Over the last 5 years people have often told me they’ve tried to build LinkedIn Groups but ‘they just don’t work’..
My response is that you’ve probably made one of the three key mistakes; you’ve over-branded the Group, you’ve not created a strong enough guest list or you don’t have a robust content schedule. LinkedIn Groups are phenomenal if you get your approach right.
They sometimes ask why they would build one when others already exist.
They might and you certainly don’t want to reinvent the wheel but when you create your own, you build an asset either for yourself or for your organisation. If a Group exists which has precisely the same purpose as your Group, does it have thousands of members? If not, you can create a more popular community and ‘own’ the discussion on your subject on LinkedIn.
When you create your own LinkedIn Groups you can achieve various things:
– You build an audience (for marketing, recruitment and more)
– You build a distribution list (for marketing, recruitment and more)
– You build an invitee list (for marketing, recruitment and more…. you get the picture)
– You lead discussion and position yourself as central to your subject
– You encourage inward opportunity (media, conference, new-business, partnerships, job openings, potential candidates)
Creating LinkedIn Groups as communities and to ring-fence an audience can be one of the most powerful things your business can do. Here are some of the must do things:
– Determine before you get started what your measures of success will be. More conversations with people you don’t yet know? More people at your events or webinars? More downloads? Once you know what you want to achieve, this will drive your tactics
– Think carefully about who the owner and managers should be; should you bring people in from outside your organisation to an official post to add richness to the expertise
– Make sure the owner and managers are briefed in a way that they understand the benefit of the initiative and are enthusiastic about taking part
– Create a robust content schedule and split it between the owner and managers as well as other appropriate experts
– Create a phenomenal invitee list. You can use your own database and top this up with people sourced online (get in touch if you want some help with this – our team does it every day)
– Ensure the settings applied to your Group support your objectives. Do you want an open or a private Group? Will you allow people to join without approval? Will you allow all members to post their own discussions, promotions and jobs?
Creating LinkedIn Groups is easy. Creating LinkedIn Groups which are powerful, sustainable and rewarding is complex and time consuming. However, most people don’t put enough in to achieve the rewards available so if you get your approach right and put in the effort, you will be able to create amazing assets for your organisation.