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LINKEDIN - THE NEW SPAM SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORM

Updated: Oct 27, 2022


Spamming on LinkedIn

With Spam Legislation to guard against receiving spam in your email, spammers have now taken to LinkedIn.


I originally joined LinkedIn Groups to share and learn valuable information on topics of interest. Instead, I hear from every "CON"sultant and salesperson sending me spam to my inbox about products and services that have nothing to do with the Group. This statement is probably an odd comment coming from someone that is a consultant. I continue to be infuriated by those that do this that give the rest of us a bad name. Those spamming assume that because you are in a Group with them on LinkedIn, they can now send thousands of emails through LinkedIn Inbox instead of your email. By now, they would have figured out there are more sustainable ways to gain clients. Most of the emails are targeted at those who would not likely be prospective clients. They are sent out instead of hoping one might land on a relevant prospect. I get emails from those trying to sell me the services we provide, which can be seen in my profile.


Classic Situations

Last month, I received five emails from HR consultants from numerous countries. They said they had a special offer or software platform to help me get a job and improve my resume/CV, when my profile. They have not yet looked at my profile to see that I am self-employed and have been for 12 years, so my need for a resume or job is not likely.


The best one was a message from a Chicago radio personality who was providing an online scam a few years back. He would tell you that you were perfect for his show and would book an appointment with you. I told him that I was in Canada and only sold to Canadians - he still proceeded to try to book the appointment. I played along as I suspected something funny. Come to find out what, he fails to tell you that he is picking you for his show as long as you pay him money to a few thousand. This point is only mentioned when you talk to his producer and finally find out this is a scam and a money grab.


I was used to getting emails like this for years until you could set up spam blockers in email; now, they have moved to Social Media.

Spamming at the Connection Level

I am still determining what has changed in the last couple of years. There seems to be an influx of people who like to click the CONNECT button on LinkedIn for every profile to add anyone as a connection. They do so whether there is a relevant reason to connect in the first place and they never send a message; just hit CONNECT. I value my own contacts and their privacy, so I will only connect with someone where there is some intrinsic value to both parties; otherwise - why would you connect?


Would you provide total strangers with your information and your contact list if it was not on a Social Media Platform? The answer is probably not. If someone just clicks the Connect button and cannot take 30 seconds to add a note of why they want to connect, they will get ignored. The majority of those that just hit Connect- you will never hear from again, which tells you they are just looking to connect with anyone.


Most likely, the real reason they connected with you is to send unsolicited messages, go through your contact list, or contact your connections and eventually add them to their list. Some believe they should connect to any live body. Relationships are two-way. There needs to be a reason to communicate with you, and it needs to benefit both parties.


Groups

I used to love Groups on LinkedIn. This is where you could converse with like-minded professionals and gain and share a bit of wisdom. Instead, most have become an advertising platforms for consultants and salespeople pushing their products and services. Even worse, because they are in a Group with you, they can send you unsolicited emails without being a connection. This is how both the HR consultants and radio personalities were able to fill my inbox on LinkedIn with SPAM.

Spam Does Not Make You Sales

For those who waste their time sending SPAM through Social Media, ask yourself how many quality sales you have made this way. Have you thought about how many consumers and businesses you have ticked off? How many deals have you lost for you and your business by sending non-targeted emails?


LinkedIn is or used to be about building relationships. The platform provides tools to interact with potential partners and clients, but when used the wrong way can be more of a detriment to your sales efforts. Why not spend time building relationships with others on LinkedIn? Use the tools they have built, like InMail, to send targeted personal messages instead of unsolicited SPAM. Most untargeted and unsolicited mail will get deleted or reported as SPAM.


Summary

There has been enough written lately on this topic that at some point, continuing to do this will hurt you and your business reputation. There are better ways to obtain clients than this. Instead, you are ruining the use of LinkedIn for those who join in building relationships, sharing, and gaining valuable information.

Spend the time instead to learn how to use LinkedIn and other Social Media platforms and make them work for your business instead of against it. Each of the platforms offers advertising to help generate business. There is nothing wrong with contacting prospects if it is targeted and makes sense. The contact makes sense but sending out the same unsolicited. Impersonal emails to 1000's hoping to get an opportunity will do more to hurt your reputation than help it even if you end up getting 1 or 2 actual clients.

We have had plenty of valuable people contact us, and we have ended up doing business with them. They sent a message telling me why they wanted to connect. It was obvious that they had read my profile. Examples are business brokers, other consultants offering complimentary services, lawyers, accountants, bankers, and third-party lenders. In all cases, they explained their reason for connecting.


LinkedIn can be a valuable tool when used correctly to build long-lasting business relationships. Unfortunately, many have misused the tool and are ruining it by using it for spamming everyone in the hope of having something stick instead of targeting the right prospects. In many cases, we built partnerships with many who sent us a connection request with a message. In other cases, we reached out to them when a client needed someone with their expertise.

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