It’s so easy to send a quick, generic invitation to connect on LinkedIn. The site even includes text, prepared for you – all you have to do is click “Send”!
And, I’ve received way too many of these from people who don’t tell me why they want to connect or how I can help their network. I know there are thousands of others who waste their time sending the same easily-dismissed messages.
Please… personalize your invitations to connect on LinkedIn!
My LinkedIn Philosophy
Everyone has a different philosophy for how they want their network on LinkedIn to work. I want to feel like I know my network. If I need something or have a question, the people in my network are people that I can go to. When I need to make a referral, I also want to be able to provide some additional insight about the person. I even state this on my LinkedIn profile, which I am sure few ever read or pay attention to, but this is what I say:
“I value each and every one of my connections. I will gladly connect with people I know (meaning we have met face to face or engaged in meaningful conversation). I am more than happy to accept twitter followers for any of the following reasons:
- Career opportunities
- Consulting offers
- Job inquiries
- Expertise requests
- Business deals
- Reference requests
- Getting back in touch”
Personalize The Message!
Giving more information rather than less is a good thing. Here is what I want to see within every invitation to connect:
- Explain how you know me or what we have in common
- Tell me why you want to connect
- Be friendly! “Please” and “Thank You” (please!)
If you are looking for advice on what to include in your invitation, you can visit these two posts:
- 3 Critical Elements of Every LinkedIn Invitation from CAREEREALISM by Arnie Fertig.
- 11 Ways to Personalize A LinkedIn Invite from Tim’s Strategy
And here’s a story Job Search: Invite Someone To Connect on LinkedIn? By Jason Alba, author of “I’m On LinkedIn… Now What?”
I Didn’t Accept Your Invite
If you are one of the many people who have sent an invitation to connect and it wasn’t personalized, I did not accept your invite.
Sometimes I feel guilty for not accepting so I will send a message explaining my philosophy. Very seldom, gosh, only once, did someone respond to my message and explained why they wanted to connect. Yes, I immediately accepted their invite.
My Reasons for This Post
The reason I am writing this is to educate. If you are a job seeker and not personalizing your invitation to me, I can only assume you don’t personalize the other messages you send out. I know it is dangerous to assume…
The other reason I am writing this? To ease my guilt about deleting the generic requests.
Okay… I feel so much better!
I hope you are now a more educated Linkedin user. Please pay your new knowledge forward and share this advice with those you know who are new to LinkedIn!
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Career Sherpa!
About the Author: Hannah Morgan is a career sherpa, guiding new job seekers through the treacherous terrain of job search. If you are looking for no-nonsense advice, check out her site Career Sherpa, and follow Hannah on Twitter for the latest job search news and trends!
Image courtesy of Tomfishburne.com, thank you!