LinkedIn is the most popular professional social network. Each day, more than 30 million companies use LinkedIn for business while over 800 million professionals use it to make connections and share knowledge.
Along with being a preeminent social network for hiring top talent, more and more businesses are using LinkedIn marketing to network, connect and sell to potential customers. LinkedIn for business gives direct access to customers, investors, prospective employees and leads.
Both marketing and sales departments are using LinkedIn to attract and convert new business. While 80% of B2B leads come from LinkedIn, 96% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to distribute content. These statistics highlight that you need a LinkedIn marketing plan. When used correctly, LinkedIn can be an effective marketing channel for B2B and B2C companies.
In this guide we discuss:
- What is LinkedIn marketing?
- Why invest in LinkedIn marketing?
- How to use LinkedIn for business? 11 Powerful tips to grow your business using LinkedIn
What is LinkedIn marketing?
Plainly put, LinkedIn marketing is the process of using LinkedIn to generate leads, make connections, improve brand awareness, foster professional relationships, share content and drive traffic to your website.
LinkedIn marketing for business allows you to leverage useful features related to analytics, connections and brand building.
Whether you are a small business, working in B2B or B2C, it is the right time to perfect your LinkedIn marketing strategy.
Why invest in LinkedIn marketing?
Here are some stats to convince you why LinkedIn marketing is worth your time and energy.
- There are 2.9 million groups on LinkedIn including industry and interest communities, alumni and college groups and professional associations
- For 92% of marketers, LinkedIn is the go-to place for finding quality content
- 58 million companies have built their brand communities on LinkedIn
- LinkedIn generated 2-5X higher return on ad spent in technology
- LinkedIn generated 7X incremental customer signups than display media in financial services
How to use LinkedIn for business?
The most important part of this guide is – how can businesses use LinkedIn? Here are the 11 powerful ways to use LinkedIn for business marketing.
#1. Optimize your LinkedIn company page
Your page should offer multiple opportunities for prospective customers and employees to learn more about your brand, the team members and engage with relevant content.
When creating a LinkedIn business page, most of the page-building process is straightforward. That said, take out time to focus on these three elements which greatly impact how viewers perceive your brand.
- Visuals – The first things users see when they visit your LinkedIn company page are the logo and cover photo. To make a positive and memorable great impression, ensure that these visual elements are true to your brand.
The same logo should be displayed on all your social media accounts and the cover image should have your brand colours, fonts and overall style.
- Tagline – The next element to focus on is your brand’s tagline. This is displayed prominently on your LinkedIn business page right below your logo and brand name.
In a precise phrase or sentence describe what your company does.
- Company description – Think of the company description as a long-tail brand bio to share what makes you different. Potential new followers who want to learn more about you will head to the “about” section to read this bio.
Your brand values, mission and what you do can be included in short paragraphs here.
Tip – Think of your target audience as you build the page. The right keywords and relevant images are more likely to draw engaged visitors.
#2. Publish engaging content
The key to nailing your LinkedIn marketing strategy is to add value to your readers instead of creating sales-y promotional messages. In fact, as per CMI, marketers who put their audience’s informational needs at the forefront make up 88% of top performers in content marketing.
Your LinkedIn business page should share and publish content that serves a purpose – be it to educate, inform, guide, or entertain your audience. If you are looking to cement your brand’s position as an industry leader, use your LinkedIn page to publish original or curated content. This improves your chances of getting the audience to engage with your posts and build a connection with your company.
When someone engages with your post, chances are that it will show up in the feeds of their connections, further increasing your reach.
Some LinkedIn content ideas are:
- Blog posts
- White papers
- Media coverage
- Announcing product launches or updates
- Sharing open positions and welcoming new employees
Tip: Use the LinkedIn News feature to find out new content ideas or join trending conversations.
#3. Share images and videos
A great way to grab your audience’s attention is by using videos and images to convey your message.
Your images can be customer testimonials, user feedback on features, infographics, client acquisition and partnership, introducing your employees, webinar and conference visuals, statistics and tips to use your product/service efficiently.
For inspiration, here’s how Slack’s LinkedIn company page uses different types of images.
Slack also uses video content in the form of short, animated videos to boost engagement.
Source: Slack’s LinkedIn company page
Now you may be thinking, why use videos for your business’s LinkedIn marketing strategy? The answer is, videos see 5X more engagement on LinkedIn than other content types.
LinkedIn native videos autoplay when someone scrolls by, which is why it does a better job at catching the viewer’s attention. Adding to that, videos hosted on the platform are prioritized by LinkedIn’s algorithm.
With LinkedIn becoming more of a visual-first platform, images and videos are likely to be prioritized on the newsfeed.
Video content capture’s the viewer’s attention for longer – and the longer the user engages with your content, it is more likely that LinkedIn’s algorithm will showcase the content to a broader audience.
#4. Boost the engagement with interactive features
LinkedIn offers interactive features like polls and reactions for brands to boost their engagement.
For example, Bobbi Brown Cosmetic uses LinkedIn reactions to encourage conversations while introducing their products in a non-sales-y post.
These features also enable you to understand your audience’s opinions.
#5. Create showcase pages
An extension of your LinkedIn page, Showcase pages are designed to spotlight specific products, business units and initiatives. They are listed under the “Affiliate Pages” section on your main LinkedIn page.
Source: Adobe’s business page
As seen in Adobe’s example, the Showcase pages are used to market to a specific buyer persona and LinkedIn users can follow individual Showcase Pages without following the business.
If you have multiple products, you can drill down into each buyer persona and keep the content interesting and personal. LinkedIn also provides dedicated analytics for each page.
#6. Leverage LinkedIn groups
As social media usage shifts from simply broadcasting marketing messages to engaging with fans, closed communities such as LinkedIn groups might be the best way for a business to engage with the audience.
Whatever your industry, role, or goal for joining LinkedIn groups, there is no shortage of curated recommendations for the best group. Look for groups that match your interests by searching for relevant titles, keywords and phrases.
Some best practices for navigating LinkedIn groups:
- Find out groups where your ideal customers belong. Then, listen, observe and engage to maximize the potential for meaningful networking and social selling.
- Look for ways to contribute and assess how you can fit into the group’s community.
- Let your work speak for itself, avoid self-promotion or spam.
Tip – Don’t limit yourself to joining only industry-related groups. If you’re trying to get into a new field or build relationships in a new region, alumni groups are also helpful.
#7. Bring together your professional community with LinkedIn live and events
If your business is looking for new ways to bring your audience together in these times, LinkedIn has two tools for companies looking to bring their professional communities together:
LinkedIn Live – This fastest-growing content type on LinkedIn drives 7X more reactions and 24X more comments than regular videos.
LinkedIn Events – A virtual space where your LinkedIn community can come together in real-time.
LinkedIn Live – Designed as a one-to-many broadcast. Here are some LinkedIn live ideas for inspiration.
- Fireside chat with your C-suite members
- Live stream a keynote or panel – the way Microsoft live-streamed CEO Satya Nadella’s keynote during #MSBuild
- Host an “AMA” – Ask me Anything session
- Interview an influencer your audience looks up to
- Unveil a new product
Virtually hosted LinkedIn events offer a more targeted and interactive experience for participants. Some ideas for your next virtual event on LinkedIn are:
- A virtual career fair for recruiting talent
- Demo a new product or new features
- Repurposing top-performing content
- Insights and analysis from subject experts – Mailmodo – a free email marketing software to create and send interactive emails regularly hosts LinkedIn events around topics such as growth hacking emails for SaaS, how to get your first 1,000 newsletter subscribers and so on.
#8. Humanize your brand
According to LinkedIn, over 87% of active and passive candidates are open to new job opportunities. Highlight your brand’s culture and values on your LinkedIn page.
Showcase your employees. Seeing the faces of employees working behind the scenes can help build trust with prospective customers and employees.
Amazon levels up its LinkedIn marketing strategy with testimonials from employees and their life stories. This is a great way to showcase your company culture and the values you stand for.
Source: Amazon LinkedIn page
Tip – Encourage employees to share content, highlight accomplishments and get the word out about your brand. On one hand, your brand expands its reach while on the other hand, it is an opportunity for employees to flex their expertise as thought leaders.
#9. Engage with your audience using LinkedIn newsletters
Use newsletters on LinkedIn to regularly talk about professional topics. Consider it as your personal email list, built natively in LinkedIn. Other LinkedIn members can subscribe to your newsletter and they receive in-app and email notifications whenever your new piece is published, similar to email newsletters.
You can invite all your connections and followers to subscribe to your newsletter. The benefits of a LinkedIn newsletter include building and growing a regularly engaged audience, receiving feedback and comments from your readers and viewing analytics to gauge the performance of your content.
#10. Experiment with new LinkedIn advertising formats
Many times, when you post from your LinkedIn page, you start to see some exciting reactions. Now, imagine the potential for even more engagement only if it could be shared with a bigger audience on the spot.
With this latest feature, you can easily “Boost” the performance of any organic post directly from your LinkedIn page. A little boost to time-sensitive or your most engaging content can quickly expand the reach to a broader audience.
Further, you can maximize event attendance and measure the impact. To amplify your event promotion, LinkedIn has rolled out “Event Ads.” They appear right in the LinkedIn feed and highlight key event details such as date, time and how to join the virtual event to an entirely new and relevant audience. Viewers can even learn if a mutual connection is interested in attending.
Marketers can get insights into the reach, engagement and firmographic makeup of event attendees with the new LinkedIn event analytics tool.
Tip – Use the event ad to drive registrations to your LinkedIn Events.
#11. Measure LinkedIn performance using analytics data
Don’t simply jump into LinkedIn marketing without some basic research. Otherwise, you may end up publishing hundreds of posts without any results and your efforts would go down the drain.
Use LinkedIn’s native analytics to see how your posts are performing. Checking the performance data regularly shows whether your LinkedIn marketing strategy is successful or if there is any scope for improvement.
Also, Keyhole’s LinkedIn analytics gives an even better insight into your company page performance. Understand how your content is performing, the posts with maximum engagement and what your audience is looking for.
Other features of Keyhole’s LinkedIn company page analytics are:
- Identify the industries your top followers belong to – so that you can create and curate content targeted to them.
- Compare all your account brands – Compare your LinkedIn page performance to the rest of the social networks to find where you’re receiving the maximum engagement.
- Analyze hashtags – Find out the hashtags that brought the maximum engagement and how often you should be using them.
Growing your business with LinkedIn marketing
This LinkedIn marketing guide for businesses helps you spruce up your digital marketing strategy. Whatever strategies you implement, remember to regularly check your LinkedIn analytics to know the engagement your posts generate.