Social media marketing continues to be the first choice for modern-day marketers. This is based on the potential that the marketers find when using social media as a marketing platform. However, the social media marketers tend to focus on Twitter and Facebook marketing. They forget that LinkedIn groups offer an effective publicity stunt through which to reach the target audience.
Did you know that LinkedIn has various features that marketers can make great use of? A good example is the LinkedIn groups, which are an attractive approach when you want to target a certain group of people. The LinkedIn Groups are a virtual meeting room for people with similar interests. The members of a LinkedIn group post and converse around topics that they want to learn about and share knowledge about. The big question is: how should marketers use LinkedIn groups for marketing?
We already know that if effectively targeted, the members of LinkedIn groups will most likely become buying customers. However, there are some basics to learn before you start marketing on LinkedIn groups. In this article, we elaborate on the essential steps for setting up effective marketing through LinkedIn groups.
We will categorize what needs to be done into two important sections. The first section is finding and Joining Relevant LinkedIn Groups and the second section will be about Participating in the LinkedIn Groups.
Each of the sections will contain various steps that you need to follow. Through these steps, the marketers will achieve the most through LinkedIn marketing. Keep reading to find out how to effectively make use of LinkedIn Groups as a marketing platform.
Section A. Identifying /Joining the Right LinkedIn Groups
We assume that you already have an eye-catching LinkedIn profile. So you want to take advantage of existing LinkedIn Groups to market your products or services? The first step in LinkedIn marketing and also marketing on other social media platforms will be finding the right audience. In this case, we are finding the right LinkedIn groups that suit your marketing campaigns.
There are up to three best alternative approaches for finding the right groups that you can use. Under this section, we will share the steps to follow for each of the alternative approaches.
One approach is finding the LinkedIn Groups that you already belong to on your profile. The LinkedIn Groups that you belong to are always visible in the interests section of your LinkedIn Profile.
Finding the Groups You Belong to in LinkedIn
To find these groups that you already belong to, follow the following guide:
Step1. Click on your LinkedIn profile Picture which is on the right side at the top of the page.
Step2. A drop-down menu will be displayed
Step3. Click on the Link that is labeled “View Profile”
Step4. Scroll to the bottom where you will find the Interests section just after the accomplishments.
Step5. To expand your view, click on the “See All” Link and a popup menu will be displayed
Step6. The popup menu will show you the influencers, Companies, Groups and various other interests as per your profile. Click on the Groups section to see the groups that you wish to target in your marketing campaign.
Through the above steps, you will be able to see the groups that you already belong to. In some cases, the groups you already belong to might not suit your campaigns best. You might, therefore, want to search and join other groups that suit your marketing campaigns. This is where you need to use the LinkedIn Search tool.
Searching for Relevant LinkedIn Groups through the Search Tool
The second approach that marketers can use is the search tool provided by LinkedIn. Through the Search tool, you will be able to browse for the right audience through the use of a search keyword.
Note that there could be various groups that share a common interest but have a different name. Therefore, you need to search for the right terms that you can use to perform the search. The bottom line is that the search term should be related to the groups and their interests.
Follow the following steps when you want to search for relevant LinkedIn groups through a search keyword.
Step1. At the top of the LinkedIn homepage, you will find a search bar. Click on the search bar to type the keyword.
Step2. Enter the Keyword and Click on the Search icon. For instance, assuming you want to search for groups within the Telecommunication industry. Enter a relevant search term like “Telecommunication”.
Step3. You will see relevant results as per the search keyword you have used. This includes people, companies, Groups schools, etc. depending on your interests.
Step4. Click on the results under the Groups tab, and you will find the relevant groups. For instance, using the search term Telecommunication, we found the following results under the Groups Tab:
Step5. Select the right Group and Join so as to start targeting the members in your LinkedIn Marketing campaigns.
Note that you might have to wait for the group admin to approve your Join request before you can be able to start posting on these groups.
Finding Recommended LinkedIn Groups
LinkedIn also recommends some relevant groups to you depending on your profile interests. Actually, this can be a good approach for finding most relevant groups. To find the recommended group, follow the following guide.
- Click on the icon labeled “Work” just next to the profile picture
- You will see a tab labeled “Groups”
- Click on “Groups” and you will find the relevant LinkedIn groups that are recommended to you. Join the groups that suit your interests.
Those are some of the best approaches through which you find the suitable LinkedIn groups for your marketing campaigns. For each of the groups, you might want to view the members first. LinkedIn allows you to see some of your connections who already belong to a certain group. It is advisable that you join the groups in which your connections belong. This helps in nurturing the already established connections (Curtiss).
In addition, be aware that LinkedIn groups can be private or public. The Private groups require you to send a join request, and this can be accepted or declined by the group administrators. However, for the public groups, you just need to hit the Join tab. You are limited to joining up to 100 LinkedIn groups. Therefore, ensure that you search thoroughly the most relevant LinkedIn groups to achieve the most in your campaigns.
Section B: Participating in LinkedIn Groups
Now that you have found suitable LinkedIn Groups, you need to begin participating in these groups. Through participation, you will be able to market your products and services. In LinkedIn Groups, the discussions form the lifeblood of the group. Therefore, as a social media marketer, you should take advantage of the group discussions.
You can choose to post new conversations on LinkedIn groups, and you can still post a comment on an existing conversation.
However, there are some basics that you need to follow to ensure you effectively market your products. In this section, we lay down the ultimate guide for participating in relevant LinkedIn Groups.
Step1. Coming up with a Content Marketing Framework That Suits LinkedIn Groups
Being a new member of the LinkedIn Group, you want to take some time to plan your content. This will ensure you are not spamming the group members through sharing irrelevant content.
Ideally, in content marketing, you are always advised to ensure that you are posting content that resonates well with your target audience. In this case, we want to target the LinkedIn Group members. As illustrated from the beginning, the members of the LinkedIn Group share a common interest. Therefore, the only honorable thing that marketers ought to do is share relevant content. This will help you in attracting the relevant stakeholders.
Before getting started, check out the LinkedIn statement in moderation of the LinkedIn post. Therefore, focus on:
- Providing Original Informative Content to the LinkedIn Group Members. While developing your content, ensure originality and aim at informing the readers. For instance, you might focus on sharing industry updates and including ideas on how the Linked Group members can benefit.
- Use an Interesting Approach. Definitely, boring content will not attract the attention of the readers. Thus add important graphical illustrations to catch the attention of the readers.
- Don’t use “Excessive” Selling Tone. Note that the best approach is coming up with content that will spark a discussion in the group. Therefore, as much as the primary focus is grabbing the attention of a potential buyer, avoid excessive selling language.
Step2. Come up with a Plan for your Posts
Another important step is ensuring that you plan your newsfeed. How often will you be sharing on LinkedIn Groups? Be careful not to look selfish in your LinkedIn Group and allow other members to post too.
Therefore, you ought to come up with a suitable schedule. For instance, you might choose to post weekly or monthly so as to ensure you retain the attention of LinkedIn group members. Note that with LinkedIn, you might be labeled as a spammer if you post aggressively. Therefore, to remain safe, you might want to post once or at most twice in one day. Always make sure that the content posted remains relevant.
Step3. Posting Content to LinkedIn Groups
Now that you have a plan that includes the type of content you will be sharing and the dates when you will be sharing, you need to know how to post. As mentioned at the beginning of this section, you can choose to start a new conversation, or you can reply to existing conversations. Either of the two offers a good road map for LinkedIn groups marketing. Now, we elaborate how you can effectively take advantage of the two options including a step by step guide for each of the approaches.
Posting a new Conversation on LinkedIn Groups
Step1. Open the LinkedIn Groups homepage
Step2. Click on the Group Where you need to post your new conversation
Step3. Using up to 200 characters enter the topic of your conversation in the box labeled “Start a Conversation with your Group”.
Step4. You have up to 2000 characters to use under the section labeled “Add some details or use @ to mention”. You can include relevant images by clicking on the add an image icon.
Step5. Once the content is ready, click on the post tab and the content will undergo the moderation requirement. Once the content is approved, it will be posted and available for other LinkedIn Group members to reply.
As part of participation on LinkedIn Groups, you might choose to reply to conversations initiated by other LinkedIn Group members. To do so, follow the following steps.
Replying to Conversations
Step1. Open the LinkedIn Groups homepage
Step2. Click on the Group Where you need to reply to a conversation
Step3. You can scroll through conversations to find the particular one you want to reply to, or you can search for a conversation using a search keyword.
Step4. Click on Comment in the conversation box
Step5. Enter your comments which can be up to 1000 characters
Step6. Click on Post, and the comments will be seen publicly
Through the above approaches, you can share your ideas with LinkedIn Group members. However, note that you ought to adhere to the content moderation rules as set by LinkedIn. Otherwise, you will be labeled as a Spammer which affects your LinkedIn Marketing campaigns. Therefore, be careful as you share any promotional content.
LinkedIn also allows you to share content privately with LinkedIn Group members even without connecting. This is good in some cases where you need to talk directly to a group member. However, you can only send up to 15 group messages to the members of your LinkedIn Groups. Therefore, you need to do a proper search to determine the LinkedIn group members to contact directly.
LinkedIn groups is indeed a good platform for marketers. However, before you get started, you should take time to study the best approaches. As illustrated above, you need to begin by identifying relevant groups to join. There are different approaches, which include picking from the LinkedIn groups you already belong to, searching for the relevant LinkedIn groups or even using the recommended LinkedIn groups feature to identify relevant groups.
Once you have found the relevant groups, you should ensure you participate actively. This includes through posting new conversations, or you might choose to comment on an existing conversation. Whichever the approach, remember that you should make sure you adhere to the guidelines for posting on LinkedIn groups.