I don't seek to gain from a "something for nothing" mindset.  In fact, I give away some of my best work. I also like to review my work and apply the 80/20 rule to be more productive.

Here's why I quit sending InMails....

1. Incomplete Data At A Premium Cost

Most paid messaging systems let you track:

  • Opens
  • Clicks / Links
  • Time Spent Reading
  • Responses

What does LinkedIn allow their paid users to track? 

That's some of the data we want but what happens when you view InMail analytics? 

What's missing?

Open rates, among other things.

What do LinkedIn users want to know?

Here are a few searches I ran inside of LinkedIn's premium help center.




It's interesting to see repeat forum posts and minimal engagement or responses from LinkedIn on the topic.


2. It's Impossible To Improve 

Without being able to measure your messaging activities with the complete picture of your data.

How can you improve?

I like programs that allow me to track which messages were opened (when, and how many times) and analyze which subject lines are most effective. To further test and improve my messages.


3. Following Up Costs

You can read LinkedIn's InMail rules here. Bottom line, if you haven't received a response from a prospect and you want to send them a follow up message. That costs you another InMail.

So if you're a good recruiter or salesperson. You are penalized for doing your job properly.


4. It's Easy

Even though LinkedIn shifted from marketing a (spammy) template InMail approach to their current personalized approach.

It's still very easy to send InMails. And take the penalty. Which means everyone will bend the rules and accept the slow down. 

Making it even easier for prospects not to respond or click this button.

Or even unsubscribe. 

The upside. If they open your message.... and if they click "Not interested" at least you get an InMail back :)


5. LinkedIn Members Don't Receive Notifications 

You can easily adjust your settings on LinkedIn so that you do not receive InMails at all.

Or by hitting the unsubscribe button in an InMail. I've also spoken to candidates who prefer to setup a dummy email account for all of their LinkedIn notifications to go to.


6. Cost

The value LI puts on InMails is $10 per message.

However, a Recruiter Lite Account costs $99.95 per month (billed annually) and includes 30 InMails per month.

If InMails are valuable. Why have they devalued them here? 


7. Effectiveness 

One of my points is that low open rates equal even lower response rates.

Why else is open rate data being withheld?

You would not be reading this post if you were getting the 60% response rate advertised in this 2008 LinkedIn Marketing Collateral 

8. You Can't

If you suck at writing InMails or your candidates receive to much noise, you eventually work yourself into a position where you can't send any more. Because you run out. Or your results bottom out. 

Now you have to find other ways to be effective.


- - -


The other day on Quora a guy asked:

"How do I find a email address finding tools which has free option?"


He'll probably never use the tools I suggested. Here they are again.

My Top 2 Tools For Finding Email Addresses (both are free to try)


I hope this saves you time and money.



Clinton Buelter is the founder of ColdEmailForRecruiters. He’s a tech recruiter turned entrepreneur. With more than six years of recruiting experience, starting at a staffing agency and working his way into technical recruitment for software companies like VMware and Glassdoor.

(Photo by Jeff Djevdet)

Views: 693

Comment by Nicholas Meyler on December 18, 2015 at 2:57pm

LinkedIn has been charging me more like $179 per month for Recruiter Lite... is your information outdated or are they ripping me off (more than I thought)? 

Meanwhile, I'm getting a 30% acceptance rate, which is almost exactly the same as I had when there was no limit on number of Inmails sent.  "Improving the response rate" was code for "charging more money for less service".

Comment by Clinton Buelter on December 19, 2015 at 11:02am

You may want to look into that a bit more. Their pricing page appears to have raised a bit. "

  • No commitment for 30 days - cancel anytime
  • After your free month, you'll pay $119.95* / month" 



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