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Your LinkedIn Outreach Is Terrible (and what you can do about it)

Your LinkedIn outreach is terrible.

I don’t know exactly where people are getting “advice” for how to do outreach on social media...but what they’re being told is really bad.

Every day I receive dozens of LinkedIn connection requests that look the same, sound the same, and even smell the same (yep, they smell like you-know-what).

I’ve been in the online marketing industry a very long time--I had hair when I started--and was networking long before these platforms even existed.

“Hey, man. Saw you were in the same restaurant as I am, so I figured I’d sit my ass down at your group's table. How ‘bout it?”

This is the level of LinkedIn outreach message today.

Is that how you want to present yourself?

Is this the level of dialogue you wish to imply is available?

“Hey, man. We haven’t even met yet but why don’t we just get this crap over with and you buy my stuff / we get married / have a baby with me already?”

That’s what you sound like.

connection network linkedin join outreach

Photo by Darrel Und from Pexels

Clues To Effective LinkedIn Outreach

You may have noticed that I do like to provide solutions where I see problems. So here are some genuine recommendations you’ll find to be effective.

First, Niche Down.

Goodness! When someone sends me an out-of-the-blue connection request, and they aren’t even in my industry… can you guess what my automatic response will be?

Bye-bye.

And--get this--the reaction is even clearer, stronger and more deeply emotional (for that split-second of attention it gets) if you have dumped one of those inane copy-paste “I just thought we should” messages into the request.

It is better for you to have used NO message. If you’re coming from outside the person’s industry, it is better for you to not have said anything at all.

Let your profile do the talking instead.

That headline. It’s copywriting. A field I’ve been involved in for over a quarter-century and made a lot of money for both myself and my clients in. Your LinkedIn headline: that’s where you should be spending all of that careful crafting effort. It was true offline in traditional printed advertising and it remains true today in online platforms. Human nature has not changed.

Spamming outreach is not prospecting.

Churn-based activity is not effective work.

Can I be clearer?

Focus for Outreach Effectiveness

If you are sending “X” number of connection requests a day because somebody told you to--without any other attendant strategy--then you are wasting your time.

Pick a freakin’ niche first.

Let me tell you about my own experience. Some of you know that I work in the space industry. The moment I changed my profile and my headline to reflect that and only that, and started outreaching to space industry people, my results got much better.

They saw I was “one of them”. And after a few weeks the Network Effect really caught on: people wouldn’t even look at my profile before they hit “Accept”.

I am connected to generals, senior officials and other high level people because of this focus.

Beyond that, though, and where nearly all of you fall down is this: my intention is to develop some kind of relationship with every connection I make.

Are You a Superconnector?

It needn’t be a deep relationship. In fact, the Superconnector books (and I am a superconnector, my friends tell me) say that you probably shouldn’t focus on developing those. Just a favor, a kind word, an introduction here and there, once or twice a year: that’s enough for people to remember you.

But I do create deep relationships, and quickly. It’s how I got all my advisors for my firm in less than 12 months.

That is my intention. Not to simply have you as a hanger-on, a never-noticed network blip...but to actually know you a little.

Can you say the same?

In my experience, probably not. You’ve probably adopted that dumb old sales “maxim” about “some will, some won’t, so what, next!”. The lack of qualification screams from that line. It’s a business model for idiots.

Niche down. Pick a target. Get some discernment. Engage that Network Effect to start acting on your behalf.

When a new USAF general sees that they and I have 122 shared connections, what do you think their next move is? “Accept”. They don’t even read my profile. The mutual connections, the headline, and that’s it. Plus my intention behind the scenes.

Remember The Number One Rule of Marketing and Stand Out, will ya?

Second, adopt a more formal tone.

That’s the way business introductions used to be. Formal. Now I’m not saying “Do it this way because it was better in the olden time.” I’m saying so because it is in direct contrast to the sloppy, casual, “flop down next to you in your restaurant booth seat like I’m your neighbor” approach so disastrously common today.

Rule Number One in marketing is Stand Out.

If you must send a connection message, make it formal. Have a good reason why you’re connecting: not this “I just figured” or “If you’re open to” nonsense.

I’m open to any space industry colleague wanting to connect through LinkedIn outreach. I don’t even look any further than the headline. I know that's helping my network effect power.

I am NOT open to you, Skippy, with your “I help overtired executives recover their life and times with energetic healing” me-me-me nonsense that I’ve received one hundred and fifteen nearly identical requests about over the past 30 days.

Qualification.

Third, why not use the affiliate model?

We use it in the online marketing world all the time. Have a well-known industry professional in the niche you want to be in introduce you to their existing list of contacts.

Yes, it’s going to be work. But you’re already doing at least half of that work now--and your way, alone, is ineffective.

And there’s going to have to be something in it for the industry pro. Hopefully you have one as a friend already. You can get creative, can’t you?

I do this, and it has made an amazing difference.

The language is formal. My kingpin contact recommends me in a three-person message. Like a tennis match, I hit the ball back over the net with my own formalized response. Perhaps the third party, who is in the same industry and at the same level as us, remember, has said something in response during this time. Then I can send the connection request, again with some super formal language reminding them of why I’m connecting and on whose behest, in case a few days or a week has gone by since the original exchange. Sometimes the new contact sends me the connection request themselves.

Do you see how different and how much more effective this kind of process is than your sad, lonely, disconnected-to-anything outreach?

Free Course for Effective LinkedIn Outreach (and it's not even mine!)

I’m not going to spill all my secrets--those are for paying clients--but I will leave you with a final gift. It’s a big one. Remember me in your will. This is a free course from a friend of a contact who got ahold of me for a consultation. He mentioned this site and I took a look around. Then I watched this course. I hope you understand I’ve seen a lot of things and so when I say this free course is better than many paid ones I’ve seen, that’ll matter to you. Go check it out. It’s A to Z, how to prospect effectively on LinkedIn.

Hell, you don’t even need me. What you do need is a change of mind.

>> FINALLY ready for effective, proven positioning, mindset, outreach and sales methods? Then you're ready for SALES ON FIRE <<

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Your Value Creates Your Business Size

Your value: where does it come from?

I'm speaking entirely in a business-rational point of view here: as a human being, you have infinite value independent of anything or anyone. In the marketplace, however, you do have a quantifiable value. So let us explore that.

Your Business Size As A Function Of Your Value

Your value is a direct function of the size of problem you choose to solve.

A couple of ways of approaching this are available to us. One, you could pick a high-priced offer. An example is a lawyer who keeps you away from a conviction and out of jail. You're going to be able to charge a high dollar figure for solving those problems...and you're also likely to be capped on the number of said projects you can handle at any time.

Two, you could pick a low-priced offer. The rub here is this offer is badly needed by masses of people, and you get to fulfill it over and over and over again. An example is a fast food lunch hamburger. Sure, the thing is only a dollar or two—but with your many locations you deliver the burger again and again over the noontime period.

Both can get you to big rational dollar totals, our indicator of marketplace value. One is not "better" than another; however, I will point out that a factor exists that makes one of these approaches better for you.

Money Tolerance. We've looked at this key "thermometer reading" before. And here it is again, this time secretly dictating the value you bring to the marketplace.

Money Tolerance and Business Growth

Say you're OK with the "let's feed 'em lunch" plan. Your money tolerance is low, eg. you believe $200 is "a lot of money".

This might be all right—if you can get yourself past the notion that a mountain of those $2 burgers delivered to hungry customers adds up to a mountain of cash.

But what if you can't?

The defense attorney is by default locked into a pretty decent money tolerance. Try as they might, $1500 or so is a kind of dumb minimum for taking on a straightforward case where the lawyer holds all the cards and the defendant has no idea what's going on. The lawyer has a better chance of creating more value in the marketplace and bringing home more for themselves, simply because of their money tolerance and the chunks of revenue per case.

burger fast food lunch your value low money tolerance low value

Photo by Foodie Factor from Pexels

The burger seller has to pump out a ton more orders to get to the same totals as the attorney can reach with just a few sales.

Again, with the right vision the burger seller can make up for and even well exceed the revenue totals of the lawyer. But they're starting with a handicap.

Your Unconscious Value Cap

The reason why I talk about these concepts is that most people—almost everyone—walk around in an unconscious daze. They have zero clue they're being pushed around, that their lives are being walled in and their daily experience manipulated, by limiting beliefs they don't know they have.

Pull these limiting beliefs out into the sunlight, and you can change your world.

I encourage you to explore the idea that your money tolerance is severely limiting the value you're bringing to and receiving from the marketplace, and thereby your business size...and that you could change all that. If you're happy with where you're at, leave it alone. But if you're not, be aware that you can deliberately shift those money tolerance goalposts. Choose a different size of problem to solve, or a higher frequency of solving it. And then watch the value rise and your business size increase.

>> Jason Kanigan is a business strategist. To book a consultation with Jason to discuss your marketplace value, business size and money tolerance, click here <<

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Money Tolerance And The Games We Play

Money Tolerance is a topic I'm surprised to find I haven't written much about here, given that it is such a central concept not only to the sales training I deliver but also to life. Your life.

If we look at the 80/20 Rule aka Pareto's Law, and apply it to your life, we find this: a small number of beliefs and their resulting decisions turn into the majority of what you experience in life.

The purpose of thinking is to stop thinking. The vast majority of our decisions are made on autopilot, drawing on what we've done before, consistency, identity. The maintenance of identity is key, whether you're conscious of this or not.

money tolerance, dollar, eye, bill

Photo by Vladislav Reshetnyak from Pexels

The Consistency of Money Tolerance

Money Tolerance is a two-parter. It's a limiting belief to imagine as two goalposts: one lower, and one upper. The upper limit is easy to spot, at least when we're being truthful with ourselves (and we often are not). This is the number at which you start saying, "That's a lot of money".

This is a game we play. We play it first with ourselves, then with others.

You see, that number is a BS story. It's nonsense. One number isn't any bigger than another: compare your number to infinity. It's all a game. Why this number and not another? You probably heard your parents say it. "This washing machine is a lot of money." OK, $500 or $1000 gets locked into your mind as "a lot of money".

But it's not the same number for other people, and this is where many folks get stuck in the game they're playing.

"This car is a lot of money," Dad said about the Mercedes station wagon priced at $87,500 because he wanted the nice trim package. So for you, $1000 is peanuts; "a lot of money" starts at $80,000.

How This Key Limiting Belief Affects Your Sales Conversations

Different people are walking around with different money tolerance levels... but they don't know it.

So as a prospective customer, you can bump into somebody who has an extremely different belief in what the cost and value of what you offer as a business owner or salesperson represents.

If you grew up being imprinted upon that "$80,000 is a lot of money", but this prospect in front of you right now believes that "$500 is a lot of money"... can you predict what's going to happen?

That prospect is going to collapse. They're going to fall into themselves, because their belief doesn't support your price tag, and they're going to leave. They literally cannot stand being around the mere idea.

Take this in.

You can also use Money Tolerance as a qualifying tool: I certainly do.

I've explained for years how you choose your customers.

One of the levers you've got available to work with here is Money Tolerance. What if you were to use it to set a bar? So that only those people who already believed—were playing the game that the money number level of where you believe value begins is what they already agree with—were allowed past the velvet rope?

What if you only let people with a pricing-value belief matching your own see the offer?

A big part of positioning works this way. Consider Mercedes again. They're happy to give away whatever info is on their website to whoever wants to look: they know the vast majority of visitors are dreamers who will never qualify to buy. Only those who come into the dealership, and pass the test of answering some qualifying questions correctly, will get the chance to receive an offer to buy. Remember, those are the prospects who can stand there and participate with the idea of this investment as not being "too much money".

How can you take this concept to your own business and apply it?

>> Jason Kanigan is a business strategist and coach. If you're ready to book a session with Jason, click here <<