The best way to message someone on LinkedIn to connect is to send them a personalized connection request that explains who you are, why you’d like to connect, and how connecting could benefit both of you. Keep the message brief but thoughtful.
Decide if Messaging is the Right Approach
Before messaging someone to connect, first consider if it’s appropriate. Only message people you have an existing relationship with or a good reason to connect with. Avoid messaging strangers or contacts too far removed from your network. Also respect if someone hasn’t responded to earlier connection requests.
Craft a Personalized Message
A generic connection request is easy to ignore. Take the time to write a unique message explaining who you are, where you know the person from, and why you want to connect. Refer to shared connections, experiences, or interests you have in common. The more personalized the request, the better.
Keep the Message Brief
Get right to the point in your message. Introduce yourself, state your purpose for connecting, and include a call to action like “I’d love to add you to my professional network.” Avoid long-winded explanations. You want the key details to be immediately clear.
Suggest a Benefit of Connecting
Articulate how connecting could benefit both parties. Maybe you are looking to build your network in a shared industry or gain insights into a certain role. Explain how the other person can provide value to you, and when appropriate, what value you might be able to offer them.
Use the Standard Connection Request
When messaging existing contacts, use the standard connection request option. This allows you to include a customized message. When trying to message new contacts, you may need to send an InMail if you’re not connected through shared groups or don’t have their email address.
Add a Personal Touch
Look for ways to make your request feel more personal. Reference recent news involving the person or company, ask how a recent project went, or wish them well on a upcoming event you noticed. This shows you took time to view their profile before connecting.
Follow Up if Needed
If you don’t receive a response within a week or two, consider a polite follow up message. Ask if they received your earlier request and reiterate why you’d like to connect. But don’t overdo it if they never respond.
Connect With Common Interests
Look at the person’s profile for shared interests, experiences, groups, or affiliations you could reference. Connecting over common ground makes the request more natural and appealing.
Avoid Overly Salesy Language
Unless you have an existing sales relationship, avoid sounding too promotional. Focus the message on relationship-building over selling. Pushy connection requests tend to backfire.
Pay attention to when you send the request. Connecting on weekends or late at night can seem intrusive. Try to reach out during typical business hours when they’re likely active on LinkedIn.
Typos or grammatical errors give a sloppy impression. Always proofread your connection message before sending. A perfectly crafted message can be ignored if it looks unprofessional.
Make the First Move
Don’t wait for others to connect with you. Take the initiative to thoughtfully message contacts you’d like to build a relationship with. Just be sure it’s someone appropriate to connect with.
Customize Invitation Settings
Under account settings, customize your LinkedIn invitation preferences. You can control whether you’re open to invites from anyone or just people who know your email address or appear in your “People You May Know” section.
Add a Personal Note
When accepting connection invitations, take a moment to add a short personal note. This helps transform a standard LinkedIn request into a more meaningful connection.
Connect First on Social Media
If comfortable, connect with the person first on Twitter, Facebook, or other social networks. Then mentioning you’re already connected on those channels can encourage them to connect on LinkedIn too.
Always follow-up with a thank you message when someone accepts your invitation. This helps start the relationship off on a gracious note.
- Craft a thoughtful, personalized request explaining who you are and why you want to connect.
- Keep the message brief and communicate a mutual benefit of connecting.
- Reference common ground and interests based on their profile.
- Avoid salesy language and always proofread before sending.
- Follow up if needed, but don’t be pushy if they don’t respond.
Connecting with the right people on LinkedIn in a respectful way allows you to steadily build an engaging professional network. With a personalized message explaining your purpose and rationale, you can pique someone’s interest in connecting and start developing a meaningful relationship.