Despite it is not in the fight for becoming the most popular social media network in the world, LinkedIn has a meaningful share of users due to its strict focus on corporate relationships and head hunting. What has made it a popular site, however, often becomes a nightmare too. Why? Because many LinkedIn users don’t use the site properly, hindering their own possibilities to succeed.
What not to do? Here a short list.
Be careless when you invite contacts
Importing your database of contacts is easy on LinkedIn, but you need to review it carefully. Those who don’t will often end up inviting people with whom they have just spoken once or twice in life to their network, or who they don’t have a friendly relationship with. Save yourself the bad moments by reviewing carefully each step of the inviting process.
Skip personalizing your contact requests
“I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.” You can do better than that when sending contact requests, and you should. If you know the person, you may want to use the contact opportunity to say hello in a friendly way. If you do not know the person, then state in your invitation why you are trying to add him or her to your contact list, so he or she can judge easily about accepting you or not.
Accept anybody as a contact
When you accept a contact request on LinkedIn, you give him access to your full profile, including your contact information (telephone number, e-mail and social networks). Are you sure you want to share that with people you have never spoken with before? At the very least ask the contact requester why he or she is adding you. It will save you more than a headache, believe me.
Spam instead of interacting
Most people can survive with just a professional profile on LinkedIn, but there is another way to interact with other users: LinkedIn groups. For some time now, however, groups have become a sad dump of spam, full of people trying to push their latest articles as if they were brilliant ways to “spread valuable knowledge with the community”. If you are going to take part of LinkedIn, please do not spam groups. There is no recovery once you have been pointed as a spammer. Reputation rarely receives a second chance.
Instead, choose the path of interacting. You will get more from LinkedIn for yourself that way. I have.