🔥 Find me at MedicalDevicesGroup.net 🔥
< 1 min reading time
Yesterday I sent a group announcement to the Medical Devices Group (pop. 354,158) entitled, “The Medical Devices Group will be DESTROYED.”
Since then, I’ve gotten a lot of questions from group members, group owners, and others interested in the LinkedIn ecosystem.
What’s going on? Why did you say that? What did you hear? When will that happen?
Here is an unfiltered stream of my true thoughts. Buckle up.
The “Joe Hage brand,” to me, conveys these values:
• Open, transparent, sometimes pointed, to cut through euphemistic clutter; fiercely against vanilla communication that attempts to offend no one and appease everyone.
• A friend to the medical device community. If I can help a member of the community without undue strain on my limited resources, I will. Doesn’t matter if I make money doing so. It’s good karma and that’s enough.
• The primary outlets where I share my online persona are these:
– https://MedicalMarcom.com, my medical device marketing business;
– https://medicalmarcom.com/the-journey/, my weekly letter to friends;
– The Medical Devices Group on LinkedIn community, each Tuesday morning;
– https://MedicalDevicesGroup.net, the companion site to that group;
– https://MedicalDeviceEvents.com, home to the 10x family of events;
– various social outlets like my LinkedIn feed, Facebook, Twitter, etc.
So item three there, “The Medical Devices Group on LinkedIn community,” is one of my venues. It will continue to do so until LinkedIn shuts groups, decides to “evict me,” or remove me from the LinkedIn platform entirely.
To be clear, I don’t expect these draconian measures, but recognize this is LinkedIn’s platform and they can do whatever they like. As a paying subscriber or no, I’m subject to the “No Shirt, No Service” policy – any time they like and without notice.
I deeply believe the changes they are making to their groups product will hamper my ability to lead the Medical Devices Group on LinkedIn community in the manner in which I (and to a lesser extent) subscribers have become accustomed.
For example, I used to have 4,000 characters in which to communicate a cogent group announcement message. It was reduced to 1,959 characters a few months back. I heard it may decrease still further to 1,300. * For reference, I already spent 1,833 characters up until the asterisk here.
Now I’ve learned this weekly privilege, to communicate with the group, will go away.
I seek a workaround. I already use https://medgroup.biz/drip as my email provider and know how to send weekly communications completely under my control. And I like the freedom.
If I had my way, I’d be able to use Drip to communicate with this community.
But that would require members to give me that privilege, which is what my https://medgroup.biz/stay link requests.
Those who share their information there, explicitly say, “Yes, I value this community.”
And those are the ones, moving forward, to whom I will devote my attention.
Now, what about everyone who joined the “Medical Devices Group on LinkedIn” group and does not subscribe to my personal mailing list. Should I never speak with them again?
No, that’s not the answer.
But I’m clearly stating the LinkedIn experience won’t reflect my brand values the way the https://MedicalDevicesGroup.net experience will – and better, once I upgrade the site, starting Friday.
Here, with this post and similar communications, I am SHOUTING to manage members’ expectations, saying,
“Look, these are LinkedIn constraints. Please forgive the hapless communication and rampant spam on the MDG group I lead.”
The “Look” declaration will, to my compromised satisfaction, adequately explain the poor customer experience to those who (a) never learned the history and (b) didn’t choose to register at https://medgroup.biz/stay and/or (c) just pushed “Join Group” one day in 2013 and long forgot about us.
My alarmist announcement entitled, “𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗠𝗲𝗱𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹 𝗗𝗲𝘃𝗶𝗰𝗲𝘀 𝗚𝗿𝗼𝘂𝗽 𝘄𝗶𝗹𝗹 𝗯𝗲 𝗗𝗘𝗦𝗧𝗥𝗢𝗬𝗘𝗗,” might more accurately be entitled, “𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗠𝗲𝗱𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹 𝗗𝗲𝘃𝗶𝗰𝗲𝘀 𝗚𝗿𝗼𝘂𝗽 𝙤𝙣 𝙇𝙞𝙣𝙠𝙚𝙙𝙄𝙣 𝘄𝗶𝗹𝗹 𝗯𝗲 𝗗𝗘𝗦𝗧𝗥𝗢𝗬𝗘𝗗” because there’s nothing “the Joe Hage brand” can do to maintain the current value proposition:
The world’s largest medical device community and the industry’s only spam-free, curated forum for intelligent conversations with medical device thought leaders.
And because the LinkedIn group 𝘮𝘢𝘺 𝘯𝘰𝘵 𝘩𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘵𝘰𝘰𝘭𝘴 𝘯𝘦𝘤𝘦𝘴𝘴𝘢𝘳𝘺 to curate intelligent conversations with medical device thought leaders.
But that doesn’t mean I’m just going to give up, and it doesn’t mean I’m willing to abandon one of Joe Hage’s sub-brands, “The Medical Devices Group.”
If the private messages I’ve received in the past 24 hours alone are an indication, I succeeded here beyond my dreams.
We did create a medical device community worth something. It is meaningful to subscribers, some of whom thank me for giving them a window into the medical device industry they otherwise would miss.
Because it’s easier to just get “whatever I get from LinkedIn” because you’re already a member. You come to LinkedIn for other reasons, not just the Medical Devices Group.
And who really wants to sign up for yet another communication? I mean, isn’t your box full enough already?
If anything, you want fewer communications.
My action introduces a change in behavior. Any marketer worth his/her salt knows how risky that is. The “lowest common denominator” member, the MDG subscriber who clicked on the “join” button eight years ago and has ignored us since? That person is lost to time and space. S/he is unreachable. In some cases, even deceased!
In the 6½ years I’ve led the group, somewhere between 60 and 70 thousand people have willingly shared their contact information with me. And as impressive as that number is, it’s but a sixth of the size of the LinkedIn community.
60 to 70 thousand subscriptions took 2,732 days to accomplish. There’s no reasonable expectation another 60,000 will act before the “Medical Devices Group on LinkedIn” is a fraction of its present self.
But for those who care enough, maybe they’ll come. There, we can continue a vibrant Medical Devices Group, unencumbered by the random workings of a capricious landlord.
The alternative may be a group that vanishes, for real, and for ever.
That’s my thinking. ✒️
About the author: Joe Hage still leads the world’s largest Medical Devices Group (350,000+ members), the industry’s only spam-free, curated forum for intelligent conversations with medical device thought leaders. Mr. Hage’s medical device marketing services help companies engage qualified prospects and his family of 10x Medical Device Conferences unites Medical Devices Group members in fun and educational forums each year.
Marked as spam