If you think LinkedIn is only for seeking jobs or recruiting new employees, think again. LinkedIn Groups is the social part of this social medium. It’s the most fun you can have while networking, without leaving your desk.
Here’s what you do to enjoy LinkedIn Groups:
- Look for groups that share an interest with you and join them. (For instance, I joined Social Media for Nonprofit Organizations.)
- Set up LinkedIn to send you a daily digest of the group by email.
- When you get the email, check the titles of the day’s posts. Click on the ones that pertain to your business or your mission, or sometimes, just the ones that sound intriguing.
- Read the post. Then–important!–read other people’s comments.
- Like posts and comments you think are especially good. (This will show up in the activity feed on LinkedIn, so even people who aren’t in that group will see that you are taking part.)
- When you have something to add, write a comment of your own. Aim to enrich the discussion with information or insights that you know especially well.
- When people like your comments or posts, invite them to connect with you on LinkedIn, and continue the conversation.
If you get to the point where you want to host the party instead of just showing up, start your own discussions in that Group. But make sure you are asking a question that will actually spur discussion!
Results? By identifying people who share your interests, and by making yourself respected for your expert and helpful advice, you will find potential clients, business partners, employers, and colleagues. You will also acquire a group of advisors who give you their knowledge for free.
Come join me in LinkedIn Groups, and when you do, say hello!