7 ways How not to connect or introduce yourself on Linkedin

linkedin1Thanks to the behemoth called Social Media, Internet has opened up new avenues for networking online. Whether it’s an old acquaintance on Facebook, a die hard follower on Twitter or a business connect on Linked In, online networking has become more than a necessity for kickass professionals and aspiring entrepreneurs.

What we do miss at times is to respect the relation online, the same we do offline. And one of the top blunders we do is while connecting and introducing ourselves. This post highlights 7 ways how not to send requests and invitations on LinkedIn.

So here we go.

  1. Using the default ‘canned’ message – This is one of the lamest invitations that you can ever send. Either you don’t know that the message being sent can be changed (which mostly is never the case) or you don’t care to type those 2 lines. Remember a hand written (typed) message is way better than an auto generated message from some piece of software. Add some personalization to your message. This will increase the chances of your invite getting accepted and respected for the effort you put in. Never Ever use the default message. Period.
  2. Toot your own horns – Many a times I receive the message – “I am Mr. so and so from the wonderland…. You will benefit from connecting to me. I have always being there done that. What are you waiting for?” Reading these messages I feel LinkedIn should receive good amount of donations to allow these egomaniacs (yes that’s a word) exercise their egos and satisfy their appetite to toot their own horns. When you want to connect with some one. It’s more about him and what he has to do with you, rather than just being about you.
  3. Having more than required connections – Also known as spamming. Before reading this point repeat after me. LinkedIn is not Twitter! And followers on Twitter are NOT equal to Connections in LinkedIn. In most cases just by looking at the profile you can make out that the person is trying to make as many connects as possible. What benefit does he get out of this insane habit, we never know. But we are sure of to run away from such type of spammers. The most horrible thing that I have seen till date is, some people even rename their names with 5000+ connections as a suffix. Post 500 LinkedIn doesn’t open your actual number of connections to the world, so these spammers rename themselves to show off to the world that Hey look at me I have so many connects, isn’t it a good reason you should connect with me? And we generally stay away form these useless connects.
  4. Connecting without any real connection – Remember LinkedIn connections are your professional relations. They are the one you know personally or are some how related to you. If the person you are trying to connect feels that neither he/she has ever met you nor there are any chances that you will; It’s obvious to think that it makes no good sense to accept your invitation. If you are still desperate to make a connect. Try meeting the person in the real world, or at least follow them on twitter and have a quick chat. If nothing works buy their products, once you are the customer you have an upper hand. All these increase the chances of your invitation getting accepted but the best option as I said is connect with a real connect not just for the sake of it.
  5. Providing too much info – The KISS principle works with this type of communication too. When introducing to someone via online networking sites  like Linked In, always Keep it Short and Simple. Let the user explore who you are and what you do if at all he wants to know more about you. Putting the whole story in an invite seems very lengthy to read and less trust worthy. All you need is to throw some right hooks and the connect is yours. Let them explore who you are rather than providing terabytes of information in the invite.
  6. Connecting for endorsement/recommendation – This should not be done! Period. Even connecting with your current colleagues, partners or acquaintances for the sake of getting an endorsement can be fatal. Whether you get the endorsement or not, it will serious malign your relationship with the connect. Also if it is very prevalent from your invite that your intentions are not trustworthy, your invite will absolutely go unattended.
  7. Greed – Greed never works, even in business relationships. Many a times I receive invites where the person describes in great depth what advantages he is looking forward with the connection. Do you think such things work! Even if you don’t highlight upfront greed crumbles up slowly once you start interacting with the person. It is not harmful to ask for a favor, but just getting what you want without providing any value from your side will never make your professional life succeed. End of the day, business is a give and take thing, right?

So this was how not to connect via Linkedin. Remember it’s not a rocket science! If you know the person, you are seriously interested in the connection and look forward to add value to the relation there is simply no reason why you should not be able to get through. But in case all you want is to spam and profit only for yourself, you better be aware as Social media is like a big TV screen where actors occasionally shout out and rant about people who spam them regularly. You not only lose the contact you even stake your reputation. Be genuine, be cool!

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{ 1 comment }

Reina Hullender September 21, 2010 at 7:25 am

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