If you’ve been part of a LinkedIn group or have considered it more recently, this article is for you! There are currently over 2 million active LinkedIn groups and more than 8,000 others are entering the playing field each week. People who engage in group discussions get an average of four times more profile views than other LinkedIn members. As business owners, we not only want to continue finding ways to connect with new leads but we want to constantly stay top of mind for our ideal clients (aka Thought Leadership).
In this blog, I’m sharing the benefits of LinkedIn Groups, best practices, and how to find the right one for you.
Benefits of Groups:
Build authentic, meaningful relationships. Engaging in group discussions puts you in front of people who are already interested in learning more about a specific topic and allows you to showcase your expertise around that subject. By providing valuable information, you are building relationships that could potentially create new leads for your pipeline—or better yet, an immediate purchase!
Filter through all the noise to reach the right people—for free! Let’s face it: Reaching your target audience isn’t as easy as it used to be. People are targeted with ads everywhere they go—billboards, TV, the internet, and social media. Capturing their attention is vital to our success as entrepreneurs. LinkedIn groups allow you to cut through the noise and engage with members who have already shown interest in a particular topic or industry. And the cherry on top? You don’t have to pay to reach them.
Conduct market research about your ideal customers. Any good marketer knows that the key to creating the right content for your target audience is to develop buyer personas, or as I like to refer to them, client codes. These “codes” are usually developed through customer interviews and industry research. LinkedIn groups offers an exclusive sneak peek into the challenges, motivators, and interests of like-minded individuals who already are interested in a particular topic. This information can be used to give you a better understanding of your existing clients or maybe develop a new one you hadn’t thought of yet. You can also use these insights to create new pieces of content (WIN!).
Expand the reach of your content. As marketers, we spend a lot of time creating content, and because of that, we want to capitalize on its reach. By sharing relevant content within LinkedIn groups, entrepreneurs can use groups as additional avenues to get the right information in front of the right people, at the right time. The conversations and connections made from this content can also lead to so many collaboration opportunities that you might not have had initially.
Become a thought leader in the industry. One of the best ways to stand out from the competition is to position yourself as an expert in your niche. By sharing relevant content, engaging with other members regularly, and answering questions within the group, you’ll become a valued contributor that other members respect and trust.
Use well-crafted messaging: The key to capturing your audience’s attention is to use compelling, concise, and relevant copy in your posts. Remember, this is likely the first impression a member will have of you!
Be educational … and don’t spam! This one is important. There is nothing that will make you lose credibility faster than a ton of promotional, ‘salesy’ messages. First and foremost, make sure your information is helpful and relevant.
Always engage with members: It’s not enough to just post content in a group and expect magic to happen. You have to continuously interact with members, answer questions, and create meaningful conversations.
Know your audience: Once you’re in the swing of things, you’ll likely be interacting with a couple of groups at once. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to copy and paste the same message across all groups. Think about it—if you’re in multiple groups focused on a similar topic of interest, chances are some of the members are as well. This can quickly eliminate any trust you’ve built.
Analyze and pivot: Always analyze what’s working and what’s not, and then adjust to get the best results. For example, if you are getting a lot of engagement from one group, spend more time in that group and less toward another that might not be as responsive.
Two ways to find groups…
The search bar:To find groups related to your interests or industry, type keywords related to your field and select the word that drops down next to “in groups”. This will bring you to a new page of all the groups related to this topic. Keep in mind, that groups are private and you will need to request permission to join. Sending a connection request plus a well-crafted message to the owner of the group isn’t necessary, but sure can’t hurt…
Start your own:It’s a simple two-step process. Head over to the LinkedIn Groups homepage (https://www.linkedin.com/groups/) and select ‘create group’ at the top right corner of the page. VOILA! You’ll need a group name, description, etc. but that’s all the fun stuff! If you’re becoming more excited about the possibilities LinkedIn can bring for you and your business but still a little unsure of where to start, grab the FREE LinkedIn Content Playbook, HERE!
Make sure to connect with me on LinkedIn and send a message to say hello!