Do Your PR with a LinkedIn Bot (Easy guide!)
My name is Dan Sevigny and I'm the CEO here at Spooky Digital.
We do a lot of press and public relations, and are always looking for new ways to get on the radar at mainstream media outlets.
But how do you go about doing that? Journalists are constantly bombarded by emails from marketers, publicists, and entrepreneurs. Everyone wants to get featured, and it's easy to understand why:
- It's good for your SEO.
- You build brand equity and become known as a thought-leader.
- You gain a ton of social proof and trust with potential customers.
Press & Public Relations is all about building relationships, and making connections.
One possible way you can do this is by using a LinkedIn bot like LinkedHelper to bulk connect with journalists at targeted publications you want to build relationships with. In this detailed guide, I'm going to explain exactly how you can do that, and what you can say to journalists you reach out to.
I should note: this technique is technically against LinkedIn's terms of service and could get you banned from the platform. My advice on that is to act carefully, and mindfully. I believe that this rule is completely reasonable, and helps stop spammers from annoying people. At the same time, I don't think anyone cares as long as you don't get out of line.
The method I'm going to show you today actually provides value to the people you reach out to, appears to be a personal note and won't get you reported. I've taught this method to a number of people who use it successfully, and haven't had any problems yet.
The most common misconception about bots and automation is that you can't send highly personalized emails or messages with them. The truth is, when you have data on a contact, you can dynamically insert that data into the message to make it seem hand-written and personal (I'll explain more on this in a moment).
If you're nervous about it, you don't have to use LinkedHelper for this method to work--you could simply copy and paste the same message manually to multiple people for an equally effective outreach campaign.
Step 1: Download LinkedHelper
Another reason I'm pretty okay with suggesting LinkedHelper to people, is that it's available as a Chrome extension on the Chrome Web Store. If there was anything crazy or malicious about it, you wouldn't find it there.
If you don't have Chrome, grab that first.
Then, head over to the download page for the LinkedHelper extension. You get a 1-week free trial to see how it works for you, not set-up or registration required at all. Very convenient.
Step 2: Go to Any LinkedIn Page
Once the extension is installed, just head over to any LinkedIn page and the extension will pop up in the lower right-hand corner of your browser window.
The design of the app could use some love, and it's a little overwhelming at first (so many tabs and options), but ultimately I think that's a good thing and really goes to show how versatile this little plugin really is.
Step 3: Set up your Connection Message
Your connection message should be short and to the point.
If you're reaching out to staff writers (full time employees at news organizations rather than contributors), be aware that many of them can't accept gifts (though they can accept practically anything for 'review').
If you're messaging contributors, those rules don't apply.
Your message should...
- Be short, well-written.
- Clearly demonstrate the value you can offer them.
- Make your intentions clear (you're looking to meet people at their publication).
Above all else, BE CREATIVE.
Put yourself in their shoes...Imagine you're a busy, overworked news-person and you're receiving the message you're about to send.
Does your message sound like bullshit? Does it set off alarms and sound disingenuous, salesy, or spammy?
Is the value you're offering something they're actually going to be interested in?
I'm networking and looking for opportunities to connect and barter services. I've been in [Insert an industry you're in] for [insert amount of time you've been doing it].
Would love to hear what kind of projects your working on, so I can find a way to help! Chat soon?
Best, Your Name
I'm networking and looking for opportunities to connect and teach people about [Insert something interesting you do].
Would love to teach you [something instersting you do]. Chat soon?
Best, Your Name
Step 4: Search for Profiles
Step 5: Preview & Send Your Message
Step 6: Follow up & Build Relationships
When people respond to your connection request, the real work begins! Now, it's up to you to find a way you can be valuable to those you're talking to. Be creative, and go the extra mile. Arrange for in-person meetings, if possible, and give them as much value as you can.
If you need help coming up with ideas for contacting people in your industry, please feel free to reach out! I'm more than happy to offer up some advice and a plan of action. Happy Spooky Networking!
BONUS: Interview with LinkedHelper Developer
I reached out to the creator of LinkedHelper, Alex Erin. Here were the questions I asked...
1) Who are you and how did the idea for LinkedHelper come about?
2) How do you personally use LinkedHelper?
3) What else are you working on?
4) Preference: Vampires, Werewolves, or Zombies?
My name is Alex and I'm the creator. Thank you, Dan!
I always love to hear success stories of using Linked Helper!
I've developed Linked Helper to find & hire developers for my another start-up. I'd spent weeks for manual recruiting. I talked with professional recruiters and realized that they did the same.
Fortunately I didn't know about existing tools and I developed Linked Helper - the most rated app in Chrome Store for LinkedIn. At this moment I'm using Linked Helper to sell my other product...
Preference: Vampires, Werewolves, or Zombies?
To become or to be eaten by? 😛
By the way, you will find a lot of useful stuff here:
HOW TO https://medium.com/linked-helper/tagged/how-to
Related: 6 PR Tips to Supercharge Your Public Relations (PR for Business)