LinkedIn is an important social sharing platform, particularly if you provide services, schedule speaking engagements, or sell books or other instructional materials. One of the best ways to interact with LinkedIn members is to participate in discussions within groups relevant to your area of expertise or whose members are likely to be interested in what you have to say.
As with everything in the social media world, it’s best to use this mode of communication with reasonable frequency – not too often nor too little. We advise our clients to respond to discussions whenever their comment will be genuine and not just a general phrase posted for the purpose of getting their name out there, and we recommend initiating discussions on a regular basis too.
A great reason for starting a discussion is to highlight a point or ask a question drawn from one of your latest blog posts, with a link to the full post.
Here’s a slick method to post such a discussion to all of your groups in 5 minutes or less – no need to go from group to group and cut and paste your headline, body, and link over and over again.
First, you must have a social share button on your website, such as AddThis, ShareThis, or AddtoAny. If you don’t, ask your webmaster to add it – it’s an important tool not just for the LinkedIn use I’m explaining today, but for providing an easy one-click method for others to share your content with their networks. If you have a WordPress site, you can find a plugin for any of these tools and install and activate it easily.
Now, here’s the trick. Once you’ve posted a blog post or page, log out of your dashboard (assuming you are the webmaster or you’re using WordPress). Then visit your post or page as you would any other site. From the page or post you want to highlight in a LinkedIn discussion, click on your own social share button. Choose LinkedIn as your sharing platform. A window will open up allowing you to insert a headline, body, and link for your own profile update, and for a group discussion.
Under those areas, put a checkmark in the box next to “post to groups.” A window will open where you can type in the name of the desired group. Here’s where the magic comes in: When you type in the letter “A,” all groups you’ve joined that start with “A” will appear. You can click on the first group name you’d like to add, then type “A” again, click on the second group name, and continue until done, then type “B” and repeat, and so on until you’ve gone through the whole alphabet and added your desired groups with just a few quick clicks. Click submit and everything gets sent at once.
Bonus: LinkedIn also provides a built in Twitter option that you can check to create a tweet at the same time.
Just be sure not to abuse this handy feature – once or twice a month is the maximum we recommend, and then only if you have some valuable content to share.