How NOT to use LinkedIn

Too pushy for social networks (Image hahatango via Flickr)I seem to be going through a negative or cautionary phase this week.

It all came about because somebody I connected with on this business networking site sent me a spam-like message within 24 hours of being ‘let in’ to my domain.

This is NOT how you behave in any kind of networking environment unless you are going to a specifically-created, speed-networking event.

Here is the email and here are some alternative approaches.

High return super is possible

Anthony Cxxxxx Owner, Dedicated Dxxxxxxxxx

To: Steve Davis

Date: October 11, 2011

Dear Steve,

I would like to take this opportunity to introduce the investment opportunity Dedicated Dxxxxxxx can offer you.

We are currently seeking investors to invest their super in our current and upcoming projects. Investors are able to invest their super and receive our guaranteed 20%p.a. return.

I know this return seems too good to be true and how can it be guaranteed? We value the commitment of our investors and think they deserve to get a great return. Our investor guarantees are achievable through documents created by our legal team, your money is protected at all times.

We have recently had two additional investors join us; one has their investment secured with our Sxxxxx project and the other with our Pxxxxxx project.

Would this be something that would interest you? If so, we can send you an information pack.

I look forward to your thoughts

Kind Regards

Anthony Cxxxxx

Director-Dedicated Dxxxxxxxx

Is that really how you approach someone you are meeting for the first time?

I would argue this approach is the one you take when you view all other living beings as ciphers or walking wallets, where your only interest is to churn through them as quickly as you can and reap what you can while the sun shines.

Alternatively, it is like wanting to hop into bed within seconds of the first date!!

What could Anthony have done instead?

Firstly, he could have taken the time to watch what material I was sharing on LinkedIn (my blogs feed there) and respond with some genuine ideas/suggestions from his portfolio if ever that topic was covered by me.

Or, he could have just genuinely shared with me some thoughts about WHY he decided to ask to be connected. In fact, I am interested in that myself. A conversation might well have flowed and he would have edged himself to being top of mind, or at least on my radar, whenever investment needs arose for me.

There is no trick here.

The golden rule is simply to act like you would at a party, bbq, or other social gathering face-to-face. If you listen to others first for conversational cues AND you are prepared to share thoughts and offer insights that help OTHERS, your turn will come.

I have shared this with Anthony before he gets deleted from my LinkedIn profile which is potentially exposing him to 3.3 million other professionals through my network.

By the way, as long as you’re not going to do an ‘Anthony’ on me, I would love to connect with you through my Steve Davis profile on LinkedIn.

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