Whilst Facebook and Twitter are the main social media used by businesses to reach out to the general public, if you want to reach out to other businesses, especially if you are a B2B company, then LinkedIn should be as equally important to your social media marketing strategy. In this article, we’ll explain why LinkedIn is important for businesses and how you can use it to help you get discovered.
Why Linked is useful for business
LinkedIn is the platform for business people. Since the beginning of 2009, it has grown from 37 million users to 433million in March 2016 with an average quarterly growth rate of 15 million users. That’s almost half a billion professional members.
And although we call LinkedIn social media, it’s not used in the same way that that Twitter or Facebook are. There’s little in the way of trivia, instead, it’s generally used as a way for businesses and professionals to make new connections; discover new products and services; recruit employees, freelancers and contractors; and to share their own content. If you want other businesses to discover you, it’s by far the best platform to use.
How to set up a LinkedIn account
Before you can create a LinkedIn company page, there are certain requirements you need to fulfil, these are:
- You have to have your own personal LinkedIn profile.
- You have to be a current employee of your company and your position must be listed in the Experience section on your personal profile.
- You need to have a company email address (e.g., [email protected]) and this must be added and confirmed on your LinkedIn account. Please note that the company’s email domain has to be unique to the company so you cannot use addresses such as @gmail.com or @outlook.com.
- You must have completed your LinkedIn personal profile in enough detail to have a profile strength of at least intermediate.
- Your personal profile should also indicate that you have several connections.
Once you have these in place, you can begin to create your business page. To do this, just follow the instructions in the video below:
Creating content for your LinkedIn page
One of the things you should use LinkedIn for is to share content. The aim is to create a range of content types (e.g., blog posts, infographics, slideshows and videos) that LinkedIn users will find useful, informative and which they will want to share with others.
By creating this type of content, aimed specifically at the people you want to reach, you will engage a wider audience and thus expand your business’s global influence.
One of the ways to grow your influence quickly on LinkedIn is to post new content frequently. What you do publish should be relevant to your audience and offer something which is both authentic and unique. Try to avoid over promoting your products and services in these posts as blatant self-promotion can look very much like spam and this can cause some people to stop following you.
Introduce your products and services to the world
Over 50% of businesses that promote themselves on LinkedIn have generated sales through the platform, so it’s vital that you use it to let other companies know about the work you do. A LinkedIn company page is the perfect vehicle to introduce your products and services to potential clients and for you to explain how they will help customers meet their business goals and achieve personal targets.
In addition to your company page, LinkedIn has also introduced showcase pages which are designed for highlighting a specific element of your business, be it a brand, a product/service or a new initiative. These pages enable you to focus on the specific audience segment that may be interested in that page, thus letting you create more consistently targeted content to engage that particular audience.
Generate lead and sales
Like most other social media, LinkedIn provides you with the ability to link back to your website from your business page, thus enabling your readers to find out more details about your products and services and to help generate leads and conversions.
Creating content is one of the major activities under taken on LinkedIn; in fact, almost 95% of businesses use it as a content channel. For this reason, it makes it the ideal platform to discover what your major competitors are up to. By following your competitors, you’ll be able to see how often they post content, what kind of content they post and how successful it is at being shared. You’ll also be able to discover who follows them, what groups they belong to and what products and services they offer.
In addition, you’ll be able to see the development of new trends and services within your niche from across the spectrum of businesses that are on LinkedIn this can help you stay ahead of the game and not get left behind.
Recruitment and head-hunting
Whilst LinkedIn can be used directly as a recruiting tool you can post jobs and potential employees can apply or send CVs; it’s also an excellent place for head hunting. The majority of people on LinkedIn post their past and present work experience and this allows you to find people who are working for competitors in the positions you are looking to recruit. Of course, you may not wish to do this directly and, instead, you may use a recruitment company to do the initial approach. However, it will give you a clearer understanding of the skills and experience that individuals in other companies have.
LinkedIn pages can improve your website’s SEO
LinkedIn is highly ranked by search engines and has a Moz domain authority of 100 the highest you can get. This means that links from LinkedIn to your website are going to have real value in helping your website rank on Google and other search engines. If you have links to your own site on your business page and embed them in the content of your posts and status updates, you will likely see an increase in your visitor traffic as a result.
You will also see, after a while, that your LinkedIn company page and posts also begin to rank highly in search engine results, so that people outside of LinkedIn can also access them. This can also lead to higher visitor numbers as these people click through from the posts to your website.
As you will have seen from the video above, LinkedIn provides analytics for your company page and this can give you a detailed insight into how your LinkedIn strategy is performing. The analytics enables you to analyse individual posts engagement, identify trends, understand follower demographics and sources, and gain an overview of your page traffic and viewer activity.
From reading this article you should now have a clearer understanding of how to
- to set up a business page
- benefit from creating different types of content
- promote products and services with a showcase page
- use LinkedIn to generate leads and sales
- use LinkedIn for competitor analysis
- recruit and head-hunt using LinkedIn
- improve SEO through your LinkedIn page and content