LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network, catering to over five hundred million members in over two hundred different countries. It has an outstanding reputation for being a business to business (B2B) platform where professionals of all ages can post and update their online profile (resume), find open job positions, and take part in industry discussions.
Over the past few years, however, LinkedIn has diverted away from this stale 1-dimensional model and has gained immense traction in the world of social media marketing, particularly for small businesses. The reason being, LinkedIn has updated their platform to contain more features that are directly related to social media marketing, such as paid advertisements, an update section, LinkedIn groups, and company pages. Last year, LinkedIn even revamped its platform to look a whole lot like Facebook.
This means that small businesses that have been utilizing social media strategies on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and so on can cater toward a more professional audience using the same tactics.
What Social Media-like Features Should Small Businesses Utilize on LinkedIn?
- LinkedIn Company Pages: This is a great starting point for small businesses, as the same strategy methods used on Facebook Business Pages can also be used here. This page should include contact details, branded images, personalized banners, employee lists, and company descriptions. The more information you include on this page, the more legitimate your business will come across to those reading about it.
- LinkedIn Groups: These are also similar to Facebook groups in that small businesses can use them to connect, network, and build up their company through group engagement. It is important to join a few different active groups within your industry, contribute valuable information to the discussions, and share your relevant original content to these areas. This will bring small businesses exposure through quality social connections.
- Showcase Pages: Small businesses can use these pages to highlight specific products and/or brands within their own company. Essentially, these pages allow you to expand on your company’s profile page by highlighting particular aspects of your business. Examples of what can be included on showcase pages include company updates, sponsored content, product advertising and campaign-based social marketing.
- Content Sharing/Blog: LinkedIn’s publishing tools allow small businesses to share relevant and engaging content on their company profile publicly. Similar to sponsored posts in that everyone on LinkedIn can see and view your updates, this is a great place to post new blog posts, re-share content from your industry, generate social discussions, and solicit feedback about your company and products.
- Utilizing Multiple Forms of Media: This goes hand-in-hand with content sharing in that you can now use different media options within content sharing to post even more valuable content to your groups and connections. Media options include videos, images, and Slideshare
With all their recent platform implementations, LinkedIn holds enormous potential for small businesses when it comes to social media marketing because it is focused entirely on professional networking. This means that those with whom your company engages with will want to build high quality, long-term professional connections, which is much more valuable than just reaching out to the mindlessly scrolling masses found on other social media outlets.