A series of articles on the big social media platforms
Social Media: LinkedIn
This is the first in a series of articles unwrapping the power of social media. Each week, we’ll run through one of the big hitter platforms, highlighting how their effective use can change your digital marketing efforts and have a profound, positive effect on your business.
Social media is now ubiquitous with the internet. Most social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn are free to use (although premium versions may be optional) with user numbers in the hundreds of millions. Taking advantage of these free-to-use tools should form part of any basic digital marketing plan and can be a great way to massively increase your audience, your new business inquiries and enhance recognition of your brand for little to no financial input.
Today, we’ll be taking a closer look at LinkedIn, the ‘network for professionals’.
LinkedIn is somewhat unique among social media platforms in that it was designed for business networking rather than the casual sharing of media and ideas seen on other sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
For new businesses
Business can be conducted anywhere, but LinkedIn is a great place to establish your company/business as an authority due to its more serious nature.
It’s also a fantastic place to practice your sales pitches and receive feedback on your efforts. Many people in the LinkedIn community will go out of their way to help you improve so taking advantage of the platform is a no-brainer.
For established businesses
An unparalleled tool for networking and appointment setting, LinkedIn is ideal if you are an established business wanting to increase new business through digital means or looking to hire your next star employee.
Although business to customer (B2C) interactions can be conducted, business to business (B2B) is where LinkedIn really sets itself apart so if you offer services or products to businesses, LinkedIn is an ideal route to market.
A closer looked at LinkedIn
LinkedIn has impressive statistics:
- LinkedIn is home to the largest professionally network in the world, nothing else even comes close. There are currently ~500 million members spread across over 200 countries. Those are some serious numbers and a gigantic potential audience.
- The network growth is showing no signs of slowing down with an average of 2 new members signing up every second.
- The fastest growing demographic on LinkedIn are recent graduates and student meaning LinkedIn is an ideal recruiting ground for new and established businesses.
- There are plenty of big players on LinkedIn: executives from all Fortune 500 companies are members on the platform and LinkedIn corporate talent solutions are used by 94 of the Fortune 100 companies.
Although LinkedIn is a well known and effective tool for job hunting and recruiting, far fewer businesses are aware of the power of LinkedIn for conducting business, generating interest in brands and hitting new sales targets.
‘What millions of members and 49 percent of them being key decision makers, LinkedIn has leveled the playing field allowing business owners all over the world the opportunity to find, connect and build a relationship with their target market regardless of industry or location.’
Why use Social Media like LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is one of the most powerful marketing tools of the 21st century. Here are the top reasons we think LinkedIn is worth your time.
Media exposure is key for brand building and getting your message and idea in front of as many eyes as possible. You might have the best product in the world, but if no one sees it or knows it available, you won’t change the world anytime soon. Connecting with the right people and putting out good quality content on LinkedIn can be a game changer for your business, and best of all, if you produce the content yourself, it doesn’t have to cost a penny.
Strategic partnering is well worth your time and partnering is a powerful way to grow your business. With a well-matched partner you can refer clients to each other, using the power of complimentary services to grow in unison. But how do you find the right company or group to partner with?
If you look closely at the strategies employed by some of the biggest brands in the world, you will see one thing they all have in common: they implement partnerships with key industry players.
Rather than getting your message in front of 1 or 2 potential clients, partnering can boost your message range in front of hundreds if not thousands of targeted contacts that have already built trust with the business or person you are partnering with.
LinkedIn is an incredibly effective tool for finding clients directly. When it comes to securing new business, getting your message in front of key decision makers is key. You can impress Bob in finance all you want but if he doesn’t have decision making authority, you might not get anywhere. LinkedIn is the ideal platform to reach decision makers directly, interact with them and convince them to give you a shot.
Although many businesses aren’t aware of the selling potential to be found on LinkedIn, many are, and a number of them could be your direct competitors. Using social media effectively should be part of any basic digital marketing and sales strategy. So, if you leave out these potentially lucrative avenues of engagement you could be left in the dust and playing catch up to your competition.
Business is changing rapidly, and consumers are more likely to engage with and trust companies which they ‘like’ rather than the company which has objectively the best products or services. Puzzling, but true. As such, LinkedIn, and social media in general, allow you to give personality to your business and connect with potential customers in real time.
Using LinkedIn effectively does not have to break the bank, in fact it doesn’t have to cost you anything. Although you can upgrade to Premium Membership for a monthly fee, basic LinkedIn membership provides all the tools you need to take full advantage of this platform. If you produce your own content and conduct sales on the platform in-house, then targeting LinkedIn is an exceptionally low-cost new businesses and marketing route.
LinkedIn is the largest professional network in the world and a deep sea of new business opportunity for those willing to take the dive.
- Speak to key decision makers directly
- Engage with potential consumers
- Form powerful strategic partnerships
- Gain an edge over your competition
- Trial new ideas/services to a professional audience
- Low-cost business growth!
MadeFour Marketing are an innovative full 360° digital marketing firm, specialising in organic lead generation, website design, content marketing and professional copywriting. Get in touch today to see how our services can transform your business.