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You know those times that you receive a LinkedIn request and look at the profile wondering if you should Link In with this person that you don’t really know? Maybe you pause for a minute….it looks like you have some connections in common and this person seems relevant to your organization.  After all, many times you link in with someone you don’t really know in your industry, but it gives you an opportunity to get to know their business, through updates and maybe messages. So, you hesitate, but ultimately accept the request.

You quickly regret this request within hours, because immediately, this person starts sending you LinkedIn SPAM advertisements.

spam (2)Example (I just received this one a few days ago):

Thanks for connecting … check out the book – may help – for the price of a grande non-fat latte you & your team get 20 years of experience selling more… I’d really appreciate your feedback … Thank You Please visit my website”

Not only do I instantly wish I had not connected with this person, but it annoys me that this person didn’t even take time to personalize the message and gear it towards me. It would take a very tiny amount of research to know that I am not with an organization that would benefit from this.

I am a big fan of marketing, promotion and finding ways to creatively market services to others. I am almost never a fan of an unsolicited advertisement. Especially since there was absolutely nothing for me to gain from the conversation. Even if this person had made an attempt to understand what I do and make it clear in the message that because I do x, y and z, it would benefit me to learn a few things from this book such as: a, b and c.  Even that would be better.

I wanted to write this post to make it clear that this type of solicitation almost never works. It not only damages your LinkedIn cred, but it also will never result in success. If it’s too easy to do, don’t do it. Instead, take some time to really evaluate your prospective clients and figure out how you can add value to them. Make it worth their while to read what you’ve got to say! Make them GLAD they added you to their LinkedIn network!!

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