"Hi Brian, I'd like to join your LinkedIn network."
Don’t you love to get these generic LinkedIn requests in your email inbox every day? Yeah, us too.
While LinkedIn is undoubtedly the 1,000-pound gorilla in the business networking space, for some it sometimes can be more annoying than helpful. Many business people still don’t believe that being active on social media is worth the time or effort. For those that don’t want to be seen as a thought leader in their industry or don’t want to spend time creating content that helps connect them with prospects, it is indeed a waste of time. But for business leaders and salespeople wanting to advance in their careers and be seen as an expert in their field, social selling and being active on social media is paramount to success.
With over 332 million members and 2 new users joining every second, LinkedIn is a great place to make new connections and to grow your network. It’s simply a social networking site that business leaders can’t ignore. But like any new software or social networking site, there is a learning curve required to learn how best to use it and get the most out of it.
One of the best ways to get started or to achieve success with LinkedIn is to connect with a vast number of contacts that are in your industry and that you have previously worked with. When you are doing this, it’s important to make sure that you are focused on creating a real connection, rather than just sending a cold request to connect. One of the best ways to introduce yourself or to ask for a connection on LinkedIn is to personalize the connection request by stating why you would like to connect and how it might be beneficial to them. After all, this is a professional networking site and you don’t want to come off poorly or unprofessional.
Customizing LinkedIn Connection Requests on Mobile
If you are like many and use LinkedIn on your mobile device, it’s worth noting that the mobile interface is slightly different than with the desktop version. Because of this, when you select the connect button on the mobile app, it ends up sending a generic connection request. While this isn’t the end of the world for your professional career, it’s been proven that customized LinkedIn requests have a better response rate.
If you have seen this screen on your mobile device before, how many times have you seen someone you know and clicked on the connect button and sent them an invite? A few times, dozens, hundreds? Well, here are a few tips to customize these requests from your mobile device.
- Before you click on the CONNECT button (which sends the generic request) look at the top right of the screen and look for the “...”. (Yes, look for the barely noticeable “...” in the top right hand of the screen and click on it. I agree, this is a terrible user experience, but this is the only way to customize your connection request. So follow along.)
- Now, you should be taken to this screen where you can select “Personalize Invite." See how simple that was?
- Next, customize your connection request and click on “send invitation." Very simple.
Now if you have writer’s block and don’t know what to write in the connection request, you can find a few good templates here.