How to eliminate duplicate profiles on LinkedIn

Here is how I advise clients to deal with duplicate, or even multiple, LinkedIn profiles:

  1. See which profile has the greater number of RECOMMENDATIONS, CONTACTS, and even old email addresses. Choose to keep the profile that has the greater number of contacts/recommendations/email addresses; everything except old email addresses on the profile portion can be updated. This is completely a judgment call – you must decide which content is most important to you. You can ask people to reconnect and even to resubmit a recommendation but you cannot add an old email address back in.
  2. Review the profile you want to delete (Profile X) and note all of your contacts and their email addresses. TIP: This can be exported from “Connections” into a .csv file.
  3. Note any other info you want saved to your preferred profile (Profile A). TIP: Print the profile.
  4. Update Profile A: Current summary, experience, education, websites, groups, applications, etc.
  5. Compare your contacts from Profile X to contacts in Profile A. List who is missing from Profile A.
  6. Invite those missing contacts to join your professional network on Profile A. TIP: Politely explain that your are merging two profiles.
  7. If you are also asking a contact to resubmit a recommendation please make the process easy on them – have it typed so they can easily copy/paste. Only do this with very close friends, or you are likely to loose the recommendation altogether.
  8. At this point you can go into Account & Settings/Personal Information/Close Your Account. You might choose to keep it live and redirect people to your new profile, but I think that might be irritation for you and the person who is trying to connect with you.