1) with the white pages app, you can find people nearby (great if farming a neighborhood) i already use this and love it. You can add these people "nearby" to your contact list and have LinkedIn communicate with your contacts automatically offering to connect with them next time you login to LinkedIn
This is completely free on the basic service
2) the reason im debating on investing in the premium (240/ year) is it makes your profile more visibly accesible for searches, higher SEO keyword search friendly and similar to trulia and zillow and the like can ask your online linkedin connections to write a recommendation/ endorsement on your behalf (again you can do this with the basic account but the premium makes this process extremely simple). It seems to be the only non real estate specific "professional" social networking tool that allows you to search for more people
Alas, my dilemma in investing in this tool. Certainly less expensive than increasing visibility with some other online advertising mediums .
Thanks for all of your input!