Recruiting through LinkedIn can be an effective way to source qualified candidates. However, it’s important to craft the right kind of outreach message to get a response. Here are some tips for writing effective LinkedIn messages to potential job candidates.
Personalize the Message
A generic outreach message is unlikely to get a response. Take the time to personalize each message based on the candidate’s profile and experience. Mention specifics like:
- Their current job title and company
- A previous position listed on their profile
- A skill, certification, or educational background that’s relevant
- Any shared connections you have in common
- A post they shared or article they published
Showing that you’ve taken the time to review their profile makes a big difference compared to a generic message. It shows your interest in them specifically.
Keep it Concise
LinkedIn messages have limited real estate. Get to the point quickly and avoid large blocks of text. Here are some tips for keeping it concise:
- Get to the opportunity quickly – what role are you reaching out about?
- Summarize the key requirements and excite them about the role in 2-3 sentences.
- Use paragraph breaks and bullet points instead of long paragraphs.
- Avoid over-explaining the company or opportunity.
- Save additional details for later conversations.
You want them to quickly grasp that you have a relevant opportunity to discuss. Avoid overwhelming them with lots of text right off the bat.
Sell the Value
Rather than generically listing responsibilities, highlight the interesting aspects of the role that would excite the right candidate. Mention things like:
- The ability to make an impact on the business
- Exposure to new technologies
- Opportunities for advancement
- Great team culture
- Flexible work arrangements
Paint an attractive picture of what they could accomplish in the role and why it would be interesting for them based on their background and skills.
Let them know if there is a hiring deadline or if you’re in the process of interviewing other applicants. This can motivate them to prioritize responding to you more quickly. Just be careful not to come across as too pushy.
Ask for a Conversation
Don’t ask for too much in your initial outreach. Request a quick phone call or video chat to discuss the role and their background. This gets the conversation started without asking for too much of their time upfront.
Once you have the conversation, you can determine mutual interest and dig deeper into details.
Close with Next Steps
End your message by summarizing next steps, like scheduling a call or meeting. Give 2-3 time slots that work for you and ask them to let you know what works for them.
Giving options makes it easy for them to respond with their availability. Follow up if you don’t hear back within a few days.
With such a short message, any typos or errors will stand out. Carefully proofread each message before sending:
- Check for spelling and grammar errors.
- Read it aloud to catch awkward phrasing.
- Double check their name and other personalization details.
Sloppy mistakes can leave a bad first impression. Take the time to get the details right.
Sample LinkedIn Outreach Message
Here is an example LinkedIn message template you can use and customize:
Hi [First Name],
I came across your LinkedIn profile and thought you would be a great fit for a [job title] role I’m currently hiring for at [Company].
Based on your background as a [current job title] at [current company] and your experience with [relevant skill/qualification], you seem like a strong fit for the position:
– Opportunity to [summary of interesting aspects of role]
– Work on [describe projects/technology]
– [Other selling points]
I’d love to schedule a quick call to discuss the role and your background in more detail. Are you available on [date] at [time] or [date] at [time]?
Looking forward to connecting!
[Your Title] at [Company]
Customize this template with details from the candidate’s profile and specifics on the role. Keep it brief while highlighting the opportunity and your shared connections.
Do’s and Don’ts
Here are a few key do’s and don’ts to keep in mind:
- Personalize each message
- Keep the message brief
- Highlight urgency if applicable
- Proofread carefully
- Use a generic template
- Overwhelm with text
- Exaggerate or mislead about the role
- Push too hard for a response
Not everyone will respond to your initial outreach. If you haven’t heard back after 3-5 days, consider sending a follow up message saying:
I wanted to follow up on the [job title] role I recently reached out to you about. I know you must be busy, but I’m excited about the potential opportunity based on your background in [relevant experience].
Let me know if you would be open to jumping on a quick call to discuss. I have availability tomorrow at [date/time] and [date/time] – let me know if either works for you!
One follow up is usually appropriate. If they don’t respond after that, it’s best to move on.
Track Your Outreach
When recruiting at scale, use a spreadsheet to track your outreach efforts:
- Candidate name and LinkedIn profile
- Date of initial message
- Any response/notes
- Date of follow up (if needed)
This will help you stay organized and follow up at the right times. Prioritize candidates who have responded or expressed interest.
Evaluate Your Results
Analyze your outreach efforts to determine:
- Response rate
- Candidates engaged versus unresponsive
- Candidates who advanced to interviews/offers
- Average time from outreach to hire
Look for any patterns in who responds and ultimately gets hired. This can help you refine your outreach approach to target the most effective sources and messages.
Reaching out directly to potential candidates on LinkedIn can enable you to source great talent. With the right approach, you can get qualified candidates excited about job opportunities. Keep these best practices in mind when crafting your outreach messages:
- Personalize each message to the candidate’s background
- Be concise and get to the opportunity quickly
- Highlight the exciting aspects of the role
- Politely follow up if needed
- Track results and iterate on what works
With a smart sourcing strategy on LinkedIn, you can connect with your next great hire.