Writing a Compelling Linkedin InMail

InMails are expensive but quite useful.  If you take your time to devise  compelling text for your inmail, you will reap the benefits.  While each person won't be a slam dunk for the position at hand, you will have impressed them with your style enough to rise above the recruiter fray.  

1. The Subject:

I often spend the most time on this part.  It should clearly convey the reason for the message.  It should be catchy but not salesy.  It should be complimentary without being flowery.  It should be memorable.  And you should play to your audience.

Since I deal with startups, I often use a term like "Poised for Greatness" or Clean Whiteboard" . 

2. The Opening Line

I always start off with

Hi Candidate:

Impressive Background!

'3. The Grabber- Make it Exclusive

"I'm reaching out to a few choice profiles before I launch a full search..."

4. The content

A few lines about the company and role:  Not too much, you want to explain it yourself so leave some mystery.   Make sure to play to your audience still and talk about "what's in it for them"

(I don't really think it's necessary to pitch your company as your profile and company page is usually available at a click. )

5. The Close

Be bold!  One line I use is "Keeping in mind that most successful people find opportunity not when they're looking but when it knocks,  how's my timing?


Impressive Background. I'm representing what could be you next career move. 

The company is growing rapidly and has had a 500 % increase in business this year. It's an interesting and rewarding product that is already being used by millions. What you'll find exciting about this position is the challenges that exist for the talented individual who lands this position. This startup is growing quickly with BLUE CHIP CUSTOMERS, household names that you'll recognize 

As a result, there is many exciting decisions to be made to keep it in line with demands on customization. You won't find formulaic thinking here. As a company that specializes in innovation, they want the best and brightest creative visionaries who think so far out of the box that the box isn't even in the picture anymore. Where others say "can't", you say "how". 

I'd be happy to talk to you further about it. I'm reaching out to key individuals before I go on a full scale search for this.. You have an ideal background and I think it's a good match for you geographically.


Please feel free to comment or share your suggestions

Happy Sourcing!



Views: 17009

Comment by Will Branning on July 18, 2012 at 5:56pm

Thanks Bill - I appreciate everyone else's comments too - I need inspiration to be more creative!

Comment by Sandra McCartt on July 19, 2012 at 12:27am

Amy, my intro line for yours would be "CIO needs a "Big Deal" Person..Like you!

Comment by Johnny Campbell on July 19, 2012 at 11:32am

I spoke to a friend who is a HRD today and he was telling me that he took the job after receiving a call from his now boss (the CEO) who said "Hi ****, I think you should be our next HR Director. Now tell me, what do we need to talk about?" He ended up having a 90 minute chat followed by a 5 hour meeting and has never looked back. Recruiters need to just get to the point. Glad you started this conversation Bill

Comment by PJ Cunningham on July 19, 2012 at 12:44pm

Thank you for sharing - I too have always looked to improve on my inmail communication.  This is very very helpful. Thank you again.


Comment by Bill Schultz on July 19, 2012 at 12:46pm

@Chuck- The candidate's name goes in automatically if you use LI Recruiter.

@ Johnny- I see your point about personalization.  It hasn't been an issue for me.  If there is someone I feel must know something (Such as if a former colleague of theirs works at the company) I will personalize.  Otherwise, I freely send off dozens at a time and get 5 star feedback (whatever that is)

@ Craig- See above- To you it looks like something you send everyone else.  To them it looks personal.  It's like using the same script for your calls.  As far as subject, the 2 subjects I get most comments on (some say it's cheesy but that's why they responded) are Poised for Greatness  (and my all time favorite) This truly is the Position of a Lifetime

@Elise- Yes it's good to know your audience.

@ Amy- Happy to take a look at your pitch if you like.

Comment by Bill Schultz on July 19, 2012 at 12:57pm

@ Johnny- Yes, that's a good one.  I've used : ...About your next role at x...

@PJ & Will- Hope it helps

Comment by Steve Gomez on July 19, 2012 at 2:06pm

Great post!  Thanks for sharing!

Comment by Matt on July 22, 2012 at 3:26pm

Bill, nice post..

I have had pretty good luck getting positive responses when using something like the following:

I am reaching out to you in the spirit of networking through
LinkedIn to see if you might be able to provide me with some
professional insight, guidance or direction as it pertains to
Manufacturing leadership and Chemical Operations.

My business is retained executive search and I am helping a Chicago metro area business unit of a global manufacturer that is in need of a Director of Manufacturing to lead all aspects of the manufacturing function. As part of the company's executive committee, this person will report to the company President.

Detailed position information can be found at the following
link in pdf format. Please cut and paste the following link to
your browser.

{upload  a pdf file to box.net on your LinkedIn profile - shorten the link using bit.ly or tinyurl}

Any professional advice that you may have to offer is sincerely appreciated.

list your name, your company name, contact info

Comment by Elise Reynolds on July 22, 2012 at 11:30pm

I like your's Matt because it leaves it open not just for direct referalls but also the opportunity to share any info.


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