LinkedIn is, without a doubt, a direct link to your business success. You can search for your ideal connections, communicate directly with them by engaging with their status updates and posts, participate in group discussions, and stay on top of company updates. But this unique social media tool for business is only effective if you stay on top of your LinkedIn network.
Since LinkedIn is such an effective business-building tool, it amazes me that so many more people spend so much time on Facebook and practically ignore their LinkedIn account. To grow your small business, you need to post often on LinkedIn. Keep conversations with customers, prospects, and associates going, especially when a post ignites a lot of chatting. That’s free advertising to potentially millions of people.
Consider the audience and impact of LinkedIn
The demographics make LinkedIn incredibly valuable. According to Business Insider, “LinkedIn is a valuable platform for brands interested in its highly educated, relatively mature, professional audience.” Statistics show that:
- 38% are college educated
- 27% of users ages 30 to 49 and 24% of those ages 50 to 64 use LinkedIn
- More than 60% of Linkedin users make over $75,000 a year
If you want your business to get noticed, LinkedIn should be part of your marketing strategy, as well, because:
- The major media like ABC and NBC are searching on LinkedIn for sources to quote in their articles and interviews.
- When people Google you or your business, LinkedIn is one of the first sites they see.
- LinkedIn is the Google for business people. It is one of the best search engines on the Internet (although limited to its own data). People use it to research you and your business (and you can do the same for them).
7 hacks to effectively leverage LinkedIn
Several months ago, Solamar provided tips to help you tap into LinkedIn for: reinforcing your brand; building business buzz; driving traffic to your website, and finding the best candidates. Now we’re delivering even more tips to help use LinkedIn to your advantage (some you may not have considered before), including:
- Use the “Relationship” tool
This underused tool allows you to keep all the information you know about someone in one place, essentially creating your own custom version of their LinkedIn profile. It includes 5 components: an element that allows you add a note to your version of the profile to help in delivering personalized service; a customizable reminder to regularly stay on your connections’ radar; a way to track how you met and who introduced or referred you; a tag that lets you integrate your iPhone contacts, your Gmail contacts, and everything in between; and a way to store messages or conversations you’ve had.
- Connect to your competitors
Don’t worry about their poaching your business. More importantly, knowing what they’re doing will help you figure out if they’re using LinkedIn better than you are. You will instantly have more visibility into their connections, see the companies they’re following, the people they also viewed, the publications they read and activities they join.
- Master your profile
Create a cool headline. If you just put President or Salesperson at (your company name), who cares? Give a description that says more about what you do to help people or solve their pain. Use a professional profile picture. Make your summary about your value proposition. Tell people how you can help them make more money (that is what business is about, right?). And be sure to write it in the third person to prevent sounding all I, I, I, me, me, me. By the way, don’t forget your business profile, either.
- Get recommendations
Recommendations give you street cred. Giving a recommendation will hopefully get you one in return. If you recommend someone first, then you have a really good chance of getting a recommendation back. They feel energized by your recommendation and want to one up it by giving you an even better testimonial. Try it! And always thank people for endorsing you.
- Join groups
Find groups that your customers learn from. Join groups where you can learn in return. Be active, get noticed…but be careful not to sell.
- Post good stuff
Start off by posting original content or share an update. if you find great articles that make sense to share to a group(s), then start here. Publish an original Post to Pulse. When your connections continue to see you posting regularly with good content, you will elevate your image and expertise to your network. This is content marketing at its best.
- Nurture your relationships
Pay attention to any status updates they post and then write a comment with the idea of creating a conversation around the comment. By asking a question in reply they are likely to respond back keeping the exchange going. Clicking the “like” button under a post will never get you the same results!
Putting yourself and your company on LinkedIn gives other people the opportunity to learn more about you, your products or services, your brand, and career opportunities. Not only that, but LinkedIn connects you with so many professionals that each have their own wealth of knowledge, expertise and relationships.
Want to know more about taking full advantage of LinkedIn? Talk to the experts at Solamar.