Are you a conversationalist on LinkedIn?

As part of my social media monitoring research I have also analyzed the conversation activity on LinkedIn.  Conversations happen at Group, Poll and Answer level.  For groups I focused attention on Belgian groups (with 800+ members) to find out how good a tool LinkedIn is to leverage the knowledge of the crowd.

Here are some remarkable results:

  • Groups: 78% of all discussion posts remain UNANSWERED.  15% have less than 5 answers.
  • Polls: 71% of polls get between 1 and 20 votes.  Only 2% remain unaswered!
  • Answers: Only 12% go “Unanswered” while 44% get less than 5 and 35% between 6 and 20 answers.

The group statistics intrigued me and asked for some more explanation.  I challenged a few groups by posting a discussion about the fact that LinkedIn Groups are a waste of time.  I got 12 answers (in 5 groups – proving my point?).  I want to share the content of these answers with you:

  • There are the non-believers (and I am NOT one of them) because of their lack of persistence or success and they gave up.
  • LinkedIn is really a tool used to CONNECT with other people which explains why the post “Who will directly connect with me and I will not reject you” is the most popular discussions in a large number of groups (even worldwide!).
  • People are TOO BUSY to read and react to the posts or they get too many mails with updates from the groups they below to.
  • Discussion topics are started in the WRONG GROUP and with the wrong audience.
  • People feel the point of the discussion topic is either to SELL you something or to be proven right and thus refuse to react.
  • People do not feel comfortable SHARING their ideas or COMMENTING on ideas with strangers.

So the conclusion is really that LinkedIn is the perfect business tool to connect with other people who you might meet face-to-face to sell your product or service to but not to share ideas with on large scale online.

Enough of the negativism and let’s be positive…

In order to improve the quality of LinkedIn for you and your peers, it is my recommendation that every time you login to LinkedIn you take the time to comment on and contribute to at least one post, vote on one poll and answer one question – total time investment: 15 minutes!  There will be a return on this investment by more people connecting with you which is why you were there to begin with.

Just imagine if in a group of 800 members that log on once a week and follow the recommendations from above, the wealth of information we would have access to? Is that to much to ask?

I love to hear from you with comments, feedback, push back and suggestions.  You can also reach me by mail (


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3 Responses to “Are you a conversationalist on LinkedIn?”

  1. Daphne Medik Says:

    Thanks for sharing Mic!

  2. Kevin Chamberlain Says:

    Posted this on Appreciative Inquiry 1st to see what response we get from 300+ members.

  3. Karen Lindquist Says:

    Nice to see some “local” research. I wonder how many of those people posting advertisements for their products “too obviously” are actually making sales.
    Meanwhile, I found some groups where there is some serious discussion and exchange of views going on, and where I am getting far more ideas than I do by reading articles.
    You can find them in my badges – one is a project management website which has surprisingly deep discussions going on. Another one I like is Systems Thinking World, which has great discussions. There is a discussion thread I like about why is it so hard to execute strategies and people are really pooling some great info there.
    The only thing I can find so far that these groups have in common is that they are organized around a narrow discipline that their practitioners are passionate about….
    That’s why I open my question to the masses – where do YOU go to discuss and enjoy and what is it about that place that makes it so great… I figure I’ll get better info from the network than from reading any guru books about the “right” way to do social networking.

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