Home – New Forums Marketing mastery LinkedIn: Whats genuine marketing, and what’s spam?

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  • #982575
    Calcul8or
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    Hello :-)

    Are any of you using LinkedIn to generate leads? If so, what strategies are you using that work for you?

    I’ve been doing a little research to try and figure this out, but have found conflicting information. I’m sure everyone is aware that sending anyone unsolicited email is a big no no. Sure enough, according to the LinkedIn User Agreement, pretty much the same deal holds within their domain. So the question begging to be asked is how come, when LinkedIn actually makes it possible for anyone to contact anyone else, you’re not actually allowed to?

    But then I went to Google and found an almost endless array of articles that promised to have all the answers. After reading a few, I was surprised to see that some advocated contacting people out of the blue after studying their profiles and finding a few things in common with them. So if that’s all it takes to make an unsolicited email legal, why isn’t being a prospective supplier to a prospective customer seen as having at least something (the word “prospective” perhaps?) in common and therefore a legitimate reason for one to contact the other?

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1137518
    James
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    This makes me think of the legal term ‘reasonable’. Most cases in law require some element of human judgement as there is no way to systematically decide every scenario.

    Everybody’s definition of reasonable varies, but you can pretty easily determine your own by looking at where mail you receive crosses the line.

    If you send mail en masse then you are probably going to irritate the recipient, and thus the mail gets labeled as spam.

    If you send a personalised email to the recipient that is written only for them with relevant content, then it would be hard to call that spam.

    It’s similar to dropping a leaflet in a letterbox vs a handwritten letter. Ultimately both are likely unsolicited but the letter will get read, and not immediately binned.

    #1137519
    Johny
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    I can only offer my view, but I tend to agree with what James said.

    I have a real problem with receiving what are obviously mass emails, which I consider to be a lazy way to market, to the extent that it is often not targeted very well.

    On the other hand, I send, and have no problem receiving emails where the sender has actually taken some time to learn a bit about who I am and what I do, and is contacting me in the belief they have some product/service that may benefit me.

    Of course they are contacting me out of the blue, and unsolicited, but I consider that to be acceptable.

    When I contact someone on LinkedIn it is nearly always as a result of having viewed their details/website and having tried to learn something about them. Even better if I can make a reference to something they have mentioned to at least show I made the effort.

    Surely, there would be nearly no contact at all on there if everything needed to be solicited. And it is a networking site afterall.

    #1137520
    Calcul8or
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    Thank you James and Johny. I am glad that both of you have a similar perspective to me, in that it IS after all a networking site, and what would be the point if you weren’t allowed to network with anyone. And also, when you think about it, it does make more sense to contact someone after having found out a little about them and their suitability to whatever you’re offering, rather than a mass mail out, which is indiscriminate and impersonal.

    But do you both think ACMA would take the same view? I got the feeling from their website that their position is that if the recipient does not expressly give their permission to be contacted, then they must not be. Also, there is the condition that even if you do have their permission, you must include an opt out mechanism in your email, which doesn’t make sense if it’s only likely to be once off.

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1137521
    bridiej
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    This is a really hand resource all about using LinkedIn for business – Linked Into Business

    I personally view any type of personal message or email from a connection offering me their product/service to be spam if it is unsolicited. I always report these, and the same goes for connection requests from “dodgy” types. Unfortunately, many of the groups are ruined by spam too.

    I tend to send connection requests to clients or people that I’ve had interactions with, either on forums such as this, social media, or within LinkedIn groups.

    LinkedIn can certainly be beneficial, but it takes time and work.

    #1137522
    Calcul8or
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    Thanks for the link bridiej, and I guess it is a fine line to tread. It’s interesting though, because since all connections, whether online or in reality, are in there own way “fortuitous”, who’s to say that a productive connection you make as the result of the random email they sent you doesn’t end up being the fortuitous connection that particular relationship needed?

    I guess it may come down to the effort you put into the communication, to ensure that the email is 100% targeted to, and tailor made for, the intended recipient, and not just a mass produced conglomeration of everything hurled at a group of people indiscriminately?

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1137523
    Johny
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    Having a quick look, the best i can find is this, under the final title “Can I contact people who have published….”

    http://www.acma.gov.au/WEB/STANDARD/pc=PC_310574

    This is what the ACMA says. Sorry, not sure if that answers your question though.

    But not sure if that is even relevant to LinkedIn. I would think you are automatically opening up yourself to receiving some type of messages when you sign up for LinkedIn. Isn’t that the point?

    #1137524
    Calcul8or
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    Yeah I think LinkedIn’s user agreement probably has more jurisdiction within it than ACMA, I suppose, but they seem to push the same line, that unsolicited contact is to be frowned upon.

    I always thought receiving random messages and sending some of your own was the point too Johny, but noone ever sends me any messages :-(

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1137525
    Johny
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    Well all I can say is that I have never had a problem. I have just over 200 contacts on there and just about all were the result of either my specifically targeting people or people targeting me. And just about every contact I have made has been accepted.

    But that is on the basis that I have specifically written to people in the groups I am associated with. I have hardly “ignored” any requests at all and only deleted a few over time.

    I have done a few deals after making contacts that I would not have made otherwise.

    But i think one of the important things on there is to get involved. If you don’t do anything, noone will look for you. When I first started, once I started becoming active with discussions and even starting a few topics my connection rate and view rate went up considerably.

    #1137526
    bridiej
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    Calcul8or, post: 156833 wrote:
    I always thought receiving random messages and sending some of your own was the point too Johny, but noone ever sends me any messages :-(

    I was going to send you a message inviting you to connect, but I think the link in your profile isn’t set up quite right as it comes up with an error when I click it…

    Yes, I do agree that a lot depends on how the message is worded. Sadly most people seem to think an ad for their service/product is adequate. And of course, remember that on LinkedIn you are visible to other people in your connection’s network – I’ve gained a client simply by having a connection in common with that person.

    #1137527
    Calcul8or
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    My link has an error!??? Sacre Bleu!

    Which one? Here or LinkedIn?

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1137528
    bridiej
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    The little LinkedIn button on your Flying Solo profile

    #1137529
    Calcul8or
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    I honestly didn’t even know I had one of those! I shall fix it forthwith! :-)

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1137530
    Calcul8or
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    All fixed, I hope.

    I could have just clicked on your icon, but if you click on mine then at least we’ll be testing if it works or not :-)

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1137531
    Calcul8or
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    Twitter?? Really? How do you do that? I havent used twitter much, and always thought it was impossible to tell what profession or business or line of work someone was.

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
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