So how do you approach this large group of professionals and make a name for yourself and, ultimately, your brand?
Approaching conversations on LinkedIn can be intimidating. I admit, I frequently get intimidated by the amount of comments and the idea that maybe my engagement efforts will be totally lost in the social sphere.
Tip #1- Join relevant groups. Join groups relevant to your industry. I suggest joining as many groups as possible to get the most variety of content. Try to join groups that have a large following not just a few people. Get creative. Join groups that you think potential leads might be a part of.
For example, as a small business marketer, I am in a variety of marketing groups but I am also in several small business groups. Posting in small business groups may ultimately get me more leads then posting in a marketing group. Know your social media objectives.
Tip#2- Update your group email settings. Most groups are set to automaticlaly send you updates every day. I’m sure, if your inbox looks anything like mine, one email a day from all those groups you just joined is going to be WAY too many emails. I find when I have an overwhelming amount of anything, especially email, I tend to turn away from it all together. Therefore, I like to keep my digest of updates to weekly. This way I can set some time aside every week for commenting in groups and go through the emails more carefully. (Update your notifications in your group settings.)
Tip #3- Contribute to relevant discussions. When going through those emails, look for conversations that you can contribute to. Genuinely.
There are two things to look at when choosing to join a conversation. If no one has yet commented on something someone shared, this is a perfect opportunity for you to direct the conversation in the route you want it to go. Try to end your comment by sparking further engagement, and/or if possible, include a link to one of your relevant blog posts that could offer others more helpful information.
If you are joining a conversation that already has multiple comments going, read through them. Don’t just jump in there and try to steer the conversation or share your blog content. This is spammy and not very well received. Instead look for a good point of entry into the conversation. Has someone said something you agree with? Something that you disagree with? Something you have experience with and could offer valuable insight? A good rule of thumb is to think of engaging on social media like a cocktail party, would you just jump into a conversation and start talking about yourself? (I really hope the answer to that question is no.)
Tip #4- Start your own conversations. Now that you are spending some time engaging in real time in relevant conversations on LinkedIn, you also want to be sharing your own content and starting your own conversations. This is where you can really start to spread the message of your brand. Try to remember, when sharing content in a group, again, you want to spark engagement. Don’t simply keep the post caption the same as the title of the blog you may be sharing. Try to ask a question or for feedback instead.
There are many ways you can leverage LinkedIn for your business. As always, remember to know your objectives, create a plan of attack and measure your results.