ViDEO: Don't Be 'That Guy' on LinkedIn -- From SalesChaosTV

Posted on April 12th 2012

ViDEO: Don't Be 'That Guy' on LinkedIn -- From SalesChaosTV

Dan Waldschmidt and Todd Schnick, the SalesChaosTV anchors, rarely mince words. If it's possible, they are even more strident when it comes to those on LinkedIn who fall into the category of what they call "Bad Behavior."

You know the type, the ones that connect with you and shortly thereafter send you a message hyping their best-kept secrets to riches or who comment on a question within a LinkedIn group by pushing their own (fee-based) solution.

They even liken that to sitting on your couch at home watching a football game when the door flies open and someone you barely know elbows you out of the way and takes over your spot. Ouch!

Honestly, these guys are big fans of LinkedIn when used responsibly. They see a certain magic to building professional relationships and helping one another via LinkedIn.

Just don't be "that guy!"

(And plan to spend time with the SalesChaosTV guys in a special webinar on April 25. Details upcoming)


Join this discussion with Dan (edgy entrepreneur) and Todd (intrepid marketer) in their latest episode of SalesChaosTV, sponsored by The Customer Collective. Engage them on Twitter at @DanWaldo and @ToddSchnick.


Dan Waldschmidt and Todd Schnick

Dan Waldschmidt is a former technology CEO, one of the founders of IntroMojo, a popular inspirational speaker, and a sought-after strategist on creating edgy conversations in the marketplace. He blogs regularly on his popular motivational selling blog Edge of Explosion and is the husband to a cute gal named Sara and the father to two energetic boys. He’s just an ordinary dude who happens to have an outrageous vision. And he wants to help you change the world Todd Schnick is a marketer, blogger, radio show host, speaker, trainer, political strategist, and distance runner. Since 2003 Todd has started six companies including The Intrepid Group, LLC, The High Velocity Organization, and Dreamland Interactive; marketing firms serving various markets and sectors. Messaging, strategy, and social media integration fall squarely within his key areas of expertise.
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OMG, this is great, AND timely!

I'd like to add one about groups - people who start discussions completly irrelevant to the audience.

I just wrote a blog post about this exact topic, and forgot completely about the Twitter stream annoyance.

Thanks for posting this. Definitely worth sharing on LinkedIn.

Here is the post to supplement this video and I'm NOT selling anything ; )

you know, a simple rule of thumb is to interact online as you would in front of real human beings. if people were having a pleasant chat about the weather, and you jumped in and said something about wombats... would that be meaningful, or welcomed?

i say no.

same thing with starting discussions irrelevant to a group audience. i just don't understand it. especially when they are spamming us with a blog post or some such...

thanks for watching!

Terrific "show" guys! Thanks for the suggestions. The point about not being self-serving is important. This includes people who just shove knowledge based content or discussions out that are 'irrelevant to the audience', as Faye says. I think that the challenging economy probably contributes to the lack of patience for many. While so much is written about the importance of creating content, taking the time to 'map' your content/discussions appropriately is often overlooked. And yes, relationships are built on trust and that typically develops over time. Rush it and you risk breaking it.

I still wrestle with the "only connect with people you know" position. I understand the people link concept and that those who indiscriminately troll for people to fill their bucket devalue the resource. At the same time, if what makes a networking group a positive and productive place is the shared knowledge, insights and experiences from participants who share a meaningful connection(s) in the form of interests, background, purpose, etc., why can’t I just walk up and introduce myself to someone I’ve never met before if I can clearly communicate relevant purpose? Let me share a real example:

The president of a firm that specializes in working with associations and nonprofits recently embarked on a journey to strategically expand her LI network. She reached out to invite relevant executives at organizations in this space that she had never met before. Other criteria included (1) they share at least one common LI group membership, (2) they share at least one person connection. Each received a personal note with the invitation that in addition to mentioning these ‘connections’, communicated her experience and involvement in the association  and nonprofit space as key reasons why it might be worthwhile to connect. To date, 83% of those individuals invited have accepted.

I welcome your thoughts about the appropriateness of this approach and suggestions that you may have.

larry, see my answer to miles above. 

1. don't connect with me just because you happened to see me on LinkedIn, and you want to inflate numbers.

2. don't send me a generic note when connecting, giving me NO indication of why we should connect.

3. don't ask me to recommend you when i don't know you or haven't worked with you.

4. i only connect with people on linkedin that i've met personally, interacted with on a linkedin group, and have a mutual connection (a legitimate one).

5. oftentimes i connect with someone on linkedin when we've had interaction and dialog on other social networks such as twitter, goggle+, etc...

6. interactions should be personal, as stated in your example above....

thanks for watching!

Todd, Only connect with people you know? That makes no sense when talking about LinkedIn.

Connect with people that you don't know, but are in an industry, profession or geography that is of interest to you. The power of your network is NOT in your direct connections, but rather in your second level connections. If you have only connected with those you know, you have limited the power of the network for the future.

If you experience "the guy" Dan mentioned that blasts you with the deal of the century days after you have accepted his invitation, just remove them as a connection. All social networks should be culled from time to time.

Your observations on Groups are spot on- why are you hanging out in 50 LinkedIn Groups of focused on the  Insurance industry if you are in insuranc? Pick the biggest/best one or two and delete the rest.



miles, yeah, the purpose of social is to deepen relationships. no doubt. and i am not suggesting you cannot interact with someone you don't know.

the context to which i am referring is the following: don't just friend me to inflate your numbers and leave me with the generic welcome message that gives me no indication about why you want to connect. and certainly don't ask me for a recommendation when i don't know you, or have never worked with you.

and finally, it is uncomfortable when someone asks you to facilitate a connection with someone in your network, and you honestly don't know anything about them. i don't want to vouch for someone i don't know....

but yes, if you connect with someone in a group, for instance, and after a meaningful interaction there is potential value, then by all means, you should connect...

I don't know, Miles.  I struggle with Linkedin.

My expereience has been that people I don't know just mostly spam me back.  I have started to only follow people that I know or "know of".  

Also, I don't find myself building lasting relationships online.  Like a billboard my connections serve to remind me of our relationships and help me nurture future engagement.  

What are your thoughts?  It takes 5x longer to unconnect than to just not connect in the first place.

Just different experiences Dan. I just returned from an extremely valuable meeting in Chicago with approximately 25 influentional sales writers, speakers, authors, every one of which I had ONLY had an online connection with (except one who I have worked with before). By the way, you were missed.

The ONLY reason we were together is because we had come across each others online activity, then starting building relationships and respect.

"Lasting" relationships-still remains to be seen, however in the short time since that meeting, I have generated a plate full of new business opportunities and engagements.

If you limit your universe to those you know or "know of", your potential for future growth will be limited. It has been stated many times that the vast majority of business ( +70% frequently quoted) is done not by direct connections but by those who are 2nd level connections.

I am not saying become one of those ridiculous LION's who join lists just to grow their connections. Just open your mind to the myriad of possibilities that can come from a happenstance connection request on LinkedIn. 

Consider my mind opened...