LinkedIn Inmail breakdown
5 min read

LinkedIn Inmail breakdown

Yo! Welcome to the next episode of The Content Strategy Reeder where 6,848 creators get better at content strategy and creation in 5 minutes or less.

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Traditional outbound channels are becoming less and less effective. That’s because they’re saturated — leaving buyers craving real genuine connections that cut through the noise.

That’s why Alyce created the Outbound Love Playbook.

Warning! You should only read it if you want to…

  • Build qualified pipeline
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  • Improve your event attendance and follow up process
  • Build customer relationships stronger than Hulk Hogan in his prime

    Ready to turn your marketing efforts into meaningful relationships (and revenue)? Grab your free copy here.

I built my career on outbound messaging.

As a sales rep, I took pride in getting get 1-to-1 conversations started with cold email to build pipeline.

As a marketer, I took those skills and built an email marketing engine that sourced millions in pipeline and built a credible brand through one-to-many conversations.

You can do the same if you know how to create messaging that’s personal, relevant, and thoughtful.

It's important to learn because lousy messaging doesn’t just fall flat — it removes your credibility.

Every interaction with your market (prospects, buyers, partners, etc) either improves or damages your reputation — both for you and your company.

There are many channels for outbound messaging. This week we’re going to focus on LinkedIn Inmail because it’s a great channel for personalized and relevant messaging, plus it feels and behaves as an interesting mix of email and direct messaging.

You’ll see a live example of an Inmail I received this week with annotations on what worked/didn't work, plus a hit list of do’s and don’ts. If you add these adjustments to your outbound messaging, you’ll turn email into a power house for driving action.

Personalization vs Relevance

I’ve talked in the past about “personalization at scale” which, TLDR, isn’t real.

Personalization means the message is customized specifically for the single recipient. It includes details that ONLY apply to the individual and wouldn’t resonate with anyone else. It’s for 1:1 communication.

Relevance means the message is customized for a group of people. It includes details that would resonate with people who share similar characteristics. It’s for one-to-many communication.

Both have a place in your outbound messaging, and it’s important to know when (and how) to use both.

OK, let’s ride.

Imagine you get this Inmail. What are your first thoughts?

Here’s the list of questions I automatically ask myself when reading this:

  • Is this personalized? No - nothing is specific to me.
  • Is this relevant? No - I do not employ Salesforce admins.
  • Am I going to reply? No (but I clicked "No thanks")

This Inmail falls short for a few reasons, but there are a couple things working in its favor too. Let’s break down why to strengthen your outbound messaging:

❌  Subject line

Imagine if a stranger randomly walked up to you on the street and asked, Hey will you give me half an hour of your time?

Most people would say no and walk on (unless you’re much more polite than me). That’s because there’s no purpose or return. Time is valuable and most people guard it accordingly.

Tip: Don’t lead with an ask. Instead try to incite curiosity or use a relevant topic to grab attention.

PS: Here’s a quick guide for writing un-ignorable subject lines.


Two reasons this opener falls short:

  1. It's immediately all about him and his company.
  2. It leads with a solution instead of the problem or opportunity.

People naturally operate on self interest, so lead with them instead of yourself.

Then frame your offer with a problem and its impact before jumping into “here’s this thing I have that you need.”

You don’t need to pitch everything upfront either – your goal is to spark a conversation not to (fully) educate and ask for a meeting all in one swoop.

Tip: Make your opening all about your Reader. Start with an observation, which can be personal to your recipient or a broader observation that’s relevant to the group you’re reaching out to.


I know this is a blast message, so I blame bad data more than the sender here even though he's accountable as the sender. I’m a marketing leader so I never should have gotten this message because I literally never need a Salesforce admin.

Tip: If your reply rates are low when you’re sending relevant mass emails to a list, it could be because you're sending it to the wrong people.


Brick text tells our brain “ahh this is work, NEXT.” If it looks and feels like work, people will read on. It’s harder to hook the Reader in.

Tip: Use line breaks and white space to help your words “breathe” and make it easier for your reader.


This Inmail isn't all bad. I really like that he asked if I'm interested instead of time to meet in the first interaction. It's better to gauge interest before requesting time.

Closing line

I'm sure it was born from trying to save money on Inmail credits, I respect the honest call out asking for a "no" vs ignoring completely

It's a smart move to tap into empathy where applicable. And even though technically it’s about him, I found it to be the most human part because he breaks the “pitch mode” and keeps it real. I wish there was more of that.


This is a short and concise message.

Rule of thumb: Keep it to "two scrolls" max for folks reading on mobile.

Great outbound is powerful

Outbound messaging can be a core pillar of your sales and marketing strategy.

If you want to spike your results as we head into a fresh month/quarter, pick just ONE thing from today’s breakdown and put it into play this week.

It could make all the difference.

Holler at you next Saturday,

Has The Content Strategy Reeder become one of your favorite newsletters? If so, you’d make me shout-sing “DNA” by Kendrick Lamar if you shared this link on LinkedIn or Twitter.

Become a prospecting powerhouse

Prospecting is hard AF, and neglecting it only leads to pipeline heartbreak.

But once you have go-to tactics and processes, it becomes the difference between 80% to quota and consistently hitting accelerators.

If you want to become a prospecting pro (or sharpen your professional-grade skills), consider joining me at Sell Better's Ultimate Cold Prospecting Masterclass on November 10th.

I'm hosting the "LinkedIn Prospecting Tips" session with cold calling superstar Gabrielle “GB” Blackwell, and Mr. President’s Club Nick Cegelski.

Perfect if you want to stack your calendar with qualified meetings.

You can get access here for $97

See you there?

(Even more) digital resources for creating memorable content

  1. Catch up on previous newsletters here (scroll down to ‘Here’s what you missed’)
  2. Follow me on Linkedin and Twitter for edu-taining content on sales and marketing tactics, plus updates on my content journey.
  3. Check out my video course Content Strategy for LinkedIn if you want to elevate your LinkedIn personal brand. Be sure to use discount code “CSR” for 22% off