With over 17 million LinkedIn users in the UK alone, LinkedIn activity can produce a valuable return.
But many users can mean many errors.
Group discussions particularly offer the potential for fruitful activity, but can be a dangerous wilderness. Get it right, and you can build a solid social foundation for B2B lead generation. But get it wrong, and errors will transform efforts into a ruined reputation, and cause connections to shun you.
Too many group users make the mistake of over-selling. When engaging in discussions, think of the group as a platform for conversation, not a marketplace. To be successful, group members should engage in social selling - which does not mean promoting yourself or your brand. Instead, social selling describes the process of providing insight and expertise of value, with no expectation of return.
In line with this, don’t post promotion-relevant content as a discussion; get to know the difference between these tabs, and always stop to think about what you’re actually posting. Is your comment in line with the topic of the group? Is the subject matter relevant? Irrelevant spammy interaction will not boost your authority as a thought leader, it will have the opposite effect on your reputation and lead generation aspirations.
Don’t just post for the sake of boosting engagement or for self-promotional reasons. Make sure your contributions add value.
Don’t spam groups with off-subject content as this will lower your own, and the group’s reputations.
2. Not listening or reading up
LinkedIn groups are about engagement. In line with not self-promoting, and not using groups as platforms to just push out our content and solutions, after you’ve become a member - stop.
At least for a little bit.
It’s tempting to jump right in and start your own discussion, but wait, read up, and see what’s going on first. Get a feel for how the group interacts, the topics they choose and the professionals active.
Then once you have a grasp of the landscape and have engaged a little on other threads to introduce yourself, consider posting your own discussion topic. A well-considered topic that listens to the group’s needs and pain points is more likely to receive a response than a blind, mistargeted entry.
A difference of opinion is fine, but try not to be overly-critical or negative.
Consider groups as a forum of opinion, discussion and conversation, not as a place to get links to your site and content. If what you’re discussing is good, you’ll generate leads and visits as a social side-effect.
But equally, don’t over promote yourself! If you’re overactive your activity may be ignored by others, not taken as seriously or seen as irritating. Posting once a day to groups and to your newsfeed should be enough.
Don’t over post or spam group members – once a day is good.
Take 15 minutes a day to be active and engage.
Other activity errors include:
Repetitive activity. Try not to duplicate discussions that have been posted recently, and if you’re posing the same discussion topic across multiple groups, change up your wording a little. Using the group search feature you can look to see if your topic has been mentioned recently.
Considering formatting (especially for links and images). Spelling and grammar will go a long way towards boosting people’s perception of you. You don’t want to make unprofessional errors!
Posting links. If you’re posting an article link, even if it’s not promotional, consider why people should click it and provide context. If it’s on topic for example, you may be best placed to create your own discussion around the article and encourage comment.
There are LinkedIn discussion groups available for almost every conceivable niche, not all are successful.
Avoiding errors such as these will help to ensure the groups you own and engage in remain an abundant source of knowledge and contributor success.