Unlike the rest of your social media which can be used to share your favorite presidential candidate’s videos, your distaste for other candidates, or pictures of lattes on marble, LinkedIn might just be the most sacred social network that you have to make sure not to abuse.
There are many do’s and don’ts about LinkedIn and you have to make sure that you’re not crossing the line when you’re networking or missing crucial information that could be detrimental to your credibility. If you want to be taken seriously or want to make sure that your connection requests are being approved, make sure that you’re following some of the do’s and don’t below.
Don’t send out LinkedIn requests out of the blue to someone you have never connected with in person or have any mutual connections with. Whoever you are requesting will immediately deny you and move on to the next request, especially if they have no context of who you are, what you do, or when you met. And you can rest assured that they will ignore your request if you don’t personalize it.
If you are trying to connect with someone who you haven’t met or are looking to have a meeting with, introduce yourself via a message and let them know why you want to connect. This will give you more chances of the person actually opening your message, add you as a connection, and hopefully lead to a meeting down the road.
LinkedIn is not the place to post your best selfie. An overhead selfie with your best angle won’t do you many favors on here, so make sure that you’re choosing the best photo wisely.
Get yourself a great photographer and invest in a headshot that will boost your credibility on LinkedIn. If you’re on the job hunt, and a recruiter sees your selfie versus someone who has invested in a good headshot, chances are you might not get that call for an interview.
Don’t send spammy messages. Yes, those include those out-of-the-blue birthday messages as well. Did you really remember that connection’s birthday, or are you just taking advantage of LinkedIn’s reminder? Be above that.
Nurture your relationships. Once you add someone, don’t add them just to add to your connection count, but make sure to follow up with them, congratulate them on their recent achievements and work, and offer ideas on how they could improve their work.
Also, it’s always best to show your connections what you can offer them versus asking them what can they offer you first. Connections are more solidified that way.
Avoid self-serving content. This is not Facebook or Twitter, so nobody really cares what you are doing in your daily life, or what you’re eating for lunch here. If you find yourself posting that on LinkedIn, you can immediately start seeing your connection count drop drastically.
When posting updates on LinkedIn, make sure to share information that’s viable to your connections. Feel free to share content from Forbes, Entrepreneur, Bloomberg, and other trustworthy news sources. Also, if you are writing your own content from your own blog that’s viable as well, this is a great way to get more traffic on your site and more eyes on your content. Pay attention to what your connections are talking about, write your own content on those topics, and set yourself as a trustworthy news source.
What are some of your LinkedIn do’s and don’ts? What are your ultimate pet peeves as professionals? Sound off below!