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This is the second episode focused on growing a community of like minded people online, why you might do it, how to start and keep it going.
This episode features a clip from a conversation I had with Alex Galviz who, along with a few others, started the ‘LinkedIn local’ events that grew into a global movement. More recently LinkedIn has taken on these events officially.
Alex shares how it all started and snowballed to cover 80 countries and 600 cities.
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How Linkedin Local snowballed to cover 80 countries and over 600 cities
…linkedin local started off as a small idea with four people around the world with myself included to get people to meet offline and network in person with no agenda, sales pitch that sort of thing. That was a little idea which snowballed into this massive global movement which has now taken over my life and career… Off the back of that I set up a startup called Local X with those co-founders helping businesses building communities themselves..Alex Galviz, Linkedin Local
Linkedin is the best kept secret in social media
… it’s just changed massively, I say it is the best kept secret as a lot of people don’t understand how to fully use it for now. They’re still using it as they would 5 years old… its completely different, before it was a place you uploaded your CV and applied for jobs. Now it is probably one of the best tools for marketing and sales as its grown into this community, into this social networking. For me it is almost like a blend of your regular social media with your previous Linkedin which is an interesting in between… especially for businesses… in the last two years there has been so much visability…Alex Galviz, Linkedin Local
Top 12 in the most influentental content creators on Linkedin
I feel it is a massively missed opportunity, I always say I went from being a regular 25million user to all of a sudden being in the top 12 most influentental content creators for the last two years running. I would say that I don’t have anything that special… it’s consistency… having a message and wanting to add value to that community. In the UK there is actually not that many people that do that… it is very heavily focused in the US and Canada… slowly people are beginning to understand that. Linkedin is like the youtube, instagram and facebook before they became… it’s kinda new now and if people jump on that bandwagon now they will see their return very quickly…Alex Galviz, Linkedin Local
How Linkedin Local Event started and where it has gone to now
… When I left my co-operate job I started meeting up with my Linkedin connections offline for what I called no agenda coffees. The idea was kinda what you were saying, build relationships with your connect, get to know them in person. At that point I didn’t really have anything to sell because I had left my job and I didn’t really know what I was gonna do with my life. If anything I was using these coffees as a way to try and figure that out… I just really got to know people and their challenges, who they are, what they’re about and what the do…
I saw a post on Linkedin by a lady called Anna McCathy that was doing something very similar… Anna use to engage a bit on my content… I messaged her and said her what she was doing as looked quite familiar to #virtualtoreality and she said I haven’t done one yet but this is the idea… I said I would love to bring that to London. I wasn’t the only one that contacted her… a guy in Brussels… and a guy in New York… all four of us got on a call and thought let do this all together… let’s see what happens…
We all did our events in July 2017… About 15 people came to each of our events and we thought shall we do it again, yeah why not and the idea behind it… for me a lot of it I was going to these networking events… people were clambering for business… they were trying to get something out of you before giving and I just thought there has to be people.. [who] want to motive, empower and inspire each other, who want to help each other out.
For me it was about building that community in London… it just continued to grow… we got a lot of people who would normally hide away from these events as they felt comfortable, its a different agenda, a different way of meeting people… it doesn’t mean to say you don’t make business out of these events… we just priority getting to know the person first. If you want to go out for a coffee and lunch afterwards then that is entirely up to you.
Jeff Weiner, the CEO of Linkedin liked one of our posts… a few months after we started, that post got seen by 1.4million people and then all of a sudden we got very visual. More people started asking what we were doing… and then all of the sudden the whole thing just snowballed… in 18months we grew it to 80 countries in over 600 cities, at now it is about 90 countries… it’s grown massively…Alex Galvix, Linkedin Local