Are you a member of a LinkedIn group that you benefit from? Let's define "benefit from". In other words, are you learning, sharing, engaging in conversation, meeting great thinkers? In my opinion, that is what LinkedIn groups are supposed to foster. You hear the term virtual community used to describe some groups. Are they really functioning like that?
Tim's Strategy - Ideas For Job Search, Career And Life does this better than most. If you are a job seeker, you will find other job seekers introducing themselves and sharing content (articles they've read, etc). Tim Tyrell-Smith, the manager, will chime in too.
You can belong to as many as 50 groups. That's nice, but it may be difficult to regularly engage in that many. My belief is that it is quality not quantity, though others disagree. As you select groups to join, consider how you would benefit.
As a job seeker, you've heard that recruiters/employers are using LinkedIn to source and evaluate talent/candidates. This is one reason you want to evaluate the groups you belong to. If you were a recruiter looking for a really good marketing candidate, would you search a group of job seekers or a group of talented marketing professionals?
As a recruiter, you would be looking for demonstration of key marketing skills. What constitutes demonstration? Perhaps these are some: discussions around cutting edge marketing trends, presentations, papers, articles written or discussed, participation in events.
OK, you may think that recruiters would go to "job seeker groups", though I don't think so. But if that is what you believe, then the same logic applies. How are you demonstrating your talent?
In order for you to see value in a group, sometimes you'll have to put yourself out there. Social media is about giving and engaging, not hanging on the fringes or being an innocent by stander. ENGAGE. Ask questions.
I think engaging is very hard for most of us. We are not used to engaging. We are used to taking in information and not giving back. Remember the cardinal rule of networking is to give.
To select the groups you will want to participate in you can see what groups others belong to on their LinkedIn profiles. Also consider how many members are in the group. More isn't always better, but it means something.
LinkedIn Tips- Groups & Their Benefits by Greg Taylor
Be a good groupie! Participate! Learn! Connect!