Select Page

By Tim Hughes | @Timothy_Hughes

While sitting in the speaker lounge at the recent sales hacker conference, there was a conversation that I see many times on-line and off-line.

It usually revolves around the fact that people think that “social selling means selling over social”.

Put it another way, somebody sends you a LinkedIn request.

You don’t know them but you accept and immediately you get a pitch for their products.

Think about it.

If you were at a networking event you wouldn’t go up to somebody and pitch.  If you went on a first date, you wouldn’t propose marriage. So why do people do it?

In the Sales Hacker speaker lounge everybody tutted and asked the question “why do people do this?”  So, I thought I would speak up.

“They do it because it works!”  Everybody turned to look at me.  Oh dear, I thought I think I’m going to be thrown out, so I explained.

“Look I don’t agree with this, but a prospective client came to us for help on social selling.  They said they were already getting great results but wanted to see if they could get more.

The process they had was as follows.

  1. Send a LinkedIn connection request.
  2. A week later, they asked for a call.
  3. 40% of the people they asked for a call, agreed.

So, I asked the speakers at the London Sales Hacker “What other sales and marketing activity gets you a 40% response?”

It went quiet. 

I pointed out there is at least one “legitimate” software supplier (I’m aware of) in the UK that are using this as a sales tactic.

It is worth pointing out that I am not suggesting this is a great way of marketing. In fact, I think you will have annoyed 60% of prospects. But the only reason why people are doing this is that it is working for them.

So, here’s my ask.

We all need to start reporting these people to LinkedIn and blocking them.

As I pointed out to the Sales Hacker speakers, this software house I’m aware of uses graduates to spread social spam over LinkedIn.  And I guess, if you are a graduate and LinkedIn blocks you, you just trash that LinkedIn account and open a new one.

What do I do?

Anybody who sends me social spam, gets reported and blocked.  It’s simple.

There are people who think that because we are connected on LinkedIn they can send me emails.These people are also reported and blocked.  Their emails are blocked as well.

I do realise that this all may seem a little radical. But the only way we can stop social spamming is for the people doing this to see their accounts blocked – until the practice reduces or in fact stops.

Digital Leadership Associates: We are a Social Media Agency. We do three things: Social Media StrategySocial Selling and Social Media Management. Drop us an email and let’s talk about how we can make an impact on your organisation.

Picture credit: By Bidgee (Own work) [CC BY 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons


Subscribe to the DLA Newsletter

To keep up to date with all of the latest news in the social media for business world...why not subscribe to our newsletter. We won't email you too often and we promise that we won't share your details.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Share This