LinkedIn today is considered as the most vital social networking platform for professionals. Members utilise it to create their CVs, list job roles they’ve held previously (or currently hold), coupled with their education, and skill set. Moreover, LinkedIn is further regarded as a widespread channel for recruitment; businesses create profiles on the platform, after which vacancies within their companies are listed.
However, LinkedIn isn’t limited to job seekers, and professionals, alone. Although it is widely used to grow one’s network and career, you can also utilize it to grow your business as well. It helps businesses across the globe gain recognition, while also forming thousands of connections. Connections such as these build relationships with companies, and individuals, in order to boost the popularity of your brand.
According to BrandZ, LinkedIn is amongst the 10 fastest growing brands in the world today.
As such, LinkedIn is a social network to its very core. It resonates with career development, industry discussions, and the formation of professional connections. You can find everything from employees, partners, and customers when utilizing LinkedIn marketing.
If appropriately utilized, LinkedIn marketing can uplift your business performance by upwards of 80%, according to surveys conducted by B2B marketers.
Gaining LinkedIn Success with a Great Marketing Strategy
LinkedIn marketing differs from the same on other social media channels because, as a business, you’re simply not allowed to push your products/services, spam others with promotions, or engage in hard-selling. All in all, selling and marketing products/services in a blatant manner is looked down upon. Therefore, it is important to have a LinkedIn marketing strategy tailored to its professional mannerism. Given the unique nature of its audience, you’ll need to implement a different approach in order to attain results.
As per Sprout Social, businesses which adequately market on LinkedIn are able to generate 277% higher leads than businesses who limit themselves to marketing on Facebook alone.
If appropriately utilized, LinkedIn marketing can uplift your business performance by upwards of 80%, according to surveys conducted by B2B marketers.
Why is LinkedIn so Important for B2B and B2C Brands
The numbers undoubtedly provide LinkedIn B2B marketing with a strong reputation. Today, the platform is trusted, proven to work, and blankets a wide range of B2B and B2C audiences.
However, as the biggest online professional network in the world, LinkedIn is prevalently B2B-centric. Amongst a variety of social media channels, LinkedIn tops the masses as a prime content marketing space for B2B marketers, with more and more businesses investing in the platform daily. Internal data by LinkedIn showcases the following:
The platform consists of over 706 million members from more than 200 countries across the world. Moreover, upwards of 55 million companies make use of LinkedIn B2B marketing for a variety of reasons.
The rate of new professionals joining LinkedIn is almost 3 members per second.
Members of LinkedIn interact with the Pages section over 1 billion times each month.
Ranging from professional associations to industry communities, LinkedIn presently has approximately 2.9 million groups.
Upwards of 55 million companies make use of LinkedIn B2B marketing for a variety of reasons.
Why should Businesses Utilise LinkedIn Marketing
A Linkedin marketing strategy allows businesses to generate leads, conduct lucrative market research, gain insights, and build profitable online communities. For B2B marketers, the platform is increasingly useful, for growing a business, through networking and connecting.
Here are the 6 primary reasons LinkedIn marketing is essential for businesses.
1. Improving your Reputation & Creating Awareness
With LinkedIn, businesses are given an opportunity to network with a variety of contacts. By utilizing the group and personal features available on the platform, you can network with multiple companies, or the people who represent them, in order to improve your visibility. Moreover, a LinkedIn marketing strategy is the ideal tool to use when wishing to enhance the credibility of your brand, and your business.
2. Influencer Marketing & Thought Leadership
LinkedIn’s marketing tools allow users to enjoy a range of features which place you as a leader within a particular domain. For thought leaders, and practice leaders alike, the platform is an excellent option to participate in numerous LinkedIn communities, while also curating quality content, and working on the improvement of your personal profile. Furthermore, since LinkedIn is best utilized for networking, you’ll be able to showcase your business as an influencer, whilst working with, identifying, and engaging with fellow influencers.
3. Generating Leads & Increasing Sales
Your LinkedIn marketing strategy permits you to use a mixture of traditional practises, and newer ones, in order to generate optimum leads. By offering personal methods of identifying promising leads, you’re able to engage with, and turn, fellow members into customers. Traditional methods such as enticing potential customers with interesting content can also be used.
However, the most important aspects of LinkedIn marketing solutions, for a business, are to listen, analyse, participate, share, network, and respond. Doing so, particularly networking with clients, and carefully directing your marketing strategies, leads to significant opportunities to generate sales.
Participating in LinkedIn as a Business: A great opportunity to grow your network is to answer questions on LinkedIn as part of your LinkedIn marketing solutions. Potential customers often post their needs, and questions, onto the platform, which provides B2B marketers with opportunities to engage with new leads. 18% of these enquiries are made as group-related posts, whilst a further 18% of members are prone to actively liking, and sharing content. This allows businesses to garner insights on their clientele.
4. Social CRM
Where it concerns Social CRM, LinkedIn is ideally one of the best platforms to utilise. It provides users with a better perspective on various contacts, and customers as well. Businesses can do so by utilising Social CRM applications, or by utilising ‘connectors’. Moreover, you can further set up an integration of your personal contacts, within LinkedIn, since the platform supports Google Contacts.
Benefits of Social CRM: One of the primary benefits of using a social CRM tool lies in your ability to monitor the activity of your contacts, on LinkedIn, in real-time. This offers businesses with vital information regarding the preferences, and behavioural patterns, of their customer base. Moreover, when targeting a particular contact, LinkedIn allows you to view this information within its own environment as well.
5. Building Traffic
A notable aspect of LinkedIn digital solutions is the assistance it provides businesses, and individuals, when building links, and driving traffic. Similar to alternative social networks, LinkedIn possesses a social sharing button which enables users to share content within the status update section of their respective profiles. This is then visible on your homepage, alongside the LinkedIn groups you are a part of.
Undoubtedly, this feature works quite well for content aligned to businesses, and can lead to them going viral. In fact, business content is more often shared via LinkedIn, than Facebook.
6. Gaining Insights & Listening
When it comes to social media marketing, LinkedIn is the ideal platform to utilise by listening, asking questions frequently, and gaining insights into your competitor, and customers alike.
Best Practises to Optimise your LinkedIn Business Profile
Company pages represent the entirety of your company when engaging in digital marketing on LinkedIn. They can be utilized for sales, recruitment, marketing and much more. Here’s how to do LinkedIn marketing in an optimum manner.
Using a professional profile picture
Some businesses tend to use a low-quality picture, or sometimes no picture at all, for their LinkedIn profiles. Doing so is exceedingly negative for you, as a brand, since your profile picture is your initial presentation of your business to your LinkedIn audience. Businesses must utilize images such as a logo for their profile picture, while also ensuring the picture itself isn’t pixelated, and is of a high-quality.
Moreover, if utilising your own individual appearance, you must ensure it is professional, neat, and clicked in good lighting which makes you look flattering and approachable.
Regularly update your profile
By constantly filling out, and updating, your profile, you’ll be able to present a collected and professional front to the LinkedIn groups you are a part of, alongside potential customers and partners. This should be a core aspect of your LinkedIn marketing solutions, while further ensuring you’ve filled out all the necessary sections and details required of your business.
Businesses can also indulge in the addition of a header image, listing their credentials, and sharing their portfolio, or website, if applicable.
Form the right connections
Connections are undoubtedly a vital aspect of your LinkedIn marketing tools. As a business, sharing, liking, and posting content to your company page will all be visible to your followers, after which they can choose to share the same posts. Therefore, forming the right connections can fulfill various tasks such as driving more traffic to your website/blog, promoting an ebook for you, or simply allowing your connections to view an article or piece of information.
However, it is important not to throw out connection requests frequently and randomly. Doing so will discredit the credibility of your business, while further giving your profile the appearance of a spammer.
Encourage your employees to optimize their own profiles
Aside from sales and marketing employees, businesses must ensure the remainder of their team is also contributing towards the company’s LinkedIn B2B marketing agenda.
Members such as technical staff can do so by acting as thought leaders within the industry, while also initiating relevant discussions and promoting their roles within the business. Whereas, business owners and other chief executives can contribute by raising brand awareness, and promoting the company in an elevated manner.
Utilise LinkedIn Pulse
LinkedIn Pulse is the channel’s own unique blogging platform. By utilizing LinkedIn Pulse, you’ll be able to position your brand at the forefront of the industry, gain more followers, build connections, and propel your marketing strategy. It is one of the best ways to illustrate how to do Linkedin marketing to gain results.
If your business already consists of a blogging schedule, you could alternate the same and resort to posting on LinkedIn Pulse a few times each month. By diverting posts towards gated content, you’ll be able to embed important links within your posts in order to direct readers towards your website. This further increases your traffic, and promotes your efforts to generate more leads.
If you happen to own a multifaceted business, adding showcase pages can highly benefit your brand. This will allow users to be directed towards the content which is most relevant for them, whilst depicting the multiple subsets of your business.
Share Engaging Content
Businesses should frequently share content such as blog posts, insights, ebooks, and other forms of content which they create. When followers visit a company profile and come across such content, they’re able to better engage with it, allowing an increase in lead generation and traffic. Moreover, sharing content on a company profile allows businesses to enhance their social reach.
Optimise your Company page
In order to optimise your company profile, it is necessary to post occasional updates regarding ongoing events and careers. This allows your audience to remain invested within your company, while also helping viewers to familiarize themselves with your brand.
How to Generate Leads & Sales through Audience Targeting
Targeting your audience is an integral part of LinkedIn marketing. Doing so allows businesses to focus on potential clients, or customers, and appeal to them directly. Some of the best ways to target your audience, in a manner which enhances sales and leads to conversions, are as follows.
Include a text version of your LinkedIn 30 seconds commercial
The foremost aspect of a company profile on LinkedIn revolves around answering a very important question- ‘What do you do?’ This is undoubtedly the first thing customers look for. As a business on LinkedIn, it is essential to first create a digital version of your LinkedIn commercial, which specifically applies to the services, and products, you offer. Following which, including a text version of your commercial, within your LinkedIn profile, is highly beneficial.
Businesses can enhance the target audience their ads are reaching by indulging in the following practises:
Locate the lowest possible CPC Bid: business marketers are highly recommended to utilize LinkedIn’s Enhanced CPC Bid. It allows businesses to appeal to audiences which the platform has deemed likely to click on the ad they put out, after which the business can then bid a certain amount in order to reach these people. Ideally, as a business, you would strive to gain the highest possible clicks on your ad, at the lowest possible costs. Therefore, begin with lower bids, and only increase it if necessary.
Carefully track your conversions: conversion tracking is necessary to measure the success of your advertising campaigns. When you set up a conversion on LinkedIn, it is essential to define how you’d like to track it. Utilising your site-wide Insight Tag allows businesses to carefully track their conversions by the amount of people visiting your webpage.
Utilise A/B Testing for your Ads: the importance of A/B testing LinkedIn ads is often overlooked by businesses. Although the practise might be rather time consuming, it is highly lucrative for businesses to engage in the following, alongside curating several ad variations for which A/B tests can be carried out.
Grow your network by making relevant connections
As stated earlier, it is important not to spam others with requests on the platform. Businesses can properly go about growing their network by utilising the ‘connect’ button located within the ‘People you May Know’ list. OLinkedIn’s algorithm posts this list within your feed in order for you to take advantage of like-minded customers and other businesses. Each connection you make through this feature broadens your network, whilst allowing you to carefully pitch your brand as well.
Build onto your lead list
Businesses must invest their daily time into navigating the connections made by their contacts. After doing so, it is useful to make a note of pages you would like to associate yourself with, and then proceed to work on an introduction for the same. Moreover, starting off with LinkedIn’s ‘Recommendations’ feature can be very lucrative for brands since you’re likely to form better relationships through mutual recommendations.
Ask for Recommendations: businesses can also ask their own connections for recommendations via email or a quick phone call. Doing so allows different sets of audiences to view your brand which enhances your overall visibility even further.
Write your own recommendations
A great way to target your audience specifically is by devoting your time towards writing, and then posting, adequate recommendations for your key contacts and customers. This aligns you with your customer base, while also acting as a promotional piece for your brand. Moreover, it allows fellow LinkedIn members to know that your business is keen to actively work with others in a mutually beneficial manner. If not a recommendation, you could also invest in referrals for your clients and customers.
Utilise efficient CTAs
Using quality CTAs within your LinkedIn profile creates a bridge between a buyer and a brand. They motivate sales funnels within a business, while further providing companies with analytical insights into their performance. Moreover, a potential customer’s engagement with your brand’s CTA permits you to determine its efficiency, and gauge whether customers are responding well to it.
All in all, customers are always looking for quicker ways to interact with content, ads, and profiles, and CTAs are proven to work. You can place them within summaries, projects, and publications, or on the forefront of your LinkedIn company profile as well.
Some of the best practises for creating LinkedIn CTAs, which effectively work, are as follows:
Make sure your CTA is concise and clear: since LinkedIn doesn’t provide profiles with a lot of space for a CTA, it is important to get your message across in a manner which can be read quickly, while still portraying what it is you wish your audience to do. Some good examples of quality CTAs are ‘Sign Up’, ‘Register’, and ‘Learn More’.
Interest your audience: make sure your CTA creates excitement within your audience. It should make viewers want to interact with your company profile through the usage of punctuations such as exclamation marks, and impactful language.
Provide reasons: as a business, you should also provide your customers, or potential clientele, with reasons to click your CTA even initially. You can do so by providing benefits, which are tangible, when a CTA is clicked.
What Have We Covered?
We’re now able to gauge the importance of LinkedIn within the world of business marketing. By walking you through the necessity of a tailored LinkedIn marketing strategy, coupled with the platform's essential usages for B2B businesses, as a company, you can now explore LinkedIn marketing with a better understanding towards the spectrum. Lastly, information regarding the most optimum practises for growing your company’s presence on the platform is sure to assist your brand in lead generation, and gaining more traffic.