LinkedIn has often been referred to as ‘Facebook in a suit’, a fancier version of the more casual social media platform, Facebook. However, Facebook is used in business circles more so in recent times as has Twitter and Instagram. This article however, will guide you through just how beneficial LinkedIn is for a business, despite any stigma that lay around using the platform.These are the areas in which we will cover over the course of this article:
- Developing Your LinkedIn Business Strategy
- Creating A Dynamic Company / Business Page
- Finding / Engaging Your Audience
- Content Marketing Using Your Company / Business Page
- Recruiting With LinkedIn
- Setting up a LinkedIn account is a simple step-by-step process, once set up, you have the choice to create a personal ‘professional’ account, or a company business page. We will cover more on that aspect later on in the article.
Developing Your LinkedIn Business Strategy:
It is a common misunderstanding that LinkedIn is only used for job recruiters / job seekers, LinkedIn much more than that. LinkedIn follows the mission statement, ‘Connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful’, LinkedIn doesn’t limit who can use its services, any business from any sector and background can use the platform and its services, growing and connecting with similar businesses and professionals.
Before you start anything regarding your business on LinkedIn, it is important that you know your audience prior to creating a dynamic profile. By doing this, you will accurately portray your company / business, and what you have to offer. You also need to know your niche market, that way you will be able to tailor your company profile to target your niche market, as well as pitching to other markets similar to your niche market.
Creating A Dynamic Company / Business Page:
To create a company page on LinkedIn on the desktop format, you first have to have created a profile for you to use to then be able to create a company page. You can create a company page by clicking on the profile picture icon, a drop down menu will appear below with one of the options being ‘Create a Company Page’ or, click on ‘Interests’ and once more a drop down menu will appear, click on ‘companies’ and on the right hand side you will see a yellow ‘create’ button. You will now be able to create a company page.
A rule to remember when creating the page with an email, always use a small business email. Google, Hotmail, Yahoo etc will already have taken the address, so a small business email will allow for the page creation. Above that is the company name, again it is important to remember to have the company name as close to yours as possible. For example, our company ‘Aurameir’ is known as Aurameir Creative LTD, simply to match our other social media platforms with the same name. It is not wise to abbreviate your company name or shorten it, adding onto it with such things as ‘LTD’ is acceptable. This then becomes your URL. Admins can also be added to the company page, as long as they are connected with the account you created the company page from. Now that you have the basics of a company page, it’s time to use imagery to make your page look good, stand out and catch many eyes.
Your company logo will most likely fit in with the dimensions and pixels that LinkedIn sets for a profile photo, however you may need to create or tailor your cover photo to fit with LinkedIn’s cover photo requirements. Whatever you chose to do, make sure that the images are of the highest quality, and no more than 2 megabytes. Images have to be the cleanest, clearest and most importantly, the most recent and up-to-date version of your logos / cover photos. Managing your pages on LinkedIn is very easy to do. You can either check on your page via the ‘manage’ section next to the company page of the drop down menu on your profile picture, or via the way we described earlier, through the ‘interests’ section at the top of the desktop version of LinkedIn, clicking on ‘Companies’ and typing in your company page. This is a slightly longer way, but will ensure that you are going to the page you want, if you manage more than one page at a time.
Finding / Engaging Your Audience:
When your company page is fully up and running, what you will want to do next is go in search of your niche and other audiences. There are many ways in which you can do this, below we have listed the most effective routes you can take:
- Advanced search – A search engine on LinkedIn with more categories to narrow down your search to find what you’re looking for.
- Saved search – a saved search list in which you can go back to for future references.
- Groups – a good way to communicate with other LinkedIn users to reach outside and inside your niche audience target market.
- ‘Who’s Viewed Your Profile’ – when people have viewed your profile, they will appear in a list of people who have viewed it recently, therefore you are able to then view their own profile, leading to engagements between you and them.
- Connections – Other LinkedIn users ‘connect’ with you to view your updates, posts, job postings etc. After adding enough connections, you will be able to see who you and your connections might know, leading to further connections with varying audiences.
Content Marketing Using Your Company / Business Page:
Updating your company page regularly is a key element in keeping people coming to your page. Only 13% of people who have a LinkedIn company page regularly update it, so to stand out above your competitors, it’s best to update regularly.
A good way to manage your pages is with the use of third-party tools. Software platforms such as Oktopost and Hootsuite offer this chance for scheduling, set up campaigns with creating reports to coincide with the success of each post. This is an excellent way to evaluate and make any necessary changes for future use of your company page.
Marketing your page essentially will lead to your page getting more and more followers. The more you do, the more followers will see your activity and are more likely to follow you. Once they have followed you, you will show up on their profile and therefore when other users look at their profile, they will see who they have followed and will spot that they have followed you. Adding onto this, if you have an employee who is also on LinkedIn, make sure that they have your company listed as their current job position. Doing so will again allow other LinkedIn users to see where they work, clicking on the name of their place of work will automatically send them to the company page that you have set up.
It is also a good idea to let other users know that your business has a company page via the use of ‘updates’ from your personal professional account, as well as using the ‘messages’ icon. This way you are pushing your page further without diverting off the LinkedIn application, where you are looking to gain your followers and boost your business audience.
Recruiting With LinkedIn:
If you are a business looking to recruit new employees, LinkedIn also offers the features of ‘career pages’ and ‘job posts’ to advertise positions that are currently available within your business. It is once more a simple process in creating and posting a job, when doing so you are able to utilise LinkedIn’s features to make the job post more appealing. For example, the cover photo is bigger on a job posting, you get to post updates, embed a video depending on how much you are paying for the job advertisement and the possibility of also using hyperlinks, to send those viewing the advertisement to places like your website or other social media.
To create a job posting, simply go to your personal profile picture, go to the company page you want to post the advertisement on and under ‘edit’, click on ‘add job’. It is always a good idea to view what other companies, who specialise in your own field, have done in their job advertisements. We do not recommend that you copy anything from their advert, but instead see what they have in order to generate your own ideas. Costs for posting jobs will vary depending upon where you are posting from, as jobs in London will cost more to post than jobs posted in the West Midlands, its good practise to be aware of this.
We are planning to conduct a ‘LinkedIn For Business’ workshop within the near future, to expand further on the basics and benefits in using LinkedIn for your business, so do keep an eye out on Eventbrite for all ‘Aurameir’ workshop events.
We hope this article has been of use to you, and that you now have the information you want regarding LinkedIn for your business.
Do not hesitate to follow us on all of our social media, which is available to find at the bottom of all pages of our website.
L. Foya, Philippa Attwood
Aurameir Creative Team