Chris Cooper

What are LinkedIn Connections?

So, you’ve made the perfect LinkedIn profile (see how to perfect your LinkedIn profile here) and now it’s time to start building your connections, but what exactly are connections? Well, to answer the question literally, LinkedIn connections are people that you connect with on the platform. Just like on Facebook where you have add friends, on LinkedIn you add connections. Once you’re connected with someone you can see what there updates on your feed and depending on their privacy settings have more access to their profile.

However, it’s super important to remember, connections on LinkedIn differ from friends on Facebook. You become friends with someone on Facebook because you know them or would like to get to know them on a personal level. On LinkedIn, you connect with someone because you want to get to know them on a professional level and they can add value to your professional life (basically to your career), or you can add value to their. This is an important point to keep in mind when looking for new connections and also when posting content.

How to make connections on LinkedIn

Step 1. Viewing Profile

Olivia Taylor LinkedIn

Before connecting with someone on LinkedIn, view their profile and look out for common interests and makes sure that you have a clear idea of why you’d like to connect with them. Once you’ve done this click the connect button to the right of the profile picture.

Step 2.

Connecting with Olivia 2

Once you’ve clicked the connect button, you’ll see this message. You always want to add a note to your connection requests. This makes them more personal and makes it more likely that your request will be accepted. It often also leads you to good talking points and helps to build genuine relationships.

Step 3.

Connecting with Olivia 3

Have a look through the persons LinkedIn profile before sending your request, this will help you to find things to put in this message. Make it personal, if you’ve met them before, write something about the time that you met them. If you haven’t met them, find out what they’re interested in on their profile and if you have an interest in common mention this in your message. Try to show them that you can add value to them as a connection, just as they can for you! Once you’ve finished and read it back to yourself, click done.

Step 4.

While you’re waiting for them to accept your connection invite, you will see “pending” where it used to say connect. Note that some people for whatever reason may decline your connection request. That’s fine, don’t take it personal, maybe they have too many connections to keep up with already or only connect with people already in the industry. Make sure that you don’t keep trying to connect with someone who declines, there’s nothing to gain from that.  

Step 5.

When someone has accepted your invite, or invited you to connect, you will see a little ‘1’ signifying a notification on the “My Network” tab. Don’t leave people hanging, keep an eye on this tag.

Step 6.

When I clicked on the tab this time, it was Olivia accepting my invite. This message that Olivia, wrote back to me is a great way to welcome people into your LinkedIn network. When someone sends you a connection request, should you accept their request, then you should always send them a welcome message. This makes them feel like a valued member of your network and is a great way to start a conversation!

Now you have a profile and are starting to build a network, the next thing is to start posting on LinkedIn (page on this coming soon)...