LinkedIn Groups has been sorely in need of a major facelift. Many LinkedIn Groups have deteriorated in value so the timing is perfect for this renovation, which is open for business today. The time is also right for you to evaluate your goals and presence in your LinkedIn Groups.
Here are the major changes announced by LinkedIn:
All LinkedIn Groups Are Now “Members Only”
The LinkedIn Open Groups are no longer available. You will need an invitation or an approval to join a LinkedIn Group. This should help improve the quality of members and participation.
Conversations and Comments in Groups Are All Private Within the Group
LinkedIn posts will no longer show up on the general newsfeed of all your contacts. This should increase quality engagement. In order to see the discussions, you will need to join the group.
Groups Are Now Classified As Either Standard or Unlisted
Standard groups are searchable. Managers, owners and now members can approve new members for a standard group. Unlisted groups are invisible in search and you may only join by invitation of the manager or owner.
Sub-Groups Have Been Eliminated
LinkedIn stated that the sub-groups were a cause of confusion for users. I think it forced many users to be in too many groups. Individual users may belong to up to 100 groups in total.
Content Will be Instantly Posted Without Manager Approval
No more waiting for the Group Manager to approve your post to the group. For Group Managers, we will need to be more diligent about checking that the right content is shared in the groups. Group managers can still remove inappropriate content.
Group Promotion Tabs Have Been Eliminated
Group managers used this tab to move promotional or off –topic content out of the main discussion feed.
LinkedIn Will be Filtering Content for Groups Automatically
Content will now be filtered automatically and and low quality content will be put in a moderation queue for the managers to review. Key takeaway for group members: Only share high-quality relevant content in your LinkedIn groups.
Job Postings Will Be Automatically Placed Under a Jobs Tab In the Group
Job seekers and recruiters need to know that the job posts in groups will be removed after 14 days.
Enhanced Conversations and Comments
LinkedIn has added the ability to post images with conversations. This will make the group discussions more engaging, but hopefully the images will be professional and relevant. There is also a new ability to mention someone with @. This is a great feature that should drive engagement as we can now pull people into relevant discussions. Use this to deepen or enhance your group conversations.
New Ways to Easily Stay Engaged and Updated
These include Mobile App for iOS, Group Highlights and Email digest. Don’t you love the ability to save time and quickly assess what is happening in your LinkedIn Groups? Try out these features and see what works for you. The Android app is not yet available, but will be coming out after the iOS. Push notifications will be available for the mobile app.
Since LinkedIn has upgraded its group function, isn’t it time that you reevaluated your strategy? How will these changes impact you?