Are you investing time into your brand's LinkedIn presence?
It's easy for companies - especially B2C's - to neglect LinkedIn in favor of other channels, but the truth is that LinkedIn is a hugely influential social network, where B2C's, along with their B2B counterparts, can thrive.
There are more than 610 million LinkedIn members globally, and more than 40 million of them are in decision-making positions.
In other words, LinkedIn provides tremendous opportunity to connect with individuals who are in a position to form strategic partnership, stock your product or invest in your business.
The bottom line? Marketing your brand on LinkedIn can only help boost your business success.
Here are nine ways to win at B2C marketing on LinkedIn.
1. Promote your own content and get creative
Drive traffic to your site by promoting your blog posts, case studies, sales, etc.
Videos and images will boost your ability to drive engagement, so always ensure you include a visual component to your posts.
You can also syndicate your blog posts via LinkedIn publisher for an extra boost.
2. Interact with other people's content
LinkedIn is first and foremost a social network - so don't forget to be social on the platform.
Comment on and reshare other people's posts, especially influencers and individuals who you'd like to align with your business.
Interacting with their content is the first step toward creating a relationship with these users.
3. Repurpose Content From Other Social Channels
What's been really successful on your brand's other social channels?
Use it on LinkedIn, as well.
You can try posting it exactly as it is, though you should try to give a slightly different angle to better suit LinkedIn.
4. Leverage hashtags
As with all social networks, you can use hashtags on LinkedIn as a means to connect with people outside your network. This wasn't always the case, but LinkedIn re-introduced hashtags to its platform a few years back, and has more recently been putting increased emphasis on them to better categorize content.
Choose hashtags related to your business or industry. Tools like Hashtagify can help you find the most popular hashtags, while LinkedIn also now has automated suggestions for tags within the composer window.
5. Tag People and Brands
Whenever you're creating a post, make sure to tag anyone you mention in it.
This may seem obvious, but it's a step that can be easily overlooked (especially if you're posting content to LinkedIn via a third-party app like Buffer where it's not even possible to add a live tag).
Tagging is important because:
- It gets the post in front of the person you mentioned
- The post will have a much higher chance of making it into the LinkedIn feeds of that person's audience
6. Create discussion and ask questions
Not only does asking questions help you learn more about your audience and consumers, it can also drive engagement on your page.
Post thought-provoking, open-ended questions, with the intent to spark conversation among your followers.
You can post questions directly related to your product or service to better understand what people like or how they are using it, or you can post lifestyle questions to build out your persona research.
7. Post job opportunities, company successes and customer stories
People go on LinkedIn to connect with employers, find jobs and discover new companies they'd like to join.
As a marketing company, you should be sharing information about your brand that appeals to every user. Post information about everything going on in your business: company values, product knowledge, jobs and employee and customer stories.
By focusing on what LinkedIn's all about, you'll be able to pinpoint more business connections, while also boosting your appeal to a wider audience.
8. Avoid business jargon
It can be easy to slip into marketing jargon when talking about your business - but you should try to avoid such, as it will only isolate your audience and limit the amount of people you'll reach.
The best strategy to ensure that your content is reader-friendly is to ask yourself this question: "Is this how I would explain my company to a friend over coffee?"
Sticking to the "coffee conversation rule" will make sure that you're engaging with as many people as possible, and making your business posts relatable.
9. Research your competitors
You should always keep an eye on what your competition is doing, and that includes what they're up to on LinkedIn.
Look at other brands in your space. What are they posting? Are they generating good engagement?
Let their efforts inspire your own.
As noted, LinkedIn may not be as cool or sexy as the other social networks, but recent data has shown that engagement on LinkedIn is rising, and there are plenty of opportunities to connect with relevant audiences, if you make yourself familiar with the platform.
By following these tips, you'll be well-placed to create a more effective, beneficial LinkedIn strategy, no matter what sector you're operating in.
A version of this post was first published on Inc.com.