I recently received a message via LinkedIn from Gary Cozin, an accomplished, well known player and knowledge sharer in sourcing circles, asking me a question:
“You know when we xray Google for LI profiles we can insert “current * financial advisor” in our string to bring back ‘current’ job titles we want. Do you know how would that be done in Bing?
Now, I have been a long-time user of Google for X-Ray searching LinkedIn. However, Google’s recently made some changes to the way LinkedIn X-Ray search results are returned that has made sourcers and recruiters add additional terms to X-Ray strings to an already lengthy search string to return only profiles (e.g., -inurl:dir, -inurl:jobs…).
Not long after Google made those changes, Shally Steckerl posted an article detailing a novel approach to X-Ray searching LinkedIn using the phrase “Public profile powered by,” which seemed to allow searchers to not have to resort to the cumbersome (inurl:in OR inurl:pub) -intitle:directory -inurl:dir -inurl:jobs, etc. search syntax.
While that approach definitely works, Irina Shamaeva and I have found it doesn’t seem to find and return all available results. Even so, there is no denying that it is a much simpler (and shorter!) method for finding LinkedIn profiles via Internet search engines. Why unnecessarily over-complicate search strings?
So, with Google’s recent changes coupled with their annoyingly overzealous blocking of more complex searches (in some cases you don’t even get a chance to use a CAPTCHA to prove you’re human!), I was happy and curious to see if there was in fact a way to accomplish what Gary was looking to do using a search engine other than Google. Continue reading