It’s a new year, and hopefully a better one than 2020! COVID-life has gotten me a little out of the networking habit, so lately I have been spending more of my professional time talking to partners, colleagues, friends, and clients. I made it a New Year’s resolution to get back out there and train my networking muscles. I’ve even signed up for LunchClub to meet new people – I’ll let you know how that goes.
There is, however, something more important than meeting new people: Introducing people you know to others. Being the initial link in a new relationship is often very rewarding. I try and do this as often as possible and am fanatical about following up if I ever say, “You should meet my friend! I’ll introduce you.”
My pathological insistence on making good on every introduction I offer has led me to develop a pretty standardized method of introduction emails. I’ll lay it out with my rules and follow it up with an example.
- Firstly, write a simple introduction using Person A’s full name.
- Here is the first pro move: Link their full name to their LinkedIn URL. That will make it easier for the two to connect.
- Give a one-sentence description of Person A. I generally like to mention their role, the company they work for, and then one personal note. I try to say something that I like or admire about the person. If I mention the name of the company they work for, I link the corporate web URL.
- Next, I write a one- or two-line reason for the introduction. Why should these two people know each other?
- I then repeat the same process for Person B.
- I end my introductions with the “I’ll leave it to you two from here” line, or some variation of it. I’ve done my job, and now it’s time to bow out.
- Don’t forget to offer something to encourage this new relationship. Explain that you would be happy to facilitate a call or host the two for lunch — something that shows you have a vested interest in this introduction and you are willing to put your own time into seeing it work.
- Finally, I like to use an email subject line format of “Introductions! Personal A <> Person B.”
Subject: Introductions Conan <> Shaq
I'd like to introduce you to Shaquille O'Neal. Shaq is a former NBA guy, and now does a variety of analyst jobs and brand representation. He is currently a Brand Ambassador at Icy Hot, and seeing as you mentioned a lot of lower back pain, I thought I'd introduce you two. Shaq has helped out few people I know in the past, and I think you would hit it off. You're both tall, funny, and seem to have a common love of terrible movies!
I hope you're doing well! I'd like to introduce you to Conan O'Brien. Conan is the founder and CEO of Conan, and is a pretty funny guy. When chatting the other day, he mentioned that he suffers from a fair amount of tall-guy-related back pain and that he was interested in using a topical liniment ointment to try and reduce it. I know you are the expert in this field so I thought I'd connect you two. Conan also mentioned that he would be interested in repping a brand whose product worked, and so you could give him some insight in working with Icy Hot.
Gentlemen, I'll leave it to you from here. Please let me know if I can help out in any way. If you want to get together for lunch some time, I'd be more than happy to take you both out on me - I'd love to be a fly on the wall while you discuss ointment.
Thanks so much,
I wish that could have been a real intro email, and yes, I know they already know each other. Hopefully this works as a decent template for you. As a summary, remember to introduce each person with a thoughtful description of who they are, include any helpful links that will allow them to further connect, and make sure to follow up with them in the future.