will be happy to share with you.
    Also, would love to know the outline of building a sourcing strategy. Working on a huge pipelining project.

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  • Kevin N

    I know it’s a year ago, but I am facing a similar challenge. May I ask if I may please get the list of 282 LI areas too? -Thanks, Kevin

  • Geetha Singhee

    Hi Alice,

    I am finding it difficult too, to get the 282 location list.
    Can you share the file to me? Email ID-
    Thanks in advance!

  • Chasmani Pilgrim

    Hi I’m facing a similar challenge – but I need all locations globally. Anyone care to share any advice/tips or even data?

  • Fadi Zananiri

    Hi Alice, I am facing a similar challenge. May I ask if I may please get the list of 282 LI areas too? My email is

  • Lordyuyu

    hi Alice, are you still giving out the list?