If the latest statistics are anything to go by, two people every second join LinkedIn as new members. Many, if not all, are joining this rapidly developing social platform hoping to explore its vast resource for industry contacts, meet new clients and form new partnership opportunities.
What you do with your LinkedIn profile can mean the difference between gaining views and converting the views and building a fruitful LinkedIn relationship. With more than 1 billion LinkedIn searches daily for names and companies, this social platform is a sure opportunity to build and develop your company reputation, professional network, and gain connections.
With many people fighting for attention, your first impression can be your best or last. To help you stand out from the crowd, below are some of the essential LinkedIn fundamentals.
Why LinkedIn is a Must for Small Businesses
As mentioned above, there are endless reasons why you ought to give a shot at LinkedIn. For many businesses, LinkedIn is their absolute favorite platform. Some of the reasons why LinkedIn is a must include;
Full of business professionals
There are more than 140,000,000 business Professionals using LinkedIn. This directly implies that these people that have money to buy your services. Finding people with a lot of money is certainly one of the hardest things that you can do. So to say, 47% of this population are business owners with 68% being decision makers.
LinkedIn is where your clients already are, and this is where they go to get their leads. It does not only enable people to connect with their audience but is also among the fastest growing networks for small business owners and entrepreneurs.
Best for B2B marketers
Besides, if the latest statistics are anything to go by, LinkedIn B2B marketing surpassed Facebook B2B marketing. Reports from the Social Media Marketing Industry indicated that LinkedIn surpassed Facebook as the number one most important social channel for B2B marketers. LinkedIn B2B marketing was cited as the best.
Third most used social platform
The other reason why you should consider LinkedIn is because it is the third most used social platform among business owners. The State of Marketing Report ranked LinkedIn as the third most commonly accessed social network for business owners. From the report, 62 percent of business owners reported to preferring this channel while 22 percent admitted to having intentions of using it.
Best for product launch
LinkedIn is also the most effective platform to undertake a product launch. You are missing out a lot if you are still relying on traditional press releases when launching your new products. It is a fact that social media, especially LinkedIn has an enormous impact on how small businesses distribute new product news and information to media, consumers, and bloggers.
So to say, LinkedIn is an excellent choice of platform for B2B businesses product launches with a whopping 80 percent of businesses preferring the site compared to Twitter’s 70 percent and Facebook’s 50 percent.
Moving on, LinkedIn is the most effective platform for a great lead generation. Hubspot report found that LinkedIn referral traffic gained the highest visitor-to-lead conversion rate compared to other social networking sites, much higher than Facebook or Twitter.
Enhances your brand search visibility
With a properly optimized LinkedIn profile and business/company profile page, you can be certain of higher chances of ranking in a random Google search. This gives you more valuable search engine results. However, to be sure of this, you should;
- Use relevant keywords in your page description and personal bio.
- Use proper descriptive wording in your job title and company name.
- Complete all fields in company description and profile.
- Attach direct links to your website and blog as you fill in your profile, company description, and posts.
Reaches all your page followers
Unlike Facebook and other social media channels, LinkedIn doesn’t filter its feed. Therefore, when you update a post to your LinkedIn page or profile, it appears in all your follower’s feeds regardless of the frequency of interaction between you and the followers.
With this, all your efforts of building your page get rewarded with captive audience without being hindered by filter algorithm. However, this doesn’t mean that all your followers on the platform will get the feed. Due to this, it is prudent to post regularly to maximize your outreach.
There are 3 Levels of network reach;
- Network Exponentially – It means that you connect with one person you got access to all their acts.
- Powerful Search Capability – LinkedIn becomes the easiest place to actually to find exactly the possible clients you are looking for. Leveraging who you know in common to generate more leads
- LinkedIn is a Business Platform – it is an easy place to get some good business reputation management, rapid lead generation, and partner development.
On LinkedIn, you do not need to be a tetchie, marketer or expert social marketer.
Getting Started with LinkedIn
Having outlined all the above importance of trying out LinkedIn, you might be in a fix trying to get started. Well, joining and setting up your basic LinkedIn profile isn’t that challenging. Below are some of the essentials when setting up a basic profile on LinkedIn.
Section One – Optimizing Your LinkedIn Profile
If you are new to LinkedIn, this section will guide you through the process of creating a strong profile. Begin by signing up for LinkedIn through their Sign in page. Note that your LinkedIn profile is an opportunity to display your education, accomplishments and professional interests. With a strong and optimized profile, you will brand yourself as a reputable professional. To do this, follow the following LinkedIn profile tips.
- Profile picture – after signing up, choose a simple but professional headshot and upload. This could be your first impression with a potential employer.
- Headline – LinkedIn allows up to 120 characters at the top of your profile for sign-ups to describe what they do. You ought to make your headline stand out. Select the best descriptive words to help you get found by your target persons. If you want your profile to be searchable, include all the relevant keywords.
- Summary – your summary should be unique and captivating. This section should bring out clearly what you do, and a Call-to-action. For instance, Please get in touch for such opportunities. You can at least include up to 6 of your achievements. Note this in form of bullets to make it easily readable.
- Experience – just like the traditional CV, this is the body of your profile. Here, you showcase your skills, expertise, and experience. Include where you have worked, how long you worked, your roles and functions. You can add media files such as images and visuals to your experience.
- Work history – you should keep your profile work history relevant. You don’t need to list all the jobs you have had, but just the necessary.
- Links to relevant sites – if you have an online portfolio or a work related blog, make good use of the 3 allowed links in your profile to fix them.
- Connect with people – you can simply ask someone to join your professional network by sending them a connect invitation. If the person accepts, they become a 1st-degree connection. Since such connections will get access to your primary email address, it is prudent to invite people you know as 1st-degree connections.
- Recommendation – reach out to colleagues, associates, and managers for a recommendation. Recommendations could be from anyone you’ve worked with before or benefited from your skills and advice. Ask each to speak about a particular skill or highlight specific experiences in details.
How LinkedIn Works
LinkedIn working strategy is as follows;
- Your profile can be your website
- Your connections x3 degrees
To maneuver LinkedIn Homepage easily, here are some of the icons and terms with their definitions you ought to be well versed with.
- Profile Menu- this shows your profile as other people see your profile
- Home View menu- this is where you viewed your status update or network update. This is where you also see the updates and what’s going on in your network. Your matrix on a regular basis will also be viewed on your home menu.
- Contact Tab- wherein you can access individual connections, and you add connections. This is to allow you to organize connections. You can add and export connections.
- Group Tab- is the secret source of LinkedIn where you can see a different option
- Inbox Tab- is a place wherein you can put your important note here, your invitations.
Section Two – Networking on LinkedIn
With your fully optimized profile, it is time to build relationships and networking. There are many ways of achieving this. LinkedIn groups are among the best way of doing this. Through this, you will be able to build relationships and network with people in a common field.
It is wise to join as many groups as possible, provided they are relevant. Join any discussion in the group, lending out your skills and expertise where possible. Note that it is prudent to engage with others and comment on their post rather than just promoting your content.
Remember that this is a social networking channel with many opportunities to learn from experienced professionals.
LinkedIn B2B Client Generation System
LinkedIn B2B marketing requires an aggressive and strategized process. The 3-step process below could be the key to your success.
Your first step should be viewing target profiles. Here, you should first determine who your ideal target lead is. There are different ways to do this. For instance, you can use the LinkedIn Sales Navigator tool. This tool gives 22 filter categories for refined research. Categories include keywords, industry, job function, experience and much more for effective filter results.
After identifying your target profile, it is time to send some connection request. This request should always be personalized and not the standard LinkedIn message. Take your time and address the user personally to stand out from other connects. Personalized connect requests increases the chances of someone accepting your request.
How to get connection
To make a connection;
- Make people feel safe and welcome. Many people are scared to send you an invite because they don’t even know you. But through this network, they will be welcome, and you can make people feel safe.
- Let people know they are in the right spot. Let them know that being part of this business is an asset
- Tell them what will happen next. Let them what will happen next after they join their network. Tell the people directly how they are benefited in joining your network.
Just like the second step, wait and see who accepts your request. This eliminates the chances of spamming with a LinkedIn user who isn’t interested in connecting with you. Your message should thank the person for accepting your request and introduce your interests. The message shouldn’t be overly salesly, but just a startup conversation to build your relationship with your target.analy
Doing the above will bring in the expected results. This includes high profile views, gaining new connections, high chances of response rate to messages and ultimately gain new potential target clients or business partners.
LinkedIn Success Formula
Some of the elements that lead to your success in LinkedIn include;
- Experience- it is portrayed to your profile, recommendations, and activities
- Relationships- it is equally important to your success in LinkedIn
- LinkedIn Skills- it will determine your success.
- Profile Destination- it follows you around everywhere you go. It will become your entire web press
- Exponential Networking- it means that you can go from your friend and your friend to someone they know.
LinkedIn has 3 degrees separation, which includes;
- Your connections
- Two degrees away
- Three degrees away
Take Home Message
LinkedIn is perhaps the best current social media channel to promote your business and company. Our guide above outlines some of the crucial LinkedIn profile tips which could come in handy, especially for those anticipating to undertake LinkedIn B2B marketing.
Note the following points when working on your profile.
- Lead generation- it might be reputation management. Remember people are going to LinkedIn to look you up. It is about getting traffic to your business.
- Branding and reputation management- making sure that your branding reputation is stronger to cope up can be times of priority
- Build a Support Network- is not a lot of keen to benefits the company. There’s nothing wrong to build a support network. Your goal is to get a connection. Get the connection first opted with lead.
Get the connection to look at your profile. Get exponential access to their network. Stay focus on your goal. Do not try to sell a product directly. All the best!