Stop Hiding behind Generic LinkedIn Invites
Switching up those boring, generic LinkedIn invites doesn’t only demonstrate that you aren’t reaching out just because you need something, but it sets you apart from the lazy majority with proof that you’re a pro who takes the time to show you care.
I want you to think beyond simply personalizing invites to connect. I want you to retrain your brain to not just reach out when you want or need something, but to take a more proactive approach to building a network of people you like, people you admire, or people you appreciate. Because in the end, isn’t that who you really want in your network?
Now, if you haven’t already read my sister post, Show Some Personality when Connecting on LinkedIn, then you missed my little secret about the Word doc I keep chock full of sample scripts like the ones below, so that I can easily personalize each invite to perfection, like this one:
I was just testing your tip in “LinkedIn’s Back Door to Connections” before sharing your article to spread the good word.
You provide great insights, and I’d love to have you in my LinkedIn network.
Master of Technology Management (MOTM)
Award-Winning LinkedIn Profile Scripter
Certified Professional Resume Writer
Certified Employment Interview Pro
A couple items to note: There’s no way you could have missed my super-long LinkedIn signature, but as I mentioned in my sister article, I chop irrelevant pieces out of that bad boy depending on what I know about my desired connection. If they don’t have a link to NY, then the “NY-based” line goes. If we’re already connected on Twitter, then I take my Twitter URL out. You get the point. Anyway, you should definitely add some form of customized signature when you have the available characters. That way, you can further set yourself apart from the crowd.
The stealth LinkedIn users among you may be thinking, “But wait, you can’t include email addresses or links in invites to connect.” Au contraire. If you follow Brynne Tillman’s advice in her article, LinkedIn’s Back Door to Connections, you can include links in your invites to your heart’s content. Hint: When you hover over the star below the Connect button on a profile, the words Save to Contacts appear. Click on that, go to your Connections button in the toolbar up top, find the most recent addition to your contacts, and execute from there to reap the benefits described above.
Two added bonuses to using that method are that you have more characters to customize your invites and you don’t need to know the email address of the person you’re trying to reach. It’s my current go-to method for connecting.
Now, let me get back to some more samples. If you’re a voracious consumer of info, whether as a frequent webinar participant or a constant reader of articles, books, and industry-relevant reports, like I am, then seize the opportunity to elevate yourself by building a network of likeminded experts, sending requests like:
I’ve been appreciating the insights within your 2014 Source of Hire (SOH) Report, Gerry, and I hope you’ll accept my invite to connect.
I just love your article, 5 Alternatives to ‘To Whom It May Concern,’ and feel that my LinkedIn network wouldn’t be complete without you, Vicki.
And if I’m reaching out based on a nudge from someone I know, I’ll say something like:
Our mutual friend and connection, Amy Peloso, has been singing your praises, and now that I’ve read your article, If You Need a Letter of Recommendation, Write Your Own, I’m a believer!
Pretty please, accept my invite to connect?
And by all means, share value when you can, as shown in this example:
I was so glad that I happened to sit next to you at our committee meeting today, Nancy, and as for the editor I mentioned, you should definitely check out Jennifer George, as she’s prevented me from looking a fool time and time again by catching what my eyes have overlooked.
I was thrilled to get the chance to talk to you one-on-one at the National Resume Writers’ Association conference last week, Mary.
I do hope that you’ll accept my invite to connect on LinkedIn and, in the meantime, the non-Wordpress blog option I was telling you about, which I love and have implemented on my own site, is Perch, so you should definitely take a peek.
And because I absolutely want to add super-cool Twitter followers to my LinkedIn network, I make an effort to send invites like:
I’m psyched to have a Twitter follower of your caliber, Jonathan.
I dig your professional style and hope you’re willing to extend our connection to LinkedIn.
Having you follow me on Twitter made my day, Darrell, and I would be pleased as punch to continue the camaraderie on LinkedIn.
I’ve even been known to extract bits of a Twitter follower’s handle to really strike a chord with my invite, like:
Thanks for the follow on Twitter, Yann.
I love your blog and writing style, and since I’m also an entrepreneur, a writer, an idea generator, and a lover of photography, I’d love to connect so that I can keep up with your LinkedIn updates.
If you need to get back to basics, head to the LinkedIn Help Center for step-by-step instructions on Personalizing Invitations to Connect and Personalizing Invitations to Connect on your Mobile Device.
And, to learn more about standing out and providing value when accepting invitations to connect, head to that damned article I mentioned twice already, Show Some Personality when Connecting on LinkedIn.
Image courtesy of Gratisography.
02 March 2015