Full disclosure: My original intent for writing this post was to get more of our readers to join and participate in FierceBiotech's LinkedIn group. We've already grown the group substantially. Since June 7, our membership has jumped from 59 people to more than 2,952.
To be clear, FierceBiotech has a lot to gain from your participation in our group. Our growing social media presence helps us share our content, listen to reader feedback and expand our reach, to name a few of those benefits. What's in it for our readers?
1. Share your ideas about important topics in the biotech industry. Twitter allows users to banter back and forth in 140-character messages, and the conversation drowns in a flood of comments within minutes. What differentiates LinkedIn group discussions is the ability to write longer responses and cultivate a discussion over the course of days or weeks.
2. Bring more educated eyeballs to your LinkedIn profile. Many of us have used LinkedIn for years, in some cases in a passive manner where we just accept and less frequently send invitations. In our discussions, you'll find people from around the world with similar interests to yours. Essentially, this puts you and your profile "in play" where many people from our group could look at it after you make a savvy remark or point about a hot topic.
3. Grow your network. I've met a lot of people from social media websites, and some of them have become trusted sources. In our LinkedIn group, it's easy to find like-minded industry professionals. Whatever you're doing now, your network is yours and you can take it with you when you leave your job. You might even find your next client, career opportunity, or employee from FierceBiotech's group.
4. Reach our editors. Every time he returns from major industry events, our publisher mentions how many readers tell him that they have no idea how to reach Fierce editors. If you didn't reach me via email ([email protected]), LinkedIn provides another way to get in touch with me and other editors. We pay attention to what's being said, and I have already received at least one good story idea from a member of our group.
5. Give the unknown a try. This comes back to my point at the beginning of this post. We didn't know what to expect from our revived LinkedIn group. Now I'm getting story ideas, notes from biotech execs I've not heard from in years, and a greater understanding of what topics are most important to our readers. I've also learned that LinkedIn provides a great venue for civilized, thoughtful debate on these topics because of the length of messages and the longer relevancy of discussions compared with Twitter.
One last time in this post, here's the link to sign up for our group.
-- Ryan McBride (email | Twitter)