Attention B2B companies! LinkedIn isn’t just a tool to use when you want to switch jobs. Its time to leverage the world’s largest professional network, with more than 175 million members in over 200 countries, to improve your company’s credibility and increase customer acquisition.
But how do you reach the right people at the right time? How do you contribute to conversations to make your target audience want to connect with you? Building an exceptional LinkedIn following is not as daunting as it first seems. Try the following six tactics to promote your business by making quality connections.
Remember, it’s not about you
The golden rule of social media also applies to LinkedIn: Do unto others, don’t think about you. Share information that people can use. Be friendly. Be helpful. When you provide info that helps your audience solve their problems, then you become a trusted source. As a trusted source, people will seek you out when they are ready to do business
Leverage your existing customers and partners
Think of your customers as a built-in audience who are already interested in what you have to say. You know they are the ideal connections, so you should take the time to study their profiles on LinkedIn. What are their interests and what groups have they joined? By analyzing their profiles, you will uncover content that interests them and will likely interest potential followers. When you’re ready to test LinkedIn ads (see tactic #6), target these specific interests to improve your conversion rates.
Create and curate LinkedIn Groups
Join relevant LinkedIn Groups and post actively. Groups are not the place to advertise your business, but they are the place to build your B2B reputation as a knowledgeable source of information who enjoys sharing what you know. If you can’t find a LinkedIn Group that meets your criteria, create one yourself and invite your connections to join. Then actively post questions, polls, and discussion ideas that promote engagement. Check in several times a week. When a member asks a question, jump in and answer. And remember to think outside your own box; if you are a digital marketing agency targeting law firms, join their groups and provide some valuable content.
Build out your business page and services offered
When LinkedIn members are reading your posts and are interested in what you say, they are likely to check out your profile, including your company page. Give them something to read while they are there. Provide company updates that link to your website – for example, when you post a new blog entry on your website, update your LinkedIn company page with a link to the blog post. If your blog is full of useful content, then people will go to your site and are more likely to read about your products and services. Sounds obvious, but most businesses still limit their social posting to Facebook and Twitter.
Post updates on your professional profile
While you are at it, post updates on your professional profile, and then encourage your employees to do the same. Your updates will appear in the emails that LinkedIn sends out to your connections. Updates are an excellent opportunity to promote job openings, announce company events, and keep your company at the forefront of people’s minds.
Test LinkedIn ads
Business is the bottom line. After all, that’s why you are taking the time to build quality connections. Test a targeted approach toLinkedIn ads by targeting your specific audience’s profile attributes as well as targeted groups cultivated by your existing client list. By tracking your stats using the Acquisio platform, you can quickly see what ads and audiences are right for your business and take your LinkedIn Ads management to the next level.
If lead gen is still your primary goal, make sure you understand your sales funnel and where LinkedIn fits. Remember, even though LinkedIn provides a highly targeted audience, it is still a passive audience like Facebook or the Google Display Network so your ad copy needs to provide more value vs “sell your stuff.” Consider offering white papers or top 11 lists to entice passive browsers to enter your sales funnel. But what will work for you and your prospects? You can answer that question by doing the 3 T’s… Test Test Test!
If you are consistent in your efforts to build your LinkedIn network, provide valuable content, and position yourself and your company as a trusted source of industry information, business will follow. Just like any B2B sales cycle, it may be a lengthy process, but the rewards are worth the effort.