Are you looking to grow your business? Of course, you are. For business professionals, LinkedIn offers an environment for business-to-business interaction and engaging potential customers. You might be wondering how to best use LinkedIn for your business – and we have the answers for you here.
LinkedIn boasts around 700 million users from around the world and is recognized as the premier platform for sales, marketing and hiring of business professionals. Its powerful search features and audience tools can put your business in contact with industry and company decision-makers to grow your business’s bottom line through increased sales.
There are two key ways you can take advantage of LinkedIn’s business and networking tools: as an individual and as a company.
You’ll need to invest time and energy into building your Personal Profile and a Company Page – this will better equip you for networking.
Here are 8 Tips on How to Best Use LinkedIn for Your Business.
Table of Contents
1. Your Personal Profile is the First Step
To best use LinkedIn for your business, you’ll need to create a Personal Profile to unlock all of this platform’s networking resources.
If your business is a one-person outfit offering services such as bookkeeping, graphic design, content writing or admin, you might decide to stick with only a Personal Profile as your main LinkedIn marketing tool.
In fact, if you’re trading under your own name and customers would most likely associate your service or products with your name, concentrating only creating a strong Personal Profile would be recommended.
If you decide on this strategy, building your profile with as detail is crucial – and LinkedIn makes it easy to take advantage of this to enhance your exposure on the platform.
At this early stage, LinkedIn requires you to define your business category and business type. By selecting the most suitable options, you are already a step closer to your target audience and potential customers.
Complete the other essentials: upload a professional headshot of yourself and complete all areas to detail your education background and career experience.
You’ll then be able to showcase your business’ services with samples of completed projects and your products for potential customers to learn, examine and engage.
Naturally, the key to this is to entice them to contact you for further information and potential business.
So, this is important to make as appealing and attractive as possible
As we’ve established, LinkedIn is the leading business networking tool. This platform makes it easy for you find people you already engage with and do business with by allowing LinkedIn access to your contact database.
From that, LinkedIn builds “Connections” in tiers: 1st, 2nd and 3rd. Simply, 1st tier connections are people immediately in your network; 2nd tier generated from people connected with your contacts; 3rd tier are made up of people connected to your industry or location on a wider basis.
Growing your network enables you to build paths to greater numbers of potential customers and also to bridge to decision-makers to increase your chances of engaging in business discussions and creating sales.
LinkedIn provides excellent tools to help you grow your network: there is a “People You May Know” section under the tab “My Network”. Using your input and information, it searches through its 700 million users to bring you people you might know according to your education background, your past companies, by city, by your industry and through your current job.
You can easily identify people with which you have a strong business connection by the number of mutual connections you share between each other.
3. Create a Company Page
Once you’ve built the basics of your Personal Profile, consider creating a Company Page.
This is another tool for you to promote and market your business – and the Company Page offers more ways for you engage with potential customers and build your business’ credibility.
The Company Page also allows you to display your business’ products, completed projects and services.
Upload your business’ logo, write a clear company profile in the “About” section and once more tick the correct category for your Company Page to be more easily found by potential customers.
It doesn’t stop there though: take your Company Page a step further by posting regular updates about your business, your market, industry news and case studies.
To best use LinkedIn for your business, they allow you to target your content to your audiences by filtering posts according to location, user demographics and business types. It is powerful in its execution to grow your content’s reach to appear before the right people’s screens.
4. Grow with Groups
LinkedIn’s power comes from its networking tools for business professionals and potential customers. No one wants to be subjected to hundreds of sales pitches and sales offers each day.
LinkedIn’s “Groups” offers users a fantastic platform for interaction. Join groups to engage in conversation with people (potential customers and potential employees and partners) in your city, region, country, profession, related industries and more, to share ideas, discuss business challenges and generate leads.
Participation in Groups is another method how to best use LinkedIn for your business.
It builds and establishes your voice as a business leader and expert in your field, grows your reputation and adds credibility to your name and your business’.
Content such as videos, infographics, polls, articles, research and opinions are encouraged for meaningful interaction.
After all, conversation (and word-of-mouth) is still the Number One technique that business relies on to grow brands and sales.
5. Search Features
The most powerful feature in LinkedIn is its comprehensive search function. You can search for people, jobs and job candidates (if your company is looking to expand), content, other companies, education backgrounds, groups, events, connections, and location.
Further filtering your searches through languages, industry type and interests will return even more defined results.
To reach the decision-makers at your potential clients and customers, undertaking deep searches to reach them is recommended, but you should also use these search functions to identify and create content to fill gaps to better enable potential customers to find your services and products.
6. Endorsements and Recommendations
This can be achieved through two ways on your Personal Profile.
Your connections are able to endorse and recommend you and your business, and these are viewable to all users under “Endorsements and Recommendations” on your Personal Profile.
Industry colleagues – and potential customers – viewing these will have better insight into your professionalism and quality services.
This is networking at its best.
7. Content is King
You may have realized by now that LinkedIn requires an investment of your time and energy to create a meaningful impact for your business. As with other social media platforms, generating a content plan with quality content that is relevant and delivered at the best time could very well lead to increased sales. That is, after all, why you’re in business.
How to best use LinkedIn for your business is to sharing your voice, your company’s vision, its processes and its place in the industry to set yourself apart from your competitors.
Using images, infographics, videos, articles, slides and documents, you’ll be able to attract people to your business through positive interaction.
Remember, word-of-mouth is still the key method businesses rely on to grow their brands and sales.
8. Messaging and InMails Generates Sales Leads
As networking is the backbone of this platform, interacting and engaging with people can be invaluable to your business’ growth. Through your network, you are able to send direct messages to decision-makers and potential customers to open the door to discussing business.
LinkedIn offers a paid-for-service called “InMails.” This allows you to message people you’re not connected to, but as we’ve already mentioned it is best not to use these opportunities for sales pitches.
Aiming to create a conversation around business has proven to be more successful, where users can discuss industry-specific news, services and products to establish a path to generating business.
LinkedIn isn’t a sales platform; it is a networking tool to sustainably grow business through meaningful relationships.