Using social media platforms is a great way to engage with existing customers and an even better way to reach new ones, especially since most of your marketing on these sites can be done at little or no cost. It’s a win-win for business owners who want to grow their businesses but have limited marketing budgets.
LinkedIn, the popular site that connects working professionals, business owners, and entrepreneurs, is one of the most effective social media platforms you can use to grow your business. In fact, as of March 2016, LinkedIn had over 400 million members, 106 million of whom are considered active members. As of August 2017, LinkedIn had over 13 million company pages.
You’re probably already on LinkedIn, but are you using it to reach your business goals? Here’s what you can do to help grow your business:
Open for Business
In addition to your personal page, establish a business page. This is where you can profile your company, build your brand, highlight your services, and post content. Always make sure your profiles are current and up-to-date. When creating your profile, be sure to use industry keywords to improve your search results. A strong online presence gives customers and vendors a complete picture of your company and shows that you take your business—and your reputation—seriously
Make it Personal
Once you have a business page, don’t neglect your personal page. Continue growing it by connecting with known colleagues, customers, friends, etc. This is your network, and when you share updates on your personal page, these connections will see your updates in their feeds. But make sure they are quality connections. Check out their profiles. Are they current? How many connections do they have?
Post Content Often
Share updates frequently to your business page. Include promotions, events, relevant tips and articles, blog posts, and news items. Your content should always reflect your brand. Offer helpful tips, insightful questions, or meaningful data that will encourage people to engage with the content. Show that you are an expert in your field and a thought leader who has much to offer. Whatever you post to your business page should also be posted to your personal page. By sharing to your personal page, you increase the likelihood of people seeing that post.
Make it Meaningful
If you connect through LinkedIn with a prospective customer who you may not have any ties to, make the communication personal and meaningful. When sending an invite to connect, go beyond the generic message. When you add a personal note to the message, you’re telling that person you are truly interested in them and you believe you both have something in common. When someone accepts your invitation, be sure to follow up with them—and that doesn’t mean simply selling your product. Ask if there is some way you can help them, perhaps by introducing them to one of your connections or sharing industry advice.
Involve your Employees
If your business has employees, consider them to be brand ambassadors. Encourage them to follow your business page, share updates, and engage with posts as appropriate. Your employees can help tell your story, promote your business, and recruit more followers.
Join or Create Groups
Another way to expand your reach, become more accessible, and further strengthen your online presence is to join LinkedIn groups in your geographical area and/or those relevant to the services/products you provide. How about starting a group of your own? By becoming an active contributor to groups, you’ll connect with more potential customers as well as industry influencers and competitors. It’s important to note that each group has specific rules about promoting your own business, so be sure you read up on the etiquette for each one you join.
Build Up Your Reviews
LinkedIn reviews and endorsements go a long way in establishing your company’s reputation. Customers love seeing positive input from other customers. Don’t be shy about asking customers for recommendations or endorsements of your skills and expertise, but be selective about who and how many people you ask. Having too many reviews saying the same thing may come off as being insincere. It’s also important that you endorse some of your connections and offer recommendations.
Webinar & eBook:
LinkedIn expert Viveka von Rosen has provided two valuable resources that will help you grow your brand on LinkedIn. They are both free, so take advantage of LinkedIn to grow your business today!
- The webinar “Building Your Brand Through LinkedIn” will help you establish a quality business page and build meaningful contacts to help grow your brand.
- The eBook 7 Deadly LinkedIn Mistakes You Should Avoid will help you clean up your profile and be more effective on LinkedIn.