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  • Group on LinkedIn

    By CrysTelCall On Research & Analysis Comments September 02, 2014

    Group on LinkedIn
    Whether you are in the job market or looking for people to hire, chances are good that LinkedIn can help you find what you want.  With over 300 million individual users and three million company profiles, LinkedIn is more than a social network - it's a giant searchable database to see how other present themselves and be seen.  One of the best ways to increase your visibility and expand your connections is through LinkedIn groups. 

    Here are five strategies you can use to make LinkedIn's Group features work to your advantage.

    Learn the Basics

    #LinkedIn members exchange insights and knowledge in over 2.1 million groups. You can join up to 50 groups in LinkedIn.  Some groups are closed groups and require permission of the group owner to join; others are open to anyone.  You can find groups by using the drop-down box in the main search engine and typing in interests ranging from location or company to job type and industry area.

    Join LinkedIn Groups Selectively

    LinkedIn allows each member to join up to 50 groups, but in general you shouldn't register for more groups than you can monitor.  Sign up for groups that match your interests.  As you sign up for each group you will have the option to display the group's logo or leave it off your personal profile page.  Unless you are joining a group that is controversial or which you wish to keep private, display the group logo as it may help you build your network.

    Complete Your Profile Before You Actively Participate

    Active group participants get four times more LinkedIn profile views than members who don't join or participate in groups. If you want to expand your network and be seen as an active participant in discussions, polish up your LinkedIn profile before you go public. If you'd like help updating your profile follow the prompts given to you in the Profile Strength section of the Edit Profile Menu.

    There are four different ways you can participate in LinkedIn groups.  First you can start a conversation by entering a Discussion Topic in the status update bar. Additionally, you can like someone else's post, comment on the post or follow the person who posted the discussion topic.  If you follow another member on LinkedIn, you will see their future updates on LinkedIn.

    As you join a new group or begin to participate in a discussion, you may want to start out by observing what other people post first.  This will give you the opportunity to learn how the group interacts and communicates with one another.  After you have had a chance to observe, you may want to start a discussion by asking a question or sharing a LinkedIn article or post.  You can then follow up with other members who comment on your discussion - they may also follow up with you directly.

    Invite Group Members to Connect

    If you find you share common interests or have a question for an individual group member, you can communicate directly with them without paying for a Premium LinkedIn account.  To do this, simply click on the group icon, then click Members.  You will then see the option to send a Message.  Never ask for a job or try to make a sale, cultivate a relationship with a fellow group member by starting a conversation about a mutual topic of interest. 

    Follow these strategies and you will likely find yourself rapidly expanding your network, building more visibility, and finding additional ways LinkedIn can help you professionally.