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Power of LinkedIn Groups for Entrepreneurs and Communicators

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Here’s an ongoing case study of a great use of LinkedIn Groups that solves the entrepreneur’s issue of where to go for inputs and advice.

I say ongoing because fellow professionals are still chiming in with advice.

Here’s the issue: A solo PR practitioner has a delicate and challenging crisis situation. The details are less important than the concern that unless handled well, the situation could get blown out of proportion through media coverage, negative blogging and community activism.The practitioner doesn’t have 4 partners down the hall to brainstorm with, so she put out a request on a LinkedIn PR group for help ASAP. Unlike too many LinkedIn postings which are paper-thin marketing pitches, this one was a genuine request.

Over the past 18 hours I’ve seen 20+ thoughtful responses, with both analysis and practical suggestions. The responses refer to each other and build into real consultative help for the practitioner. Here’s a sample of what the requesting PR person wrote to her colleagues: “You are all amazing! I’m sending a few of you private responses to your questions…We now have solid plans in place for just about every situation we can think of. I can’t thank you all enough.”

Seems to me this is the essence of what social media – especially among professional communities – is supposed to be about: less self-promotion and more genuinely useful conversations that leverage the knowledge and skills of a particular online professional community. As professional communicators, that’s something to remind ourselves about the next time no one responds to a LinkedIn posting.

Anyone else with such a good experience with LinkedIn?

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