Posted on June 27, 2020

How to Build Your LinkedIn Network:

Tips for Making Meaningful Connections

Networking on LinkedInHave you seen this?

“I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.” 

This is the default message that is sent to a prospective connection when you click on the ‘connect’ button for ‘people you may know’ served to you throughout LinkedIn. It’s often the fast track to having your request ignored; using this default connection message is one of the biggest mistakes you can make when you’re looking to network on LinkedIn.

People usually dismiss these requests because you didn’t take the time to explain why you want to connect with them.

Instead, you should go to the person’s full profile page and then hit the ‘connect’ button right under their profile picture. You see, the secret to getting professionals to connect with you on LinkedIn is your introduction. You must customize each connection request by telling them why you’d like to connect.

These 300 characters can have a big impact: If you’re connecting with someone you know well, it’s a great opportunity to say something positive and strengthen the relationship. If you’re connecting with someone you know casually, it’s a great opportunity to remind them how you met. Finally, if you’re connecting with someone you don’t know at all, it’s your only opportunity to convince them to accept your request and start a relationship.

Show you're willing to put in the time and effort to make a proper introduction; this goes a long way in networking.

Currently, LinkedIn does not allow the customization of invitations sent from the People You May Know feature in the mobile app. It’s best to save the request until you can access your computer.

If the recipient of your message responds to your custom message, a new message thread will appear in your Inbox. Keep in mind that a response can be sent without them accepting your invitation.

To add a message to a LinkedIn invitation to connect:

  1. Visit the member's profile page and click ‘Connect.’
  2. Click on ‘Add a note.’
  3. Add your message in the text field.
  4. Click ‘Send invitation’.

Here are some samples to get you started:

Hey Marta,
I’m glad Amber introduced us. Next time we run into each other, you’ll have to tell me more about what you do for ABC Company - I’ve been looking to transition into that industry.
Take care,

Dear Mark,
It was great speaking to you at the ABC User Conference in Philadelphia last month. The work you’re doing with startups sounds fascinating! Let’s connect  - I’d really like to hear about updates on your work.
Thank you,

 Dear Ms. Smith,
As a fellow marketer, I’ve been following your work for ABC & Associates. I loved your recent campaign in The Gazette  - the technology component was really informative. If you’re ever in the Denver area, I’d love to hear more about how you started working in the field.
Thank you,
Jane Doe

Dear Rob,
I’m also in the Global Media group here on LinkedIn, and I’ve really enjoyed reading your posts. The piece you shared last week about the future of data journalism was quite thought-provoking. I’d love to keep in touch and learn more about your work.

Dear Sam,
I found your profile on the NYC Recruiters page and I’d like to discuss possibly working together. I’d love to chat about whether my background is a fit for any of your openings; I’m also happy to connect you to other professionals in my field.
I look forward to hearing from you,
Lisa Walters

Dear Mr. Johnson,
 This morning I was on the MSU Alumni Group and noticed your profile. I was hoping we can connect so I can learn more about your career in the political field. I’m relocating and am looking to work as a news correspondent in the DC area. Any advice would be helpful and appreciated.
Thank you,
Jim Smith

Hi Stephanie,
I'm reaching out because you came up in my "People you may know" feed.  I saw we both worked at ABC Corp. several years apart, and I'm looking to transition back into that industry. I'd love to ask you a few questions about how things have changed in our field.
John Smith