DO NOT send sleazy DM’s like a raging hormonal teenager
For the love of LinkedIn – lessons I’ve learnt about life online.
Disclaimer: I am not and do not claim to be a LinkedIn expert or trainer. These are my own observations and some mildly sarcastic advice I’d like to share with you, after a year of actively participating on this platform. I don't always practice what I preach, but I do try and follow these guidelines as much as possible.
LinkedIn is NOT a speed-business-dating channel. Play the slow game.
Building a quality network takes time, just like in real life.
Don’t connect with every Tom, Dick and Harry for the sake of adding as many connections as possible. Curate your own audience AND your feed. Choose your connections carefully and you’ll end up with a quality feed tailored to your own taste.
Do. Not. Sell. Not via your posts, not with DM’s, and definitely not by looking up your connections’ email addresses and sending your sales pitch without their consent. People don’t like it. They will ignore you, unfollow you, or block and report you. Yes, LinkedIn is primarily for professional networking and there’s nothing wrong with the occasional “we’re open for business” update. But it can be very off-putting if you post about it non-stop.
Add value with your posts. I know we all like a cute kitten photo, but if you don’t have anything interesting to say that will get your network thinking and engaging, they’ll get bored of you faster than you can say “meow”.
Cheesy posts with lame real or made-up quotes… They’re so 2010. Enough said.
‘Look at me, I’m so unique” fictitious job titles – you know the ones that make you look just like everyone else who’s desperate to stand out? Yes, running your own business means you can call yourself whatever you want to, but surely some common sense should be exercised here? It seems everyone is getting some sort of never before heard of martial arts qualification – there are only so many ninjas this world can cope with. Seriously.
Don’t make it all about you. People just aren’t interested. We are all selfish and want to be the centre of attention, I get it. But what your network really wants to know is WHAT can you do for THEM? How can you HELP them? WHY should they listen to YOU over the constant noise of everyone else?
Mix it up – don’t just post videos of you talking all the time, for example. Unless, every single video you post is sizzlingly different and amazing. Then post away. Don’t forget the captions. Most people watch videos without the sound on, so without any captions you might as well be talking to the wall.
Selfies taken at every single local networking event – WHY?
No one really cares. I know this is a bit harsh, but it’s true.
Be honest – do you get giddy with excitement when you see someone’s picture taken at one of these events?
Everyone is sat around the table having a nibble, and someone's doing a presentation in the background...
Is your heart racing now? Nope. Didn’t think so. If, however, they’re salsa dancing on the boardroom table and swinging off the chandeliers, you need to record this for historical purposes (and let me know where and when this takes place).
Want to remain a solid LinkedIn player? You need to be consistent one way or another. Post at least once a week and engage on other people’s updates for a few minutes every day.
Radio silence is a big no-no. LinkedIn is a multi-way relationship with all of its participants. If you’re getting comments on your posts, the polite thing to do is to reply, otherwise people will just ignore you in the future. There’s no point in them engaging if you never respond in return.
Be yourself. The chances of you being who you are and the way you are, because your parents met at the right place and at the right time, is one in 400 trillion. There’s no fun in pretending to be someone else and you won’t come across as an authentic individual. You are unique, quirks and all, so you might as well own it!
Don’t get into public debates with pushy know-it-all’s. It’s just not worth your sanity or your time.
Word of warning – do not, I repeat, DO NOT send sleazy DM’s like a raging hormonal teenager.
Why would you do that? Stop it and grow up already.
You can just Foxtrot Oscar, please!
I don’t like using foul language, but this particular issue really makes my blood boil.
Finally, follow the LinkedIn gurus who really, REALLY know their stuff. I’ve learnt most of the above from them. They all consistently post exceptionally outstanding high quality content – a real intellectual feast for those who like to consume gluttonous amounts of funny and engaging wordsmithery.
My favourite LinkedIn players in no particular order are:
And here's my LinkedIn profile, in case you fancy having a snoop.
What’s your LinkedIn game playing strategy? Is there anything else (or anyone else) you’d add to this list?
Zsike | chief vampire