The social networking group LinkedUp Grand Rapids has reached 10,000 members. Local social media consultant Mike Yoder, manager of the group, is planning a day-long celebration May 15 at venues all over town, with the hub being the Biggby Coffee downtown where participants can get maps and information about the other venues.
Yoder started the group in 2008, and has seen it grow to the largest business networking group on LinkedIn in Michigan. Basic membership is free, with enhanced benefits through a "Platinum Membership." The group has large quarterly meetings for networking, with 5x25 events for a limited group of 25 for more intimate business relationship building. Yoder guarantees that participants at these events leave with at least 5 leads, connections, referrals, or ideas, in keeping with the group purpose of "building trusted business relationships through virtual and networked business opportunities."
"I think the success and growth has come as a result of being in the right place at the right time and recognizing the opportunity," Yoder says. "It's also due to the fact that I try to manage discussions and content carefully, keeping it focussed on discussions that are relevant, interesting, and helpful for group members."
In the future, Yoder is looking to develop student chapters at area colleges and universities.