6 Benefits of Using LinkedIn to Grow Your Brand & Your Business
It seems like lately I have been meeting business owners who say they have a Linkedin™ account, but rarely log in. In fact, I have several clients who were resistant to investing any time into marketing on Linkedin. As an entrepreneur and small business owner the value of LinkedIn jumps out at me like a $100 bill tucked away in a forgotten pocket in my wallet.
It is also true, I come across business professionals on LinkedIn making a mess! They are sharing inappropriately and attempting to use the platform like Facebook.™ LinkedIn IS NOT like Facebook. Yes, it is a social media platform, however, it is more like Casual Friday at the office than hitting up the club with friends. The name says it all, according to their developer page. Their brand guidelines are very clear – byt the way these guidelines clear up whether the I should be capitalized. Formally, it’s “LinkedIn® Professional Networking Services ” and “LinkedIn™ Recruiting Services.” Although it’s often referred to as a social media platform, always be mindful…business first. For these reasons, I am dedicating the next couple of weeks to teaching you about the benefits and No-no’s of LinkendIn.
So, let’s begin with clarity:
If you want a solid Online presence with more activity on the professional level, LinkedIn is the best place to start.
When you communicate with your followers, you are communicating with the first level connections who serve as a powerful force when it comes to spreading the word about your brand.
If you are a small business owner, you are also likely sharing information to a handful of your own employees, as well as potential employees who are following you on the site. If you are an Independent professional building the brand of YOU, it is also important to recognize, you are transmitting to a potential partner or possibly an Industry Influencer who may want to lend you some of their brand equity. Think about a leader in your marketplace, someone who is running a business that you admire…now think for a moment if your posts will attract or repel that person. The same analogy is true for prospects that you are likely to find on Linkedin too.
Now, if you are interested in gaining a larger and more effective social following for your business, LinkedIn has tools that can help you achieve that too. So, we have established so far the possibility to connect with Industry Influencers, partners and potential buyers who, if a connection is made, would do so because they are interested in your business. The connection won’t be made because they liked the cute picture of the puppies you posted last week or because they love those beautiful quotes you love to post so much. They will accept your request for connection or contact you because they want more information about your business. How cool is that! Half the battle won.
Are you still wondering why LinkedIn is ideal for almost any business looking to gain traction on the internet?
Here are some benefits of using LinkedIn for business:
1. Lead Generation on LinkedIn opens the doors for networking as long as your profile and Company Page are optimized and active. Posting unique and relevant content on a regular basis will result in more people finding you who are more likely to be attracted to your business.
2. Increased Exposure with a LinkedIn Company Page is one more way to gain attention for your business. Not only will this bring more prospects, but it will also help to send more traffic to your website. Unlike your Facebook page, this page is about your business with glimpses of your personal life. Rule of thumb, only share enough personal information to enhance your brand.
3. Higher Level of Credibility on LinkedIn is a good place to gain brand awareness to attract your ideal buyer. Further, it is a great place to craft a reputation to convert more buyers. The Recommendations feature is a great tool to meet this end. The more recommendations you have from satisfied clients, the more opportunity you have to generate more serious leads and sales.
4. Show Off Your Accomplishments is another cool way to build trust with potential clients. You can display your achievements and portfolio right on your profile. This will give everyone a birds-eye view of exactly what you have to offer.
5. Filtered Search Results will help you to generate sales effectively and streamline the means to reach your target market. LinkedIn makes this easy by offering a very thorough series of advanced search options you can use to hone in on your target demographic with precision.
It is worth noting that some of the most advanced search tools are only available for premium members who pay for the privilege. This powerful, efficient indexing can often pay for itself if it is used effectively. Of course with any investment, do you research to make sure the R.O.I. (return of investment) is worth it for your business need.
6. Quality Business Connections – The most important benefit of LinkedIn is the fact that it is populated almost entirely by forward-thinking professionals such as yourself, who are similarly looking for ways to grow their businesses. This creates a unique culture of individuals who, in representing their respective companies, make business easier for everybody.
Essentially everyone on LinkedIn (well maybe not everyone – I did have a client tell me she uses her account to make connections with CEO’s in search of a husband. I must admit, that is strategic.) OK, so most people on LinkedIn are business professionals, with varying intention. Your task is to be clear about your agenda before you log into your account. What purpose will this platform serve for you? What are you expecting to achieve by logging in and completing your profile? If you create a company page, who are you targeting? Buyers, investors, employees or JV partners (joint-venture)?
The connections you make on LinkedIn are noticeably more effective than those that you could get by cold calling or even by using references sometimes. This is the only platform where you stand to directly make a connection with Industry Leaders, CEO’s, Recruiters and Thought Leaders. There are no gate-keepers here asking you what is the nature of your call. This is thanks to LinkedInís meaningful use of information and to the people and brands the service has attracted so far.
Thanks to LinkedIn’s effective use of information connecting people, brands and services. Next time you log on take a look at who LinkedIn has attracted so far, the potential is endless for you and I to grow our business.
In awareness, passion, joy & a productive LinkedIn,
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