LinkedIn beta test makes LI Groups visible, searchable, shareable

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I got the following message in my LinkedIn mailbox the other day:

 I am pleased to announce that LinkedIn has selected Social Media Marketing as a beta group for open discussion, a new feature. This means that all future discussions will be fully visible, searchable, and shareable on the Web. Since we are all about social media, having our discussions shared IN social media only makes sense, right? Right, and about time!

All past discussions are now closed in a members-only archive. Any comments or responses to postings will be reviewed and moderated by myself and the managers first, so rest assured no inappropriate, off subject, time-wasting or SPAM responses will get through. We will keep the group focused and productive.

I look forward to our future discussions now joining the broader conversation on the wider Web and engaging new social media marketers around the world.

Mike Crosson
Moderator and Publisher

This seems like it will be a big deal  The key operative phrase in the message from Mike Crosson is this: 

“This means that all future discussions will be fully visible, searchable, and shareable on the Web.”

  LinkedIn groups have always been a social media commodity of dubious value.   Some are great. Some are moribund, stale and boring on their best day.    Most have been walled agrdens as well, with the discussion residing primarily inside the community, or embedded in the LinkedIn river of status updates unless the group owner pushed them out via Twitter or Facebook.   Now they can found via search which will change the game a bit.  

 On the down side, it seems like this will create more clutter, and probably have sme impact on SEO and Klout scores for certain people. 

On the upside, it will make the knowledge and expertise that is threaded throught these groups much easier to access via search.

LinkedIn groups may have suddenly become much more viable for building communities, and much more valuable as a place where you want to stake out some social media real estate.  I will be keeping an eye on this beta.

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