How Not to Connect on Twitter or LinkedIn

I received a mention on Twitter recently where a guy was recommending that I buy an e-book to get more Twitter followers. First of all, I’m not on Twitter to simply amass a huge following of people I don’t know. I’m on Twitter to help my clients communicate better with their industry or customers.

I tweet about stuff that’s going on with my company and my clients’ companies. I use Twitter to research topics for blog posts, to learn about what’s hot in an industry for email marketing and to give my clients ideas for engaging with their customers.

How to Connect on Twitter

So, here’s my advice for connecting with people on Twitter the right way:

  • Don’t throw out blatant @mentions. These mentions should be reserved for people you know, a kind remark (no product push) or a response for someone publicly calling for a solution, vendor or recommendation.
  • Find someone to introduce you. You know – someone you know who knows your target someone.
  • Follow them and see if they follow back. Then send a kind direct message to gauge interest in connecting further.

How Not to Connect on LinkedIn

Last week, another guy took advantage of social media to send me a bogus affiliate marketing website – complete with music and no explanation of what the product was. But, what’s worse is he asked to connect with me on LinkedIn. He said we were friends. I clicked his link to see if he was someone I’d worked with in a past job. Nope, we’ve never met. Think he made it to my connections list? No way, Jose.

The Right Way to Connect on LinkedIn

  • Connect with people through LinkedIn Groups. It’s a cool way to determine if you have something in common. And, a lot less creepy.
  • Find someone to introduce you. They even have a feature for this called “Get Introduced!” Love that tool!
  • Send an InMail. This gives your target introduction the ability to screen you and it gives you a chance to provide a professional introduction to what you do.
Twitter and LinkedIn are awesome networking tools if you use them correctly. They have certainly helped my business. What’s your favorite Twitter or LinkedIn use?