Editor’s Note: This is a guest post written by Anum Hussain from HubSpot. For more on LinkedIn Groups, register for a free on-demand webinar series co-hosted by HubSpot and LinkedIn on “How to Master LinkedIn for Marketing“. Connect with Anum on LinkedIn.

Earlier this year, a HubSpot study found that when it comes to generating leads, LinkedIn is 277% more effective than other social networks. But before you start hunting for leads, you need to create prospects. That’s why this post will delve into the benefits of LinkedIn Groups—gathered from HubSpot’s extensive use of LinkedIn Groups—to help you make the most of this social network!

1. Join Groups Pertinent to Your Industry

Run a few LinkedIn searches to discover groups that would benefit your industry. If you’re in the business of recruiting, try joining networking groups. If your business falls under a     more general industry, look for associations. Here’s some example groups for learning more about effective marketing:

2. Become a Top Influencer

Many users’ first reaction when joining a group is to start multiple discussions promoting their own content. Problem is, nobody in this group knows who you are, and nobody has built trust with you. But if users continue to see you in the top five influencer list, they’ll see that you truly are a helpful Group member. Remember that Top Influencers are group members whose contributions cause the most contributions from other group members. Shoot for quality, not quantity. The Top Influencers ranking updates every 3 hours and resets completely every Sunday at midnight.

3. Start a Poll

People want the reassurance that you’re in the group for engagement, not spam. Creating a poll can show users that you are truly interested in hearing their opinions. A poll is an easy way to get users to know and engage with you.

4. Start a Discussion

Now that you’ve established your authority and reputation, start a discussion! There are three key components to starting a valuable discussion.

  1. Title: Keep it short. When you bridge over 140 characters, your title will appear with an ellipsis at the end.
  2. Details: Be sure to provide users with more context. Be brief to keep users’ attention while still proving important information.
  3. Link: Include a link directed back to your Company Page, blog or website. Now that you’ve started the conversation on LinkedIn, give users an easy way to reach the next step in their learning process.

5. Share Through Other Social Networks

LinkedIn Groups include easy sharing buttons to not only share the group itself, but to also share individual polls and discussions. By sharing discussions, you’re extending the reach of those discussions by giving them more visibility and increasing engagement opportunities.

6. Measure the Results

There are a few free tools to help you measure the impact of your LinkedIn Groups participation. Employ Bit.ly links and tracking tokens to see how many people click on links you share.

 7. Repeat

Nothing on social media can be done just once, or twice. You have to be proactive and continue to test different methods of phrasing your message. Compare the results you’re receiving from LinkedIn Groups with other strategies you’re employing and analyze whether it’s truly worth your time. And if you do give it time, you’ll start seeing the results come through.

For more on the extensive benefits of LinkedIn, be sure to register for a free webinar on how to master LinkedIn for marketing here! HubSpot is partnering with LinkedIn to provide more in-depth teachings of using LinkedIn for marketing your business!