Here's why I won't accept your LinkedIn invite
Know that feeling?
The "who the h#ll are you?" feeling...?
I get it, LinkedIn is a GREAT way to get in touch with new contacts, find new customers and keep up with all the people you've met or done business with in the past.
It's revolutionised the way business people interact with each other and has created new ways of prospecting ANYONE that people didn't have before.
But it's also given rise to people being lazy, especially when it comes to getting in touch with people they don't know.
You didn't even bother saying 'hello'?
What gets me really ticked off though is when random people send me a LinkedIn invite and don't even bother with a personal message to go with it.
I'm sure I'm not the first person to rant about this. I'm sure there's business people who're busier and more influential than me who've gotten pissed off about it as well.
But people (especially sales people) don't seem to get it.
If I don't know you, I'm sorry but I'm probably not going to care
When I've got a huge network of contacts that I've spent thousands of hours building up over many years, why would I want to open that entire contact list up to you if you can't even add a short message in your invite to tell me WHY you want to connect with me?
If we've met, or it's completely obvious why you would be sending an invite, then fair call. It's ok to not add a message. But if I don't even know who you are, then why would I want to connect?
Unfortunately, far too many people are just wanting YOUR connections, not necessarily to do business with you.
Don't waste time trying to be a 'LION'
(this isn't Facebook or Instagram)
5 or 6 years ago, being a LinkedIn Open Networker (LION) was all the rage.
People spent entire workdays promoting themselves to get as many business contacts on LinkedIn as they could. But really, what's the point? It's not a competition to see who has the most 'friends'. This is business...
If you've got 7,000+ people in your LinkedIn network (which is supposed to be for business connections), what sort of relationship do you have with these people? I'll tell you, unless you're spamming them every day or something, they probably don't remember you.
Let's look at the ridiculousness (yes, that's a word) of this situation: If you spent 10 minutes - which is hardly meaningful - each year in contact with each person on your list, you'd spend 3.2 hours each day, EVERY DAY OF THE YEAR to do that.
(Best of luck with that ok).
It's no different if you're going to just randomly add people. Again, why bother?
Make a friend, not an enemy
Let me give you a tip...
If you're going to add people on LinkedIn for prospecting purposes, then you need to take the time to craft a message that'll get their attention, accept your invite, and leave the door open to contact from you.
Don't just click the automated 'Connect / Add' button and hope that they'll go "sure X, I'd love to randomly connect with you for no apparent reason"...
Send them a message that says hello, tells them why you'd like to connect and a benefit. If you can fit in a comment about when you'll speak with them or about a deadline of some sort, then that's even better.
"Hi Greg, we don't know each other but we've got a common friend in 'X'. I was reaching out to you today because I've found a great way to help companies save money and I think I can assist yours. If you'd like to connect and find out more, then I look forward to speaking with you."
If you're connecting with me, then something along the lines of:
"Hi Rob, we don't know each other but I've heard you're a good copywriter from a number of people. I'd like to connect and chat about what you can do for my business. Looking forward to hearing from you."
I don't need an ego boost, I just need a reason
See how simple that was in the above messages?
And they're fairly elaborate - especially the first one. You don't need to be that special and you don't need to stroke the ego of person you want to connect with. Just give them the same short, sharp and valid reason for connecting that you would on a handwritten note to a receptionist if you were doing 'door-knock' sales. If the decision maker only knows your name and nothing else about you, they'll simply tell the receptionist to shove you off.
So, how are you connecting with people on LinkedIn?
Are you just expecting people to connect and be instant best buddies with you or are you taking the time to send a note (and 10X-ing your chances at the same time)?
LinkedIn is the most powerful business contact tool ever - just use it to your advantage by seeing it from how your prospect would see it.
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