LinkedIn 101: Make Your Connection Message Personal

Photo: TheSeaFarer via Flickr

Photo: TheSeafarer via Flickr

I get several LinkedIn connection requests each week. Rarely do they explain who the person is, or why they want to connect. If I know you personally, I’ll click “accept.” However, if we’ve never met and you’re looking to build a bigger or better network, I understand where you’re coming from. Here’s the problem: too many people are using LinkedIn to spam people with sales pitches, so I often click “ignore.” Want to know how to ensure you won’t get ignored as you’re trying to connect with people on LinkedIn? I have one easy piece of advice and a couple other tips.

Personalize Your Connection Request

It doesn’t take long to write a sentence or two about connecting with someone. You can even write a couple of templates ahead of time, save them in a note and copy/paste them into a LinkedIn message.

As an example, I connect with people on LinkedIn for a few basic reasons. As the marketing specialist for a mortgage banker, I’m looking to make real estate connections. I like to share updates and information with real estate agents, Realtors®, builders and other professionals involved in the housing market.

  • Keep in mind: I’m not looking to spam these folks with unsolicited sales pitches. It’s all about the inbound approach of engaging, relevant content.

I also connect with marketing experts on LinkedIn. And finally, I love local connections. With that in mind, below is an example of a template message you could have on-hand for connecting with folks.

I’d like to add you to my network of marketing experts here on LinkedIn.
Cheers,
Dan Moyle
Inbound Marketing Specialist
AmeriFirst Home Mortgage

I also make sure I address their name to the beginning of the message, and add any relevant items I found in their profile we may have in common. An example of that may be a previous employer, a common town or connection or maybe an interest.

This simple gesture turns the canned message everyone else uses on LinkedIn into a personal message that stands out in their inbox.

Bonus Tip: Make sure you have a clear photo as an avatar or profile picture. It should be relatively professional, a medium-to-close shot and not a Facebook-like shot of you on the beach somewhere. This lets me know who you are visually, so I can place a face with the name.

Want to know more about using LinkedIn well? My friends at Inbound Marketing Agents have quite a few articles on the subject. A good one with some quick tips is Become a LinkedIn Power User in 10 Minutes or Less Give it a read. And connect with me on LinkedIn – but please make the message somewhat personal.

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One thought on “LinkedIn 101: Make Your Connection Message Personal

  1. Pingback: 6 Best Practices for LinkedIn | The Inbound Evangelist

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