[This article was written by Benjamin Shepardson.]
LinkedIn is growing like crazy. They just reported an increase in membership to 467 million. LinkedIn is the best place to make professional business contacts, and if you’re not using it you’re leaving money on the table.
Every member of LinkedIn is looking for an advantage, a way to connect with better prospects (and more prospects) than their rivals. Using automated systems to connect with people on LinkedIn is a potent tool. However, sometimes LinkedIn automation scheduling can turn into spam.
What Are People Using to Automate Their Linkedin Accounts?
You may be asking, “What tools do people use to automate annoying and troublesome tasks on LinkedIn?” Some people confer with a list of the top automation tools and use those.
FollowingLike is one of the most interesting tools in the industry. Other people prefer free options, and they use Chrome Add-ons like the Free LinkedIn Automation Tool. There’s isn’t just one right answer. It depends on your budget and your willingness to learn the software.
What Does LinkedIn Say It’s Not Okay to Use
LinkedIn doesn’t want you using any 3rd-party tools to automate your processes. As a matter of fact, LinkedIn has major issues with automation in general. They have actually sued anonymous data scrappers in the past and officially they have a strict policy against automation tools. In practice, they will only shut down or restrict your account if you abuse automation tools.
Is It Ethical to Add Contacts Quickly?
Marketers are often of two minds when it comes to adding contacts quickly via LinkedIn. Some people say that it’s cheating and that people who add others quickly negatively affect the platform. Others are more lax, saying it’s just social media. A certain digital marketer added 550 LinkedIn contacts in a matter of weeks and she details her strategies online.
On the other hand, spam has become a major problem with the platform. John Dunn from ComputerWorld UK notes,
“LinkedIn spam and scams have become a major nuisance for anyone using the world’s most popular networking service.”
When automation tools annoy other members, they become unsavory. People want to receive personalized requests; they want to know you have a special reason for wanting to connect with them.
Penalties and Punishments
LinkedIn bans people for suspicious behavior. Having a restricted or banned account is the biggest risk of automation. However, there are other risks too. The biggest among these is damage to your brand. Spammers aren’t popular on LinkedIn, and you don’t want to be associated with them.
Try using the list endorsed by respected digital marketer Neil Patel. It has a variety of tools that let you automate certain tasks. For instance, Salestool.io lets you download lead lists from LinkedIn to Excel. If you like to manage lists via Excel, then this automation tool will save you time and effort.
Which tools shouldn’t you use?
Making a definitive list of black hat LinkedIn automation tools is not just hard, it’s almost impossible.
LinkedIn opposes automation tools just like French revolutionaries opposed Marie Antoinette. LinkedIn technically frowns upon virtually every automation tool in existence.
Also, many tools just don’t work. A Quora expert says 90% of LinkedIn Automation tools are buggy or ineffective. Yet, finding horror stories about specific tools is surprisingly tricky. Even in the Chrome and Firefox add-on stores, there are very few LinkedIn automation add-ons and the ones that are present earn solid reviews.
Supposed approved tools:
You can find more details here. These are tools that ostensibly obey the rules. In short, automation tools can’t look like automation tools to LinkedIn. You want tools that only automate certain manual actions. You want tools that mimic humans, tools that know how long to stay on a certain page. That’s the key to success.
Your Thoughts on Linkedin Automation Tools
What are your favorite LinkedIn automation tools? Have you ever been banned because you used an automation tool that went too far? Leave your thoughts and experiences in the comments.
Benjamin Shepardson is a web development guru and founder of NoStop Blog Writing. As the company’s leader, Ben brings to the table an innate ability to help small businesses compete with larger competitors through content strategies and SEO.