How to Use LinkedIn to Find a Date

You?ve tried Tinder. You?ve tried Coffee Meets Bagel. You?ve tried Bumble. You?ve tried OkCupid. It?s all the same. You?re not getting any replies. You?re getting ghosted. The dates that you get aren?t going anywhere. The whole process of swiping and chatting is taking so much time and you?re just done with the whole dating process. What about LinkedIn? There are some great eligible people there. They?re legitimate professionals so maybe you?ll have a chance? Why not give it a try?

Well in efforts to write this article, I had some help. I put a query out on HARO (Help a Reporter Out) to get some input on this. Little did I know that I was poking a sleeping lion?

Image for postTaken from Shutterstock. Credit tongcom photographer

I?m a career coach and that?s the worst idea I?ve heard. People are on LinkedIn to find jobs not dates.

? Jennifer Yeko, Founder and Career Coach from Ninja Recruiting

The responses kept coming into my inbox all saying the same thing?

That is a HARD no. Niet. No. Nein.

LinkedIn is a professional network. Not a personal one. There is nothing (on LinkedIn) more infuriating than accepting a connection request from someone just to be hit on. Even the instant hard sales tactic is not as bad.

So no. Don?t do it.

? Jodi Lasky, CEO & Founder of The Pride.

In an article written by Eric Martin, he says

It does not matter what words you use, if you?re reaching out to a woman on LinkedIn, there should be absolutely no non-professional content in that message. No matter how gleaming your endorsement of her physical features, she does not want to hear that from you on LinkedIn

Abigail MacAlpine who responded to a guy?s advances by posting his messages on her social media said this

Please do not use this website like Tinder, I don?t invite these comments with my profile or my work

Carlota Zee, Success Strategist from Carlota Worldwide says

?the idea that people are connecting with us in order to get a date is a huge turn off. I personally have been approached by men and women on LinkedIn who then ask me out, and trust that they all get rejected.

Here?s another response from Nance L. Schick from The Law Studio of Nance L. Schick

I am an attorney/mediator who still follows the original recommendations on LinkedIn. I don?t connect with people I don?t know, unless a mutual contact has connected us, and most of the people I am connected with are those I feel comfortable enough recommending or acknowledging a true relationship with. This is especially important because I know that potential clients will be reviewing my profile as part of the analysis of my neutrality when I am mediating or arbitrating. If someone uses LinkedIn, the professional network, to flirt with me or contact me for anything other than a mutually beneficial business connection, I will not only remove them from my contacts list, I will likely block them permanently. Please do not encourage people to use the site for dating. It is not what LinkedIn was designed for, and it violates the User Agreement/Professional Community Policies.

We even got tagged in an InstaStory

Image for postInsta handle @torihatesyou

To people who are considering using LinkedIn to find dates, you have been warned! Your efforts will not be well received! Save yourself! Do not use LinkedIn to find dates!

?But! Dating apps suck! And! What if my true love is on LinkedIn??

Well?it is possible. Remember that story where a couple met on LinkedIn? Albeit, their intent started professional. So?how do you do it? Well here?s Sonya from Her Aspiration and some advice on how to navigate through LinkedIn.

Besides its traditional use, LinkedIn can be successfully used to find dates. It could even work better than a traditional dating site, especially for the single professionals looking to meet someone with a similar background and affinities.

Here are a few tips to use LinkedIn for dating:

Focus on a target group: LinkedIn encompasses a huge pool of users with different backgrounds, professions, and interests. Narrow down your searches by focusing on a specific target group (e.g. scientists based in LA area, aged between 30 and 40);

Select potential dates: Not all users that correspond to your search criteria are potential dates. The first thing is to cut out those profiles with few connections, which are inactive or fake. Next, find out whether your potential date is available. Type their name in a search engine and check the results. Try to find personal information on the one you like, including the marital status.

Approach a potential date: If the person is single, approach them by sending a request to connect your profiles. Alongside, also send a message asking them out. Since LinkedIn is not a dating site, my advice is to be straightforward about your intentions but not too pushy. Just sending a message asking your potential date for a date in a ?professional? manner would suffice.

Accept rejection: LinkedIn is a network created for business purposes and many of its members are not interested in dating. You will get tons of negative answers while many others will ignore your message altogether. Don?t over-think it and just move on to a new potential date.

Meet your date: When you?ve found someone who wants to date you, enjoy your time. Keep expectations low and remember, even if it doesn?t end with romance, you can at least learn something at a professional level from your date. So it?s a win-win situation.

That said, Sonya was the only response I received that was in favor of this idea. She?s not alone in this opinion, here?s an article that gives tips to men on how to use LinkedIn to find dates and another article predicting that LinkedIn will become another just dating site. There?s even a lady who wrote an article talking about the success that she?s had using LinkedIn as a dating site! So, if you are an eternal optimist and you decide to use LinkedIn to find a date?be prepared for the negative responses. However, if you are risk averse and terrified of rejection, do not use LinkedIn. If you are not getting any luck on dating apps, do not use LinkedIn. If you?re still not convinced that LinkedIn does not hold the answer to your dating woes, here are more responses ?

I wouldn?t recommend logging into LinkedIn purely as a way to find dates, but if you are looking for new business or networking connections, then feel free to add in some people you find attractive, and you can get to know them on a business level first. Then, if there is mutual attraction you can take it to the next level. The best part about potential dates on LinkedIn is you already know they are hardworking, ambitious, and on your business-level before you get to know them. ? Stacy Caprio

Here?s Len Rubel, Founder of Strategy For Dating

LinkedIn should not be used to find dates the way other channels are. It is designed to be a professional environment, and many people will find it inappropriate to use it for dating. However, as a professional networking channel it IS meant to connect people. LinkedIn profiles allow people to showcase their careers, interests, passions and hobbies. So if you change your approach, LinkedIn can be used to find dating prospects. Do not look for a date on LinkedIn, but look for people who share your interests and connect on that. If it leads to messaging or coffee as a next step that?s great. If it doesn?t at least you won?t look foolish for trying.

Last but not least, here?s Lisa Barone, Chief Marketing Officer of OverIt.

LinkedIn is a valuable place to make business connections,to establish thought leadership, and to grow your career and your business. But it is NOT a dating site.

Attempting to use LinkedIn as a platform for optimizing your love life comes with some serious pitfalls.

You look like a creep. Speaking as a woman in tech, it?s hard enough to safely network and to establish business relationships. The moment someone slips in a non-professional comment into a message, women have been trained to drop offenders into a bucket they?ll never recover from. I?m on LinkedIn to make connections; but not that kind of connection. It can be incredibly demeaning to get a message commenting on my head shot or anything that is not about what I have accomplished professionally. You also can?t tell from my LinkedIn profile whether I am single or married.

You close off future business partnerships: People remember how you met. If the way you came into my network felt inappropriate, I?m going to avoid you from now under eternity. I?m also going to encourage others to do so, as well.

You put yourself at risk. Using LinkedIn as a dating site puts you at risk for being publicly shamed by someone who may find it your remark inappropriate. They not only have your words in writing, they also know where you work and who else you?re connected to.

I was pretty amazed when I received these responses. In what other issue have we been able to come to a near consensus? Whether you agree or disagree with the above comments, LinkedIn is a great community where professionals from all walks of life come together to help each other on their professional journey. Treasure that community.

An observation I made was that most of the responses I received were from women, which made me feel that there was a voice that was missing here. The point that Lisa Barone brought up is worthy of elaboration. It?s hard for women to feel safe while making connections and it can be a challenge to be regarded as a professional. This is the reason why LinkedIn is a definite no-go zone when it comes to dating. In the movement for respect at the work place and equality ? equal opportunity and pay, LinkedIn has become a space where women expect to be seen for their profession and achievements rather than their appearances. Respect that space. LinkedIn positions itself as a platform to make professional connections and as such professional behaviour is expected.

Image for postAfter I published this article, I received this message on LinkedIn. Inappropriate use of Linkedin or new client?

Let?s preserve the intent of LinkedIn. Don?t use it as a dating site. Lisa Barone has the last word.


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