Many LinkedIn users view the social platform as a personal career tool and know that maintaining a strong and up-to-date profile is important for any working professional. LinkedIn allows users to connect with other professionals with similar experiences or interests, giving you the opportunity to build connections in your personal network and for your small business. Below you’ll learn how to engage with your audience and market your small business on LinkedIn in ways you may not have considered before!
Attract Your Audience on LinkedIn
Before you can engage with your audience, you need to attract them and make them follow your page.
Leverage Employee Profiles
One of the fastest ways to build a strong foundation for your business’s LinkedIn page is to have engaged coworkers and employees. Make sure that your employees and coworkers update their LinkedIn profile to include their current position at your company. Users who have identified their position automatically become followers of that company. In addition, a person’s current position and company is one of the first things you see on their LinkedIn profile. Therefore, any time they show up on LinkedIn, whether in search results or a profile view, your company will show up as well, which will increase your company’s visibility.
When an employee puts the company they work for in their profile, it shows a certain amount of loyalty and pride in the business they’re at. This makes the company seem like one that an audience can trust, and will produce the mentality of “if a company treats its employees well, it will treat its customers well, too.”
Join and Contribute to LinkedIn Groups
You can also attract your audience by joining and contributing to LinkedIn groups to share your company’s expertise on certain topics. Joining groups and engaging in dialogues with these online communities can help expand your reach beyond your typical target audience. If you’d like to make it even easier for your audience to stay up to date with your business’s updates, consider adding a follow button to your LinkedIn page.
Engage with Your Audience on LinkedIn
Once you’ve gained an audience on LinkedIn, and you have a better understanding of the type of potential customers your profile is attracting, it’s time to start engaging with them! Here are the steps to effectively engage with your customers and get the most out of your small business’s LinkedIn:
Include Your Business’s Page in Your Personal Profile
Similar to having your employees engaged with your business and having your business on their profile, make sure you do the same! Besides just having your position and business’s name on your profile, periodically post updates on your personal page. These updates can include blog posts, big company announcements, and various media. This will allow your business to get exposure to your personal network, including people who might not have otherwise found your business.
Optimize Your Page for Mobile Viewing
Most user engagement to LinkedIn profiles comes from smartphones, so take advantage of this knowledge by keeping your text posts short and using more visual media. It’s recommended to use 200 or fewer characters for your posts so the text is easy to read on the device, and keeps the attention of the readers. Additionally, make sure that your headlines are bold and eye-catching, and your landing pages are optimized for mobile viewing as well. If your goal is to generate leads from LinkedIn, try having fewer fields for your leads to fill out on their mobile device to reduce the risk of error.
Post to Your Business’s Profile Often
You don’t want to take over your audience’s feed, but you do want to be a consistent presence. Try to post at least once a day, especially during the morning, when professionals are looking at their own pages and analytics before their day begins. Although posting in the morning is a good starting point, you’ll want to experiment with posting at different times by scheduling and queuing content with a platform such as HootSuite. Keep checking your analytics tab on your company page to see at what times you’re getting the most engagement from your audience.
Keep Your Company’s Profile Up to Date
Let your audience know if you’re going to be participating in any events such as craft shows or trade shows, or post major updates such as additions or changes to the products and services you offer. Any new blog posts, features, promotions, or major announcements should be on your business’s feed as a way of keeping your audience in the loop and keeping them excited about engaging with you. By keeping them well-informed, you’re letting them know that you care about their business and the relationship that’s been established.
Establish a Lead and Follow Method
Lead as an industry competitor by identifying and joining groups that are relevant to your industry and your business. Engagement with these groups will help you to further understand current needs and stay up to date with the needs of your target audience, giving you insight into ways to improve your business.
You can also participate in these groups by initiating dialogues with topics, questions, and concerns pertinent to your industry. This will present your company as a thought leader in your industry, savvy on its most relevant topics. It will also allow you to create dialogues in ways that showcase your company as a leading business in the industry. The more places you can establish authority and expertise in your industry, the more trust you can earn from users. The more trust you earn, the more customers you will attract.
The “follow” part of this method comes from following lead influencers, channels, and competitors within your industry. This will help you to stay in the loop on changes that are happening in your industry that you might not otherwise consider or know about. Not only will following these channels keep you up to date with your ever-changing industry, it will also provide material for help you come up with ideas for engaging with the groups through the “lead” part of this method, and will inspire future content ideas for you to post on your website, other social media profiles, and blog.
Create Your Own LinkedIn Group
If your search for relevant LinkedIn groups isn’t returning the results you’re looking for, or you think you have an area of expertise that isn’t covered by other groups you’re finding, create your own! Creating a LinkedIn group can help your business by:
- Increasing your visibility and creating interest
- Building authority, credibility, and thought leadership
- Allowing your to share your own content from other platforms, use LinkedIn Polls for research, and post relevant content from similar groups
- Nurturing relationships with group members and working to build your audience
LinkedIn groups aren’t just used by users of the platform, but especially attract service-based companies in industries focused on business to business work. Some of these industry professionals include:
- Financial planners
- Information technology
Name Your LinkedIn Group
When you’re naming the group, remember that LinkedIn users will be searching for keywords, so don’t include your business’s name. To help generate some name ideas, think about what keywords you use for local SEO and try using one of those keywords for your group’s name. The description of the group should include your target market’s name and your niche category. You’re only given 140 characters to describe your group’s purpose and draw an audience in, so think about what you’d want to hear if you were in your audience’s shoes.
When the group’s activity picks up, monitor discussions and screen new members to ensure that your group won’t be getting spammed. As the leader of the group, stay actively engaged! Actively post discussions, questions, polls and comments, and show that you’re excited about your audience’s interaction with your group. As a group manager, you’ll also have a LinkedIn email broadcast tool, that gives you a free and easy way to send weekly emails to your group members.
Be Creative and Vary Your Content
One way to make your audience stop their scrolling is to post eye-catching pictures and videos! Instead of only posting text posts, show your audience what you want them to see, and supplement this media with short, engaging captions. Another great method of engaging with your audience is by asking questions in your posts. This encourages an open dialogue with you audience and allows you to have a method of directly interacting with them.
Have you had success with marketing your small business on LinkedIn? Let us know below!