6 ways LinkedIn will help your business
LinkedIn is one of the niche social media channels and it is designed as a professional networking tool as opposed to the personal and more informal platforms such as Facebook, Pinterest and even Twitter. Small to mid range companies in particular find it extremely effective in creating a solid network and business relationships that will increase their share of the market.
But how does a platform geared towards making business connections work in terms of promoting your business? We’re going to look at six strategies that will ensure your LinkedIn presence truly pays off.
1. Make Valuable Connections
Like any social networking site, the ultimate goal of LinkedIn is to connect people. Giving you access to new leads or new business associates will help bring about potential opportunities you may have not had access to. Get started by searching for friends and associates based on your email contacts but by no means stop there. You want to get to know people you don’t already know. Start looking at LinkedIn Groups and connect to people in your industry or your location. You can also use the Advanced Search option to target a specific market and find people, companies and industries of interest by keyword. You can also search for specific companies and job titles should you aim to market your products or services to a very specific audience.
2. Build Your Authority by Showcasing Your Knowledge
Get your name out there by answering simple questions to generate brand awareness and get insight into the mind of your potential customers.
Posting regular quality articles on online channels is a fairly good way to establish your authority and get a following. But the importance of interaction is paramount. Entering a dialogue with members of your groups or your network is extremely important. Seek our questions relevant to your business and get involved with meaningful and useful answers. People’s interest will be piqued.
As best practice, avoid just talking offering your opinion and instead blend personal experience with examples from reputable sources. Try to leave your answers open-ended to keep the conversation going and perhaps make a few more connections along the way.
3. Get Endorsements on LinkedIn
A recent study from Dimen-sional Research shows that positive endorsements from sites like Yelp, Angie’s List & Amazon influence a buying decision almost 90% of the time.
Endorsements make it easy for LinkedIn connections to vouch for each other. It’s quick and a lot easier than writing a full recommendation.
These endorsements are like reviews for your small business. You can use them to build up your business reputation and they can lead to recommendations which we’ll cover below.
4. Get Recommended and Build Authority
The age old saying that you should “let someone else say it” rather than saying it yourself proves to be true in online marketing.
People are more persuaded by word of mouth, by the seemingly objective endorsement of other people.
This shows your audience that your service or product is worthy of other people’s recommendations. Recommendations are like referrals, and referrals are gold in business. Best of all, LinkedIn recommendations appear straight on your page so the more you have, the greater your authority.
5. Use Sponsored Updates
If you are afraid of coming across as aggressive or “spammy” then using LinkedIn’s Sponsored Updates to reach targeted users can help and generate greater lead generation than many other social media paid strategies or services. Recently, HubSpot worked with LinkedIn and reported a 400% lead increase with their targeted audience.
6. Reach Out and Make the Personal Connection
The biggest mistake people make using LinkedIn and other social pages is to lie back and wait for the traffic to come to them.
As a professional platform and quite the opposite of informal Facebook, the etiquette is to refrain from adding contacts without explanation. It is however extremely beneficial to be proactive and send a short, personal message to accompany your invites to connect. This enables you to get a little bit of your personality across or even mention things you may have in common. You can establish that emotional connection that so many B2B relationships are missing. Always remember that B2B is still human to human.
The best practice with these messages is to identify common areas of interest and mention why you are reaching out. Writing an honest and meaningful message introducing yourself can be a powerful thing and an incredibly effective ice breaker. HP recently used LinkedIn for greater emotional engagement with its social media audience and reported 300,000 new followers in just two months. They also measured increased attrition, engagement rate and even a 2.5 increase in customers who refer the company’s products to friends, family and acquaintances.
Using the Who’s Viewed You tool is great for identifying warm leads. If someone was searching for you, they are unlikely to dismiss a personal message. The Who’s Viewed Your Profile option was voted the best feature of LinkedIn.
As you can see, using LinkedIn has a number of benefits but only if you are willing to use its variety of tools and features consistently…Just creating a profile and forgetting about it will not do! Make the most of your efforts by spreading out the time you spend on LinkedIn, try to check in daily or at least a few times a week. This way you can keep your actions consistent, your name up there and your brand visible.
Need more reasons to start using LinkedIn? .
LinkedIn Quick Start Cheat Sheet
- Set Up Your Profile
- Work experience
- Areas of specialization
- Your websites
- Interests and hobbies
- Profile photo
- Check for keyword optimization
- Create a vanity url with your name
- Build Your Network
- Send invitations via email addresses
- Search for people you want to connect with
- Ask for introductions via your connections
- Join LinkedIn Groups that are relevant and send updates to your email
- Invite people who are in your groups to connect
- Search for LIONs who you want to connect with
- Add your LinkedIn profile link to your blog, websites, email signatures, etc.
- Save your most relevant searches
- Sign up for a premium membership to use InMail
- Get Recommendations
- Identify people who can give you specific recommendations
- Call or send a personalized request
- Give them guidelines on what to include in their recommendation
- After completing a project for someone, ask for a recommendation
- Explore Additional Features
- Build a LinkedIn Company Page
- Create RSS feeds for things like keyword-related questions
- Start your own LinkedIn Group
- Upgrade your membership for additional information
Suggested Daily Activities:
- Post your status updates
- Check your group feeds for interesting new discussions
- Participate in at least one group discussion or start your own
- Share an interesting article, your own or someone else’s
- Invite at least 3 people to join your network
- Post fresh content on your Company Page
The Millionaire Marketer; Speaker, Trainer, Consultant and Multiple Best Selling Author on how to create wealth through books and social marketing