The Wrong Way to Use LinkedIn

The Wrong Way to Use LinkedIn

There is a right way and a wrong way to use LinkedIn. Actually, there are a lot of right ways and a lot of wrong ways, but today I’m going to talk about one particular wrong way to use LinkedIn.

The Wrong Way to use LinkedIn

There are two reasons to be on LinkedIn. First, because it’s another social media site and everyone says you need to be there. Second, because you see the benefits of networking and you want to use the site to improve your business or career. Ultimately, the second reason is what it’s all about.

Clearly, the first group is using LinkedIn wrong, but that’s not what I want to talk about. It’s the second group, those who want to find new opportunity, that this post is directed to. See if you can tell why this is the wrong way to use LinkedIn for generating business.

Not long ago, I had a message on the answering machine of my business phone. The person who left the message said they found me on LinkedIn and wanted to discuss some of the services my business offers. I was asked to call back. I called the next day. They didn’t know who I was until I gave them my website URL and they looked it up in some kind of database. First warning flag goes up. You called me, asked me to call back, and you don’t know who I am?

It turns out, they had no interest in hiring me for anything. Instead, they wanted to sell me some sort of SEO dashboard software. (Second warning flag goes up.) Now, while I do some SEO optimization and online presence research, I already have all the tools I need, and they do the job very well. I don’t need to spend money on capability I already have, and I said as much. There was (and still is) some persistence on their part, but I plan to simply ignore them.

The point is this: LinkedIn is a great tool for finding business opportunities through networking. It’s a great tool for finding out who is who at a corporation. It’s a great took for highlighting your abilities.

It is not intended as a list of cold call candidates. That is the wrong way to use LinkedIn. Really wrong. It’s like the guy who goes to an in person networking event, hands out business cards and plastic bags full of promotional crap, then leaves after the bags are gone. Nobody wants to talk to that guy. You shouldn’t strive to be that guy.

I’m upset at the company that called me for several reasons. I used my dime to call them for what I had been led to believe was a potential client only to have the tables turned on me. I got pressure sales tactics in my face. I had a company out of India calling through a domestic phone number.

It’s not ethical and it goes against everything social media for business is all about.

As I said the first time, sorry, not interested.

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