Right now, LinkedIn is the best way to build a professional community, and you should be taking advantage of it. There are more than 200 million people on LinkedIn today. Individuals within your organization are on LinkedIn. It’s a fact.
This is how I recommend you use LinkedIn for your business:
1) Throw the notion of a group specific for Alumni out the door.
Instead, I recommend having one LinkedIn group for the business overall then segmenting that group into subgroups. Subgroups could be organized based on things like:
- Areas of practice
Current members of your business want to stay in contact with alumni, and alumni want to stay in touch with current members of your business. Fostering this connection will build a community of people who are likely to maintain loyalty to the business – which in turn is also a nice selling point to potential hires.
2) When people join the firm, encourage them to join the firm’s LinkedIn group and connect to their colleagues.
3) Put individuals in Marketing/Business Development in charge of various subgroups and have them:
- Post content that is on the firm’s website
- Provide community updates for both current firm members and alumni
- Share job postings
- Set up polls/discussions focused on relevant topics to the group
Note: If it makes sense to align a subject matter expert with the Marketing/BD folks, do so.
- Reach many high value audience members where they spend time on the web already
- Provide and maintain access to updated contact information for all within the community
- Engage in discussions, celebrate individuals, cast polls and foster overall engagement
- Provide access to job postings/opportunities
- Segment the community into subgroups in order to target content more specifically and provide more relevance
- Control the level of moderation
- Easily build the community as people can search for the group on LinkedIn and share with others for moderated inclusion
- Have different owners for subgroups to better target content
So get out there and secure your company’s page and set up a group for people to join. You definitely don’t want someone else taking control because you didn't get around to it yet.
Once you've set up a Company Page and Group on LinkedIn, consider doing the following:
- Take advantage of LinkedIn’s newly-designed Company Page layout by adding a header image
- Feature up to three of your firm’s group(s)/subgroups directly on the Company Page
- Promote key practices and activities within the firm in the Services tab
- Regularly post company status updates with the firm’s latest thought leadership, events and experience
Feel free to check out what we’ve done with our One North company page: www.linkedin.com/company/one-north-interactive