Of course, Linkedin offers paid small business marketing services. But there’s plenty of stuff you can do for free to gain extra exposure for your business. While it may not be the “sexy” platform that Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have become, LinkedIn can connect you with people that may not be as active on these other platforms.
So what is the importance of Linkedin when it comes to your business’s social media strategy? Whether you’re in the B2B or B2C categories, LinkedIn can certainly be useful, but you need to approach it somewhat differently. Of course, big brands, especially consumer brands, are quite active on LinkedIn. So how can your business take advantage of this professional networking platform?
The Difference Between Personal (Public) Profiles and LinkedIn Business Pages
Too often, we see folks who create a professional profile on Linkedin with their business name! This is a bad idea. Professionals want to connect with other individuals. This is a common mistake on Facebook, as well. But especially on Linkedin, having your own professional profile in addition to a Linkedin Business page (which is free), makes your business look a lot more legitimate.
It’s also important that these public profiles be updated on a fairly regular basis. Unlike Facebook, and especially unlike Twitter, though, you don’t have to post quite as regularly. Some suggest only posting once or twice daily at a maximum. The trick is to be active without overloading people.
Liking and Leaving Useful Comments is Very Good
One of the great things about Linkedin is that as you build your professional network, likes and comments on posts appear directly on the “walls” of your connections. So, while you don’t want to post a lot, liking posts from relevant industry leaders and your connections is worth doing for a short time on a daily basis. It’s especially good to leave thoughtful comments on posts, as well.
Business pages can be updated much like a profile, although they aren’t nearly as detailed. They basically exist as a way to get more exposure for your business. You should keep this updated at least weekly with updates, mostly about your industry, and only occasionally about your business itself. This is a good idea on any platform, but the pressure to update a Linkedin page isn’t as much as it is on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram profile.
Be Careful Whom You Connect With
It’s very easy to just add connections at will. You can have tens of thousands of connections on Linkedin. The more you connect with, the more access you get to others. This is why it’s important to only connect with people in the same field or related fields as you or potential customers.
B2B vs B2C on Linkedin
This is where the big difference between Linkedin for Business to Business and Business to Consumer companies comes in. Unlike on Facebook, Twitter, and other popular platforms, Linkedin is about making professional connections. In the case of B2B companies, this isn’t really an issue. You would be connecting with business owners that are either non-competitors or potential clients or vendors. Those that are both B2B and B2C businesses should probably focus on the B2B side of your business on Linkedin.
But if you’re purely a B2C business, there are still ways to use Linkedin effectively. It just means that you have to focus on connecting with other local businesses. You can still share pictures and videos like you would on other platforms. But signal boosting the content of other non-competing businesses locally and related fields can go a long way.
Whatever your business, having a Linkedin presence will help your overall social media strategy succeed. Above all, be as professional as possible. It’s OK to post memes, but just be sure they are in good taste. And above all, don’t overshare. Linkedin is all about networking and building others up. As long as you keep that in mind, you will find some success on Linkedin.