How Not To Network On LinkedIn
For the love of God please stop sending the standard, LinkedIn connection requests. As soon as I see, "Hi, I'd like to add you to my LinkedIn Network" I hit delete. It's a pavlovian thing. When you send the standard LinkedIn connection message you're basically telling me that you don't really want to connect, you're just trying to build your rolodex or worse, you're a salesperson and you've got something to sell me.
Take the time to personalize the message. I'm not asking you to write War & Peace, but write something. Even if you just pick something out of the person's LinkedIn profile or I don't know, maybe take a second to check out their company, their Twitter profile or any of the information folks often connect to their LI profile. If at all possible, consider crafting something truly creative that rewards the prospective connection with a good laugh or something in exchange for reading your request to connect. The photo for this post is an actual LinkedIn Request sent to Ann Handley -- you can read her entire post here and see if she accepted the connection.
And lastly, while we're on this subject, don't ever try to connect with someone you don't know via the LinkedIn mobile app. When you click the connect button on the mobile app, it automatically uses the standard LI connection message. You can't change it or personalize it. It's a HUGE oversight in my opinion, but till they change it, you're better off just using the mobile app to connect with folks you actually have met in real life.
Read the rest of this post originally posted on my new Digital Sales & Marketing Blog