More Things to Stop Doing on LinkedIn
It's been a long time. I shouldn't a left you without a dope beat to step to.
You know you've been blogging a while when this is the second blog post you've written that references that Aaliyah song, okay? But sometimes I feel like if I don't give some people advice on the regular, they'll straight up screw everything up. And LinkedIn connectors, I am coming for you.
I've previously written about LinkedIn no-nos, and most of those were pretty basic. I mean, remembering to add a picture and capitalize your name? Obvious.
Now, we're going to delve into issues that seem like common sense to me – but given the number of people I see messing these up, they clearly need to be addressed.
1. Thanking Me for Every Post
STAHP! I know that people think thanking me for every post makes them "engaged" but ...it doesn't. It makes you look like a stalker with way too much time on your hands. Every single time I post something, I get some automated message immediately, which makes me think you didn't actually read the post.
There's literally no way this can make you look good. If you're a job seeker, it looks like you're desperate for my approval and do not understand how social media works. If you're a potential client or vendor ... yeah, it basically says the same thing.
The same goes for liking every single one of my updates. I hate it. Stop it. I bet other people hate it, too.
2. Having a Weird Icon or Image as Your Picture
Bravo for remembering to put up a picture, and even more bonus points for not stretching it out or smooshing it into square dimensions instead of asking any sixth-grader to help you with image editing software. But dang, Spongebob? On a professional network? Betty Boop is really the image you want people to think of when you're emailing them about a position you have open or when you ask for an introduction to their hiring manager?
I will answer my own question: No, it is not.
3. TopLinked Is This Generation's LION
I feel like everyone knows who's who on LinkedIn, and if not, there are lots of percentage lists to help you out. I never connect with LIONs or TopLinkeds if I can help it. Adding them to your network is basically saying, "I would like to be spammed daily." Just say no to fake honorifics.
4. Using Weirdo Titles
I get that you have a really cute title like, oh, say, 'chief marketing brain,' but no one really wants to hear it. How are you going to appear in search results if someone is looking for a marketing consultant or CMO? The answer is that you won't.
Now, if you're the CEO of a rapidly growing agency that blows its competition out of the water, you can probably use whatever title you want – but not if you want me to connect with you. Do as I say, not as I do.
5. Hitting on Women
It's super annoying. While the majority of articles and anecdotes seem to place the blame squarely on me, I am sure there are some women out there who think it's okay to violate this most basic of rules. Go to Tinder, head to OKCupid, or check out eHarmony – but please, keep your comments about personal appearance to yourself on LinkedIn. Really, I shouldn't even have to say this.
6. Sending Mass Messages
Welp, I cannot even believe I have to type this, but stop sending mass emails to everyone, please! I can see everyone else you sent it to, and I'm not flattered. Even worse, chances are the one person who replies to your ridiculous recruiting email – which, by the way, asks me to do your job for you – is going to hit "reply all" as well. For the love of holiness ...
7. Guilt Trippin'
This happens on email, and now it has sunk its insidious claws into the world of LinkedIn. Look, I didn't ask you to reach out to me to sell me your stuff. I didn't send a demo request or even join a group, so don't act all hurt when I decide not to respond to your cold InMail. Subject lines like "In case you missed it ..." and "A few minutes of your time ..." are dead giveaways that you're trying to guilt trip me.
While these are my particular pet peeves, other Branchers also weighed in with their own, including: recruiters adding you when they have nothing to do with recruiting in your field; pointless endorsements for things like 'organization' or 'strategy'; and people asking for recommendations before they even know you.
A version of this article originally appeared on the Marenated blog.
Maren Hogan is founder and CEO of Red Branch Media. You can read more of her work on Forbes, Business Insider, Entrepreneur, and her blog, Marenated.