LinkedIn Groups – Which one should I Join [Video]

Linkedin-3D-256LinkedIn Groups

Which LinkedIn groups should you belong to and why?

In my opinion, LinkedIn groups is the most powerful feature of LinkedIn. There are two reasons people join groups:

  1. You want a like minded group of people to interact with in a conversation
  2. You want to be part of a group and by being part of that group you can easily connect on LinkedIn. When you are part of a LinkedIn group you can send a connection request to anyone in the group without knowing their e-mail address. I hate getting connection requests that state they are my friend and I have never met them.

Which LinkedIn groups should I join?

LinkedIn Groups You May LikeThere are several easy ways to locate groups to join:

  1. Locate the menu item Groups You May Like
  2. Look at LinkedIn profiles of people that you would like to meet or are in the professions that you want to interact with. Check out what groups they belong to
  3. Search for groups that are associated with specific organizations

This last option is especially important. My favorite groups are alumni groups, both university alumni and corporate alumni.

For example, I belong to the Northwestern University Alumni LinkedIn group.

IBM Official LinkedIn GroupI also belong to the IBM Official Alumni Group: The Greater IBM Connection. Notice the little lock next to the name. That means it is a closed group and is not searchable by Google. I like these kinds of groups as they are often moderated. You will find little SPAM in these kinds of groups.

LinkedIn Group Statistics

Once you find a group you are considering joining, check out the group statistics first.

Watch the video below where I contrast to very different large LinkedIn groups.

Go look at the statistics for the LinkedIn Groups you belong to. Did anything surprise you?

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Comments

  1. Marc:

    I entirely agree that the groups is the best part of linkedin. My problem is the cap is 50 groups.

    John

    • Marc Miller says:

      John,
      You really should look at the 50 groups you belong to. Most of us cannot track 50. What I have noticed is LinkedIn changing my subscription for digest e-mails based on whether I have been to the group recently.

  2. I have another criteria I use for judging the value of a LinkedIn group – traffic to my website.

    One of the uses I have for LinkedIn groups is promoting my blog posts. In addition to who the group members are, and how many members there are, I evaluate the number of visitors my blog gets from groups I post to. I judge this both on raw traffic (how many people visit my blog from a posting in a group) and on the ratio of traffic to the number of members. A smaller group may generate a smaller amount of total traffic, but if members of a group are more likely to visit my blog, that is a group I want to be a member of.

    I track which groups are providing me with the most traffic and the best “bang for my buck”, and annually cull the ones that end up on the bottom of the pile.

    If LinkedIn is, in part, about showcasing who I am professionally and what I can do, then how well the groups help me do that is a valid metric.

    • Marc Miller says:

      Jim,
      You know something I do not, how do you determine the traffic came from a specific group versus just LI?

  3. Oooo I get to show you my trick! :-)

    On your WordPress stats page, you will see a section for referrers (I’m guessing that non WordPress blogs have something similar too). Each referring site is listed there. If you grab the URL of the LinkedIn referral, you will see something that looks like this:
    http://www.linkedin.com/groups/Convert-Office-Documents-Newer-Formats-93094.S.208247177?view&srchtype=discussedNews&gid=93094&item=208247177&type=member&trk=eml-anet_dig-b-pop_ttl-hdp&ut=2PWdQ5L6WgJ5A1
    See where it says “gid=”? GID is the Group ID of the referring group.
    If you plug it into this URL:
    http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=3078
    This will take you to the Group.

    I have a spreadsheet that I use to track the recurrances of each Group ID number from my Referrers.

    Quarterly I update the groups’ statistics in the spreadsheet (number of members mostly) and the spreadsheet does the rest – which groups are productive (raw traffic) , and which are effective (best ratios), and which are not generating traffic.

    I have a blog past that touches on finding out information about referrers
    http://dlairman.wordpress.com/2011/01/19/hacking-the-url/

    • Marc Miller says:

      That is coming from the WordPress stats which is interesting. I have a self hosted WordPress site and that function is part of Jetpack. I have had so many problems with Jetpack screwing up other plugins that I removed it completely. Let me look at Google Analytics to see if I can get to this detail.

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