LinkedIn is exploding with new users and is increasing their revenue so much every year that it is hard to tell how big of a market and attention share they may actually achieve among the other social media giants. With Facebook and Instagram getting more competitive in the business landscape, LinkedIn may become a safe haven for those looking to make meaningful connections and sell more products. If you aren’t on all of these platforms, you need to take a thorough look at your digital strategy. The later you get on, the harder it will be to ever gain the exposure your business deserves. LinkedIn is an especially interesting website as many don’t see it in the same light as a Facebook or an Instagram, but in reality, there isn’t much that sets these platforms apart. If anything, LinkedIn offers more useful features that allow for the meaningful exchange of information and facilitation of productive conversations. Missing the glitz and glamour of your typical social website, LinkedIn cuts out the fat. This provides a compelling opportunity for hungry business people to grow. Why sort through the hundreds of comments and likes on Instagram when you can connect with the most powerful leaders in your industry with one easy search? The problem this has created is a ton of spam that leads to lower engagement rates for the average marketer. This means that if you wish to follow along with the automation crowd, you may do so, but you may also find your messages to be less effective over time. I can’t say that no one should be using automation for LinkedIn outreach but I can say that for those taking it on, there are a lot of things you are probably getting wrong.
So…Should you Automate Your LinkedIn Messages?
The sad, boring, and yet truthful answer is that it depends. If your business caters to high-level executives, you might want to stay away from automated messages. If you’re reaching out to less respected members of organizations or even CEO’s of smaller companies, an automated message can fly. The reason you don’t want to send automated messages to high-level executives is that they are receiving hundreds of them every week, if not every day. No matter how good you think your copy is, anyone with this amount of “clout”, knows exactly what an automated message looks like and will skip over it immediately. High-level executives are rarely on LinkedIn to be sold to. They are on LinkedIn to hire people for their organization and to find unique partnership opportunities. In both of those situations, a personalized message is going to be the only way to catch their attention. There needs to be a specific need that this executive needs to be filled and the only way to truly know what that need is, you’re going to have to do some research and introduce yourself before sending an automated message. For the less busy and less revered professionals on LinkedIn, you have an opportunity to use automated messages to generate hot leads daily and scale your business, quickly. These professionals are typically a lot less accomplished, less busy, and therefore are much hungrier individuals. For users like that, getting a relevant LinkedIn message in their inbox could make their entire day and provoke extremely enthusiastic responses. If you feel that your niche is on that end of things, automate away! I will say though, that for the long term, you could miss out on a lot of important opportunities to connect with someone that you would’ve never expected to be so valuable to your business. The “big dogs” on LinkedIn, hate automated messages so using that approach could instantly damage your relationship with someone that is more important to you than you may think.
Now, before you come away with any wrong ideas, don’t think that these are the only two criteria that you should be looking at before deciding whether or not to automate your LinkedIn messages. There are many more relevant criteria to use depending on the industry that your business is in. There are also other great ways to automate your LinkedIn profile without aggressively messaging people in their inboxes. Sites like Octopus CRM, are amazing tools that allow you to simply view other people’s profiles or leave recommendations to relevant professionals in your network, on autopilot. This is a much less aggressive approach to automating your LinkedIn profile and will keep you from pissing off the more uptight professionals on the platform.
Truthfully, if what you’re offering to clients is that great of an opportunity and you have your LinkedIn profile set up to portray your unique value proposition clearly, you will find that people will even be reaching out to you with serious business inquiries that may change your life with a less aggressive approach. When you are as genuine as possible on the platform, liking, commenting and sharing the content of those in your connections you will be able to start developing some real, long term relationships in short periods of time when executed consistently.
So yea, I hate to be that guy but the answer truly does depend. When I’m doing outreach on LinkedIn, I make sure I study the person I’m reaching out to before I accidentally send some generic message that doesn’t completely align with what they do or their prior experience. Dig through their profile, find mutual connections, universities, and find a few things or interests that you have in common to start your conversation with something more personal. This will catch anyone’s attention. Even the busiest people on the planet may get back to you within minutes because you are now tapping into something that they are very passionate about and can’t control their reactions to. Networking with higher level professionals, in general, is all about developing a relationship first. As many of you may already be aware, in Gary Vaynerchuk’s book “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook,” he breaks down the idea behind this process in depth and I recommend any business person in marketing, sales, and entrepreneurship to take the time to read the novel.
To summarize the most important insights from this article I want to leave you three takeaways that will change your perspective on this topic drastically.
Don’t spam high-level executives, this will backfire in the long run.
Keep all of your messages personal and look for passions when introducing yourself to anyone on LinkedIn.
Make sure your LinkedIn profile tells a story, creatively about what it is that you can do to help people in your network become more successful, as that is the main motivator of just about everyone on the platform. If you get this wrong, your outreach and messages will have little to no effect as the first thing everyone does before networking on LinkedIn is check on your profile for legitimacy.
I hope that if nothing else, you have at least gained some insights behind the psychology of users on the platform as it varies drastically from those like Instagram and Facebook. Regardless, I’d love to see some feedback below of your thoughts on LinkedIn automation and the results you’ve gotten using it on your own! Regardless of the route you take, I wish you a ton of success and prosperity along your journey.
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