26 Feb 2013
Are you curious to know the identity of the person who disconnects from you on LinkedIn? What about knowing who reports your connection request as ‘spam’? I’ll show you how….
The old way: export all your contacts on LinkedIn to a spreadsheet. Then whenever your total number of contacts mysteriously reduces, systematically cross-check your spreadsheet, name by name with your LinkedIn contacts to try and figure out who the leaver is. Painful drudge.
The new way: download the ‘Friend Check’ App (IOS only) by Savi FREE today (usually a bargain 99 cents) on the App Store. Sync it with your LinkedIn account (and your Twitter, Facebook, Instagram if you wish) and you’ll know precisely who has decided to part company. Every time you hit refresh, the app takes a snapshot and makes a record of your connection status (total, new and ‘ended’). Categorizing your LinkedIn leavers as ‘Ended’ is a little strange, but who cares? It works.
There’s nothing you can do if someone decides to leave you on LinkedIn. Knowing is not going to be terribly useful and it certainly won’t make you feel better. That’s life. I actually recommend regular pruning of connections to my clients – read why here.
‘Hater’ seems a little strong, I’m sure these folks don’t actually ‘hate’ you and why would they? They don’t even know you. Having said that, it does take more than a little spite to do the virtual equivalent of slapping an outstretched hand.
Which is essentially what transpires when someone you’ve reached out to with a connection request responds by clicking the ‘Report Spam’ button. They either do this oblivious to the damage it causes you (a few Spam Reports and you’re frozen by LinkedIn until you apologize to… LinkedIn) or knowing the consequence, which is frankly, malevolent. So in the interest of full disclosure, here’s a way to find out if someone you’ve asked to connect has responded unkindly.
- Look at your Inbox and ‘Sent Invitations’.
- Click on any invitation you’ve sent.
- If you can see ‘Resend’ and ‘Withdraw’ – the recipient has done nothing with your request.
- If you can’t see ‘Resend’ – the recipient has clicked ‘Ignore’, your request has been archived.
- If you can’t see ‘Withdraw’ and ‘Resend’ – the recipient has reported you for ‘Spam’.
Obviously, check to see if the person is a new 1st degree connection before thinking the worst (you won’t see ‘Resend’ or ‘Withdraw’ on an invitation which has been accepted). There’s also an option to click ‘I Don’t Know [Name]‘ after clicking ‘Ignore’. IDK has the same effect as ‘Report as Spam’ but may not have as much weight when LinkedIn evaluates whether to freeze an inviter’s account. You’ll never know for certain if someone IDKs you. Perhaps, if word gets around that folks who click the ‘Report Spam’ button are easy to peg, it may discourage the practice? But I do believe there’s an obligation on all of us to observe and follow the connection protocol.
There are measures you can take to minimize the risk of being labeled as a spammer when building your network. Here’s an excellent article in the Huffington Post on this subject by Claire Diaz-Ortiz and I’ll give you the short version in my own words:
- Customize – NEVER use the invitation template suggested by LinkedIn, it’s truly worthless.
- Specify – WHY exactly do you want to connect? What’s in it for me? For both of us?
- Verify – WHO are you? Give me a resource so that I can look you up outside of LinkedIn.
In my experience, if someone has more than 500 connections, there’s a strong likelihood that they’ll connect with you when asked. Conversely, the smaller their network, the less likely they are to connect with you. If they have already ‘opened the door’ to your connection request by browsing your Profile, liking (or sharing) your update/comment/blog post etc. then there’s a good chance you’ll be warmly received.
That’s all from me this week. As always – thanks very much for stopping by and reading. If you found this article thought-provoking, interesting or even useful. Please go ahead and share it with someone using that sliding share thingy on the left.
Warm regards from Chicago.