When it comes to LinkedIn automation tools, choosing between Linked Helper and Expandi is a big decision.
Linked Helper offers a familiar desktop experience with downloadable software, while Expandi.io operates from the cloud, accessible from any device.
Here’s the catch: Expandi costs $99 per month per seat, but Linked Helper’s Standard license covers you for an entire year at the same price. This article breaks down the differences between these two options, helping you pick the right fit for your needs.
21 reasons to choose Linked Helper over Expandi
Reason #1 – Longer trial period & no card required
Both services can be experienced in full without payment. However, Linked Helper offers a 14-day trial compared to only 7 days in Expandi, which might not be enough time to see results. Also, be prepared to link your card right away with Expandi. In Linked Helper, this step is not required for a free trial.
Reason #2 – Security
From a security standpoint, browser-based downloadable software (Linked Helper) is technically more secure than a cloud-based web service. You can learn more about the reasons in the article.
With Expandi, time-outs mostly occur after 24 hours (based on information from their support), requiring you to log back in to the software. Additionally, the software lacks in-page navigation.
Linked Helper fully mimics human behavior as it works, inserting random pauses between clicks, using human-like navigation, and even simulating message typing.
You can literally see every step of the software in LinkedIn from your profile within Linked Helper. On the other hand, Expandi’s work happens blindly; it is not visible on the screen and can occur in the cloud even when the computer is turned off. In which case would you trust the software’s operation more?
Reason #3 – More convenient and flexible lead collection
Expandi doesn’t offer built-in redirects to different search pages on LinkedIn. You need to separately perform the search and paste the link to the results into the tool.
Furthermore, certain options for adding leads are available in Linked Helper but won’t be found in Expandi. Such as:
- Your followers
- Sent invitations
However, in Expandi, you can queue campaigns for “People you may know.”
Note: In LinkedIn Helper, you have the option to semi-manually upload profiles from “People you may know” or any other page by following these steps:
- Open the page from which you want to collect users in your browser. Scroll through the entire list.
- Save the page as an HTML file.
- Upload the saved page to your campaign queue.
For a comprehensive guide on this process, please consult the article in the Help Center on profile collection (adding profiles from HTML file).
Reason #4 – Flexible lead filtering before launch
Since your actions with leads are always limited by quotas, it’s crucial not to waste them on irrelevant people. Both services allow the exclusion of unwanted people after the launch, but there are two differences.
In Linked Helper, you can manually filter profiles based on certain criteria to prevent them from being included in a campaign. For instance, you can filter them based on tags, presence of a profile picture, etc. This feature is not present in Expandi.
Reason #5 – Flexible exclusion of duplicate leads
Expandi has a strict filtering rule that prevents the use of the same leads in different campaigns. This makes sense because it eliminates the chance of intrusive outreach or spam.
The List Manager plugin in Linked Helper enables you to exclude the same profile between two campaigns and even specific actions. But it’s not mandatory and can be adjusted flexibly.
Read about the List manager plugin.
In the screenshot below, you can see that after collecting leads in Linked Helper, you can sort them using the built-in CRM parameters. Alternatively, you can manually remove unwanted leads. For instance, you can choose to keep only the leads with “Job seeker” or “Open profile” status.
Reason #6 – Easier platform switching on LinkedIn
The ability to switch between platforms is an important advantage because it not only provides convenience but also helps in reducing LinkedIn subscription costs. Just like Linked Helper, Expandi can also process Sales Navigator links within a basic LinkedIn profile.
However, only in Linked Helper, by activating the Override feature, can you seamlessly switch between platforms for different actions within a single campaign.
Furthermore, the option to Set up a group/event ID offers flexibility in collecting leads from groups using Sales Navigator. This feature allows you to search for leads based on specific groups.
After collecting the leads and assigning an ID, you can send messages through the basic profile using that group/event ID. For example, you can share a portion of the collected leads with a colleague, using the assigned ID as a reference for outreach purposes. Don’t forget to tell your colleague to join the group or register for the event before starting to message its members.
Reason #7 – More campaign diversity
Both tools allow campaign creation and customization, but Linked Helper offers twice as many templates and fewer limitations.
For instance, only in Linked Helper, unlike Expandi, you’ll find templates like:
– “Export profile information”
– “Message sequence via event”
– “Invite 1st to follow Organization (Company / School)”
– “Inmail sequence”
– “Find profile emails”
– “Remove 1st connections”
Certain actions available in Linked Helper are either absent in Expandi or confined to specific campaigns, for instance the “Message to group/event members” action. Additionally, Expandi’s Group Campaign lacks the ability to add leads from CSV files.
Reason #8 – Growing groups or business pages
For those aiming to expand groups or business pages, Linked Helper is the choice. Expandi lacks actions or campaigns for auto-inviting to groups or pages, which is pivotal for many marketers’ brand growth strategies.
Reason #9 – Sending paid & free InMails
Expandi doesn’t allow automatic sending of paid InMails, although there’s a campaign for sending free InMails to Open profiles. This restriction is absent in Linked Helper. You can send both free and paid InMails.
Reason #10 – Messaging via events and groups
The “Message to event attendees” feature in Expandi solely permits messages to first-degree LinkedIn connections. They attribute this to LinkedIn restrictions, but as of writing, users can message 3rd degree connections through events and groups using Linked Helper.
This is feasible within the software as long as LinkedIn permits it as a manual action in your profile – in other words, if you see the “Message” button next to a member’s name in the list.
This is also achievable by using group or event IDs in Linked Helper as a lead source. They can be gained through profile collection and sorting, for example, in Sales Navigator. Expandi lacks this capability.
Reason #11 – Enhanced engagement with comments
Linked Helper lets you leave comments with customized variables when liking posts. Comments are often more noticeable than likes, and they’re visible to the contact’s connections, potentially boosting organic profile visits.
This won’t be possible if you choose Expandi.
Reason #12 – Budget-friendly option in Linked Helper
Expandi offers a single $99/month plan per account, and switching licenses affects only one account at a time.
In contrast, Linked Helper provides two plans. The all-included PRO plan costs $45 monthly, which is half the cost of Expandi. However, if you are on a tight budget or you don’t want to overpay for the features you know you won’t be using, you can opt for the Standard plan. The Linked Helper Standard plan also costs $99, but it covers a whole year. If you prefer a monthly subscription, it’s only $15 per month. This flexibility suits individual users who are looking to expand their networking reach. In this plan, key lead generation actions like connection requests, messages to 1st-degree connections, auto-following profiles, canceling sent invites, and InMails aren’t limited artificially.
More exotic outreach options are limited or missing on a Standard plan, like:
- Exporting messaging history to 3rd-party tools via webhooks – n/a
- Likes and comments – 20 per day
- Invite to follow organization – 20 per day
- Message to event attendees – 20
- Invite to group – 20
- Invite to event – 20
For many users who want to pinch pennies, this is the optimal and most cost-effective option for LinkedIn growth.
Reason #13 – Integrated CRM and customer profiles
Expandi allows convenient lead filtering and keyword searches, along with assignment of tags.
It lacks detailed client cards and a clear list of leads across all campaigns that can be sorted. When you click on a lead’s name, you will be directed to their LinkedIn account. Here’s something like a client card feature as seen in Expandi:
Linked Helper’s unified system functions like an internal CRM, capturing leads across all campaigns. It goes beyond tag assignment, allowing note-taking and utilizing CRM filters like “Job seeker,” “Open link,” and more.
For comparison, here’s what a client card looks like in the CRM of Linked Helper:
Both Linked Helper and Expandi allow you to send leads to third-party CRM systems through Zapier and other webhook integrations.
Reason #14 – Convenient campaign evaluation during execution
In Expandi, there’s a limitation when it comes to evaluating the reasons for the failure of individual profiles within a campaign. Unlike Linked Helper, which allows you to inspect and understand why a specific profile may have failed and gives you the option to resend it to the campaign, Expandi lacks this feature.
Additionally, Expandi doesn’t provide a dedicated list of successfully processed profiles, making it challenging to assess the tool’s performance.
In the example below, you can see that in Linked Helper, profiles are categorized into lists such as “Processing,” “Processed,” “Successful,” “Failed,” and so on. This makes it more convenient for you to track the progress of your campaign for each individual.
These categorized lists allow you to have better visibility and control over how each person is progressing through your campaign, making it easier to monitor and manage your outreach efforts.
Reason #15 – No hard-coded limits
Linked Helper offers more flexibility in managing action limits compared to Expandi. In Linked Helper, you can adjust and customize action limits according to your specific needs. This means you can go beyond the default limit of 100 actions per day (like in Expandi).
For instance, you can manually set the limits to perform 150 or more actions per day, but it’s important to note that exceeding this number is generally not recommended. The key advantage here is that you have control over which 150 actions you choose to perform, providing greater flexibility in your campaigns.
Reason #16 – Comprehensive profile and company data in Excel
When it comes to exporting data, Expandi has certain limitations. You can only obtain exported files through email or a webhook, and these files contain only partial information. Specifically, you can download profiles of individuals but can’t do research on companies.
Moreover, the exported file lacks important details like people’s bios, complete work experience, company descriptions, skills, and headlines, and it includes only publicly available email addresses.
In contrast, Linked Helper provides more extensive data export capabilities, guaranteeing that you receive a more comprehensive dataset. This includes all the details available within a profile:
- Emails that may not be listed in the profile (if Email Finder or Snov.io is enabled during scraping)
- Complete work and education history
- And more.
Furthermore, it may be challenging to open the file exported from Expandi. In Linked Helper, you’ll find detailed instructions on how to open the exported file. Expandi’s settings are not as user-friendly in this regard, and their customer support has suggested one solution: contacting Microsoft to open their export.
Note: In Linked Helper, you have the option to export message history separately using a dedicated template, which then transfers the data to a webhook. In contrast, Expandi provides only the most recently received and sent messages, limiting your ability to archive and reference past conversations.
Reason #17- Technically proficient & always accessible customer support
Both Expandi and Linked Helper offer fast and round-the-clock customer support, help center, and a blog.
In Linked Helper, their support team consists of specialists with technical backgrounds, enabling them to delve into issues at a development level. This means you can expect more detailed responses, often with visuals and step-by-step instructions, rather than just being directed to manuals or documentation.
Even though Expandi support is available, there might be situations where they can’t provide immediate solutions. Delays in receiving responses can occur, as experienced when waiting for a response overnight or due to team members being in meetings or unavailable.
But Expandi has taken the initiative to foster a sense of community among its users by creating a Facebook group where they can share experiences, tips, and insights.
The creation of Expandi Academy, complete with a variety of tutorials, provides users with a structured and educational resource.
Reason #18 – Email Finder for unlisted emails
If your goal is to create a database of customer emails, choosing Linked Helper over Expandi is the better option.
Linked Helper allows you to search for emails from people at the 2nd and 3rd degree of connection, even if their email isn’t mentioned in their profile. In contrast, Expandi only provides publicly available emails. Even though Expandi syncs with your email service internally, it may not be sufficient for outreach campaigns.
Linked Helper can find emails that aren’t listed in the profile. By performing 150 actions per day on profiles, you can potentially discover over 4,500 emails per month using the Email Finder feature.
Regarding the costs, every time you purchase a license, you are awarded credits. The Standard plan includes 620 credits, while the Pro plan includes 3,100 credits. These credits are used up when you find emails associated with a single profile (deducting one credit per profile). For more detailed information, please refer to this link:
Furthermore, you have the option to acquire Email Search Credits separately, available at $15 for a 1,000-search pack and $49 for a 5,000-search pack.
Email searches can be conducted using two methods:
- Internal Email Finder Database
Linked Helper’s internal Email Finder database enables you to find emails through connections of other Linked Helper users.
- Direct Integration with Snov.io
Linked Helper directly integrates with Snov.io. While this integration requires a Snov.io subscription, it significantly increases the chances of finding corporate emails.
With the Snov.io integration, you can effectively organize mass email outreach campaigns or forward the data through a webhook to your email marketing service.
Reason #19 – Enhanced message builder
Linked Helper Pro offers a more sophisticated message composition tool. It provides a wider range of built-in variables, allowing for greater flexibility when crafting messages. Notably, Linked Helper includes variables for mutual connections, such as their count and names. This feature is particularly useful for creating engaging invitation messages.
Both tools allow you to set conditions for messages. However, Linked Helper’s “IF-THEN-ELSE” functionality can be applied to any variables, including custom ones. In Expandi, this feature is automatically applied when using custom variables, but it lacks the ability to create nested “else” conditions.
Reason #20 – Message history analyzer
Imagine starting your automation experience and wanting to send hundreds of automated InMails to potential candidates. Before you ever heard of LinkedIn automation, you had manually sent a number of InMails earlier. You want to make sure the same people will not be messaged again. While Expandi does have a reply detection, only in Linked Helper can you set a few “stop” words (e.g., “Key account manager,” “be interested,” “a new role”) as a condition not to send the message if any of such words are found in earlier messages with this contact. How amazing is that? The feature is available both in Messages and InMails.
Reason #21 – Cost-efficiency
The most expensive subscription on Linked Helper, the Pro plan with no limits (except the recommended 150 per day), is 54.5% cheaper per month than Expandi pricing on a monthly basis. On an annual subscription, Expandi is 3.2 times more expensive.
A monthly subscription to the Pro plan, even with a dedicated server (this server is required for the software to operate when the computer is turned off on a remote desktop), is $33.89 cheaper per month than Expandi.
Both tools offer discounts for bulk purchases. Linked Helper’s discounts are readily available, as shown in the image below.
In contrast, while Expandi may require you to contact their sales team for pricing details, they do offer an attractive incentive of a free account when purchasing three licenses.
What’s in Expandi that’s not in Linked Helper?
Cloud-based tool without additional services
Expandi operates in the cloud, enabling campaigns to run at specified times, even when your computer is off and not connected to the internet. While this can be convenient, it’s important to note that cloud automation often involves sending API requests to LinkedIn’s servers, which may pose security concerns.
With Linked Helper, you have the option to shift operations to the cloud by setting up a dedicated server on a remote desktop. This will also enable access for multiple team members to work concurrently.
Direct Email Integration
Expandi allows you to directly integrate with email services like Gmail, Yahoo, Outlook, and others from your dashboard. This integration enables you to send emails to leads from Expandi seamlessly.
It also provides a convenient way to sort people whose email addresses are indicated through filters.
At the same time, this function can be achieved in Linked Helper by sending emails and leads through a webhook to your email service. Additionally, integration with Snov.io can help you initiate mass emails right away.
Expandi offers a feature that Linked Helper currently lacks – campaign triggers. With Expandi, you can tailor your campaign based on specific triggers. For example, you can set triggers like “If connected,” “If followed you,” “If email was opened,” or “If Open account.” You can even create custom triggers to fine-tune your campaigns.
Dashboard with SSI Index and graphs
Expandi provides more data visualization options for your campaigns and calculates your Social Selling Index (SSI) for you.
Campaign priority with one click
In Expandi, you can select the priority of a campaign if you have multiple campaigns running simultaneously. This feature sets Expandi apart from competitors. There are three priority levels, but it’s not explicitly stated how many actions the tool allocates to each campaign based on these priority levels.
However, Linked Helper provides the flexibility for users to manually set limits, giving them greater control over the software. You can’t do it with one click. But here are some examples:
- Applying Advanced Limits: Users can manually restrict certain functions within a campaign. For instance, they can limit the “messages to group members” function to 30 messages per day in one campaign while focusing on other tasks like sending invitations.
- Utilizing the Action Step Delays Plugin: This feature allows users to set batches of 15 invitations with a 24-hour interval. In practical terms, the campaign will send 15 invitations and then pause for 24 hours before proceeding to other tasks. While this may be considered an advanced technique, it offers more granular control.
- Leveraging the “Postpone Action Start” and “Action Working Hours” Features: Users can schedule campaigns with different working hours. For instance, one campaign could be set to operate from 9 AM to 3 PM, while another, which is less critical, might run from 7 PM to 8 PM, totaling just one hour of operation. This allows users to fine-tune their campaign priorities and maximize efficiency.
Convenient inbox with reply functionality
Expandi offers a convenient Inbox feature that allows you to respond to messages directly from the service without the need to visit the LinkedIn website. In Linked Helper it is just one step longer – you need to click “LinkedIn” and then reply directly from your LinkedIn inbox.
Next, you can explore comparative tables categorized by criteria.
Criteria-based tool evaluation
Getting started with the tools
Cross-platform processing: LinkedIn, Sales Navigator, Recruiter
*For instance, a Sales Navigator profile can be used to collect profiles, while automatically switching to your basic account for mass liking (which is not available in the paid plan).
Drip campaign & campaign templates
Scope of automation
*Our recommendation is to set a limit of 150 actions per day, regardless of the type of LinkedIn subscription.
Customer support and resources
Scheduling & timing
Dashboard and campaign stats
Managing accounts in teams
Integrations with 3rd-party tools
Pricing & value
*150 actions/day – recommended safety limit
In terms of value for your investment, let’s explore these comparisons with real-world scenarios:
- Monthly Breakdown:
- Total cost of server ownership with Windows licenses ($20)*
- IPv6 proxy ($0.11)**
- 1 PRO license renewed monthly ($45)****
- The total monthly cost will be = 20 + 0.11 + 45 = $65.11 per month overall.
* VPS Windows M,( 2 v/Cores, 4 GB Ram, 160 GB SSD). Prices from Ionos at the time of publication.
**Prices from Host Zealot at the time of publication, excluding taxes.
***Prices from Proxy Seller for 1 unit excluding taxes.
****Linked Helper PRO price without tax.