5 Really Great Reasons NOT to Join Another Group: Networking Success Tips

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Did you drink the Koolaid? Are you convinced that just by having a group logo or name attached to your online profile on Linkedin or Facebook that you are somehow more desirable. Do you believe this will boost your visibility and credibility? GET OVER IT. The reality is that the only way group membership makes any difference is when you actually get involved. That’s right, you have to participate. It is by sharing your expertise, contributing your experience, and actively engaging in discussions that you will actually go farther. Sorry if this shatters your illusions.  Racking up a whole bunch of group memberships on LinkedIn really isn’t going to help your net worth.

So take a look here at 5 Really Great Reasons NOT to Join Another Group, oh and this applies to live as well as virtual or offline as well as online!

Lead Generation, Social Media Speaker, Relationship Marketing Speaker, Joining Groups, Tips on Networking

Groucho on Groups

#1 Don’t join a group just because you are invited. You really need to explore any group you are invited to thoroughly and determine if you will provide value to the group and if it will provide value to you. When you can’t answer both questions in the affirmative, don’t join. Many people invite their entire list of contacts just to build numbers and look popular, they don’t drive engagement, focus, or value. In fact, it was Groucho Marx, the great comedian who once said “I don’t care to belong to any club that will have me as a member.” (Group and club in this case are synonymous.)

#2 Don’t join a group just because it is related to your industry. There are a million and one groups out there, many of them are dead as in no conversations or discussions active. In fact, many haven’t seen any activity in months. And in other cases the only activity is spammers or sales pitches (hmm is there a difference between those two?)

#3 Don’t join a group because all of your peers are in it. Really? So if they all jumped off a cliff would you go too? This gets back to my follow the flock and you’ll end up a lamb chop principle. Be different, be unique, be yourself, don’t be like everyone else. How incredibly boring. If this is a group you know, like, trust and enjoy then by all means go for it. But just because it is your peers doesn’t make it worth joining.

Linkedin Groups, Networking Success Tips, Social Media Speaker, Relationship Marketing Speaker,  Lead Generation, Why Join a Group on Facebook?, Facebook Groups

Don't Join Him!

#4 Don’t join a group because they put you in it. This happens all the time on Facebook and is incredibly annoying and can clutter your email like no one’s business. It seems there is a rampant disregard for choice and many who open up groups, just arbitrarily put their friends and colleagues in them. And we stay because we don’t want to offend them. That’s nuts, get out if it isn’t for you. Oh and if you don’t want to get the emails, it may well not be for you.

#5 Don’t join a group because you want to belong. I’ll confess I’ve done this a time or two and it never works well. It is the WRONG reason to join a group. The only reason to join is because you feel it will be of benefit to the group members and to yourself, not for any other reason.  In fact, I know that in internet marketing a ton of people join high end groups (masquerading as coaching programs) because they want to belong. I’ve researched this with members, it’s shockingly true.

Here is the bottom line. Random activity of any kind achieves random results. In order to make joining groups on Linkedin, Facebook and other networks, both online and offline, worthwhile, you have to get involved. When you don’t have time for the group or lack interest, don’t join it. There is no benefit in empty belonging particularly if it is going to cost you money.

And often you would be better served by starting your very own group in one of these places and leading it in a manner that truly serves and supports your success. Then you get to control who joins and who doesn’t and show an active commitment to the value produced.

As always, I love to hear your thoughts. Find me on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter and make sure your invite is personal.

What are your favorite groups? What networks?

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17 Responses - Join the Discussion!

  1. Thanks for this great reminder and quick support sheet here, Melissa. I love that you’ve made it so easy for us to put the next opportunity through this little self-check: am I just saying yes without really considering the value, and even more importantly, why?

    I’m always surprised by how easy it is for me to fall back into old patterns of always being the nice gal who’s agreeable and cooperative.

    And though I’ll never give up being warm, friendly, respectful and compassionate toward others, I do have to remember to check in to stay in alignment with what’s best for me first.

    With deep appreciation, I wish you well-
    Nanette
    Nanette Saylor recently posted..On Memorial Day… to honor, to remember and to pray.My Profile

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  2. Excellent points… especially when you work in a creative industry!

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  3. Yitz Finch`
    Twitter:

    Howdy Melissa,

    With regards to #3 Don’t Join a Group of Peers – I don’t join groups of peers, mostly because I’m not looking to network with peers. I’m looking to connect with interior designers and architects, primarily. That’s why I participate in #IntDesignerChat, and that’s how I was so fortunate to meet YOU! B-)

    Yitz

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  4. It must be zeitgeist!

    I have been busy cleaning email lists I am on [never yours of course,] various FB and LinkedIn groups, and some activities in “real” life.

    Your points will be my checklist for future requests!
    Thank you.

    Lynn
    Lynn Dorman, PhD recently posted..Preterm Births Are Soaring – GloballyMy Profile

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  5. Melissa,

    Great points. I have recently been delcuttering my groups on LinkedIn and Facebook. I also took a strategic decision to spend less time on face to face networking groups. It has had a dramatic impact on my business and productivity.

    Pete

    Reply to this comment
    • Thanks Pete,

      Intrigued to know that reducing your face to face has improved business and your productivity.

      I think it is all about being selective and finding the right networks for you.

      Hugs, Melissa

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  6. Jim
    Twitter:

    Great post! I love your line, “Random activity of any kind achieves random results.” The best networking always has a strategy and a plan toward meaningful results.

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  7. Great points Melissa

    My favorite group is eWomenNetwork. I have attended a lot of networking events and belonged to on-line groups and its important to find ones that you really connect and fit with.

    Your comment “The reality is that the only way group membership makes any difference is when you actually get involved” is right on. You value you get out of a group is very closely connected to what you give, so find a group that is aligned with your values and the way you do business. Thanks for sharing – Johnell
    Johnell recently posted..Eat Right: No More Junk Food for Disney – at Least on TVMy Profile

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  8. Thanks Melissa I have been unsubcribing to alot of group. They are not a bad thing for who it is for, but just not my thing. It can become overwhelming. Right now I am in the process of finding what it is I am truly purposed to do. I don’t need all the clutter. Be blessed :-) Now how do I add my picture to this post, LOL :-)
    Jana recently posted..Be Inspired By….. The Beauty Of OrderMy Profile

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  9. Great timing of this pertinent post. There are a few LinkedIn groups I rarely participate in and plan to disconnect from since I don’t the time to actively participate and build the relationships within these groups.

    As social media continues to grow, we all have to discern which groups will serve our highest purpose, both personally and professionally.

    Thank you for this time saving information.
    Charlene Christiano recently posted..By: CharleneMy Profile

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