A Handy New Sales Hack

Like you, I get random LinkedIn connection requests often.

Unless they’re obvious crackpots, I usually accept and send a short message mentioning that I look forward to learning more about them/their work.

They might want to sell me something I need, read my stuff or become a client—so I stay open to seeing what they have to say.

So when one of these new connections shot back a really good opening question, drawing me in, I was intrigued. We pinged a few quick messages back and forth and then he pitched me.

Not in a natural, graceful way, but more like a bull in a china shop.

Dead stop in the conversation and frankly I wasn’t even interested in keeping him in my network, he was so obviously crass.

He opened beautifully, but then went off the rails.

Instead, he could have used an elegantly simple new hack to figure out how to approach and connect with me in a way that would maximize his chances for a conversation and perhaps more.

Enter Crystal Knows,  a handy new (free) tool to give you a shortcut to communicate with your targets in the way THEY want to hear from you.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Go to CrystalKnows.com and add the extension to your Google Chrome.
  2. Head over to LinkedIn and pick anyone in your network you’d like to check out—and go to their profile page.
  3. On the right-hand side, click the CrystalKnows symbol and read what she has to say about approaching your contact.
  4. Even better? Click on the full profile button and read down to see the sample email you might craft to get your best response (you get only a few of these without upgrading to a paid version).
  5. Write your email with her insights and send it off.


It gets slicker still if you use Google or Outlook Calendar—you can get daily reports for the participants in your meetings.

Like any personality tool, it has its limits, but if you’re reaching out to someone you don’t know, it’s probably worth the 15 seconds it takes to see what Crystal knows before you hit send.

Had my new connection checked it out on my LinkedIn profile, he’d have learned that he should “speak directly, but be kind.”

And then maybe we’d still be having a conversation.

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