LinkedIn Lead Generation Expert? Pwah!

By Nigel Cliffe

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This week I had a rant on LinkedIn.

The rant centred on the fact that most people who purport to be “LinkedIn lead generation experts” suck!

As bold of a claim as that may be, the rant I had was inspired by my being sick and tired of receiving barrages of Connection Requests from these so-called “LinkedIn lead generation experts.”

I have shared a list before that I use to decide if someone will NOT become a Connection of mine. But here’s how I spot a spammy type LinkedIn lead generation expert from a mile away…

1) The Connection Request They Send Is Often Automated

Their Connection message has an automated ‘copy and paste’ feel to it. It’s as if they haven’t given a single thought to me personally and what value we can bring to each other’s lives. I am just a number, a faceless person for them to churn out Connection requests to in the hope that they get someone who hits ‘accept’. That’s why it always pays to Personalise a Connection Request.

For more information on why I detest Automating LinkedIn activity, such as automatically sending Connection requests and automating Profile Views, click here.

2) They Have a Few Hundred Connections

Profiles with countless Connections are often suspicious as they view Connections as a numbers game, or they could have ‘purchased’ LinkedIn Connections.

In my view, Connections should only be made with people if you can add value to their life in some way or vice versa. Your priority should be in the quality and relevance of your network, not superficially impressive high numbers.

3) Their Profile Has No Background Image

Again, this is a sign of a LinkedIn account having been quickly set up with little thought to really getting to know other people. Leaving a crucial and easily noticeable element of your Profile blank indicates you have something to hide or nothing to show; you have no personality. You are just after a quick result.

4) They Have a Dismally Poor Abut Section

How am I expected to know if we will be a good ‘fit’ for each other and offer each other good value if I don’t know anything about them? If their LinkedIn About section seems generic and copied from another source, that’s also an instant turn-off.

After all, you wouldn’t approach a stranger and expect to have a close relationship if they knew nothing about you, would you?!

5) They Have 6 Recommendations That Have Been Given in the Last Two Days…Strange Huh?!

This is a highly unlikely scenario and points to a potentially fake or spammy Profile. Giving Recommendations and receiving them adds credibility and authenticity to your LinkedIn Profile and wider brand. They help build that initial layer of trust between you and a potential client. You’d expect them to be given over a period of time as you progress in your career or business.

I’d aim to have at least 3 Recommendations on your Profile.

6) They Haven’t Personalised Their LinkedIn URL

Personalising your LinkedIn URL is quick and simple once you know how. It shows you have taken the time to make your Profile unique and look professional. This gives a good impression and suggests you will be just as respectful and professional when engaging with new Connections – offering the value that only you can offer rather than bombarding them with salesy messages or far-fetched promises to get them hundreds of leads.

7) Their Last LinkedIn Post Was Over a Year Ago

Whenever I’m lucky enough to receive a new Connection Request, I ALWAYS view their Profile. I do this because:

  • Doing so leaves a ‘digital footprint’ as they will get a notification that I have shown interest and ‘checked them out’ by viewing their Profile (providing I’m not in anonymous mode within my LinkedIn Settings).
  • I can see who they are, where they are based, what they do and what they are good at. I can see if they are a good fit for me or I for them by reading their About Section, seeing what Skills they list on their Profile and what Recommendations they have. After all, you wouldn’t start working with someone you didn’t know, would you?!
  • I can find out who they are Connected to (if they have their settings set so their Connections are visible) and see if we have any mutual Connections.
  • I can see if they are active on LinkedIn by scrolling down to their ‘Activity’ section and then clicking ‘See all’ and viewing the ‘Posts’ tab. How often do they post? As I said above, I only think we should Connect if I think I can add value to their life, or they can do the same for me. They can’t do that if they never post original content!

8) They Haven’t Viewed My Profile

If they haven’t taken the time to View my Profile and see what I’m about, they aren’t interested in building a valuable relationship with me.

Note: If you’re on the free version of LinkedIn you can only see the last 5 people who Viewed your Profile, so it’s worth checking who’s paid your Profile a visit every day. You can do this by scrolling to the ‘Your Dashboard’ section on your Profile and clicking on the blue number above the ‘Who viewed your Profile’ label.

With LinkedIn Premium you can access a full list of who’s Viewed your Profile in the last 90 days.

The (negative) list goes on and on…

And sadly, each supposed LinkedIn lead generation expert I seem to get a Connection request from seems to be Connected to 20 of my existing Connections who must have fallen for their false promises.

People like me who do this (LinkedIn Training and Consultancy) properly for a living have to differentiate ourselves from the barrage of people who claim to be a so-called LinkedIn lead generation expert and who bring a lack of trust into our line of work.

LinkedIn Lead Generation is a fine art that takes time, patience and a strategy. Relationships are earned, not bought. Trust is everything.

I am proud of my quick wins, but I promise nobody nothing unless they stick to a plan and are consistent for many months. Then, and only then, do I guarantee them success.

Thanks for reading the explanation of my rant, I feel much better now!

Click here to find out what to do if you receive a really suspicious LinkedIn Connection request.

Otherwise, I ask that you take care when choosing to accept a Connection Request and wish you prosperous networking and relationship building!

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