If you are a professional looking to network on LinkedIn, you may have come across the terms “connect” and “follow.” While both features are aimed at building professional relationships, they serve different purposes. In this article, we will explore the differences between connecting and following on LinkedIn and how you can use them to your advantage for professional networking.

Key Takeaways

  • LinkedIn Connect and Follow are two distinct features of LinkedIn.
  • Connecting on LinkedIn involves building a mutual relationship with another user while following allows you to stay updated on their content without establishing a direct relationship.
  • Both connect and follow features have unique advantages and can be used to build and maintain professional relationships on LinkedIn.
  • According to the LinkedIn State of Sales Report 2022 UK Edition, 40 percent of buyers check the LinkedIn page of a company.
  • You should account for LinkedIn’s Social Selling Index (SSI) to boost your visibility.

What is LinkedIn Connect?

LinkedIn Connect is a feature that allows users to establish connections with other professionals on the platform. By connecting with someone on LinkedIn, you can build your network and gain access to a wider range of career opportunities. When you connect with someone, you’re allowing them to see your profile, and in turn, you can view theirs.

Connecting on LinkedIn is easy. You can send a connection request to someone by clicking on the “Connect” button on their profile page. If the person accepts your request, they will become one of your connections on the platform.

Benefits of Connecting on LinkedIn:
• Expanding your professional network
• Access to potential job opportunities
• Building relationships with other professionals in your industry
• Ability to message your connections directly

Connecting on LinkedIn is an important aspect of building a successful career. By establishing connections with other professionals, you can expand your network, gain access to career opportunities, and build meaningful relationships with others in your industry.

What is LinkedIn Follow?

If you’re an active LinkedIn user, you’ve probably noticed the “Follow” button next to the names of people, companies, and organizations. Following someone on LinkedIn means you’ll see their posts and updates on your feed, without necessarily being connected to them as a first-degree connection. It’s an excellent way to stay up-to-date with industry news and trends, as well as to discover new content and insights.

By following a company or organization, you’ll be able to see their latest product releases, job openings, and other relevant news. Following a thought leader in your industry can help you gain insights and inspiration to apply to your work. Plus, by engaging with the content they share, you’ll increase your visibility on the platform and potentially attract new connections and opportunities.

However, it’s worth noting that following on LinkedIn is more passive than connecting. You won’t have direct access to their contact information, won’t be able to message them directly, and won’t have the same level of engagement as you would with a first-degree connection.

Key Differences between LinkedIn Connect and Follow

While both LinkedIn Connect and Follow allow users to engage with other professionals and stay updated on industry trends, there are significant differences between the two features.

LinkedIn ConnectLinkedIn Follow
Connects users directly, creating a first-degree connectionAllows users to follow others without creating a direct connection
Requires mutual agreement to connectDoes not require mutual agreement to follow
Provides access to more detailed information about the connection, including contact details, job history, and shared connectionsProvides limited access to information about the user being followed
Allows for direct messaging and communication between connectionsDoes not allow for direct messaging or communication with users being followed

When deciding whether to connect or follow on LinkedIn, it’s important to consider the level of engagement and access to information you require. Connecting with someone creates a stronger relationship and provides access to more information, while following allows you to stay updated with a user’s activity without committing to a direct connection.

In general, it’s recommended to utilize both LinkedIn Connect and Follow features for maximum benefit in professional networking on LinkedIn.


Overall, both LinkedIn connect and follow are essential features for professional networking on LinkedIn. While connecting allows for direct engagement and relationship building, following provides access to valuable insights and industry trends. By utilizing both features, users can create a well-rounded and extensive network of connections, stay informed about the latest developments in their field, and position themselves as thought leaders in their industry.

Remember, the key to successful networking on LinkedIn is to be genuine, professional, and consistent in your interactions. Whether you are connecting with someone for the first time or following a thought leader in your industry, always approach the interaction with a clear purpose and add value wherever possible. These small steps can lead to big opportunities and help you achieve your career goals.


Q: What is the difference between LinkedIn Connect and Follow?

A: LinkedIn Connect is the act of sending a connection request to another LinkedIn member to establish a professional connection. LinkedIn Follow, on the other hand, allows you to follow the company pages, influencers, and thought leaders without their consent.

Q: How do I connect with someone on LinkedIn?

A: To connect with someone on LinkedIn, search for their name or profile, click on the “Connect” button, and send them a personalized connection request. You can also include a short message introducing yourself and explaining why you would like to connect.

Q: What are the benefits of connecting on LinkedIn?

A: Connecting on LinkedIn allows you to expand your professional network, stay updated with your connections’ activities and achievements, and access opportunities for collaboration, mentorship, and career advancement.

Q: What does it mean to follow someone on LinkedIn?

A: Following someone on LinkedIn means that their updates and posts will appear in your feed, allowing you to stay updated with their content and insights. You can follow company pages, thought leaders, influencers, and other LinkedIn members without connecting with them directly.

Q: Can I unfollow someone on LinkedIn?

A: Yes, you have the option to unfollow someone on LinkedIn. Simply go to their profile or the post you want to stop following, click on the three dots (…) or the “Following” button, and select “Unfollow.” This will remove their updates from your feed.

Q: Which is better, connecting or following on LinkedIn?

A: Both connecting and following on LinkedIn have their benefits. Connecting allows for more direct engagement and networking opportunities, while following allows you to stay updated with relevant content and industry trends without establishing a direct connection. It’s recommended to utilize both features to maximize your professional networking experience on LinkedIn.