The growth of social media seems unstoppable, and it has become an excellent marketing tool, with a huge number of brands using sites such as Twitter and Facebook to attract and retain customers. But what of LinkedIn?
If you’re a user, the chances are that you see it as simply being a way to network and enhance your professional profile. And it’s true; it’s an outstanding platform for doing just that, but for the savvy user it’s also a secret sales resource. Find out how with PeoplePerHour’s top hacks below:
1. Create a Company Page
Sure, you’ve got your personal profile already, but a company page which highlights your business’ goods and services, gives a face to your employees, and amplifies your brand can work as an effective – and free – advertising platform, drawing professional customers in.
2. Target Customers
One of the best things about LinkedIn is the amount of user information openly available. This allows you to zero in on potential customers with whom you might have the most pulling-power. You can search by job role, industry or even company size, creating a bespoke advertising campaign which reaches only those mostly likely to bite.
3. Keep It Current
In frequently updating your profile and your business page, you will keep yourself in the active timeline; this ensures that you stay in the consciousness of potential customers and partners. The only caveat here is to not run into overkill at the risk of being seen as a spammer.
4. Create a Call to Action
Most people’s LinkedIn profile is little more than a digital CV, but if you’re clever you can use it to invite action: email me; call me; visit the company website; sign-up to our newsletter; check out our latest products. It’s not pushy; it’s pro-active.
5. Become an Influencer
Given the LinkedIn platform, it’s not too difficult to position yourself as an industry influencer. In sharing content which highlights your credentials you can make yourself – and your business – look like the go-to expert in your field.
6. Watch the Watchers
If someone has viewed your profile or business page, return the favour. This may start a conversation, or lead to a new contact, and every new contact brings the potential of a new sale.
7. Create a Group
Interest-related groups are big business on LinkedIn. If you can find an interesting niche related to your company and build an engaging forum around it, you will have a whole new way to reach your target market, without having to spend a penny.
8. Join Other Groups
If you can engage others in interesting discussion you may well pique their interest enough for them to check out your profile, visit your website, and eventually become a customer.
9. Endorse & Be Endorsed
The difference between LinkedIn and other social media channels is that on LinkedIn endorsements really matter. Research has shown that when it comes to making online purchases peer reviews influence up to 88% of sales. LinkedIn endorsements can have a similar effect; on your personal profile they can act as an open reference. On your business page it works as a customer recommendation. Think about how you shop and why consumer webpages are so popular, and you’ll soon appreciate the value of endorsements. And if you endorse someone else, they will generally return the favour.
10. Pay Per Click
PPC is one of the most useful features of online advertising. With LinkedIn Sponsored Updates you can pay to push your post onto an individual’s LinkedIn feed, and while pure ‘buy me, buy me’ advertising often fails, an interesting status update or ‘thought-leadership’ piece can grab the attention. It gets you seen, and you only pay for results. It’s win-win.