10 Smart Ways to Grow Your Business Using LinkedIn
In the professional world, it's no secret that LinkedIn is one of the most powerful tools for networking with potential leads, business partners and other like-minded people in your industry. Beyond that, it offers traffic-generating content as well as a wealth of talent for hire. If you've spent time on LinkedIn but have struggled to see benefits for your business, there are plenty of strategies for you to try. Though it's technically a social network, the rules of the digital road are a bit different when your objective is to direct more traffic to your business.If you're unsure whether your online business strategy is working out or wondering how to achieve even better results, you have landed on the perfect place! Read our blog to know everything about using LinkedIn for small businesses. Here are 10 smart ways to grow your business using LinkedIn:
- Build a Solid Profile
- Create Original Content
- Improve SEO
- Use LinkedIn Pages
- Tap into Your Network
- Create a LinkedIn Group
- Participate in a LinkedIn Group
- Post on Your Newsfeed
- Use LinkedIn with Twitter (and Other Social Media)
1. Build a Solid ProfileHaving a good profile is critical for success on LinkedIn. It's the first thing unfamiliar visitors come across, so it's important for you to provide information that shows them why you and your business are relevant to their interests. Luckily, LinkedIn profiles are extremely customizable, so there are many things you can do to stand out from the crowd. A simple, commonsensical tip is to take a strong, clear picture. Don't try to get too fancy with photography skills or editing; find a solid background and have your face take up as much of the frame as possible (without being cropped, of course). The same applies to the "Professional Headline" — don't try to be too clever. Just be sure it has your title and the name of your company since it'll be visible whenever you're referenced on the site. Here's another frequently overlooked pitfall: making your profile all about your occupation. You likely have relevant life experience outside of your day job. Include nonwork details in your profile, such as affiliations with clubs, groups or charities. Adding this information makes it easier to build your network.
2. Create Original ContentWhile sharing links to articles is an easy way to stay active on LinkedIn, creating and publishing your own content is just as important. By relying on someone else's content, you miss the chance to establish your industry expertise. Building that authority over time nets a more direct payoff than followers engaging with shared content. Consider posting status updates about new projects or products are in the works. This ensures that you'll have lots of fresh content for your existing audience and any newcomers who might be interested in checking out your business. It can double as an opportunity to see what ideas are attracting the most attention before you invest more time or money in them. Another benefit is that frequently posting informative new content keeps you in other users' "Network Updates" list. This list appears whenever someone logs in, so appearing there often will build brand awareness and authority, an essential part of any content marketing strategy. Don't forget to take advantage of different content types. Well-thought-out video content is shareable and can boost a company's presence quickly. B2B companies can see greater benefits from professional networks on LinkedIn than on a social media site like Instagram, where the focus is more on B2C video content.
3. Improve SEOPublic pages are indexed on search engines like Google, Bing and DuckDuckGo. Ranking high on one or more of these search engines can be difficult. Many people focus on SEO in articles, but you can tweak your entire LinkedIn presence to be more SEO friendly. For example, in your profile summary, write out your full name instead of using "I" or "me." For professionals such as authors whose branding relies heavily on names, this is a key part of overall SEO strategy. It's how you get your name out there. Linking to a biography or "About Me" section on your website can make it easier for others to validate your identity and give your traffic a boost. You should also include relevant keywords in the headline and throughout the summary of your profile. Don't overstuff it to the point that your core message is lost. Good SEO ties content together and strengthens it.
4. Use LinkedIn PagesCreating a Company Page on LinkedIn is a great way to gather all the details about your business in a single accessible location. It can act like a virtual business card — instead of giving potential customers a tedious explanation of who you are and what your business is about, you can direct them to this page. You can promote the link through any means you already use by adding it to email newsletters, status updates, videos, etc., or by doing something creative like making a QR code.Don't forget to make use of Showcase Pages, too. These are niche pages that extend from a previously created Company Page, and you can use them to promote specific products and services to a targeted audience. You may discover that you were missing out on additional sales or growth simply due to exposure. You can create both page types for free, so it's an easy way to get more eyes on your business and its products and services.
5. Tap into Your NetworkThe best part about using LinkedIn for business is that among the 600+ million users, there's no shortage of professional connections. Take advantage of this fact by checking out the connections of other people (employees, colleagues, mentors, etc.) in your own network. Doing this can uncover people and organizations with a high likelihood of mutual interests. If your business is recruiting, this type of networking becomes even more useful. Sometimes talent is hidden away where you don't expect it. People in your network might have a diverse professional background, and someone in their circle could be the right fit for an open position in your business. Don't be afraid to ask them for recruiting assistance. Additionally, tapping into your network can be a useful way to discover new groups, content and ideas using resources already at your disposal.
6. Create a LinkedIn GroupLinkedIn Groups connect professionals in the same industry with each other and provide a place to discuss important topics, share content, build brand reputation and post and view jobs. An active LinkedIn Group can also help businesses connect with customers, which helps to build authentic relationships. It's not the place to openly advertise, however. Creating your own LinkedIn Group not only gives you administrative privileges, but it also establishes you as a leader in your industry. Administrators are allowed to email members once per week in the form of an announcement. By encouraging participation in your group, you can come across ideas for new content, organically grow your community and generate new leads, even without advertising.Take time to get to know your group members. You're allowed to view their profiles and send messages. Be aware of the message limits: Group members can send up to 15 messages per month to another group member, even if they're not connected. The bad news is that this limit applies across all your joined groups, not to each group separately.
7. Participate in a LinkedIn GroupWhile it's beneficial to start your own LinkedIn Group, leveraging content that others in the same industry have created is a fast way to get conversations started and increase engagement. Look for content that's recent or a hot topic within your industry. An additional benefit of participating in groups Is the chance of finding business partners. Investors, prospective employees and even high-level executives could discover you via conversations in groups related to a specific product or service your business offers. This is one of the many reasons having a solid profile matters. To find a group, use the search bar to enter group names or keywords that you're interested in. You can also choose one of the options suggested by LinkedIn under "Groups you may like."
8. Post on Your NewsfeedLinkedIn Pulse used to be a separate platform for news articles that offered insight into global issues in the political, social, legal and economic sectors. In 2017, however, LinkedIn integrated this feature into the homepage newsfeed. It's a convenient source of information populated by the writing of thought leaders from diverse professional backgrounds. To make the most of your feed, you should use it to explore new topics, people and businesses, as well as to read the latest articles to keep up with trends. The "Recommendations" box on the top right of your homepage lists suggests people to follow, but you can also search for people or organizations on your own. Just like in groups, interacting with your feed by commenting on, liking and sharing articles will expand the reach of your brand. It's also a good idea to contribute by writing your own articles — just click "Write an Article" at the top of your homepage (and don't forget about SEO while writing).
9. AdvertisePaid advertising is often the first option many businesses consider, but without preparation, it can result in major losses. To get the most out of LinkedIn's range of advertising options, set clear marketing goals (with objective metrics for success) and budget constraints. There are two types of advertising: pay-per-click (PPC) and sponsored posts.LinkedIn PPC ads work how you'd expect — ads are placed throughout LinkedIn, and you're charged when someone clicks on one of these ads. What separates LinkedIn's PPC platform from others is the power of targeting. You can target ads to your audience based on these criteria:
- Job Title
- Job Function
- Company Name
- Company Size
- LinkedIn Group
10. Use LinkedIn with Twitter (and Other Social Media)If you have a multi-site social media presence already, why not use it to your advantage? There are quite a few ways to combine other platforms with LinkedIn for maximum effect. Sharing your LinkedIn status updates on Twitter is a quick way to reap the rewards of its active communities, whether they follow you or not. You can use Twitter mentions (the @ symbol) to tag people or companies, which their followers will also see.
Wrapping UpThough many businesses already use LinkedIn, it's likely these companies aren't using the platform to its fullest potential. When used correctly, it's among the most powerful tools a professional can use. The 10 tips above are effective ways to build a business and keep it growing. It's important to take time to construct a solid profile and put out high-quality original content that's SEO friendly. Being active by creating pages and groups, as well as participating in them to strengthen your network, are also keys to success. And, of course, making the most of LinkedIn's extensive targeted advertising can take your business to the next level. Whether you want to generate more leads, discover top talent or create more buzz around your business, LinkedIn provides the tools to achieve these goals. You just have to use them.
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