LinkedIn might not be the most popular social network for the general population, but it is a top networking site for those who network for business purposes. It is the largest professional social network and connects current, past, and potential employees together while providing a unique option for content sharing and community development.
The secret to these LinkedIn groups best practices is that leadership, authority, and an active network can be built to support personal and business goals quite effectively. If you’re looking to get involved with LinkedIn or want to make your current presence more effective, then here is what you’re going to need to do.
1. Get the Basics Right 100% of the Time.
Leads on LinkedIn can convert at a rate that is 3x higher or more than on other social networking platforms. For this to work, however, you’ve got to get the basics of being on LinkedIn right. This means your company page must always be up-to-date. You’ll want to provide evidence of the value your services or products can provide. Having brand recommendations on your page are going to be helpful as well.
2. Establish Your Authority.
People gravitate toward the brands on LinkedIn that display the most cohesive niche expertise when compared to other industry brands. Part of this expertise is built upon the content that is shared on the social networking platform. How that information is shared also part of the equation. By being involved in groups, your brand can personally counsel people and provide a 1-on-1 interaction that will continually pay dividends over time.
3. Make Sure the Rules of Engagement Are Clear.
There must be parameters set for your LinkedIn group for it to be successful. This is true whether the group is private or public. Without clear parameters, not only can there be prejudicial, baiting comments being made that do no one any good, but the group itself can become hijacked by spammers and those who just want to promote their own brand. Set clear guidelines about what belongs in your group and what does not belong and then enforce those rules of engagement consistently.
4. There Must be a Moderator in Place.
You need to have someone who will enforce the rules of your LinkedIn group on a full-time basis. It’s a best practice to have several back-up moderators in place if your primary moderator can’t be online for some reason, but funnel everything through one primary person to create more consistency. Even if back-up moderators are fully briefed on what is and what is not allowed, there will be different points of emphasis in rule enforcement. Limiting this is vitally important.
5. Take the Lead.
You’re going to need to break the ice for most LinkedIn group conversations. The quality of the conversation may even get traced back to the quality of the questions or comments that are initially made. This means you’ll need to take the lead and research the subject before blindly posting something to the group. If people within your group don’t care about the conversations you’re starting, then all you’re doing is wasting your time.
6. Market Your LinkedIn Group as You Would Your Brand.
If professionals don’t realize your group exists, then there isn’t going to be many members signing up for it. Things are going to be slow at first, but they’ll continue to be slow if nothing is done to market the presence of the group. Engaged members will help it succeed over time and word of mouth about your brand’s value in the group will make it grow.
A LinkedIn groups best practice for marketing is also to remove members that are spamming others, overly aggressive with their content, or are just there to promote themselves. One bad apple can cause the rest of the group to completely disengage.
7. Give it the Time it Deserves.
Moderating a LinkedIn group and working with others to encourage ongoing participation takes a lot of time. Considering outsourcing this task if necessary to make sure the needed time commitments to make the group successful can be met.
These LinkedIn groups best practices will help your brand be able to engage with people in a meaningful way. It offers a 1-on-1 experience, yet also provides group learning opportunities that will show off your niche expertise. Get involved on this social network today and your online reputation will begin to slowly, but surely grow.