Why LinkedIn is Essential for Small Businesses in 2020 and How to Make Most of It
Are you a small business wondering if LinkedIn should be a part of your content strategy? You bet, it should! Why? Because engagement on LinkedIn is booming. LinkedIn content creation is up 60% year-over-year, and if you are not on LinkedIn, your business is missing out on a huge opportunity to reach your target audience, drive leads, and traffic to your website and find new customers.
So, how you can use LinkedIn for your small business? Well, before you start building a brand presence on LinkedIn you will need to create a company page. So, let’s start with the basics and then take a deeper dive into different LinkedIn features.
Optimize Your Company Page
Completed pages get 30% more weekly views so start by creating a complete and keyword-rich company page.
So, take a stock of your LinkedIn company page to ensure it includes–
- Your logo and a clean cover photo that resonates with your business
Companies with logos on their page get 6x more visits
- An enriched company overview section, featuring your products & services, your mission, vision, and values.
- A customized call-to-action encouraging visitors to take action e.g. visit website or register.
- All relevant company information including website URL, location, industry type, contact information, and the number of employees.
Create and Share Engaging Content
Content is at the heart of all digital marketing efforts including social media. LinkedIn is no different. So, creating awesome content is the key to your success. Follow an “always-on approach”, meaning you should post relevant and exciting content, at least once a day or few times a week to regularly engage with your audience.
What type of content you can share and post on your LinkedIn page?
- Industry News
- Company Photos
- Products Videos
- Thought leadership Videos
When creating content on LinkedIn, make it about your audience—ask yourself what do my audience need or care about. In other words, don’t make your content a sales pitch about how awesome your products and services are, instead, engage and genuinely add value for your audience.
LinkedIn recommends the “3-2-1” model, meaning “every week, aim to publish three pieces of industry-related content, two pieces of “proud” content (content that make your employees and community feel good) and just one piece of product or service-related content.”
Pro Tip: Members are most active on LinkedIn during a workweek, between 9 a.m.-5 p.m., given the professional nature of the channel. So, plan to post your content accordingly.
Make the Most of Your Content
Maximizing the reach for your content will enable you to raise awareness around your brand and grow your followers and find new leads. Here are a few tips that can help you expand the reach for your content—
- @Mention people associated with a specific piece of content e.g. a client or business partner.
- Participate in conversations most relevant to your business by adding relevant hashtags in your profile. LinkedIn allows you to add three hashtags to your profile.
- Every time you post on your LinkedIn page click the “Notify Employees” button to let your team know you have published a new post, encouraging them to engage with the post—share, comment, or like promptly. At this point, LinkedIn allows page admins to notify five employees in 24 hours.
- Leverage Showcase Pages to highlight specific brand initiatives, products, or business unit. A Showcase Page is an extension to your company page and once created will appear as ‘Affiliated Pages’ on your main LinkedIn page.
Expand Your Reach with LinkedIn Groups
LinkedIn Groups is a platform to cultivate a business community. Groups provide an opportunity for professionals from the same industry or with similar interest to share content, make contacts, find answers, share career opportunities, and establish themselves as industry experts.
Join LinkedIn Groups relevant to your industry and actively participate in the discussion, becoming a trusting voice in your community. You can even start a LinkedIn group focusing on a particular topic or aspect of your business.
LinkedIn Groups are a perfect platform to spark discussions about industry trends and challenges, and in doing so increasing awareness for your business.
Get Interactive With LinkedIn Polls
If you hadn’t noticed earlier this year LinkedIn introduced polls—a quick, easy, and fully-virtual way to solicit feedback from your community. Polls are another great way to engage your community or seek their insight while inspiring new conversations. You can access polls from your feed or from within specific groups. For more targeted insights, create polls in a specific Group focused on a particular topic in your industry.
Pro Tip: Keep an eye on your poll while it’s running to glean insights and continue engaging with your audience once the poll closes by sharing the results and thanking your community for participating in the poll.
Taking Advantage of LinkedIn Events Feature
LinkedIn is promoting its newest Events feature as a professional tool. So, why not take advantage of it and network with your connections. You can host both in-person or online events.
What kind of events you can host on LinkedIn—
- In-person networking events for your connections
- Alumni meetups
- Industry-specific meetups
- Workshops—either in person or online
- Product launches
- Conferences or summits
You can create an event from a personal page or company page. What’s great is that you can create private events, event update notifications, or use search filters such as locations, companies, and industry to invite the right attendees.
LinkedIn recommends that you share your event as a post in your feed to maximize exposure. To enhance visibility share your event on your company page as well as your personal profile.
Wondering how you will manage the event? Well, once you have created the event you can track all interactions, post updates, attendees and invitees, from within the event page. Moreover, LinkedIn will send timely and relevant notifications to attendees regarding all important updates.
With its members engaging more than 50% year over year with the LinkedIn Feed, the platform offers a tremendous opportunity for small business to tell their brand stories creatively. If LinkedIn is still not a part of your overall content strategy, now is the time to unlock the potential of the world’s largest professional network to reach your target audience and grow your business.
Author Bio: This article is written by our guest author Anuja Seith. She is a content strategist and a freelance writer who helps SMBs and startups, get more traffic and leads, and build brand credibility through creative storytelling. You can reach Anuja at https://anujaseith.com/