If you are on LinkedIn to truly connect with businesspeople, LinkedIn Groups is where the party is happening. Sometimes you get invited, sometimes everyone is welcomed, and sometimes the party gets a little wild... You can even get turned away at the door!

To get the most out of LinkedIn Groups, you need to learn how to be the life of the party—not a wallflower or a party crasher. Here's how.

1. Don't be a party crasher

Nothing is worse in a group than a member who constantly "spams" discussions with his direct advertisements for products or services, or starts discussions with direct-sales tactics, pitching what he's selling. Linking to a blog and asking a question around your own content are both fine, but the quickest way to get kicked out of groups is to constantly pitch your stuff.

And don't focus solely on sharing your own content! This is a community, after all, so comment on and share other people's articles in your status updates; it's a great way to build out your network and start more conversations.

2. Don't try join in with too many groups

Join a variety of groups, and make sure to join those with high numbers of members and very active discussions. But be careful not to join too many (the max is 50), because keeping up just becomes too hard.

A handy way to keep up with discussions you started is to hover over the "notifications" flag on your LinkedIn home page and see who's commented or liked your discussions. (It's also a great way to make new connections.)

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Matt Haskell is the Social Media Marketing Manager for SourceLink, a marketing services provider focused on data-based marketing.

Twitter: @SourceLink
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