LinkedIn is the largest and most influential professional network in the world with approximately 225 million users. The social network is great for making new connections, staying in the know about industry news and trends, sharing content, building and maintaining a following, and amplifying brand reach and visibility. LinkedIn has an outstanding visitor-to-lead conversion rate of 2.74%, which is approximately three times higher than the conversion rates of Facebook and Twitter. The most common and detrimental mistake brands make on LinkedIn is creating overly “salesy” marketing. LinkedIn is a social network, so be social; set your sights on being an informational resource and providing links to highly shareable content jam-packed with deep industry insight and valuable solutions.
You must foster real connections and genuine engagement to attain success. Do not over-automate your LinkedIn activity or blast promotional spam; such tactics will not fly on LinkedIn. Strategic mastery of LinkedIn will allow you to amplify engagement, effectively promote your company, increase lead generation, gain influence and attract new business. Compared to other social networks, LinkedIn users are more focused on business and career, which increases the impact of relevant industry content.
LinkedIn offers an ideal platform to position yourself as an industry thought leader. People want to connect and work with experts in their field. Join relevant groups; be an active, insightful member. To foster credibility and gain influence, share your expertise and demonstrate your insight and thought leadership to all your connections and prospects. LinkedIn Groups can help you expand your professional network and stay in the know about industry news and trends.
You could even create your own LinkedIn Group based on a relevant industry topic and become a LinkedIn Group administrator. Use your group to establish yourself as an industry thought leader, increase your influence and credibility, and discuss relevant trends and ideas. You can also use LinkedIn to search for interesting in-person networking events. LinkedIn has made online networking on a global scale highly accessible, which is great. However, meeting others face-to-face is still highly valuable. The Events application allows you to see what events your connections are attending and find places to experience face-to-face professional networking. Do not forget about the importance of reading LinkedIn Today to find recent industry news and relevant problems that need to be solved.
One recent addition to LinkedIn—the Tweets Application—can be key to successful marketing. By allowing you to see whether those connected to you on LinkedIn also choose to list themselves as Twitter users, you can decide to follow or unfollow them without having to log onto Twitter. The most important benefit of this application is that it acts as a bridge between LinkedIn and Twitter—fostering virtually limitless marketing potential by adding more value to your LinkedIn connections.
The company pages on LinkedIn provide a profile of the visiting members, which can help you devise marketing strategies for your content. You can set them up to find highly-relevant offers and links that will bring them to your company website and ultimately generate more leads. Utilize LinkedIn's DirectAds feature to send out ads based on the specific targeted demographics within the LinkedIn subscriber base.
The recommendation option is a good way to understand how your company's products and/or services have fared. It is most useful as a way for LinkedIn users to give feedback on anything on the Products & Services tab of your Company Page. You can click on any item on the page to see all its customer reviews and then use this data to improve your products and/or services.
Experiment with various ways to distinguish yourself and your company, and you could make new connections, expand the reach of your content, gain influence and win new business.