Using LinkedIn automation tools is an excellent way to improve your outreach efficiency on the social media platform. But you have to be careful when automating. If you aren’t careful or automate LinkedIn in ways that go against the platform’s policies or best practices, you could find your account locked. Many people refer to this as “LinkedIn jail,” since you can’t do much, if anything, with your account.
But the good news is that it is incredibly easy to automate LinkedIn connections and other aspects of the platform without raising red flags. By learning the LinkedIn automation do’s and don’ts, you can maximize your results without ending up in LinkedIn jail or annoying connections.
We’ve gathered the most important of these do’s and don’ts in one place, along with extra advice regarding LinkedIn jail.
Before getting into the do’s and don’ts of LinkedIn automation, it’s important to understand LinkedIn jail. This will help create the context for the advice that follows. Remember that your goal for following our do’s and don’ts is to avoid LinkedIn jail and other negative consequences. By understanding what consequences you are avoiding, you will have a better idea of why it is so important to follow the best practices and the following advice.
Although LinkedIn jail is not an official term, its meaning is pretty universal. It refers to being signed out and locked out of your LinkedIn account. When you try to log in, you see a message that your account is restricted.
There are multiple reasons your account may end up restricted. Sometimes, LinkedIn may suspect that it is fake, but that hopefully won’t happen if you follow all of our advice.
The most common reason for someone running LinkedIn campaigns to have their account restricted or locked out is mismanagement. Simply put, closing or restricting accounts helps LinkedIn run its platform how it envisioned without its users worrying about spam or harassment.
One of the best ways to avoid LinkedIn jail is to understand the most common reasons that accounts end up there. Then, you can just avoid these things. Most of them come down to not using the platform properly or not following its guidelines. They include:
Unfortunately, many of the reasons you are put in LinkedIn jail come down to the platform’s algorithms. This is inconvenient because they change regularly, and no one can know everything. That’s why any reputable LinkedIn automation agency will err on the side of caution and do its best to stay up-to-date with the latest algorithms and best practices.
This guide should make it much easier to keep your account active and unrestricted while using LinkedIn outreach automation. All the do’s listed below are safe strategies and actions for you to use. Some of them can even help prevent your account from getting flagged. Meanwhile, the don’ts can put your account at risk of being flagged.
Simply put, if you want to avoid LinkedIn jail and keep your LinkedIn account active, just follow our advice for automation do’s and don’ts.
As with any type of automation, the best use of LinkedIn automation software is with repetitive tasks. From sending messages to requesting connections to visiting profiles, a lot of your tasks for LinkedIn outreach are repetitive. But the good news is that you don’t actually need to do these tasks manually, which is where the best LinkedIn automation software comes in handy.
By automating these tasks, you can focus your efforts on the things that do require a human touch. For example, it could be having automated LinkedIn messages early in the sales funnel and handling them yourself later on to push lead conversion.
Or you can take advantage of your LinkedIn message automation tool to reduce the number of people needed on your team. Save your budget for other things instead of hiring someone for a task that could be automated.
Automating repetitive tasks is great, but what about those that you can’t effectively automate? For example, many tools won’t be able to sort through your invites for you and choose which ones you should accept. At least, they won’t do so perfectly.
So, delegate this task to someone, like an assistant or intern. You can also have them delete people from your network if the number is getting large enough to pose a risk of your account being flagged.
If someone reaches out to you on LinkedIn, take full advantage of the situation and add more value. The easiest way to do this is to create a lead magnet and share it with the people who reach out to you. You can also include it when you automate LinkedIn messages for people further along in the sales funnel.
The lead magnet will reinforce the idea that you add value to their time on LinkedIn. It will help develop trust and the relationship you want.
As a bonus, this is a great way to get people to opt into your emails. As we’ll discuss later, you should always get permission before using the email addresses you get from LinkedIn.
Whether you are responding to a message or starting the conversation, Alfred’s library of LinkedIn message templates can come in handy. We have hundreds of templates, each of which can be personalized. Or you can create your own LinkedIn connect template.
One of the most common mistakes with LinkedIn InMail automation or any other type of automation is forgetting to personalize. This can lead to robotic-sounding messages and give the impression that your prospect is just another potential lead. Adding a touch of personalization makes prospects feel special, increasing the chances of a conversion.
The good news is that automating personalized LinkedIn messages is just as easy as automating a non-personalized message as long as you have the right software. The best LinkedIn messaging templates will have plenty of opportunities for personalization. Use these tools to add personalization by mentioning:
Adding personalization to your LinkedIn message templates will improve the response rate and help move your prospects along your sales funnel. Best of all, it is still automated, just like the message itself.
Alfred goes beyond personalization, offering hyper-personalization. There are already various personalization values built into Alfred, but you can also add others. Just import a .csv file of your leads. Alfred automatically captures the extra columns, letting you add more customization to your InMail templates for sales or any other template.
Even if you aren’t going to automate the creation of LinkedIn content, the content that you create can affect your LinkedIn lead automation. As such, you want to always create great content. That content includes nearly anything you would make on the platform, such as:
You will notice that some of those, such as the InMail and connection requests, can be automated. But others, like the posts you create and your profile, won’t be automated.
The key is to remember that every single time you engage on LinkedIn, you are enhancing your brand and the public perception of it. When you automate LinkedIn outreach, you will notice better results if you have great content. People are more likely to respond to your connection request if you provide value and seem authentic.
As mentioned, posts are one of the many types of content you want to generate on LinkedIn. We mentioned that you can’t automate creating them, but there is an aspect you can automate—social media post scheduling.
The idea here is that you can set aside a chunk of time once a week or even once a month to create all the content for your posts. Then, you use your social media post scheduler to automatically post each at a given time.
Following a social media post schedule on LinkedIn is important for a few reasons. We already mentioned that it helps show that you provide valuable content. That will increase the response rate to your LinkedIn connection requests.
But scheduling a LinkedIn post also helps you stay fresh in the memory of people once you connect with them. After all, you don’t want people to accept your personalized LinkedIn connection request and then forget about you. Yes, you will send them additional messages in the future to keep your brand in their mind, but posts also do this.
Additionally, creating posts lets you continue providing valuable content to your connections. This way, they don’t decide to remove their connection.
As a bonus, you can get help from tools throughout the entire process. Social media post templates streamline the process of creating the posts, then your LinkedIn post scheduler posts your content at regular intervals without you having to remember to do so.
With Alfred, you can do more than just schedule posts on LinkedIn. The free social media post scheduler included with Alfred also includes Facebook groups and pages, Twitter, and Instagram.
Not everyone who you reach out to on LinkedIn prefers that platform. Some may spend more time on Twitter or prefer emails or another method. The best way to overcome this is via multichannel marketing. In addition to reaching out on LinkedIn, you also talk to people on other platforms.
This does a few things. As mentioned, it ensures that you reach out to people on their preferred platforms. But it also increases your touchpoints, keeping your brand fresh in their mind.
Alfred makes using multiple marketing channels a breeze. You can set up a LinkedIn campaign sequence that includes as many steps as you want and goes between channels as many times as you want. Start on LinkedIn, then go to Twitter DMs before going to email and back to one of the others. Using this type of multichannel marketing automation lets you take advantage of marketing across several channels without having to sacrifice your time doing so manually.
But this “do” comes with one important “don’t” regarding email. Always make sure you have permission from your LinkedIn connection before reaching out over email as part of your multi channel marketing. The law requires you to get an opt-in before you email people for certain reasons. It’s best to err on the side of caution with this. That said, you may want to look into the reasons you can reach out over email without explicit permission.
In addition to the legal concerns, don’t forget about the effect on your reputation. People will get annoyed if you send them an email right after they accept your connection request. This can seem like spam to many people, so keep it in mind when designing your LinkedIn campaign. Make a step in your campaign LinkedIn where you explicitly ask if you can reach out over email.
When finding prospects for your automated LinkedIn lead generation, you don’t want to leave any stone unturned. This includes putting LinkedIn events and groups to your advantage.
The best automation tools will let you send individual LinkedIn group messages to members of a group, complete with the templates and personalization you get with any other message. You can do the same with an event on LinkedIn.
Alfred can find leads from a LinkedIn event, group, or post. This is just one way that Alfred helps you find potential prospects in your industry with relevant interests.
As with any other type of digital marketing or outreach, you should have a strategy in mind as you create your LinkedIn campaign management and design the campaign itself. This should include setting goals and having a plan to achieve them.
Goals are a key part of your strategy, and you have to make them realistic to achieve the best results. For example, don’t expect to double your outreach overnight. Expect to build it slowly. If you aren’t sure what goals would be realistic, look at your current LinkedIn campaign analytics. This will give you a good starting point.
Speaking of LinkedIn analytics, take full advantage of them to confirm your progress toward your goals. There is plenty of information built into the LinkedIn analytics dashboard within the platform itself. But the best automation tools will also include a LinkedIn analytics tool.
Alfred has its own analytics dashboard to provide useful insights. Use it to see the effectiveness of your outreach methods in real time. View detailed stats and analytics, such as leads generated, replies, and acceptance rate.
Keep an eye on the analytics for LinkedIn throughout your campaign to confirm it is going well. Use the analytics and reporting to spot when you need to make improvements or changes.
Looking at the do’s of LinkedIn automation, you hopefully noticed the common themes of personalization and adding value. It should go without saying that spam is the opposite of both. As such, you want to avoid spam at all costs. There are a few issues with spam.
First, it is a horrible way to build trust; you will do the opposite. People will associate your messages with spam or generic messages. Even if you improve your strategy in the future, this can mean they simply won’t open your messages. They may even block you forever. Of course, it will also hurt your brand reputation.
On top of that, sending spam messages will quickly eat into your LinkedIn daily limits. You want to make the most of the LinkedIn limits, so ensure every message or connection request you send is personalized and offers value to your prospects.
We’ve briefly mentioned that LinkedIn limits connections and other interactions. If you get too close to these limits or go over them, your account may be flagged and restricted. So, it should be obvious that you want to stay under the LinkedIn message limit per day.
The challenge is that LinkedIn doesn’t publish official limits. The LinkedIn messaging limits will depend on your account activity and other factors. The best thing to do is err on the side of caution. Or you can look for a tool or campaign manager LinkedIn that sets those limits for you.
With Alfred, you don’t have to worry about LinkedIn InMail limits or any of the platform’s other limits. Alfred handles it all for you, including on messages, connections, and other activity that comes with limits. Alfred has unique algorithms that detect your LinkedIn account type. From there, the system automatically sets a conservative limit for daily connection requests, emailing limits, messages, and profile views. This is set conservatively to prevent flagging. But you have the option to edit Alfred’s limits if you want.
It’s natural to want to be salesy in your interactions on LinkedIn. After all, your ultimate goal is sales. But you don’t want to sound salesy. Instead, your goal with automated LinkedIn messaging should be to build a relationship. You want to seem like a real person who wants to connect over mutual interests, not a salesperson. This leads to trust and more sales in the long run.
So, focus on building trust and value in the relationship, not pushing the sale. The sale will come eventually.
Your LinkedIn automation should be just one part of your online marketing. So, be sure to include other marketing best practices into your Linked strategy. For example, include keywords in your profile and any LinkedIn articles you post.
You slipped up somehow and now you are in LinkedIn jail with a restricted account. What should you do?
The first step should be disconnecting your automation tool or tools. Before you reconnect it (or connect a different one), make sure that it doesn’t violate LinkedIn’s policies. If you are using a less-than-reputable automation tool, this may be the source of the issue. Many tools violate the terms of service. This can be a serious issue, but the best tools use advanced technology to prevent LinkedIn from noticing those violations.
The team behind Alfred stays up-to-date with LinkedIn’s policies. Its services are 100% cloud based, using a proprietary technology that allows it to work around LinkedIn’s policies and terms of service. This means your account is highly unlikely to be flagged or restricted unless you go around the safeguards it has in place or also use another tool.
If you are unsure about the safety of the tool you used, delete any account information you registered with the service. Then, restrict its access. For added security, clear the browser cache.
In many cases, LinkedIn will just issue a general warning. This is especially common if the issues weren’t your fault or you made a minor issue. With a warning, your account should be back up in a matter of days, sometimes within hours.
You may feel tempted to make a new account and pledge to yourself that you will follow best practices as a LinkedIn account manager. Don’t do this. LinkedIn does not view this favorably. LinkedIn is likely to detect the activity is coming from the same IP and investigate or just ban you.
If you can’t create a new account, what are you supposed to do? It’s simple—reach out to LinkedIn help. Unfortunately, this can be easier said than done, especially if you don’t know how to contact the platform. Sending an email or filling out the contact form doesn’t always work.
The best option is to reach out to LinkedIn customer service on Twitter. Their handle is @LinkedInHelp. Write a Tweet and tag them in it instead of sending a DM at first. This increases the chances that they will respond because others can see it.
When you talk to LinkedIn support, don’t mention your automation tool. Instead, state your case. Ask why your account was restricted and express a willingness to change.
Once you get your account back, take it slowly with your efforts. Don’t even go close to the daily limit for LinkedIn connections. Be similarly limited about accepting invitations.
You can use an automation tool again in the future but do so cautiously. Most importantly, choose a reliable LinkedIn automation tool that won’t get your account flagged. And either wait to start using it or start by using it to send just a handful of messages and requests.
One of the first things to do when you log back into your LinkedIn account is to look at your connection requests and invitations. Remove any that would be considered spammy and could get your account flagged again. If they aren’t valuable to you, get rid of them.
When used properly, LinkedIn automation is a simple way to make the most of your time. Automate repetitive tasks to save yourself and your team time for interactions that require more effort and a human touch. But as you use automation, you need to take care so your account doesn’t get flagged, as you don’t want to end up in LinkedIn jail.
Staying out of LinkedIn jail is as simple as following the best practices and the do’s and don’ts of LinkedIn automation. Use automation wisely, taking advantage of personalization and paying attention to limits so your account doesn’t get flagged. But don’t go overboard or exceed the LinkedIn limit on connections. The right automation tool can handle all of that for you, including tracking limits so you don’t go over them.
Alfred has a vast library of templates, lets you personalize your automation, and tracks your limits for you, among other tools. Meet Alfred with a demo, then start a free 7-day trial without any credit card required.