The Etiquette of Connecting via LinkedIn

So, you’ve crafted the perfect profile in LinkedIn. You photo is super professional, and your credentials and history are plotted out in an easy to read manner. You are ready to start connecting with all the millions of LinkedIn users and you are ready to make some money!

You search for those you know well first. Click and Connect. BOOM! 100 connections sorted!

You start to think about those that you don’t know so well but think would be a good idea to be connected to. So, you go searching. Do you just click on that CONNECT button, thinking that they will accept because you are after all a professional, or do you formulate a plan of action?

A plan? You ask. Yes, a plan, a strategy, a modus operandi.

There is most definitely a certain etiquette when it comes to connecting on LinkedIn. As posted before, LinkedIn is not Facebook, and should be handled with very different gloves.


Ask yourself, firstly, WHY you want to connect to that person. What do you want to achieve by being a LinkedIn connection with that particular person? If you can answer that WHY confidently, then that should be your opening line when you add that little message in before sending off your request to connect.

A message?

Yes, you have the option, before allowing LinkedIn to send the request to the unsuspecting user, to add in a personal message.

But, what should you say in that message exactly?

Your WHY should answer that. For example, if the reason you want to be connected to John Smith (yes, unimaginative, I know!) is because he runs an Events Management company, and you often need to host events, then that will be where you would start.

“Good Day John, I would very much like to connect with you so that we can discuss possible event ideas for my company.”

Okay, that was an easy one. Let’s try a harder WHY.

Joe Soap (okay, a little more sass there, but still boring!) could be a potential client, as he has a very large investment portfolio, which you would love to manage.

“Good Day Joe, I have come across your profile and am very fascinated by your wide selection of investment portfolios. As, I manage a wide range of diverse portfolios currently, and with great success, I thought it would be a good idea for us to have a conversation. Please connect with me via LinkedIn and let’s see how we can get together sometime.”

Yes, quite a bit “pushy” and direct, but hey, this is a professional platform aimed at connecting business people with the aim of doing business with one another in some manner or another.

If you are still not sure about this whole etiquette thing around LinkedIn, pop me a mail or message, and we can chat about a strategy for your business or at least how to word that message.