I check my LinkedIn account at least once a day. I like to review the discussions in the groups I follow, review the updates from my connections, and check my notifications, messages, and invitations. I was surprised to see I had a message yesterday from a connection with the subject “Hey girlie!!” The message continued with updates ALL IN CAPS, shortcuts-how r u?, and lots of exclamation points!!! This was definitely not the format I send LinkedIn messages or the format I usually receive LinkedIn messages. It is important to remember LinkedIn is a professional networking site, and you always want to be professional when sending messages, responding to discussions, and sending LinkedIn invitations. Take some time to review your spelling and grammar, tone, and format before responding or reaching out-is it professional? You don’t want to miss out on information, a connection, or an opportunity because of an informal or unprofessional message.
When sending a connection request, do not just use the standard “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn” message. Take some time to write a meaningful request. Include a greeting, an introduction and/or a little bit about yourself, consideration for connecting, thanks, and your name.
Here’s an example of a request I sent recently after meeting someone at a conference:
I really enjoyed your presentation at the NCDA conference last week. Thank you for taking the time to speak with me afterwards and answer my additional questions on the market data. It’s always nice to meet a fellow Michigander too! I hope we will be able to stay connected on LinkedIn.
If you are still new to LinkedIn or a seasoned pro, check out this great article from HubSpot-The Ultimate Cheat Sheet for Mastering LinkedIn for some tips and tricks in using LinkedIn.
Be present and professional on LinkedIn. And don’t start messages to connections with “hey girlie!!”