12 May Don’t Ignore LinkedIn [Social Media Tip]
I feel LinkedIn is an under appreciated network in social media marketing. Whenever I bring it up, the response is usually “people use Linkedin?” YES! Over 300 million of us. Beyond being an amazing resource for job hunters, LinkedIn is perfect for exposure in very niche or b2b markets.
If your business is extremely segmented, more technical than a business to consumer (B2C) product or service, or is completely business to business (B2B) than LinkedIn is absolutely the place for you. The folks that use the network are very interested in gaining knowledge and resources about their particular industry, and of course connecting to like minded individuals. This creates the perfect setting for brands that use webinars, white papers, or other educational content to attract membership and customers.
There are different ways brands can use LinkedIn depending on the time that can be spent and goals. Two of LinkedIn’s well known features are groups are company pages. Although they seem a bit redundant, there are a few differences in the way they allow you to interact with your audience and their features.
Here are some benefits of features available on LinkedIn (excluding advertising):
- Groups: Groups offer a whole world of marketing possibilities! LinkedIn’s groups can be a great way to drive conversions and membership. Groups give users a place to ask questions, offer resources and have discussions about industry topics. You are only allowed to join about 50 groups – so people are selective and join groups that they actually care about and have good experiences in. Groups can be super niche, so finding one in which your content fits isn’t too confusing. Be sure to converse and interact with other posts, and conversations and not blast posts. You are also to create sub- groups (think exclusive groups for events or special members). Having and cultivating a group is great for brands that produce a lot of content around a specific topic (for example a magazine or blog like Social Media Examiner). Groups can be set to be viewed by the public, or you can set them to private and approve members in. As a group manager you can set group rules (banning links, etc.) which means as you have control of what happens and if a member is disruptive you can kick them out. Groups can be a lot of work but the payoff is great for the right brand. Groups offer analytics as to the demographics of your members
- Company Pages: Another great feature is LinkedIn’s Company pages. These work similar to Facebook fan pages, in the capacity that you can post updates, and unlike groups are completely public. People that may not have room to join your group can still follow your page and get updates. Company pages also allow for “spotlight” pages, which means specific products or services can have their own landing page within the company page. Company pages offer analytics such as post engagement rate and follower demographics. You can also interact with posts as your company page now. This could be a good option for brands that aren’t exactly B2B focused, but would still like a presence on the network.
- LinkedIn Publishing: If you are marketing an individual, LinkedIn’s publishing option is a great supplement to a blog or to share news! Your connections and people who follow your publisher page (who are probably in your industry and interested in your topic) will get notified when you publish a new post – driving traffic and eyes to your message. Posts are linkable and can hold images and videos. LinkedIn even offers detailed post analytics about who is reading and interacting with your posts. This is great for writers, or bloggers as it’s easy to track if your posts are resonating with the industry you want to interact with.
Although LinkedIn is more B2B centric, B2C brands can reap benefits from being active on the network as well. Although it may not be a directly relevant at the beginning, if you are exploring a deeper strategy, developing your audience further or targeting customers based on interests, LinkedIn can be a good place to test how people will react to your content. If you are a B2C brand who is looking for talent, you may want to start a company page to let users know what your business is about, drawing candidates to you.
LinkedIn may not be a network you get involved in for your brand initially, but don’t write it off completely – it’s full of influencers. This really niched network can deliver great conversion rates if used efficiently for the right business. Aside from that, I do think LinkedIn is a valuable asset to anyone who takes their career seriously, or wants to advance in their professional life. The wealth of information and support available makes it a great tool for research and professional growth.
As always, if you have any questions or comments leave them below or tweet me 🙂