The Truth About LinkedIn Social Selling Software

The automation of fake sincerity destroys your credibility. Can we agree on that? Whether you’re dating or trying to influence a new customer, fake sincerity is deadly stuff. Yet mainstream social selling (marketing) software roars forward — violating LinkedIn’s terms and conditions, and every ounce of what Dale Carnegie taught us about winning friends and influencing people.

Fake It til You Make itThe automation of fake sincerity destroys your credibility. Can we agree on that? Whether you’re dating or trying to influence a new customer, fake sincerity is deadly stuff. Yet mainstream social selling (marketing) software roars forward — violating LinkedIn’s terms and conditions, and every ounce of what Dale Carnegie taught us about winning friends and influencing people.

The Faking of Sincerity

If you’re not familiar with the faking of sincerity … well you’re living under a rock.

“I get emails all the time from companies that sell browser extensions and apps for use on LinkedIn,” says Bruce Johnston, who advises sellers on these issues.

Johnston says the idea is that you can automate and scale up your interaction with others by getting the extension or app to do the work for you.

“Apps will view profiles, invite people with certain keywords or titles to connect, automatically send them welcome messages when they accept, automatically endorse them, automatically send them congratulatory messages when they have a birthday, work anniversary or change jobs, and automatically send sales messages to large swaths of your connections.”

Sound familiar?

Now I don’t want to offend my dear readers but I must ask, point blank, do you think:

  1. Faking interest in prospects is smart?
  2. Automating the faking of your interest will work?

If you do, how long until your target customers catch on? How long until they get inundated with fake sincerity coming from sales people and stop falling victim to your false signals of interest in them?

Why Would Sellers Fake Sincerity?

Scale. Automation. It’s the dirty promise of all things digital.

What’s the result of the automating of faked sincerity? Johnston says sellers want to a better way to scale — to start a relationship with a connection without having to go to the trouble of knowing something about them.

People are lazy. I get it. But robotic nonsense like this? Too many smart people are falling for this dangerous gimmick.

In a recent post on LinkedIn, Johnston says, “Doesn’t anyone find it ironic when these (automation) companies say: ‘We will automatically look at 500 profiles, scrape the data from the profiles, then automatically accept invitations to connect sent your way, and send the new connection a welcome message. It’s the ultimate in social selling!”

He rightly asks, “Wait a second, where was the social part? How social is it when you are starting off your relationship with someone by conning them?”

What’s the Harm?

Using “relationship starting” marketing automation software cheapens the user experience for everyone on LinkedIn. It also violates LinkedIn’s terms & conditions. But it gets worse for you. Because this practice introduces the element of doubt in your interactions with people.

“Is that really you who sent that message or your bot? Was that you who sent me a ‘welcome to my LinkedIn network’ message or a browser extension?” asks Johnston.

Author: Jeff Molander

Jeff Molander is the authority on making social media sell. He co-founded what became the Google Affiliate Network and Performics Inc., where he built the sales team. Today, he is the authority on effective prospecting communications techniques as founder of Communications Edge Inc. (formerly Molander & Associates Inc.) He's been in sales for over 2 decades. He is author of the first social selling book, Off the Hook Marketing: How to Make Social Media Sell for You.Jeff is a sales communications coach and creator of the Spark Selling technique—a means to spark more conversations with customers "from cold," speeding them toward qualification.

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