Should You Make Your LinkedIn Connections Private?

Next to deciding whether or not to purchase a premium version of LinkedIn, perhaps the most-asked question I hear as a LinkedIn Trainer is this: “Should I make my first degree LinkedIn connections private?”

Before giving my answer, I always end up flashing back to my freshman year of high school.

Back then, the early 1990s were in full swing, complete with rolled jeans and big bangs:


In fact, I think I still have spots on my lungs from the ungodly amounts of “White Rain” hairspray my older sisters used to get their bangs spiked to ski jump levels.

Back in those days, I was in the midst of a full-blown, high school drama — The past couple of girls I’d been dating ended up meeting a friend of mine, liking him more and dumping me for my buddy.

I remember sitting down in my dad’s home office, rocking back and forth in his green recliner and ranting about the situation.

“How the heck am I supposed to stop this guy from stealing my girlfriends?” I half-asked, half-yelled.

My dad just smiled.

“John, when you find one who really likes you and cares about you, you’re not going to have to worry about this guy or anybody else,” he said. “Real love doesn’t work like that.”


If Your Connections Truly Love You, Why Be Afraid?

I’ve always remembered that analogy when it comes to worrying about a competitor “stealing” or “poaching” my clients, connections or customers here on LinkedIn or anywhere else.

If I do my job and deliver an incredible product or service, and if I treat my customers and clients like rock stars, I shouldn’t have to worry about losing them to the competition.

That’s why personal, 1-on-1 marketing and client interaction works so well on a platform like LinkedIn.

Being able to create social bonds and friendships that go beyond a simple product or service exchange not only make doing business more fun, but also help customers think twice about leaving given that they genuinely like you and/or your company.

Of course, if you’re in a purely transaction-based situation, where your customers are only using your product or service because of price or something similar, it becomes harder not to lose them to competitors when someone offering the same service or product comes along and tries to poach them.

That’s why, whenever possible, you want to make sure you’re not competing on price.

Price is only an Issue in the Absence of Value!

Here’s an example: I gladly pay more for a smart phone than I need to.

But because of the work Apple has done to make the iPhone unique, and because I’ve spent years getting indoctrinated into the Apple ecosystem and using so many of its products, I feel a loyalty and passion for Apple that makes Samsung or other competitor phones seem like cheap junk by comparison.

I’m not interested in leaving Apple for a cheaper alternative … I love my Apple gadgets and gizmos too much to even think of “cheating” on them.

Of course, if a garbage hauler knocks on my door and offers to save me $10.00 per month on trash pickup, I’m all ears.

In this case, I’m only concerned about price – I don’t know the people who pick up my garbage, they don’t make an effort to know me or ask what I think or care about, and garbage pickup is garbage pickup, so for me it’s easy to leave them when a better offer comes along.

I don’t know what situation you’re in on LinkedIn, but I wouldn’t sweat a competitor “stealing” your connections unless you work in an industry that has top-secret client lists or something like that.

The Solution: Make Your Product or Service Better!

Otherwise, work on making your product/service the best it can be, treat your customers like you’d treat a beloved family member, and you’ll be fine.

As an added benefit, those happy customers will go out and recruit more people to your side … along with rebuffing the offers of other suitors.

With all that said, if you do want to make your LinkedIn connections private, here’s a video showing you how it works:


Want More? Get the Free Video Training!

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About the Author

John Nemo is the Author of the Amazon Bestseller “LinkedIn Riches: How to Leverage the World’s Largest Professional Network to Enhance Your Brand, Generate Leads and Increase Revenue!”

Since 2012, he has helped hundreds of Small Business Owners, Entrepreneurs, Business Coaches, Consultants, Trainers, Sales Executives, Business Development Executives and others use LinkedIn to get in front of prospects, generate sales leads and close deals.