Driving Group Engagement
We know LinkedIn groups aren’t what they should be and that LinkedIn have left the functionality woefully short of Facebook groups but that doesn’t mean that we can’t make them work for us.
It’s time start taking responsibility ourselves and stop waiting for LinkedIn to pull their socks up.
Dylan Jones is doing just that!
More from Dylon later but first…
Feedback from last weeks LinkedInformed.
Mark Crossley sent me this message
Just a quick comment on your latest podcast, which I really enjoyed. In particular, the three step writing process piece, which I found very helpful from Justin Welsh. I reflected afterwards that the approach he used was pretty good but it was very samey, in that if all the posts that you do follow that formula, your content could become predictable and lacking a little bit of variety.
I wanted to share with you my approach to posting which I’m currently doing following the Know – Like – Trust marketing philosophy, my current approach is to post three times a week with three different approaches.
The first post is an informative post akin to the three-step approach that Justin has been using. My second post is a personal post of some kind, and the third post is an offer or free resources relating to my career coaching work, or a soundbite from my latest podcast.
I find that the personal post gets most engagement and relates to the ‘like’ aspect of the know, like trust. The information post gets a fair amount of engagement and this relates to the trust aspect, but of course, the third type of post, the one which is a bit more, trying to sell your services, gets the least engagement – but it can quite often get between 500 and 1000 views, and this one seems to be the most likely to lead to new clients.
That’s what I’ve found. So I’d be interested to know your thoughts on this approach in terms of mixing up different types of posts.
I really like Marks approach to posting but I don’t think Justin Welshs’ posts suffer through a lack of variety either.
If you check Justins feed you will see that within his process he also shows a lot of variety and the results he gets are pretty amazing. Yes he has 72,000 followers but he is not an official ‘INfluencer’ and has built those followers through effective content.
We also know that plenty of followers is no guarantee of success – the content still needs to engage.
Even if Justin was producing ‘samey’ content, it would be wrong to assume that this would cause a problem.
The algorithm is highly unlikely to distribute each post to the same followers every time
In addition, his followers will vary in their relevance to their followers depending on the actions of them and their followers so the distribution journey for each post will always vary.
In theory, you could deliver ‘samey’ posts multiple times and their audience will vary each time.
Whilst Mark is seeing business come from his more promotional posts, I would suggest that the greater distribution obtained from more engaging posts would easily compensate for this in the long run.
LinkedIn add more information to an ‘All’ search result.
Now when you search for someone by name and hit return (not select them from the suggested list) you will see more information including their activity and any posts they have been tagged in.
Here’s an example;
Whilst I don’t think this will be used much, it’s a nice addition for when you are conducting research on someone.
LinkedIn Learning provides free access to 15 popular courses.
There are a range of soft and hard skills courses to choose from, mainly geared towards corporate employees but they are definitely worth checking out.
Company Page Benchmark Report
Jan Willem Alphenaar sent me this interesting report on the performance of company pages. Jan’s team have assessed 50+ pages from a wide range of industries. You can read the full report here but in summary;
- Followers grew by 23% in 20220
- The peak of growth came in April when LinkedIn introduced the option to invite your connections to follow. This soon dropped to normal levels by May once admins have finished inviting.
- Tip: Invite employees with highly engaged networks to become a company page admin for a short while and invite 100 (sometimes up to 250) of their connections to follow.
- 5.6% of followers are company employees
- Only 14% of page visits happen at the weekend
- The above is because 97% of content is posted on weekdays! Perhaps admins would benefit by using scheduling tools to post updates at the weekend?
- 47% of visitors are unique
- nearly 5% visit the jobs page
- Native content outperforms external link updates
- 163% more impressions
- 125% more engagement
- 140% more clicks
Groups – A Success Story
Dylan Jones first set up his group in 2008 and in those days it worked well for him. There was plenty of engagement and his membership grew to thousands in a short amount of time. At it’s peak it was generating about 50% of his leads.
After about 6 years or so, engagement really started to tail off. The group was still attracting plenty of posts but very few of them resulted in likes or comments.
Dylan started to lose interest and the group became somewhat dormant.
More recently, Dylan listened to an episode of LinkedInformed ‘Is it time to reconsider Groups?’ and decided it was time to take back control of his group. The results have been quite remarkable!
Dylan goes into much more detail in the article below (click on the image to read)
For a long time now I have been insisting that, whilst Linkedin could significantly improve the quality of groups, the main issue with them is how they are managed. The main issue is this;
Posts that are not designed to start conversations kill groups.
Dylan understood this and went about changing the rules of the group. He explained to members that post that link externally and promotional content would no longer be tolerated.
He also took a proactive position in encouraging the right type of posts by selecting members who he knew produced great articles and asked them to repurpose that content into a format that would encourage engagement in the group – he even helped them re-write the content himself!
These are great initiatives but I still wondered how he managed to quickly inject new life into the group. Like most groups, his members hadn’t left but were never visiting the group. So how did he get their attention again?
Dylan explained that he used several tactics. The first was to promote the posts he had encouraged (see above) via the weekly promoted post which is sent out by email. Because the subject/heading was strong, he found this got the attention of some members. Another tactic was to take a screenshot of a particularly lively discussion – cover up the members names and then post it in his feed. This shows other members and non members what they are missing out on! Finally they promoted these posts/discussions in their email newsletter.
Once they got some momentum, it started to take on a life of it’s own.
I know that Facebook groups have better functionality but LinkedIn is the natural home for business-related engagement – in most sectors a good percentage of your target audience either won’t be using Facebook or they prefer to keep it strictly personal (as I do).
I truly believe that if LinkedIn groups had just 85% of the functionality of Facebook groups, the argument would be over – LinkedIn would be the clear winners and the execs at LinkedIn should hang their heads in shame to have allowed that situation to occur.
All that said, LinkedIn is as much about the community as it is about the company that designs the site. We can determine what happens and whether our groups become a success – don’t let the tools stop you.
In other words…stop moaning and make it happen!
Dylan did and so can you!
Post of the Week
This is an unusual one as the original post was taken down by LinkedIn for reasons that I really can’t understand…it’s about KitKats!!
The original post achieved an amazing 67,996 reactions, 5203 comments and over 2.4 million views!
Adam decided to repost it as he understandably could see no reason why it was taken down, here it is;
The above is a screenshot but you can click on it to go to the post (unless LinkedIn take it down again!).
I like it because;
- It’s a business and customer service related story that also touches on HR and people management.
- It’s a real experience and an interesting story
- It portrays the company and authentic, human and principled. It’s not promotional but manages to portray the company in a good light.
OK, that’s all for this week.