[LinkedIn Groups] Let's have a gathering of the minds
I’ve been using Linkedin for some time now. While there are many facets of the site that I like, the real gem for me is LinkedIn Groups, without question. Why do I say this? Think about it for a moment.
Building your connections beyond your current network requires getting to know new people. You do that by participating in groups. Unlike Facebook and Instagram, people on LinkedIn are there to further their professional network, build their personal brand, and increase their industry knowledge. This makes LinkedIn Groups a great way of bringing your customers together, especially if you are a business-to-business (B2B) company. They’re a good resource to get support for and tips in your business as well. They are ideal to build trust and rapport so that you can attract new clients and referrals from group members.
If you’ve not built a LinkedIn Group or join one, here are some reasons to consider as to why it’s a benefit not to pass on:
1. Thought Leadership
LinkedIn Groups are one of the best ways to position yourself as an industry expert and establish thought leadership. LinkedIn Groups is a feature high-level professional that can be utilized to find others within their industries. They allow members to share relevant information, discuss important issues affecting the industry, and tap into one another’s specialties. LinkedIn Groups is also a method for improving your brand, positioning yourself as a thought leader, and can even help generate leads.
2. Connects A Thriving Community
People love to belong to a community or a Tribe as Seth Godin puts it. The more you are able to connect like-minded people together, the more they will appreciate you for doing so. Create an opportunity for passionate people to come together because the leader that does this usually reaps the benefits.
3. Driving Traffic To Your Front Door
If you’re looking for ways to help drive traffic to your website or blog, Linkedin Groups is a great way to help achieve this goal. Here are a few ways you can drive traffic to your site from your group:
- Put your website link in the group profile
- Send a weekly message to your group, and include a niche related article from your site
- Add your site in the group welcome message (more on this below)
- Create a discussion and include your link
4. Right back at you
Let’s be real, do you want to send a message one-by-one to someone every time they join a group? Of course not as this eats into your time management. LinkedIn was very astute to make this easy for the group managers by enabling a welcome message. That said, when someone joins, you can send your own automatic message that delivers to their email account (not their LinkedIn account, but their actual email provider).
So what you say? With this step you can create a decent sales funnel by first welcoming people to the group, telling them a little about how the group can benefit them and where they can go to get more information.
5. Lead Generator
The more you give, the more you will receive. Dr. Robert Cialdini talks to about the proven power of reciprocity in his best selling book Influence, and it holds true within a LinkedIn group as well (on LinkedIn, or any other social networking site for that matter).
Connecting people, providing job leads, referrals, valuable content to help them achieve their goals: these are things that you can give to people, and by doing so they will give you an abundance of leads (or whatever it is you need in your business) in return.
6. Creating Sub Groups
Are you wanting focus your aim on key targets, such as different locations around the world? Then you’re in luck. LinkedIn allows you to create up to 10 subgroups. It’s a great way to throw events all around the country and only have to send a message out to the subgroup, as opposed to the entire group about a regional event.
7. Helping Others
Ultimately, every good leader helps his team or community rise to the top. I’m sure 99% of group owners have their own agenda when creating a group, but the more they focus on helping its members achieve their goals, that group owner will achieve their goals as well. It feels good to have the opportunity to help others. LinkedIn helps us every day by letting us see how we are connected to one another, and allows us to build stronger, more meaningful relationships. Let’s face it, business (and life) is about all about the relationships we have, right?
In closing, LinkedIn is a powerful platform to help you achieve your business goals, and the group's aspect is a vital part in helping you achieve those goals faster and in a more meaningful way. Be willing to take some time to better understand them, as you may find a new way to help yourself, or others, by using them each day.