How to find the right audience for your Linkedin Group

How do you get on with LinkedIn groups?

Time was, when a LinkedIn group was in the top 4 weapons in your social media armoury, along with tweeting, blogging and Facebook. A ‘group’ brought people together around a subject so they could chat and share ideas in a non salesy way. I joined a handful about social media, and played a part in setting up several others for clients.

But now I have got stuck on a problem. My latest group is not growing. It is stunted and despite lots of tender ministrations and lovely high quality content, it is not finding an audience.

Are the days of a great group gone?

Well let’s look at the facts. The groups that work well for me are the ones where we are genuinely occupying a niche. The specialist recruitment group has hundreds of members and over the past 6 months by focussing on getting the content right, it has started to generate good levels of engagement from other group members. A success! Another even more niche group is to follow!

But over at my cloud computing group things are static. These are the problems;

  • The members all work in the computer industry and are primary LinkedIn contacts, rather than target audience, which is a different crowd altogether.
  • The content is aimed at people who work in a diverse range of professional services and want to learn about cloud computing, but don’t know much about it yet.    
  • Therefore the content is not finding the right audience. 

My suggested remedy is to change the group’s name so that it reflects the type of people I want to join, perhaps using the phrase ‘a beginners guide’ or ‘how to’ – then I need to line up some content that really matches the name change before setting to and publicising it.

I still have faith in LinkedIn groups, but I think it is harder to get an audience – especially in areas like computing where the competition is tough. What is your experience with Groups and do you think the strategy I have outlined above is going to do the trick?

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5 responses to “How to find the right audience for your Linkedin Group

  1. Thanks for sharing your experience and work-in-progress. I have been thinking about how I could use LinkedIn groups better. Your ideas sound like they should work so I hope they do.

  2. I think a lot might ride on the name of the group simply for being found. Are your groups generally very active? I’ve always assumed that the 90:9:1 rules applies to nearly every community on the web (“In most online communities, 90% of all users are lurkers who never contribute, 9% of users contribute a little and 1% of users account for all the action” – http://mac.publicinvolvement.org.uk/2006-10-Oct/LoveaLurker.php)

  3. I have built up a small active group with the right content in one of my groups but in another there is nothing but silence! I think there may well be lurkers there but it is my job to tweak the name and the content until a few of them can’t resist joining in! I love the challenge! It is like finding the right stories for your newspaper or getting more opens on your newsletter using headlines, content etc A great job for an ex journalist like me.

  4. Jacinta Ashworth

    I am new to LinkedIn having only joined in last few months. I joined a few groups related to my professional – market researchers – and am disappointed with the content: a lot of spam and not much worth learning about. A friend of mine said he is only on LinkedIn for the purposes of ‘buzz word bingo’ – hoping his CV gets spotted in the cloud by putting in all the right buzz words. A cyncial perspective but I can’t help thinking he has a point.

    • Hi Jacinta.
      There is a lot of trash out there but like any networking you have to look around to find the right groups and keep at it to get anything back. It might be likened to finding the right book group – if they are reading 50 Shades of Grey then perhaps you had better run for the hills! It could be worth getting recommendations from people in your field as I am sure somewhere out there there are a whole host of freelance market research consultants having vibrant discussions! (or not)
      Lucy

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