Five reasons why Linkedin Groups are good for business
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Five reasons why Linkedin Groups are good for business

Workplace
Author since:
December, 2016
33 blog posts

At Workplace, we are always looking for ways to develop ourselves, our business and our community through business networking groups. We are avid fans of social networking sites like LinkedIn, so we recently started to investigate Linkedin Groups, looking for communities that might be interesting to our members and our industry.

Today, there are over 2,870 LinkedIn Groups available on a huge range of different subject, but what are the benefits of marketing on LinkedIn, and why should we join LinkedIn Groups?

There are groups on absolutely any topic, but picking those in your industry, interests or target market may not necessarily be a strong enough reason to join. You don’t want to end up overloaded with information or joining groups that aren’t entirely relevant. But don’t let this put you off. Here are five reasons why they are good for business

1. Access a wider group of connections

When you join a LinkedIn Group, you have access to all the group members. You can then request to connect with anyone of interest to you. Don’t overdo this though or you will be branded a spammer.

Another, perhaps more effective, way is to browse the members through the group. You can then find people who are a more relevant connection. You can sort by location, their posts, their industry etc. The big advantage here is that you can message these people in your group without actually being connected.

2. Meet others in your industry

When we started Workplace, we knew little about the hosted workspace industry, mostly hospitality. So, we looked for relevant LinkedIn Groups, to understand what was going on in the industry. We chose groups that had plenty of members. In some cases they are smaller and more specialised, but we were looking for a broader base of professionals.

This gave us access to the industry experts’ brains. We were very impressed at how happy other founders were to help, explain what they thought about the software they were using and generally have a chat about the industry.

LinkedIn Groups are for more than research and learning, however. The platform is excellent for making connections and generating interest in your business.

Another warning here though; people are uncomfortable with being contacted through LinkedIn as a direct selling tool. Ideally, you need to give something back. Provide engaging and insightful content, get involved in the industry, and let your connections and sales grow organically.

3. Exposure for your expertise

After joining a few groups, you’ll be gaining knowledge and information from other members. Now is a good time to share your expertise and put your name out there in your group.

This is a useful and productive way to generate leads for your company, especially if you choose groups where your target market or audience regularly visit. The more content you share, the more connections, leads and discussions you’ll have.

Post your blogs, or parts of them, join in conversations, add something to your group and you will receive something back. You can directly post a blog for your LinkedIn connections specifically, making your content targeted and unique.

4. Find great content to share

I have learned so much from reading shared links and blogs — it’s a great source of information. If I read something that will be interesting to others, I’ll share it with the group.

An additional bonus here is that you’ll meet others who might invite you to guest post on their blog. Simply introduce yourself as a LinkedIn Group member and begin a conversation. You should comment on their blog posts as well, this is great for sparking conversations in the blogger network.

5. Connect with businesses in your area

With millions of users and thousands of groups, you are sure to find a group or two in your geographical area. If you don’t have many local connections in business, this is a great way to meet other business owners, help them when you can, and consider meeting up with them the next time they get together.

There are groups for local businesses in most areas, and larger areas have more specific groups like social media clubs, marketing groups, freelancers and sub-groups for smaller areas or topics. For example, there are several Manchester groups and then sub-groups for other local areas such as Stockport, Bolton, Bury etc.

Some groups that could be of interest are Manchester Digital, a group focused on digital progression in the North West, Greater Manchester Chamber a group for commerce in Manchester, and B2B Technology Marketing Community, exclusively for B2B tech marketing.

Local businesses and communities are an often overlooked opportunity for other online businesses. Seek these groups out, they are full of business owners from a variety of industries that might be willing to support other local businesses.

So, be a groupie!

LinkedIn Groups is one of the most overlooked channels by local and national businesses. Social networking sites are full of business networking groups and opportunities, if you engage members with insightful content and engaging conversations. Give them a go, they can help your business grow, get leads and build useful connections. Start with your own industry and add more LinkedIn Groups as you becoming more active.

Up Next

Happy by Derren Brown - Book Review

Workplace
Author since:
October, 2015
61 blog posts

I have watched Derren Brown on the television and always thought “how does he do that?” and never worked it out. Now I have read this book I am still thinking “ How does he do that”?  To change from being a… Mentalist and illusionist … to a serious author of what is a really intriguing book. I have found myself asking quite a few people if they have read Happy by Derren Brown. I can’t find anyone who has which is a shame as I  like to talk to someone else who has read the book and another opinion on Happy.

Let’s get straight to it, I believe that Derren’s latest book could be truly life-changing. There’s very little about magic or illusion in here and when it arrived I opened the package and was a bit taken aback by its size 500+ pages. It is a commentary on the ancient Greek and Roman philosophy of Stoicism, and how we might usefully and practically apply it to our own lives in order to help bring about that most elusive of goals: Happiness.

Derren Brown’s success is in taking the teachings of Marcus Aurelius, Seneca, and the other Stoics, and making them understandable today. His method for doing this (the “trick,” if you will) gets you to understand that your life is a story; one that we tell ourselves about ourselves, and one which ultimately shapes our self-perceptions and worldviews. He says we have a choice of what we tell ourselves and what we believe in and so what we take notice of and the story of our life. This is what makes us happy or unhappy.

Self-help books are causing more harm than good

He says that all the self-help books are actually causing harm as they are telling us to set goals, think positively be strong minded and if you can’t-do that you fail. We aren’t in control of it and trying to have control is actually counterproductive. Many of the principles which can be found in the Stoic philosophy are very simple, it is the execution that is hard. Brown explains in great detail how supposedly negative events themselves rarely hurt us; it is usually our beliefs, feelings, or judgments concerning those events which do. If you have ever read or watched Daniel Kahneman who talks about our lives being shaped by memories, this part reminded me of him.

The book dwells on fact that material goods, money, and other immediate pleasures rarely bring true lasting happiness. Brown talks about the reasons why this is, mentioning a great deal of scientific research in addition to quoting other authors on the subject of happiness. He also discusses helpful, practical ways in which we can deal with anger, hurt, aggression, addiction, and the ever-present fear of death (the book ends with a section on how to die well?).

The book can also be seen as an attack on the multi-billion dollar industry of self-help and positive thinking. Derren reserves much of his anger for fads such as The Secret, and details extensively how “the power of positive thinking” can actually be harmful to us. Take the well-known example of the U.S. airman captured by enemy forces during the Vietnam War. Many of the men who did not survive their brutal captivity were optimists by nature, and insisted on thinking positively: “We’ll be out by Christmas…OK, we’ll be out by the 4th of July…OK, we’ll be out by Thanksgiving…” When holiday after holiday rolled around and they found themselves to be still incarcerated, many of these POWs began to literally curl up and die…whereas the officer who fell back upon the principals of Seneca and the Stoics made it through eight years of hell, ultimately surviving to regain his freedom because all they did was get through each day.

So it is clearly about living on the here and now and not trying to gain external hardware to make yourself happy. It is all down to us and I would say… read the book, give it a go and let us know what you think.

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