For any small business, social media has a vital role to play in the overall marketing mix.
Not only is it proven as a great way to reach people, but it’s cost-effective too.
It can aid even the smallest business in multiple ways, helping it to grow through positive social awareness.
In general, we can all agree, that social networks can be a huge help when it comes to growth.
So with that in mind, consider how much can be achieved when you start to leverage the social channel that is best known for its business-focus – LinkedIn.
With over 450 million users (2 new per second), across 200 countries, LinkedIn is not only a professional social platform, but is also one that holds incredible potential – so what can you do to make the most of it?
Well, watch your small business thrive with these 6 actionable steps:
Create & Maintain Your Company Page
Anyone with a personal LinkedIn profile can create a LinkedIn company page.
So straight off the bat, there’s no excuse for not having a presence on the site.
You can create a page that tells all about who you are, what you do and also connects directly with your employees.
Of course, it’s not just enough to be on there. You need to populate and promote your page for it to be of any real benefit to you.
It can be used as a hub to publish relevant content and even as a direct recruiting or sales tool.
With LinkedIn said to be nearly 300 percent more effective for lead generation than Facebook or Twitter, having a company page (and regularly looking after it) can easily be immediately beneficial to your growth plans.
Engage With Groups
LinkedIn groups bring together those with common professional interests.
Making it a convenient way to hone in on the people you are looking to reach and find them in one interactive place.
Whether it’s for recruitment, sales or just general interest, LinkedIn groups provide you with ready-made forums that cut right to the chase.
Although LinkedIn groups are widely hailed as a marketing tool in their own right, it’s important to keep it authentic.
People don’t react kindly to pushy promotional posts, so participation is key.
By participating in relative industry forums, you can establish yourself as a thought leader, this can win you trust and connections that can prove valuable in the long term.
Start by thinking about your target audience and what groups they’re likely to be a part of.
If you’re a web design company, for example, then the small business network may be of use to you.
By sharing informative content with other members could lead to a flood of click-throughs to your website.
The key to selling? Educate and inform!
No one likes promotional posts or ads whilst browsing social media.
The best way to sell something is to not sell anything at all – build awareness and trust from those who might buy.
If you have a wealth of knowledge in your industry, then share your best tips and advice with others.
Then, once you’ve captured the interest of people who might buy, there’s a much higher probability that they’ll be interested in what you have to offer.
Spend time engaging in relevant group conversation, offering an opinion and being tactful with your presence before you promote your own agenda.
Here are 8 ways to boost business by participating in LinkedIn groups.
Post Articles With Pulse
Pulse is LinkedIn’s publishing platform, available for all users to post articles and content for their connections to see.
Every business should be using Pulse to promote what they do.
The articles that sit there can become search-engine friendly (when you make SEO a focus), helping to improve overall rankings and online traffic for your business.
Articles that you post on Pulse can be reworked from your website in order to reach a wider audience. Making it a relatively simple action point to explore.
They can then be shared within the platform by employees or influencers, improving levels of engagement as they help to build a personable presence behind the brand.
Get Everybody On Board
LinkedIn connects people in a professional sense – showcasing the companies they work for. This makes it a go-to for potential employees who are researching career paths and possible colleagues. This makes LinkedIn the ideal place to grow your small business through effective employer branding.
Employer branding is letting people know what your company is like to work for, or with.
It’s really important when you are small, or starting up, to give off the best impression you can to attract talent that can help to take you further.
Getting everybody on board with LinkedIn involves making sure that employees profiles are up-to-date, eye-catching and proudly representative.
Setting them up to make valuable connections on the site and to be appropriate ambassadors for your business as a whole.
Align With Your Marketing Strategy
How you behave on LinkedIn, and all social channels for that matter, should be aligned with your wider marketing plan.
Think about what you want to achieve, the timeframes you are looking at, and the resource you have available to do it.
With LinkedIn, you can utilise SEO and PPC strategies, producing highly targeted social adverts that reach out to your specific groups of interest.
There is plenty of opportunity for keywords – within your own profile as well as within Pulse articles.
So whether organic or paid, your digital strategy can be fully supported, and excelled, with the help of your LinkedIn activity.
Be Brave & Show Off
Despite its professional edge, LinkedIn is ultimately a social network – so it’s a place that people document and showcase.
The platform sees over 130,000 long form posts each week and hosts over 19 million slideshares.
So if you want to be noticed in such a fast-moving social space, you’re going to have to put your ideas out there for all to see.
With users defined by professional interest, it is much easier for your business to find its appropriate audience, and in turn to dial up its messaging to match.
Anything to do with your business can, and should, be promoted on LinkedIn. From recruitment details to sales campaigns and snippets of office culture.
Building The Links To Success…
These 6 easy steps aren’t difficult to action, and yet they can produce instant benefits. When looking to grow your small business, cost-effective strategy, such as social media engagement, can be a huge part of your success story.
As you explore your LinkedIn potential, remember a few key pointers:
- Always have a presence
- Put on a united front
- Engage and interact
- Content is key
These fundamentals run through each actionable point and keeping them at the heart will ensure that LinkedIn becomes a valuable tool in your quest for success.
No matter how small your business is, you can enjoy more than just a leg-up the growth ladder when you tap into this channel’s potential.
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