The quick and simple way to reply to a message on LinkedIn is to click on the ‘Reply’ button within the message thread. This will open up a text box where you can type out your response. Once done, click ‘Send’ to deliver your reply back to the sender.
Navigating to Message Threads on LinkedIn
Before you can reply to a message, you first need to access your LinkedIn inbox to view message threads. Here are the steps to get to your messages on both desktop and mobile:
1. Click on the ‘Messages’ icon on the top navigation bar. This looks like a speech bubble and is located next to the notifications bell.
2. This will open up your inbox showing all your incoming and outgoing messages.
3. To view a specific message thread, simply click on it. This will open the full back-and-forth conversation.
1. Tap on the ‘My Network’ icon on the bottom navigation bar. This looks like a little person silhouette.
2. Next, tap on the ‘Messaging’ tab at the top.
3. You will now see your message inbox. Tap on any conversation to open it.
Replying to Messages
Once you have opened up the message thread you want to reply to, responding is very straightforward:
- Review the existing conversation so you have context.
- At the bottom, locate the text box that says “Send a message to [Name]”.
- Type out your reply in this text box.
- When ready, click or tap the blue “Send” button next to the text box.
That’s all there is to it! Your response will instantly be delivered to the other person and show up in your message thread.
Tips for Thoughtful Replies
Here are some tips to keep in mind when responding to LinkedIn messages:
- Reply in a timely manner. Leaving people hanging for days is bad etiquette.
- Be personable yet professional. Add a warm greeting and sign off with your name.
- Make sure to answer any questions the person asked.
- Ask follow-up questions to continue the dialogue if needed.
- Avoid very short replies like just “thanks”. Expand on your thoughts.
- Proofread before sending to catch any typos or errors.
Customizing Your Reply Settings
LinkedIn gives you a few options to customize how you receive and reply to messages. Here are some settings to consider adjusting:
To change how and when you get notified about new LinkedIn messages:
- Go to your profile > Click the Me icon (top right) > Settings & Privacy.
- Go to Communications > Set your notifications preferences.
For example, choose whether you want email alerts for new messages or in-app notifications.
If you want to send an automatic acknowledgement when receiving new messages:
- Go to Settings & Privacy > Communications.
- Under “Auto-reply to messages”, choose your default message.
You can pick from pre-written options or create a custom auto-reply. Just know the other person will see this generic message until you manually respond.
To stay organized, use labels to categorize different message threads:
- Within a conversation, click the folder icon in the top right.
- Choose an existing label or create a new custom label.
Common labels include “Follow Up”, “Hiring Manager”, “Prospects”, etc.
Replying on Mobile vs. Desktop
The process for responding to LinkedIn messages works the same whether you are on mobile or desktop. The main differences are:
- Mobile: The interface has larger tap targets for easier typing on a small touchscreen.
- Desktop: You can multitask with other browser tabs open for reference when crafting replies.
- Mobile: Get notifications about new messages even when you aren’t logged into the app.
- Desktop: Larger display makes it easier to review long message threads at a glance.
In general, mobile is great for quick replies when you are on-the-go. But for lengthy conversations, most people prefer the desktop experience.
Here are some common issues that can come up when trying to respond to LinkedIn messages, along with troubleshooting tips:
Can’t Find the Reply Button
If you don’t see the reply text box at the bottom of a message thread, first double check you have the latest version of the LinkedIn app. If on desktop, try doing a hard browser refresh.
Also confirm the message thread is open – the reply box only shows within an active conversation.
Reply Button Unresponsive
If clicking the reply button does nothing, try closing and reopening the message thread. Make sure you don’t have the conversation open in multiple browser tabs at once.
As a last resort, log out and back into your LinkedIn account to reset things.
Reply Not Sending
If your reply doesn’t successfully send, you likely have a network connection issue. Check your internet status and try sending again.
If the problem persists, close out of LinkedIn completely and restart your device. Then log back in and re-send your reply.
Can’t Find Sent Replies
All messages you exchange back and forth will be visible in the same conversation thread. So if you don’t see your sent reply, open the message thread it was intended for.
However, if you accidentally sent it as a new message instead of a reply, you’ll have to search your Sent folder.
Responding to messages is one of the most useful ways to connect with your network on LinkedIn. By taking the time to thoughtfully reply, you can build stronger professional relationships, advance your career, and open up new opportunities.
With the steps provided, you should now feel comfortable with navigating your LinkedIn inbox and crafting messages. Don’t be afraid to personalize your responses and let your personality shine through.
So next time you get a message on LinkedIn, put these tips into action to continue the dialogue. Keep the conversation going and see where it leads!