Developing Influence on LinkedIn Groups

For today’s business professional, having a LinkedIn presence is important. However, it is not enough to simply create an account on the business-focused social netwokring site, and put a few details on your profile. A mix of the right connections, and regular bouts of activity are necessary to make the most of your LinkedIn experience.

Each week, LinkedIn selects “Top Influencers,” or users whose comments, likes and discussions generate the most participation from other group members. These members will appear in the upper-right corner of each group’s home page in the “Top Influencers This Week” box. These users are typically permitted to post new discussions and comments without approval from group management. New group members, on the other hand, may receive a message upon posting, alerting that comments have been submitted for approval. Note that this is not the case for all LinkedIn groups, and is at the discretion of the group manager.

Some groups will limit your ability to participate based on your perceived influence. For example, a college student with under 20 connections, a less than stellar work history, and zero recommendations, may be less likely to have his new discussions approved than a LinkedIn user in the same group with more influential credentials, such as numerous recommendations, a professional profile photo, and a long list of connections with CEO titles. Take caution; connections, recommendations and profile updates should be built up in regular increments over time, avoiding sudden spikes and drops in LinkedIn activity.  

Get your profile picture out there. People will begin to recognize your photo if they see it regularly. Posting comments when you feel comfortable and qualified to offer an opinion on the subject matter is a great way to get people to follow you, which can lead to an increased perceived influence. Simply clicking the “like” button for a comment, discussion or post will allow you to increase your brand recognition without words. It is fine to do so sometimes, but be careful not to “like” every post you see. Instead, regularly offer something of value to other users, which will increase your perceived influence to both members and managers.

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