What is essentially an ongoing, virtual professional networking event, the social media platform LinkedIn is an invaluable means of connecting to potential leads—or leads to leads—for your business. If you haven’t heard of it—you are not alone. Despite being one of the most popular social networking sites today, many people are still not aware of what LinkedIn is—or how being on it can bolster them professionally as an individual or business. Put simply, LinkedIn is a social network for professionals. It is a means of showcasing yourself and your professional abilities and connecting with others in your field. In terms of using LinkedIn for marketing, think of the platform as a pool of already somewhat vetted leads. Consider the following statistics about LinkedIn:
- The average LinkedIn member has an annual household income of $109,000
- Nearly 50 percent of LinkedIn members have the authority to make decisions for their companies
- More than 65 million business professionals and 467 million users worldwide are on LinkedIn
- 94 percent of B2B (business to business) marketers use LinkedIn to distribute content
- 41 percent of millionaires use LinkedIn
- 59 percent of LinkedIn users do not visit Twitter and 13 percent do not have Facebook pages
Using LinkedIn for marketing is essential if you want to expose your company to potential consumers that may not be present on other social media networking sites where you are pushing content. If your business is not on LinkedIn, you may be missing out on valuable leads and connections to other companies that can help push yours in the right direction.
Consider these tips for successfully using LinkedIn for marketing.
- Create an appealing profile for yourself. Before you create your company page, you need to develop your own LinkedIn profile. If people know your name before your business’ name, then this is where they will make the initial connection. LinkedIn has a function that shows you what percentage of your profile is complete at any given time. As you fill in more and more information, you will get closer to 100 percent. Be sure to keep your page updated, adding new work experience, achievements and work samples as you progress.
- Create an engaging LinkedIn company page. After you make your individual page, it’s time to set up your company page, which will act as your business’ LinkedIn profile. Your company page should clearly state what it is that your business does, and it should be connected to the employees that work there. (Ask your employees to follow the page. Also, if they indicate that they work there on their profiles, then they will automatically appear in your “employees” section and their profiles will link back to your page.) Company pages are free, with the ability to upgrade to paid tiers as desired.
- Optimize your company page for search. There are actions you can take to help your company LinkedIn page appear in front of more eyes during search—both within the social network and outside of it. First, incorporate keywords into your company profile. These keywords should be words or phrases that internet users would naturally type into a search engine. Next, link to your company page from your website, blog or other digital assets. To optimize your LinkedIn company page for search, you should also post relevant content on a regular basis and encourage followers to share said content. We will discuss that more below.
- Attract followers to your page. The more followers you have, the more people your posts will reach. Start by asking all of your employees to like the company page and to share it with their associated networks. You should also promote your LinkedIn page on your other marketing assets like your website, email, newsletters, blog posts and other social networks where your brand has a presence.
- Publish likeable content on a regular basis. If LinkedIn users have followed your page, then any posts your company makes will appear on their feeds. On LinkedIn, in general people like to see content that can help them excel in their particular careers or industries. You can push your product or service, but avoid sounding too much like a salesperson, as this will turn people off from your content. You should also tag connections in your posts when you can using the “@” symbol and that person or company’s name. The goal is to generate engagement with your content—likes, shares and clicks.
- Join groups relevant to your industry. Joining groups will help your company page garner exposure in the eyes of your peers. Within these groups, participate in discussions, which can portray you as an expert in your field that others will turn to—and recommend. Answer questions and act as a reliable resource, rather than just talking about your business and your product or service.
- Sponsor content that performs well. Just like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, LinkedIn allows you to pay to sponsor content so that it will become visible to more LinkedIn users both inside and outside of your network. With LinkedIn’s sponsored content, you can target your audience, decide where your content will appear and track the engagement of your sponsored posts—and how many followers you gleaned from them.
LinkedIn is not a social network you want to miss out on if you want to appear as an industry expert in the eyes of your fellow business professionals and clientele. The platform was created to foster goal-oriented persons with a drive to succeed, so if you want to be associated with that crowd, then using LinkedIn for marketing is a must.
If you need help optimizing and creating content for your company’s LinkedIn page, let the McNutt & Partners team help you! Call us at 334-521-1010 or visit our contact page.