The short answer is no, you cannot directly edit a message once it has been sent on LinkedIn. However, there are a few workarounds that allow you to modify or update the content of a message after sending it.
LinkedIn does not have an native “edit message” feature like other social media platforms such as Facebook. This is likely due to LinkedIn’s positioning as a professional networking site, where message content is treated more formally. Editing sent messages could lead to confusing conversations or miscommunications in sensitive business contexts.
Still, there may be times when you need to revise a message that has already been sent for typos, incorrect information, or if you simply want to add/remove certain details. Here are some tips on how to get around LinkedIn’s no editing policy:
Recall and Replace the Message
Within a few seconds of sending a message, you will see an option to “Recall this message.” Click on it immediately and you can effectively delete the message before the recipient sees it.
You can then compose a new message with your edits and resend it. Thisrecall window is very brief though, so you have to act fast. It’s easy to miss if you navigate away right after sending.
Send a Follow Up Message
If you are unable to recall the original message in time, simply send a follow up message acknowledging the error or omission in your previous message. You can provide the correct information or clarify any confusion caused.
Make it clear you are following up on the specifics of your last message, so the recipient isn’t confused why you are randomly providing additional details unprompted. You can apologize for the mistake and having to send a correction.
Delete the Message Then Send Again
Rather than leaving the inaccurate message up and trying to clarify after the fact, you can delete the entire message from both your and the recipient’s inbox and then resend it edited properly.
On desktop, hover over the sent message and click the down arrow, then choose “Delete.” On mobile, tap and hold the message, choose “Delete.” This will remove the message for both parties. You can then compose a new draft with your fixes and send it off.
Just be aware the recipient may see the gap in your message thread where a deleted message would have been. But the content will be removed.
Edit Your Draft Before Sending
To avoid having to edit or delete messages entirely, take advantage of LinkedIn’s draft feature when composing messages.
Rather than sending a message right after typing it out, click the “Save as draft” icon instead. You can then navigate away and come back anytime to further modify the message draft before sending.
Use this draft feature to carefully review and perfect any important messages before officially sending them to your connections. You’ll have plenty of time to make changes.
Use Your Computer for Composing Long Messages
Typing long, detailed messages on mobile can lead to more mistakes that require editing. Whenever possible, draft and send messages on LinkedIn’s desktop site instead.
The larger screen and physical keyboard make composing messages much easier. You’ll have better visibility and can proofread content more effectively to catch errors.
Switch to desktop LinkedIn when you need to send lengthy or intricate messages requiring perfection. The improved composing experience will reduce having to edit.
Install a LinkedIn Auto-Correct Plugin
Spelling mistakes and typos can often prompt edits and clarification messages. Plugins like Grammarly can help cut down these types of errors when composing LinkedIn messages.
By auto-correcting spelling and grammar in real time as you type, you’ll send more polished messages from the start. Install Grammarly or other writing enhancement tools for your browser to perfect messages pre-send.
Use Keyboard Shortcuts to Navigate and Edit
LinkedIn has some useful keyboard shortcuts that allow quick access to messaging functions, as well as easier navigation that can aid editing.
Press “N” from your LinkedIn feed to jump right into composing a new message to a connection. Use CTRL+S to save a message draft quickly if you need step away.
Keyboard shortcuts for copying/pasting, cursor movement, selecting text, etc can speed up proofreading or making changes before sending.
Quote Previous Messages for Context
When clarifying points made in a previous message, use LinkedIn’s quoting feature to include relevant snippets to provide context around your follow up edits for the recipient.
Simply highlight a portion of a previous message and click the quote icon to add it to your new message with attribution. This keeps conversations coherent even with multiple clarifying messages.
Avoid Need for Editing Altogether
Ultimately, the best way to handle the inability to edit LinkedIn messages is to avoid having to do so entirely. Here are some tips to send error-free messages from the first try:
- Double check for spelling and grammar issues before hitting send.
- Read the entire message out loud to catch awkward phrasing.
- Wait a few minutes then re-read your message before sending.
- Ask someone else to proofread the message if it’s really important.
- Don’t rush – take the time to get the messaging right.
Following careful composition practices will minimize obvious errors needing correction down the line. Remember, messages on a platform like LinkedIn can have real professional consequences, so put in the effort to craft good ones up front.
Use Another Communication Method
For very long, complex communications that may require significant editing and wordsmithing, use an alternate communication method besides LinkedIn messaging.
Have a live phone or video conversation to discuss details fluidly. Collaborate on a shared Google Doc or Slack thread if you need to perfect something written together iteratively.
Know when it’s better to move sensitive discussions off of LinkedIn messaging due to its difficulty in editing and focus on more formal business communications.
While LinkedIn does not allow directly editing already sent messages, you do have options to either recall and replace, follow up with clarification, or delete and resend messages with corrections when needed.
Practice good writing habits up front when composing LinkedIn messages, and utilize tools like desktop composing, drafts, and plugins to optimize the process. Move to other communication platforms when extensive back and forth editing is required.
With the proper diligence and workarounds, you can maintain effective communications even without a native editing feature on LinkedIn messaging.