An Anatomy Of A Perfect LinkedIn Connection Message + Templates

Today will be all about connection requests.

LinkedIn connection requests seem pretty simple: you have to provide reasons for adding a person. Your message should be personalised and contain a common ground so you don’t sound like a bot. Actually, getting closer to your audience is the only way to get heard.

Anyway, we still receive something like this in our inboxes, don’t we?

LinkedIn Connection Request Message - Bad Examples

“Your name popped up” — the most easy thing you can write. Such messages tell that you haven’t done a thing to learn about a person before reaching out. You just copy-paste the most common connection request.

LinkedIn Connection Request Message - Bad Examples 1

And our favorite:

LinkedIn Connection Requests - Bad

Yes, this was a connection request 🙂

So, in this guide we’re going to go through some important steps you should take before creating a connection message so you won’t end up sounding like the messages above.

Connection Request — Make It Or Break It

If you’re going to communicate with a person, it’s pretty logical you should have some things in common. 

But…it’s impossible to have things in common with everybody you want to reach?!

  1. You don’t want to reach out to all people out there on LinkedIn. You target only your audience.
  2. People appreciate it when you know what you want, talk in clear & plain language and if you’re from “the same Universe.”

If you manage to do audience research and implement our hacks, you won’t sound like a bot.

In order for somebody to treat you like a real person (not a bot), you should first do audience research.

The closer you get to your target audience, the more they warm up to you.

LinkedIn Connection Message: Always Start With Research

We’ve been through this million times. 

To write a compelling message, you should first conduct research and learn about your audience. Only then you can talk the same language.

Nothing has changed! It’s still one of the proven ways to “unfreeze your audience’s icy exterior”. 

LinkedIn Connection Requests - Start With Research

Audience Research is the bedrock of your LinkedIn outreach strategy.

Wait, isn’t just everybody in marketing rambles on about the importance of knowing your audience? It became a buzzword that everyone just passes by and ignores. 

Let’s go back for just a minute.

What does it mean — researching your audience?

How To Write An Ideal LinkedIn Connection Message: Research & ICP (Ideal Customer Profile)

Suppose you want to connect with people who’re in the same industry (for example, you build a CRM with a focus on email management & customer support). You want to reach out to c-level executives at SaaS companies.

To begin with, let’s perform an initial search.

With broad filters, you can use your personal LinkedIn profile. For a narrower search you’ll have to buy a LinkedIn Sales Navigator.

So, you go to your LinkedIn account > My Network > Connections > Search with filters.

Tick the box with 2d and 3d connections so you can find people outside of your acquaintances.

Choose All filters and here you’ll have to specify your search criteria.

Scroll down to Industry and put click Add Industry.

LinkedIn Search

Put in “Information Technology and services”  — you’re looking for SaaS executives, right?

Specify Location. If you want to break it down to a city, LinkedIn will probably ask you to purchase LinkedIn Sales Navigator. Thus, it’s better to begin with more broad filters, like the United States. 

Click on Show results.

Let’s start with the first profile that popped up at the top.

How To Search People On LinkedIn

You can see now that Jennifer is a CEO at Pager Duty.

LinkedIn For Prospecting

If you make a visit to their website, you’ll see that they’re experts in incident management and also that they configure on-call schedules.

They’re trusted by a whole lot of leading companies.

Searching your audience on LinkedIn

What else?

If you scroll down her profile, you’ll see that she was quite a participant of her university’s activities.

Searching People On LinkedIn

So, Jennifer is a proactive lady with an aptitude for leadership. She also played golf during her studying.

Let’s suppose you examined 20 profiles that popped first and PagerDuty seems like a company that might be interested in your product.

The next part is to find as much information as you want so you can get a fair idea of what they’re doing, what their challenges are.

So, you go to their blog and start reading posts…

Exploring Your Target Audience On LinkedIn

Ok, now imagine how many blog posts you’ll have to read to get the general idea of what each of your prospects has been up to recently.

And you want to automate your outreach.

Here is where ICP comes into play.

ICP – Ideal Customer Profile

Idea Customer Profile is a picture of an ideal customer that you use to segment your audience. 

This is done so you can create different campaigns for different groups of people and make those campaigns highly personalized.

With the help of an ideal customer profile, you can narrow down your search by using precise filtering: add job title, city, keywords, etc. This way, you won’t have to inspect each of the prospects’ profiles because you’ll have a common ground or a conversation starter based on your ICP.

How to create an Ideal Customer Profile

There are some general factors that you take into account when creating an ICP:

Business factors:

  • Company size by employees
  • Company revenue
  • Industry or vertical
  • Geography

Demographic factors:

  • Age
  • Sex
  • Job Title

Psychographic factors:

  • Lifestyle
  • Goals
  • Pain Points
  • Success metrics

Geographic factors:

  • Country
  • City
  • Region

Go through each of them and define which one will fit your ideal customer. 

For example, in our case with SaaS C-level executives, you may come up with:

  • Company size by employees: 30-50
  • Industry or vertical: Information technology and services
  • Geography: United States
  • Age: 35+
  • Sex: Male/Female
  • Job Title: CEO, Managing Partner
  • Lifestyle: Fan of outdoor activities, healthy habits, sport-driven, growth mindset, life-long learner
  • Goals: To increase market share & revenue 
  • Personal goals: to reduce the amount of time they spend in company meetings
  • Pain Points: low reply rate, people in company talking about outreach strategies in totally different ways
  • Success metrics: reply rate, conversions, LTV, ROI
  • Country: US

It’s good when you map your customer’s profiles to be on the same page with your team:

ICP - Ideal Customer Profile on LinkedIn

Download your free template for creating an ICP.

Now you have your first ICP. Start creating campaigns targeting this specific group of people. 

Connection Request Templates To Reach Out To Your Ideal Customer witch Real Examples.

Now, let’s go through some templates that you can use to target a specific group of people that matches your ICP.

Feel free to copy-paste these messages and use them in your outreach campaigns.

  • Common ground: Job title
Hello {first_name},

I'm a CEO at {company}. Always looking for more leaders in {your_industry} to add to my network. Would love to connect!


See, suddenly your message doesn’t sound like a bot. 

  • Common ground: University
Hello {first_name},

I see that you graduated from my university, {name}. I’m an {specialty} major and would be excited to connect and read more about your work. I’ll be in your area in a few weeks for vacation; if you have any free time, I’d love to meet up for coffee.

{your name}.
  • Common ground: City or region + job title
Hey, {first_name},

Hope everything is well in {country}.

Looking at your profile, it seems like you’re on top of your leadership game at {company}. You're doing a great job there.

Would love to connect!

  • Common ground: Industry
Hey {first_name}, always looking for more leaders in {your_industry} to add to my network. Would love to connect!

  • Common ground: Following the same influencer, facing the same challenge
Hi {first_name}, 

Saw you also follow {name_of_the_person}.

I found his guide on {subject_of_guide} very useful, especially if you’re up to {name_of_the_challenge}.

Would love to connect with you.

  • Common ground: Mutual group
Hi {first_name}, 

I noticed your profile and wanted to reach out as I see we are both members of the {name of the group}.

Would love to connect with you.

  • Common ground: Engagement into the same viral post
Hi {first_name},

I saw you also commented on the inspiring post that {name_of_the person} wrote.

I think he is a really top influencer, one of the best.

Would love to keep updated on your content as well.


  • Common ground: Same sport/activity + industry
Hello {first_name},

Great to meet a {sport} fan!

I’ve been in {industry} for {number_of_years} now and always looking for more leaders in {your_industry}.

to add to my network. Would love to connect!


Check our other customizable templates for LinkedIn outreach.


LinkedIn in a way is an intimate place.

If you wanted to just keep up with a person’s content, you would subscribe to their blogs! Or follow them on Twitter.

LinkedIn is a very private universe. People decide whether they want to see you in their connections or not. In order to be welcomed, you have to speak the same language with your audience, not just be friendly and charming.

That’s why creating an ideal customer profile is crucial, especially when you get clear on their interests & motivations. When it comes to connection requests, the more precisely you’ve segmented your audience, the better will be your connection request reply rate. 

Hyper-personalization means you target people by their interests & motivations. Finding common ground with your ideal customer is not that difficult: you have to think where your audience hangs out and scrape them. By creating a personalized connection request, you save your time dealing with low reply rate, and instead build a nice ground for future communication and closing a deal. 

By the way, here is what you can do once the connection is established:

How To Network On LinkedIn Without Sounding Sales-y — Full Message Sequences

Content creator at Closely. I write about marketing & B2B sales. Welcome to our LinkedIn Sales Hacking Universe ;)