Most of the reporting and commentary this week about Microsoft’s purchase of LinkedIn focuses on what the deal means for the two companies.

But what does it mean for the rest of us? If Microsoft is to be believed, the value of LinkedIn as a social media platform is 50 percent greater than the value of its current stock price.

In an interview with NPR, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner described the combination as an opportunity to unlock a world of cool new features:

linkedin-911794_1280.jpgAs NPR’s Aarti Shahani put it, imagine if the LinkedIn newsfeed talked to your Outlook calendar, if it knew all the meetings you were going to have in the next month, the customers you’d see.

“And it lit up news articles of those customers,” Microsoft’s Nadella said. Or, he added, if Microsoft connected LinkedIn to its Cortana platform, “Just imagine a world where this wakes up just before I enter a new meeting with people I’ve never met before, and thanks to the LinkedIn integration, you learn that, ‘Oh, wow, you went to school with this person, or, you worked at the same company. One of your colleagues at my – in your company, in fact, knows this person.’ ”

In the same interview, LinkedIn’s Weiner suggested that the help tab in PowerPoint or Excel could be connected with LinkedIn. If Microsoft’s Office 365 was integrated with LinkedIn, it could provide “the ability to connect with people in your network who can help with your question, the ability to connect with freelancers who are experts in that area.”

This is all very cool stuff. Yet while these ideas could advance the utility of LinkedIn, they don’t change the basic functionality of the platform.

In other words, if you’re not on LinkedIn, or you don’t have a picture on your profile, or you have a profile and a picture but lack a strategy to make LinkedIn useful to you and your company, then you’re failing to capitalize on the full value of this social network. And you’re probably not factoring LinkedIn into an effective inbound marketing plan.

Have you looked at your LinkedIn profile lately? At your company page? Do you feel you’re getting the full value from either one of those? Could you increase the personal and professional value of LinkedIn by 50 percent, without investing a dime in any publicly traded stock? I’ll bet you could.

Face it: you and I are not making the most of LinkedIn even as it stands now.

So let the market and the regulators evaluate the deal as they will.

For the rest of us it’s time to maximize our personal and professional investment in LinkedIn. Are you ready to get started?