You can use your LinkedIn profile for much more than managing your professional connections. By starting a LinkedIn Group and engaging your professional community, you can also have a small but solid link building campaign.
LinkedIn Groups are special pages that anyone can set up on LinkedIn. They gather like-minded professionals to discuss their respective industries. LinkedIn Groups foster a lot of interaction among professionals and are a good starting approach to link building.
When you are starting your own group, you must keep in mind that LinkedIn hosts hundreds of thousands of groups. If you want yours to stand out and gain members, you should try to target a niche theme or audience. If your group is too similar to the others pertaining to your business, you may not gain much traction.
When you start a new group, you become the group’s manager – allowing you to do things such as moderating discussion posts or approving new members. More importantly, you also have more control for displaying your links. There are a lot of link building options you have when you’ve started the group, including:
By maintaining an active group that contributes to the professional community, your posted links can get a lot of traffic. Furthermore, if you’ve developed your group to target a specific audience or demographic, you’ll be getting meaningful traffic – and hopefully, higher conversion rates.
This month LinkedIn is revamping the Groups section of their site. You may already be a member of a group on LinkedIn, but if not, I would highly encourage it. More than likely, there are groups about your industry or a specific topic that is of interest to you. LinkedIn’s groups have always been a great way to portray your expertise in a particular area or stay up to date on news topics, but with this recent update I imagine that they will become even more helpful.
The focus of this revamp seems to be to place an emphasis on discussions within groups. You will now be able to find news and discussions all in one place, making it easier to start discussions around recent news topics. One of my favorite features is the carousel within the discussions section. This area is a great place to highlight topics, such as blog posts, as MoreVisibility’s group features. Members of the group can then scroll through the different featured topics.
Individuals within these groups can comment on an article, news, or discussion topic. When they do, a thumbnail image of that member will appear. Simply scrolling over that user’s image will enable you to see their comment.
Other features include an area called Top Influencers This Week. Following top influencers can help you to stay current with their topics and discussions. You can actually follow any members within a group. This follow feature in particular seems to be very “Twitter-like”.
There is also a Manager’s Choice section, where the Manager of the group can select a discussion topic of their choice to feature. You can also search discussions to find a specific topic that interests you.
Become a member of a LinkedIn group today to learn about how you can get involved.