One out of three professionals has a LinkedIn account. Many of those are influencers and decision makers within their organizations. And while the platform is more of a networking site than a promotional one, LinkedIn is becoming the number one social media for content marketing among B2B companies. This is a platform where people learn about businesses from a professional standpoint and requires different techniques than other social networking sites. A company profile isn’t about who you are, it is an opportunity to explain what you do, to show how you are an important part of your business industry, and to tell how your business is solving the challenges that your target audience are facing. Your company LinkedIn profile should be a supplement to, not an extension of, your website and other Internet based platforms. It is a free marketing opportunity to drive traffic to your online channels and engage, not bombard, prospective clients and business partners. Here are some things to keep in mind as you build and maintain your company profile:
· Premium Account: Gain access to full profiles; utilize Advanced Search filters to find your target audience; utilize InMail for in-network communications
· Posts: share daily content to foster familiarity and drive word of mouth; balance your own content with insights and wisdom of others; avoid hard sells - write posts that educate/benefit your followers; provide opportunities for engagement, feedback and interactions; display testimonials from clients, vendors, and employees; announce new projects, partnerships, and accomplishments
· Optimize for Search: with key word use
· Connections: network through existing connections; easily keep relationships fresh; reach out to vendors and others you meet at conferences/events; add a follow button to your page; customize the recommendation request to improve the quality and quantity of recommendations written by your connections
· Brand awareness: display your company logo everywhere; include your LinkedIn profile link on your company website, business cards, blog, social media channels, email signature; empower employees to display LinkedIn link on their signatures, sites, etc.; utilize groups (see below)
· Thought Leadership: provide expertise within your industry – share your perspective on news and trends, within your organization – share the vision and principles of your company; provide answers – tell how your offerings are the best solution for clients
· Groups: participate in existing groups and create new groups to attract views to your company profile and establish yourself as an expert/solution provider
· Plan: use a content calendar and set engagement targets
· Personal Profile: is an extension of your company profile, first impressions matter and online stalking is the norm
· Utilize Tools: track who is reading your company profile and who is engaged with your material; use the profile organizer to segment contacts and keep notes about your interactions; publish articles using Pulse
Your LinkedIn company profile can be used to create awareness of your offerings and to improve your reputation. It is an opportunity to show your organization’s personality and position yourself as an expert in your industry; a place to tell your story and build brand recognition. As 76% of B2B buyers prefer to work with recommendations from their professional network, LinkedIn is not just about gaining contacts, it is about exploring existing relationships to uncover new opportunities to grow your business.
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