LinkedIn generally isn’t the first platform that comes to mind when it comes to social media marketing. That’s not because it’s not viable (it is!), but instead because many small business owners just don’t understand what it can do for them.
It’s true: LinkedIn is a different crowd. If Facebook is a rowdy roadhouse and Twitter is a swanky nightclub, LinkedIn is an upscale bar with a Michelin-star chef in the back and a bunch of professionals closing deals out front.
That’s not bad, and you shouldn’t be intimidated. It’s just different. And once you figure out the laws of the land, it can actually be quite lucrative — if you know how to leverage it.
We can help.
Know Your Market
On Facebook, memes, humor and thinly veiled digs at the competition win the day. While your product or service post might only get a few comments and a handful of likes, a shared picture or tongue-in-cheek post can go viral. And that’s OK — because it still brings attention to your business.
On Twitter, it’s the “news of the day” that sells. If you can newsjack a trending hashtag, you’ll be rewarded with plenty of retweets and scores of new followers.
LinkedIn doesn’t play by those rules. It’s a community of professionals, with 61 percent being between 30 and 64 years old. Seventy-five percent pull in $50,000 or more a year, and 44 percent are in the $75,000 tax bracket. In short, LinkedIn users are a rather discerning lot, and that repurposed Game of Thrones meme just ain’t going to cut it here!
This means if you want to market on LinkedIn (without annoying your would-be, could-be customers), you’ll have to adapt.
Sell Your Brand, Not Your “Stuff”
On LinkedIn, your brand is your reputation — and you can bet your reputation will be fully researched before they do business with you. Make sure your pages are up to date with any awards you’ve won, fantastic recommendations, customer testimonials and above all, tie your personal page (you do have a personal page, right?) to your company page.
LinkedIn users want to see the face behind the brand — the “peaks that become the mountain range,” according to LinkedIn’s marketing solutions page.
“Buy my stuff” posts don’t fly on LinkedIn. Sure, you can try. You’ll probably even get plenty of engagement, if your idea of engagement is comments like “This is spam” and “How is this relevant?”
Instead of purely self-promotional posts, think outside the box. What are LinkedIn users talking about and how does your product or service provide a solution to common problems? Instead of promoting your product or service, could you promote something amazing your company has done, such as volunteer projects, community engagements or charity events?
This may seem counterproductive — after all, your goal is to make money, not earn good karma — but when LinkedIn users see relevant posts, they’ll click on them. And when they click on them, they’ll be directed straight back to your company page, which is where you wanted them to be to begin with!
Position Yourself as a Leading Authority
LinkedIn Groups are a fantastic way to prove how well you know your stuff. Spend a bit of time joining groups that coincide with your business. For instance, if you run an accounting firm, you would want to join groups that deal with finance, business and/or taxes.
Then, participate! You don’t need to comment on every post that comes across your screen, but if you have the ability and the knowledge to help someone, do it! Once you position yourself as a leading authority in your niche, people will notice, and they’ll remember you when they need more help. By reaching out, you’ll be pulling customers in — no hard sales tactics required!
For the uninitiated, LinkedIn can seem problematic at best, and terrifying at worst. But when you follow the rules, do your research and understand the way this particular platform functions, it’s an excellent strategy to add to your marketing arsenal!
Need help figuring out how to leverage LinkedIn to work for your small business? Mischa Communications is fluent in social media speak! Contact us today and let us show you how to successfully market on any platform!