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Using LinkedIn Groups for Networking

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LinkedIn Groups offer a great opportunity for networking with professionals and entrepreneurs in your industry and in your local area. An example of a local business group in the Dallas area is PBN.

It is an opportunity to find business partners, potential customers, clients or sales leads. They are also good way to get exposure for your business.

You can use LinkedIn Groups to brand yourself as a friendly, helpful expert in your niche.

Watch the video to see how you can use groups to make connections with people you meet through a LinkedIn Group.​

LinkedIn lets you be a member of up to fifty groups at once but you should only join a handful that you can really interact with. You need to actively participate and it's impossible to devote this kind of time to more than a few.

A good strategy for getting started is to sign up for every relevant group for your business or niche that you can find.  Check them out for a period of time and then quit the ones where there's little activity.

It is important to find groups where your target market is hanging out and to which you feel you can contribute.

Comment on the Discussions in the LinkedIn Group

What's next ? Join the groups you have found most relevant and once you are approved go in and see what is happening. Each group has a discussion, Promotions and Jobs area.

To start with go to the discussion area and get involved in reading and commenting on the discussions. Just like if you visit forums or blogs, try to offer value to other members of the group by sharing your expertise.

As with other social media channels be yourself and focus on being helpful. Read what other members are saying and respond naturally with your own ideas.

Spread the News

The Groups interface allows you to easily start discussions and share links to relevant information online. Whenever you find a news article, blog post or website that you think other group members would enjoy, share it and other group members can comment on it.

Always remember to put a call to action at the end of your post to encourage people to comment.​

This is a good way to start a discussion. Every group is different and they all like different kinds of content so pay attention to how they respond to your shares.

Announce Events in LinkedIn Groups

Some groups let you make announcements to the group about upcoming events you're hosting or are involved with.

If you've got a webinar or offline event coming up, post about it and let everyone know. Make sure that the event is relevant and valuable to the group or else it will look spammy. Shameless self-promotion doesn't go over well on LinkedIn.

Start Discussions

One of the purposes of LinkedIn groups is for members to share their ideas or thoughts. If you've got an idea that you feel might get some conversation going, start a discussion.

Another good way to get a discussion going is to ask questions to get other members' opinions.

Spend some time in your groups and get a feel for what kinds of topics the members like.  You will get a good idea by the discussions that gets lots of comments.

Conduct Polls

LinkedIn has a feature that lets you conduct polls. Polls are a great way to get people's opinions on topics and then provoke conversation.

Other members can vote and like with one click. They can also add comments. This is a good way to participate and get yourself known as an active group member.

It's also a good way to learn more about your market or colleagues. Once you have the results of the poll you can use the results to start further discussions.

Group Etiquette

There are a few rules of etiquette to follow on LinkedIn groups. Of course, don't spam a group. It shouldn't need to be said, but lots of people do it. They employ blatant tactics to get backlinks and what it usually gets is a penalty.

Just like in other social media channels nobody wants to deal with somebody who just puts links up and about their business or opportunity.​

As mentioned before, self-promotion doesn't fly. You need to remember why people use LinkedIn.

They're here to network, hang out, learn, and share ideas with like-minded professionals. They're not here to buy or check out promotional offers.

Don't fight with anyone. If a conversation becomes heated, take it out of the group comment thread and take it to your private email. Arguing with people on LinkedIn doesn't brand you as a helpful, agreeable, and friendly professional. In general, avoid being negative, which is really a rule of any social media channel.

Be Proactive

One final tip – be proactive with LinkedIn groups. Don't wait for the daily or weekly newsletter to come into your email inbox. Get into a routine of visiting your groups daily to at least read and, if possible, join in the discussion or offer up some thought-provoking ideas.

If you're active and you consistently provide value, you'll be named a 'top influencer,' and you'll be featured along with others in LinkedIn's weekly newsletter.

Over to You

Sheryl Jones Accept

Finally, if you watched the video, then you now know you can use LinkedIn Groups to connect with people you don't have the email address for. When they accept you will get an email from LinkedIn along the lines of the picture to the right.

Do you participate in LinkedIn ​Groups?  If you do how do you use them, leave a comment below. Also check out my post on growing your LinkedIn Profile.

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I am a marketer and social media consultant passionate about helping people development themselves and their business. I believe everybody has it in them to succeed at their passion regardless if that is through a Direct Sales Opportunity or a brick and mortar business. Either way I love to see people be successful and I like to take the mystery out of the social media and getting discovered on the internet.
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29 thoughts on “Using LinkedIn Groups for Networking

  1. Hey Andy,
    Interesting article about networking on LinkedIn.
    The steps and tips you provided are very useful to help us to connect with our audience on this platform. Thumbs up for the video explanation.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Justin Iskandar recently posted…How to Increase LinkedIn EngagementMy Profile

  2. Andy,

    I have been kind of focused on facebook, so this is a very timely article/video. I definitely want to get connected in LinkedIn. I keep hearing great reviews from other marketers that use it. It looks very easy to find and connect with others based on groups of interest. Thanks for sharing.
    Nathaniel Kidd recently posted…How to Save Money on Your Next Disney World TripMy Profile

    1. Nathaniel,
      I was going thtough teh comments and seen yours here that it seem to be similar to my situation.. in the last while I have been looking deeply how to use FB better,… Andy done a great job for all of us to know more.. and for sure what he shared will be helpful.

      Thanks for doing all what you do and for always support others.. for sure when you know more of what is going on on FB you will do more for others.
      Thanks Nathaniel and you too Andy
      nick catricala recently posted…What you do when time seem to be against you?My Profile

  3. Hi Andy,

    Great post on groups in LinkedIn. I haven’t actually joined any groups on LI yet but your post makes it easier to understand how to and what to look for.

    Have a great afternoon, Monna
    Monna Ellithorpe recently posted…Hosting a Book Blog TourMy Profile

  4. Another excellent and informative piece of work from you Andy. I love how you combine the potential with the practical. The ” need to actively participate and it’s impossible to devote this kind of time to more than a few” is GOLDEN advice for the start-up guys who are already stressed out fitting in their business building while holding down a J-O-B. Coupling that with that it “is important to find groups where your target market is hanging out and to which you feel you can contribute” is ICING ON THE CAKE. Think I might have a cup of tee and plan another strategic marketing expansion. Thank You, Thank YOU, THANK YOU. prp
    Peter Pocklington recently posted…And On The Seventh Day #3411My Profile

  5. Excellent post Andy!

    I really enjoyed all over your extremely helpful tips! Especially your advice about not spreading yourself too thin, by trying in vain, to actively participate in way too many groups!

    I really need to get much better, quick with regards to effectively utilizing the marketing and network opportunities on LinkedIn.

    Your proven tips, will make that possibility, a reality so much faster! Thanks for sharing your proven insights!
    Mark recently posted…Why Your Business Marketing Expertise Might Be Literally Sabotaging Your Success!My Profile

  6. Andy, well done I must say!

    I have been one of the first on LinkedIn prior to stopping the beta. I see that lots more people from non-professional social media locations. They, are now flooding LinkedIn and not completing their profiles. These, are the ones that should take a long look at this amazing tutorial.

    I use LinkedIn and have extended three times the amount of contacts with customer service. I am now on my fourth today!

    You walking through this. Is what I was looking for. It is helping my vast partners understand the proper way to use this powerful location.

    Thank you again Andy for giving us usable content.

  7. Hi Andy. Great post, full of really useful tips. I have been thinking about ditching my Linkedin account as I get zero interaction on it, but perhaps it’s worth one more try using some of these tips. The trouble is there are only so many hours in the day and it’s impossible to keep up with all the different SM platforms. Worthy of consideration though, thank you

    1. Depending on your business it is a great platform, but it is always going to be Know Like and Trust.

  8. Valuable post, Andy! LinkedIn has always been a mystery to me, mostly because I haven’t taken the time to find out what it’s all about, how it works, and how it can work for me. Even there, it’s all about interaction and relationships, isn’t it… hence your advice to join only a few groups you can really interact with. I am bad for spreading myself too thin, and not finding or adding real value anywhere. Thanks for the great tutorial on how to change that.
    Willena Flewelling recently posted…A Helping HandMy Profile

  9. Andy,
    great job sharing this great information and for certain the video is grand for me.. I can follow it very easy and when I cannot I just stop it and rewind it.. THANKS a lot.

    I knew a few things about how to connect with groups.. but this sure helps me more..
    Thanks again.
    nick catricala recently posted…What you do when time seem to be against you?My Profile

  10. GREAT tips. I have been using LinkedIn for networking and am a member of a few groups. I love the opportunities they have brought.
    Heather recently posted…Where has the time gone?My Profile

  11. I recently searched groups on LinkedIn and joined a few. I have started to interact and this article really helped me to understand how to do this better. Thank you for many tips I was not aware of
    Carol Graham recently posted…7 Deadly Sins To Ensure People Won’t Follow Your BlogMy Profile

  12. Hello Andy, This is a very timely post for me, I actually just asked to join about 8 different groups in my niche, and as you have stated I am going to see which ones are active and then focus my attention there.

    I do have to thank you for this great article as well as the remember to put a call to action at the end of my posts.. I did read somewhere that Youtube video’s are watched more on LinkedIn than any others site. HUM?? Have you heard this?

    Well Thanks again for sharing..Chery :))
    Chery Schmidt recently posted…5 Main Components To Your FaceBook Marketing StrategyMy Profile

  13. This is one of the areas, I really should be doing more of. I’ve become a FB addict, and understandable since I run a very large WordPress group there. I am a member of many groups on LinkedIn, but haven’t taken advantage of them. *guilty*

  14. Hi Andy. This is a nice article on LinkedIn groups. My only issue is a personal one – finding time. It’s hard to know which social media platform to concentrate on. I try to get around to Facebook, Pinterest, and G+, but with everything else going on, I kind of feel like I’m in a hi-goodbye mode on social media.

    I’d love to hear from others how they pick and choose and how they work social media into their day.

    All the best,
    Leslie Denning recently posted…Building Backlinks the Easy WayMy Profile

  15. Very wise words Andy… I like your idea of choosing local groups as well as worldwide ones
    You have written so well about etiquette and procedures for connecting we can translate this information to any social media channel.
    Also a great idea to choose join a selection of groups and then monitor the interaction between members and standard of conversation and enjoyment and stick with the good ones 🙂
    Jacs Henderson recently posted…Extraordinary! Webinar and Video Conferencing Software From RunClickMy Profile

  16. Joining a group just so you can spam it, instead of being there to network, is kind of like a bunch of toddlers playing together. They aren’t really playing *together*, but rather each one is doing his own thing, and they are playing *parallel* to one another. Networking and interacting is the reason for joining a group in any social media context.
    Willena Flewelling recently posted…A Helping HandMy Profile

  17. I have tried a number of times to use LinkedIn for my home business, and it’s SO different from Facebook that I just didn’t enjoy it very much. That written, I know a lot of people who love it and use it with great success. I am so glad to read your article and get better understanding of what I need to do. Thanks, Andy!
    Christi Johnson recently posted…Why I Left LiveFyre For the Disqus Commenting SystemMy Profile

  18. Diane Hochman comes across with a powerful and simple message. Do it – don’t get hurt by rejection – move on – and do what you know how to do – and do it.

    1. Thanks Dave and thanks for for your help.


  19. Nice overview, Andy, of how to benefit from your involvement with LinkedIn groups.

    I think that while people are focused these days on Facebook groups, LinkedIn often gives you access to a more serious crowd, who are a bit easier to engage and build relationships with.

    You’ve given good advice here, for how exactly, to go about doing that.
    David Merrill 101 recently posted…Building Relationships | First Niagara Bank ReviewMy Profile

    1. David

      Yes I think LinkedIn does sometimes get over looked but you need to be careful on the groups you pick, as some of those are like facebook. It is also important to understand your potential customer and where they hang out.


  20. Great post Andy. You know, I never really gave LinkedIN too much thought. I primarily used it for my professional practice to network. Now I can see how I can use it to grow my online business. Thanks!
    Lisa Thompson recently posted…7 Tricks to Getting RetweetsMy Profile

    1. It can be a great avenue to grow your network, some of the groups suffer the same problems that FB does, so getting in the right groups is important.

  21. I’m using linkedin but haven’t really explored its features like this group. Thanks for sharing this.
    Lux recently posted…Why Women Choose Bad Boys (10 Possible Explanations)My Profile

    1. It is a great way to make new connections that you might not have email addresses for but as with all social media, if abused you will get blocked.

  22. Thanks Andy for sharing your LinkedIn Strategies, it’s definitely a field that can be used very efficiently for business.
    Andrea Ansari recently posted…“Could My Opportunity Be A Scam Without Me Realising?”My Profile

    1. Andrea
      LinkedIn is a great channel to use providing that is of course where your customers hang out 🙂

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