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I accept everyone that requests to connect with me on LinkedIn. As a result, I get about 15-20 LinkedIn messages every single day, and I virtually never respond. This insane influx of LinkedIn messages probably stems from the fact that everyone is ignoring email solicitations now.

Even though LinkedIn is a new platform, please don’t throw all of the various emailing best practices to the wind. In fact, they’re even more applicable if you want people to actually read your LinkedIn messages. Here are the most common reasons why I never reply to your terrible LinkedIn messages.

And, if you’re looking for an easier way to sell more, try a Proactive Relationship Management platform, like Spiro!

I have no idea who you are

This is pretty self explanatory. If I am going to respond, I need to really know who you are. If I have no idea who you are, there is no reason for me to respond to your message, and there’s nothing differentiating you from all the other random people trying to sell me things.

It’s clear your pitch sucks, even from the first few words

Building off of the first point, LinkedIn only lets you preview a few characters before you actually open the message. If you spend all of those to say “Hi Adam, how are you” and we don’t know each other, then it comes off wrong. It’s clear that you don’t really care how I am, you just want to sell me something. Make these few characters count- most people aren’t going to bother to open your full message.

The messaging is unnatural

In a lot of these messages, it seems like they’re being mass-produced (and they probably are). The wording is often a bit off, like it was automatically generated and no one bothered to proof-read the message. For example, instead of saying “your company, Spiro” some messages I get say something like “your company, Spiro Technologies, inc.” This comes off as fake, and I’m not going to reply.

Your calendar invite is a mess

Also, that preview is not the place to paste your calendar link so I can book an appointment with you. If you just copy and paste your link, it comes out a jumble of characters and words. This just looks a bit sloppy and careless, and doesn’t give your recipient the best impression. Instead, take the time to schedule a meeting a different way, or at the very least get that calendar invite to work correctly.

You don’t know when to give up

If I don’t respond to your first message, it’s not because I didn’t see it. And, if I wasn’t interested the first time, I definitely won’t be the second, or the third, and especially not the fourth time. Stop wasting your time, and unintentionally annoying everyone you message.

What You Should Be Doing

In the rare occasion that I actually do respond, it’s because someone had already engaged with something I posted on LinkedIn. If someone likes, shares, or comments something insightful on my post, I’m more likely to be interested in what they have to say. If you’re going to ask for something from someone else, then try doing something helpful for them first. For example, there are a few people who consistently like and comment on my LinkedIn posts. If they were to message me, I would likely respond because I know who they are.

Also, make sure you are keeping your message “subject line” or the first few characters super relevant, because that’s probably all someone is going to look at to decide if they should actually open your message or not.

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About the Author Adam Honig

Adam is the co-founder and CEO of Spiro Technologies. He is a natural sales leader with a mission to help salespeople make more money using artificial intelligence — or any sort of intelligence for that matter. Adam has been a founder of four companies which resulted in two triumphant IPOs and two legendary mergers. He is best known for speaking at various conferences including Dreamforce, for pioneering the ‘No Jerks’ hiring model, and for flying his drone while traveling the world.


  • Janette says:

    Thanks, I appreciate the insight.

  • Paul says:

    Great article. I would just change one thing. Never give up. That is to say put longer space between touches and to continue prospecting ofr new business. Overall enjoyed the article.

  • Larry Hodge says:

    How can you help our SALES team reach out to pursue new business from CIOs and DIRECTORs (in IT ONLY) within HOSPITALs and MANAGED HEALTHCARE INSURANCE CO’s only nationwide? Right now our SALES team mass emails and uses Linked IN slightly to reach out to CIOs/DIRECTORs each day …….

    We are a 20 year old firm dedicated to providing IT consultants to Hospitals and Managed HealthCare Insurance Companies nationwide (40 states).

    Please contact me to discuss any ideas.

    Larry Hodge, President & CEO

  • Anonymous says:

    Good, common-sense stuff. Thanks for reminding me to utilize that all too uncommon sense.

  • Paul Terry says:

    I agree, Adam. Our digital presence offers the sender a wealth of information and insight into what is important to us as potential buyers. Smart modern sellers lead with that, and find the opportunity to give, before they expect to get. LinkedIn messages should not simply be a new channel for the old message – fired off into the dark in the vain hope that we randomly hit the right issue. I don’t say this because I work at LinkedIn. I say it because I, too, am irritated by unsolicited, untargeted, and irrelevant outreach, but, conversely, and impressed when the seller gets it right.

    By the way, now that I have commented on your article you’d better reply!


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