Goldilocks And The Three Bears’ LinkedIn InMails

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One day, Goldilocks was out for a walk in the forest, and she came upon a cottage. Going inside she found three tables with three laptop computers, all with LinkedIn accounts open on their screens. Each screen had an InMail message on it.

She went to the first screen and read the InMail, where the sender had made a naked sales pitch, asking for a meeting to showcase their product.

“Eww,” said Goldilocks, “this person doesn’t care about what my problems are, it’s all about her! This InMail is just too hot!” And she ignored the InMail.

Then she went to the second computer, where the InMail sender hoped that the recipient liked their message.

“Yuck,” said Goldilocks, who as a pre-adolescent didn’t have much of a vocabulary, “there is no call to action here, just some wishy-washy grovelling at the end. This InMail is way too cold.”

So she went and looked at the third laptop, where the InMail contained some ideas of value to the recipient, and ended with a pointed call to action to start a conversation between the sender and the recipient.

“Yowza,” said Goldilocks, “this InMail is just right!” And she was about to type in a response to the beautiful InMail when the three bears, who owned the little cottage returned, yelled “WTF are you doing with our LinkedIn accounts?” and ate her.

The End

Moral of the story: Keep your InMails short, so that the recipient has time to respond and get away before being eaten.

Didn’t see that one coming, did you?

Okay, okay, alternate moral: Have a call to action that…  

  1. Is appropriate for your message. For example, if you want to get a face to face meeting as a result of your InMail, your message had better be incredibly good.
  2. Is a real call to action. Being overly solicitous and asking someone to reply when they have time isn’t going to get you the response rate you want.
  3. Doesn’t make “no” an easy alternative. If you can get your recipient to want more – more information or more explanation – that makes “no” a tough answer.