I got the following InMail message recently:


I don't know this person and I wasn't aware she viewed my profile (she may have set her preferences to view others' profiles anonymously).

She thought she was offering up a great opportunity, but this is how I read the message:


Was this person wrong to reach out to me? No. I've worked remotely for the last seven years and during that time I've used a variety of video conferencing apps. But her approach was too centered around her company, and not me.

If I was sitting at this person's keyboard, this is the InMail I would have sent instead:

Hi Michael,

I was surfing LinkedIn and came across your profile. Looks like we both belong to [group name] on LinkedIn. What caught my eye was that you listed experience with video conferencing platforms. Based on your current role, it appears you may still be using video and/or video conferencing as part of a larger strategy to help your clients grow their businesses. Do you have anyone in your network that may appreciate this article on "hosted" video conferencing? [article link].

All of the information referenced in this amended InMail can be ascertained from my profile. The article would need to be a very "top of the funnel" post to get the reader interested in learning more. Many people would click the link out of sheer curiosity. I would.

Then, if the article resonated with me, the rep could ask for my information by presenting an ebook or another resource accessed via a lead generation form. If the content was really good, I would probably share it with a few colleagues.

Maybe I'd buy their stuff, maybe I wouldn't, but I'm just one potential sale. Wouldn't it be great to tap into my 362,350 second degree connections? If this rep had understood the sales laws of attraction, I might have researched hosted video web conferencing software instead of writing this post.

Editor's note: This post previously appeared on LinkedIn, and is republished here with permission.

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Originally published Mar 18, 2015 7:00:00 AM, updated October 12 2017


Social Selling on LinkedIn