We all have likely heard of Linkedin by now! It’s a widely popular social media tool meant to establish and build relationships with other business professionals. 260 Million Users access Linkedin on a monthly basis!  There are tons of additional stats about Linkedin, who uses it, and how effective it is!  

Linkedin Stats as shared by Sorovjain

You can see more stats on this Infographic by Sorovjain: https://www.soravjain.com/linkedin-stats-facts-infographic

With all these stats, you can understand that there are different approaches to how LinkedIn could and should be used. I specifically hate it when people connect on LinkedIn, then pitch me something, or send information about themselves, without ever attempting to learn anything about me! 

This isn’t self aggrandizing…it’s not even selfish on my part. Here’s the thing…If you, or anyone else, wants me to do something FOR you…including buying something from you, subscribing to a service you offer, signing up for an email list, or even asking for a review on a book or podcast.  It’s up to you, to build trust FIRST with the person you are contacting to increase the likelihood that others will help you when you need help.

Recently I received a Linkedin Message from a contact…Alan.

It started with: Hi Matt,

Since we’re connected on LinkedIn, I wanted to share my new podcast with you. The XXXXXX has just rolled out and features 8 of my best interviews ever!

It went on to list links to 9 episodes, and a request to review the podcast on 3 different podcast networks.

Alan has done this before. In fact, since connecting, he has sent me 4 messages in total. We connected on January 4th, 2018. The messages he sent me were on:

March 14, 2018

March 13, 2019

June 14, 2019

December 7, 2019

The Messages

The March 14, 2018 message

This message was asking me to register for his event a month later.

The March 13, 2019 message

This message asked me directly to buy his book, and if I wanted to make a bulk purchase I could contact him directly. He followed that message up with a message 30 mins later with: “Sorry for the generic, impersonal message Matt… just trying to get the word out in mass. Hope all is well.”  He clearly knew it was impersonal and felt the need to send a follow up. At that time I replied to Alan with the following: “It’s probably not the most effective way to get the word out.“

The June 14, 2019 message

The message said: “I hope you are ready for a memorable and productive summer! I’m excited to share my new speaker reel: [Link Removed]

If you know of a leadership, sales, or HR team who could benefit from my message, I’d be honored to help them … with a dynamic keynote or interactive workshop. Thanks in advance for any connections you’d be willing to make.”

Did he just ASK me for a referral, when that’s exactly against the premise of everything I speak and write about? REALLY?

The December 7,2019 message

This message was all about asking me to listen to his podcast episodes and rate and review them online on 3 websites.

Why this doesn’t work…

It’s selfish.  Notice what the messages say…and don’t say:

  • There are no questions about me
  • There is no attempt to build a relationship with me
  • In 4 messages, there are 4 requests to do something for HIM!
  • There is no offer of anything in return
  • He doesn’t work to understand me
  • Does his podcast even matter to me? In reviewing it, I didn’t see the connection.

Relationships with others, when built deep, provide a lot of value, often both ways.

This LinkedIn Connection is Over…It’s D Day…Disconnect Day!

This relationship could have gone much better.  While I could have reached out and built a relationship, I was turned off after the first message. Then there were more.  

Not all connections on LinkedIn are meant to be strong connections.  In fact on LinkedIn you may have hundreds if not thousands of connections, and in that case, you certainly can’t have deep, meaningful connections.  But even if you can’t have a “connection” with all of them, you still shouldn’t attempt to sell them something, or get them to do something for you.

You may as well be asking for favors every time you meet someone for the first time or see them a second time!

Enough already!  No one on the other end wants that type of relationship!