There are nearly 30 million small businesses in the United States, but only half of them will make it past five years. To ensure your small business is in the successful half, we encourage you to capitalize on the various ways LinkedIn can evolve your business.
With LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network, you can generate leads, produce sales and hire top professionals to fuel your growth. Here are seven ways to grow your business using LinkedIn:
Create a LinkedIn Company Page
We’ve found that LinkedIn members are 50 percent more likely to buy once they’ve engaged with your business on LinkedIn. But they can’t connect with you if you don’t have a LinkedIn company page. According to Forbes, only 57 percent of companies have pages. The remaining 43 percent are missing out on a free opportunity to generate leads, talent and, ultimately, revenue.
Create a LinkedIn Company Page. Personal profiles don’t have the same marketing, advertising and recruiting features, making them less effective at promoting your business. As you create your page, think about the kind of impression you want to create among potential customers and employees. This will help you select the right photos and messages to use on your page.
For a step-by-step guide on how to create an effective page, view the LinkedIn Company Page Best Practices.
Promote Your Company Page
Announce your company page to your clients, employees and personal network. This will help you gain your first followers.
Promoting your page on other platforms or via email is a great way to grow your audience. Here are some simple ways to get the word out:
- Announce the launch of the company page on your personal LinkedIn profile
- Encourage employees to follow the company page by making it a part of your onboarding process—Social Media Today reports that content shared by employees receives eight times the engagement as brand shared content
- Link to your company page in the footer of your marketing emails or newsletters
- Embed a company follow button onto your website so visitors can easily follow your LinkedIn company page
Share Content Regularly
The more you post, the more people you can potentially reach. Best-in-class LinkedIn company pages are consistently updated to ensure that visitors have plenty of new content to consume and share.
To get started, try posting at least once per week. Posting consistently shows that your company is active on LinkedIn. Use LinkedIn’s company page analytics to see your top performing updates, your best times to post and which members of your audience are the most engaged. With this information, it’s easy to make data-driven decisions to optimize your company page content.
In addition to posting often, here are a few more stats to help you boost engagement:
- Posts with links receive up to 45 percent more engagement
- Images see an incredible 98 percent increase in engagement
- Posts that have relevant “best of” lists get almost 40 percent more amplification
When a post gets good engagement, consider promoting it to a wider audience with LinkedIn sponsored content. Take the sponsored content tour and discover how sponsored content amplifies your best content.
Showcase Thought Leadership
Seventy-nine percent of buyers say thought leadership is critical for determining which companies they want to learn more about. To get started with thought leadership content, try to provide a unique perspective on your industry, product or organization. Sharing your opinion on the future of your industry or creating a definitive guide on your product are just two ways to demonstrate your expertise and position your company as a credible partner.
For more ideas and advice on expanding your brand’s authority, download LinkedIn’s Sophisticated Marketer’s Guide to Thought Leadership.
Target Sales Prospects
LinkedIn has over 500 million users to date. That may seem like a lot to sort through, but LinkedIn also provides you with tools to identify and target your ideal audience.
LinkedIn members are more likely than other social media users to keep their profiles up-to-date, making it easier for you to find the right people. Use LinkedIn profile data to search for LinkedIn members based on geographic location, education, experience and even connections. Once you’ve found prospects using the search feature, visit their profiles. Their endorsements or recent profile views might surface additional qualified prospects, too.
For more ways to reach your ideal audience, learn how to advertise on LinkedIn.
Build an All-Star Team or Hire
LinkedIn has helped 75 percent of job switchers make informed career decisions, making LinkedIn a top recruiting network. What are candidates looking for when making those decisions? Our research shows that 66 percent of candidates want to see company culture over everything else. To take advantage of this preference, consider enhancing your company page with a LinkedIn career page.
Career pages allow you to target audiences with a personalized look into your company, culture and jobs. They give you dedicated life and jobs tabs on your company page that attract and engage relevant professionals.
Encourage employees to share job postings and “day in the life” content as well. This gives visitors a genuine idea of what it’s like to work for you and adds to your authenticity. If you have a few employees who lead the pack in sharing content, consider linking them to your company page’s life tab. Their shared articles and recent updates will automatically populate, providing visitors with up-to-date information. Watch our video below on how to use the life tab to attract the right talent for your company.
Finding the right talent for the task at hand isn’t as tricky as it once was, even if you can’t afford the salary of a full time employee.
LinkedIn ProFinder enables you to post your projects, receive free proposals and hire trustworthy professionals all in one place. ProFinder will even pair you with local professionals to ensure you have the best freelance experience possible. With 172 professional services available on ProFinder, it’s easy to find the perfect professional for any task.
LinkedIn vets all the professionals on the platform to ensure they are qualified and leverages your network to find freelancers your connections have used, so you’re never in the dark about who you’re hiring.
By using freelancers, you’ll get access to outside perspectives and broad experience of professionals of all kinds, from creating websites and designing logos to managing your books or crafting your marketing strategy. Plus, with none of the management overhead of a full-time employee, you can focus solely on the job at hand.
Amber Bockman is the search marketing specialist for LinkedIn Talent Solutions