I’ve been on LinkedIn almost since Day One, but other than short periods here and there, I’ve never applied myself to taking advantage of its full potential. Since I intend to get back to it, I was pleased when Kayla Matthews offered to share a few pointers.
Of all the social media networks, LinkedIn arguably offers the greatest potential for marketing your business. It makes sense, as LinkedIn’s target audience is professionals seeking professional connections.
When it’s relevant and timed right, marketing your business can come across as organic and unforced on LinkedIn, as opposed to on Twitter or Facebook, where it may just feel spammy.
To harness the great potential of LinkedIn, consider the six methods below to use this platform as a great source of leads for your business:
1. Write Articles in Your Business’ Niche
On your LinkedIn home page, you’ll notice a button below where you write an update: “Write an article.” Clicking on it will lead to a very user-friendly process where you input a headline, add images and write your post.
For the blog’s content, it’s up to you, though the goal should be to showcase your knowledge and passion for your business’ niche. Ideally, you’ll also include a call to action that leads interested readers to your business’ website, where they can potentially become leads.
For example, this recent LinkedIn blog post from Justin Bariso analyzes Uber’s former CEO Travis Kalanick departing from the company. In it, he stresses the importance of transparency in an organization, with Kalanick’s departure as a consequence of an overly secretive business. At the end, he drops a mention of his forthcoming book in his bio, along with the option to subscribe to his monthly newsletter. In just one blog post, he showed his expertise and passion, while directing readers where to go in case they want more in the future.
Exploring a recent event related to your expertise is a fantastic way to simultaneously showcase your knowledge and promote your brand or business.
2. Network with Like-Minded Professionals
When building connections on LinkedIn, it’s important to recognize people who are seeking a mutually beneficial relationship. The only way someone will react positively if you abruptly approach them with a product is if they publicly expressed a need for it. Otherwise, you’ll likely come across as an overly pushy marketer.
As a result, it’s important to develop meaningful relationships within your business’ niche. This means reciprocal interest in their projects, recognizing ways future collaboration can be mutually beneficial.
Further, discussing recent events or happenings in the niche can help both parties develop meaningful knowledge that can help their product excel. Eventually, after some meaningful conversations, they will gain awareness of your business without you pushing it in their face.
It’s better to come across someone within the niche who’s genuinely interested in learning more, as opposed to someone who thinks they already know it all and is simply looking for leads.
3. Use LinkedIn Plugins
A great way to build your LinkedIn network, especially in acquiring blog readers and like-minded connections, is to incorporate LinkedIn plugins onto your business’ website.
Use LinkedIn’s company profile plugin generator to craft a widget that allows users to click through to your site. This will help build a base of connections on LinkedIn that are current customers, helping to build authority, as those seeking your business on LinkedIn will see numerous connections.
Additionally, you can use the widget as a way to proudly express your LinkedIn presence, showing you have nothing to hide.
4. Use LinkedIn Integration Tools
There are several tools and apps available that automate LinkedIn tasks, such as merging with other social media platforms in the vein of sharing Facebook posts to your LinkedIn feed, auto-sharing MailChimp emails and syncing with Gmail. Zapier and IFTTT are among the most popular tools for this, providing a very extensive list of platforms they can connect to, ranging from Github to PayPal.
Using automation tools like this can help save time, while increasing your overall reach whenever you publish a blog post or interact with LinkedIn in any capacity.
5. Emphasize Connection Quality, Not Quantity
It’s an old, well-known adage, but “quality over quantity” applies strongly to LinkedIn. It’s easy to add thousands of connections on LinkedIn, in the hopes some of them click your profile and read about your business.
In reality, you’re better off with 10 relevant and meaningful connections, as opposed to 100 selected fairly randomly. When adding connections, think carefully about how they fit within your target niche for blog posts and interactions in general. If they’re not a fit, it can be a waste of time.
6. Write About What Matters to Your Network
Similarly, when publishing blog posts or other content, realize one heavily shared article can have substantially more impact than 50 generic articles.
When writing content, ask yourself what those in the niche are asking and how you can answer that. Strive for creativity, as opposed to simply rewording pre-existing blog posts. If you offer something unique and truly effective in a blog post, the shares will likely follow, propelling your business to new heights of recognition.
These six tips are great ways to improve your reach on LinkedIn, providing your business more recognition among relevant connections without being overly pushy or unnatural about it.
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