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Making the right connections on LinkedIn is one of the keys to success. In the past I've written about who you should connect with, why you should connect with them, and how to best find great connections on LinkedIn. You can find links to those articles below.

But this week I want to reinforce something your mom taught you--writing thank-you notes.

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It's time to dust off that time-proven technique, and not just because it's good etiquette but because it's good business too.


When to send a thank-you note

Some people are adding dozens of people to their LinkedIn network each week, and sending a personal note to each person may not be possible. But, at the very least, I suggest sending a thank-you note when:

1.  You accept an inbound connection request from someone who meets one of your most important strategic connection criteria

2.  Someone accepts your outbound connection request

You have their attention; so don't miss this opportunity to send them a note. It may encourage them to give you a call or consider you next time they need whatever product or service you're offering.


They invited you to join their network

In this case your response can be somewhat standard, but it may be advantageous to mention something the person said in his/her invitation to you.

Here's what I typically say:

Hi (insert first name):

Thanks for the invitation to connect, and welcome to my network. 

I look forward to helping you with your LinkedIn strategy and tactics. To get started, let me know if you would like to begin receiving my free weekly email of LinkedIn strategies and tips. 

Take care. 

Wayne 


You invited them to join your network

In this case the note should be totally customized, depending on why you extended the invitation in the first place.

Say "thanks" and mention a next step the person could take. Here are a few easy ways to spark engagement:
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  • Include a link to download a helpful resource or an archived or upcoming webinar
  • Suggest a time for a phone call or meeting
  • Share a reason to check out a section of your website

You get the idea.

Does this take extra time? You bet. Will it be worth the effort? Without question. I add twenty to thirty people to my mailing list each week by following these steps--and some of them have become clients.

LinkedIn is so much more than a social media site you should check occasionally. It's a powerful tool to help you grow your business. And if you can make money AND make your mom proud, I say go for it!

For more ways to improve your LinkedIn network, check out these articles:

The LinkedIn Connection Conundrum: Who Should Be in Your Network

Do You Need a LinkedIn Connections Fill-up?

LinkedIn People Searching: Your Ticket to Improved ROI