3 Easy Ways to Approach Your Prospects on LinkedIn


In the past couple of posts, we have discussed setting up a strategy for prospecting on LinkedIn and how to qualify the leads. What do you do when you actually find them? How can you take the relationship to the next level that makes sense for both parties? The answer to those questions are inside this post.

If and when they look like a good fit on paper there a number of different approaches. Let’s explore the 3 major ones:

The first approach is the most aggressive of the three. The second tactic is going to provide you with the warmest lead; however, it takes the most time. The last approach can only be used when you are in a number of groups on LinkedIn that your potential clients are active in.

  1. The most proactive approach is
  •  Go to the person’s profile and Click on “Add [person’s name] to your network button

  • Inside the message you will want to input a template message. (Look for upcoming post “Creating a Powerful Message”.)
  • The message will have call of action built into it.
  • Then send the invitation
  • Once that person responds to your invitation, you will want to schedule a time to connect with that person offline. Start with an introductory phone call. Then see if it makes sense to meet face to face. Keep in mind that you want to qualify the prospects. The less time you waste of theirs and yours, the better. Social media allows you to continue to nurture the lead even if they are not initially a hot lead.
  •  If you use a CRM, then track your activities and progress. If you do not have a CRM, then use the profile organizer tool in LinkedIn.

2. Create a potentially warmer lead by using your connections:

  • Find the person you are connected with and send them an actual email.
  • Do not use an introduction through LinkedIn. This feature can create a very long process and an unrewarding outcome.
  • An email outside of LinkedIn will be a much faster and it is a direct approach.
  • Send the person an email asking them about the person in which you would like to be connected with and that they know.
  • Ask them how they know the person and if they would be a good introduction for you.
  • Your connection can respond in one of two ways:
  • They can say, “Yes, [person’s name] is actually a great person for you. He/she is a good friend of mine and a really nice person. We have done business with each other for years. He/she and I have a very trusting relationship. Now that I think of it, they had mentioned a need for a service like yours.” That is an ideal response.
  • The other possible response is, “You know, that person is a real jerk. I know him/her, but not that well because we just did not get a long when we first met. Plus, I think he/she already has a strong relationship with one of your competitors.” That is great information as well. Obviously that is not a good lead for you; however, it is better to know that upfront rather than waste countless hours trying to convert that person.
  • Once you determine they are a good fit for you, you ask your connection to make the introduction.
  • To be sure the introduction is at its highest quality possible, make sure the person who is making the introduction asks the prospect if it is ok to introduce you to them. That way there is no surprises and they expect your email or phone call.

3.  The last approach is for connections that you ONLY share a group with. If that is the case, you are step above being a 3rd degree connection. As a member of a group, as long as their settings allow them to, you can send messages within LinkedIn to your fellow members of the group.

Start with selecting on of the groups that you joined. [Reminder: The groups you joined should be where your clients are located.]
  • Click on the Members tab inside the group
  • Enter the Keyword you are searching with in the Search Box located on the left side
  •   Click on “Send Message”

  •  Enter in the title of the message. Make sure it explains your reasoning. Such as, Connecting or Social Media Marketing or Consulting Offer

  • Then the last step is to enter the message that, again, needs to include a call of action step at the end. Make sure to keep it short, sweet, and to the point. Long and self promoting messages are about as good as a cold call.


Each method can be used for different situations. The circumstances will dictate which approach will work the best. Follow up is going to be a key element to your success with prospecting on LinkedIn. Be diligent.
Please let us know how they are working for you and if you have any questions. 
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About Brandon M. Lewin

Marketing and training run through my blood. That is why I love what I do. Being an intricate piece in the marketing success of Cardinal Path Training Academy has been a dream. Its imperative for us to share our knowledge with a community of people and organizations who desperately need guidance in the fields of digital intelligence and marketing. The future depends on it. I also get the chance to teach people with hands-on, real world experience workshops. That is so much fun to infotain. Beyond my passion for my work, my family is my everything. Chicago sports is a close third.
This entry was posted in Brand, Brand Awareness, Branding, Business Development, Businesses, Connecting, Interactive Marketing, Lead Generation, LinkedIn, LinkedIn Marketing, Marketing, Networking, Sales Process, Social Media Etiquette, Social Media Marketing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to 3 Easy Ways to Approach Your Prospects on LinkedIn

  1. Great points you got here, thanks. While there is no size-fits-all method, it is very important to know what works well with your business. Like you said, circumstances will dictate which approach will work the best.

  2. mattbaronn says:

    Very good stuff! It’s obvious that you are preaching what you have practiced—because this is practical stuff borne of real-life experience.

    All too often, people communicate laziness, sloppiness and presumptuousness when they connect on LinkedIn. They send an impersonal invitation to connect–or, I should say, when they blow making a positive connection/first impression.

    Instead, they fail to provide context or indication of how such a connection would be mutually beneficial. I have written at length about LinkedIn, mostly via my blog, and the theme I keep returning to: treat people like individuals, not some additional notch in your Cyber-Rolodex belt.

    Another tip I’d offer: make the effort to provide meaningful recommendations of people with whom you are LinkedIn—add value, so that it’s not about a quantity of connections, but a high quality of any given connection. I’ve made more than 60 recommendations and it not only benefits those I recommend, but also showcases my ability to string a few cogent thoughts together (on good days)–a rather relevant “show, don’t tell” element when one is in the public relations/communications industry.

    • DoughNuttz says:

      Thank you for the acknowledgement. We are firm believers of practicing what you preach, especially when what you practice produces results.

      You bring up a very good point that not only do I skip over, but many others forget to mention, the power of the recommendation. It is not only about recommending someone who requests you to; the unsolicited recommendation is one of the most powerful tools you can use in your LinkedIn marketing arsenal.

      Thank you for bringing that to the attention of our audience and to myself.

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