Receiving an inmail message on LinkedIn but not getting a response right away can be frustrating. Inmails are an important way to make meaningful connections and advance your career on LinkedIn, so you want to make sure you are using them effectively.
There are a few key reasons why someone may not have responded yet to your LinkedIn inmail:
They haven’t seen your message yet
The most common reason for no response is that the recipient simply hasn’t noticed your message. Unlike emails which go into an inbox that people check frequently, LinkedIn inmails can be easy to miss.
LinkedIn inmails don’t send notifications or appear prominently anywhere, so many users don’t realize they have pending messages. The inmail icon is small and easy to overlook. And if the recipient uses LinkedIn infrequently, they may not log in and see your message for some time.
Be patient and give them some time. You can also follow up with a reminder message if it has been more than a week. Just say something friendly like “Hi [name], just wanted to make sure you received my earlier message. I’d love to [connect with you about…]”
They don’t know who you are
If the recipient doesn’t recognize you, they may be hesitant to open and respond to your message. LinkedIn inmails from complete strangers can come across as spammy.
Make sure you politely introduce yourself in the message and explain where you know them from or why you wanted to reach out. Give them context so they feel comfortable engaging.
Personalizing the message by mentioning a shared connection, group, or company helps a lot too. Finding some common ground gives the recipient a reason to reply.
Your message wasn’t compelling
Inmails with vague, generic messages often get ignored. You need to quickly get to the point and make it clear why it is worth their time to respond.
Tell them specifically why you are reaching out and what you are hoping to discuss or ask. Give them a compelling reason to engage such as requesting advice, providing useful information, or proposing an interesting opportunity.
Make sure your message is short, focused, and has a clear call to action. Long-winded notes full of fluff don’t get responses. Be direct and let them know the next steps you would like them to take.
They are too busy to respond
Even if you send an excellent inmail, some recipients may be too busy or preoccupied to get back to you right away. Professionals on LinkedIn get lots of messages daily.
Executives and others in high demand roles likely have hundreds of unread inmails at any given time. So don’t take a lack of response personally. Follow up politely if you haven’t heard back after 1-2 weeks.
They don’t want to engage
In some cases, the recipient may have seen your inmail but chose not to respond. If they aren’t interested in engaging with you or don’t see any value in it, they will simply ignore the message.
There could be various reasons – your shared connection wasn’t strong enough, they don’t see an opportunity to help each other, or they are just selective about who they network with. Don’t take it personally and move on.
Avoid repeatedly messaging someone who doesn’t respond. Take the hint and focus your efforts elsewhere.
Their account settings are limiting inmails
Some LinkedIn members configure their account settings to automatically archive inmails from people outside their network. This helps cut down on unwanted outreach.
So your message may have gone straight to their archive folder unseen. Try requesting to connect with them first before sending an inmail.
Premium account holders can also screen inmails from free members. So if you don’t have a paid LinkedIn account, some of your messages won’t get through.
Tips to get better LinkedIn inmail response rates
To increase your chances of getting a reply to your inmails on LinkedIn:
- Personalize the message and make an effort to establish common ground
- Be clear who you are and how you know them in the first line
- Explain briefly but compellingly why you are reaching out
- Make it easy for them to respond with a clear call to action
- Follow up if you don’t hear back after 1-2 weeks
- Target recipients carefully – focus on warm leads who are likely to respond
- Keep the message focused and avoid lengthy notes
- Add value by sharing useful information or opportunities
- Highlight shared connections and groups to increase trust
Following up on LinkedIn inmail
If you haven’t received a response within 1-2 weeks, it is appropriate to send a follow up message.
Keep your follow up brief and casual. Remind them who you are and restate your purpose for connecting. But avoid sounding desperate or pushy.
If they engage with your follow up note, great. But if they continue not to respond, move on and don’t keep messaging repeatedly.
Here are some tips for effectively following up on LinkedIn inmail:
- Wait 1-2 weeks before following up
- Keep the follow up message short (2-3 sentences)
- Politely re-introduce yourself and your reason for connecting
- Add “Follow up” to the subject line
- Consider varying the content slightly from original message
- Remain professional and avoid sounding desperate
- Don’t follow up more than once or twice if no response
- Focus on warmer leads if you don’t hear back
Alternatives to LinkedIn inmail
If you aren’t getting responses from your inmails, consider alternative ways to reach out to prospects on LinkedIn:
- LinkedIn connections – Build up your network of 1st-degree connections which makes it easier to get responses.
- LinkedIn groups – Engage in relevant group discussions to connect with members.
- Status updates – Comment on their posts and like their updates to get noticed.
- Company pages – Follow and interact with their company page if available.
- Events and conferences – Attend industry events to connect in person.
- Warm introductions – Ask for an introduction through someone you both know.
Leveraging your existing connections and networks on LinkedIn can help you get your foot in the door when inmails are ineffective.
With some persistence and creativity, you can find ways to engage your target prospects on LinkedIn beyond just inmail outreach.
- Be patient as recipients may simply not have seen your inmail yet.
- Introduce yourself clearly and establish common ground in the message.
- Keep your request focused and explain the value in responding.
- Follow up politely if you don’t hear back after 1-2 weeks.
- Consider alternative outreach strategies if inmails are ineffective.
- Don’t take non-responses personally and remain professional.
With care and some effort, LinkedIn inmail can be a valuable way to connect with industry contacts and expand your network. Focus on personalizing your outreach, adding value for the recipient, and following up appropriately.