No matter the size of your business, generating leads is always a priority. Before we delve into how to optimise your strategy of networking with LinkedIn, let’s look at why LinkedIn should be one of your platforms of choice.
With around 830 million members and over 58 million registered companies from over 200 countries, LinkedIn is the ideal platform to network, connect and grow your business. LinkedIn is filled with regular users – around 40% of its users access it on a daily basis and to put it into context that’s a staggering 1 billion interactions each month.
Statistics also show that just under half of all LinkedIn users earn more than $75 000 per year, millennials make up over 59% of their user base with around 13% of them being in decision-making positions and if that wasn’t enough to convince you that networking with LinkedIn is the only way to go, a survey showed that 76% of business executives check LinkedIn once a day.
The biggest advantage for anyone wanting to network and generate leads with LinkedIn is that you are not just reaching a general audience, but you are able to target an audience on a more focused level including their location, industry, current company etc. which should lead to better opportunities with higher conversion rates.
Your profile is key
Your profile whether it is your personal or business is key when it comes to networking and generating leads with LinkedIn. When completing your profile, it is exceptionally important to keep it SEO friendly. It is worthwhile doing proper keyword research and long-tail keywords will keep your efforts targeted. Many LinkedIn users don’t complete their profile in its entirety, and this is crucial in order to take advantage of optimisation strategies when it comes to searches on LinkedIn and Google.
There are other simple steps you can take, like hiding the “People also viewed” section on your profile – in essence, this box provides your viewers with easy access to people with similar profiles i.e. your competition.
Growing your network
Initially growing your number of connections may seem daunting but there are a few steps that can easily help you grow your network. It’s always easier to start with who you know and encouraging people you’re connected to on other social networks to connect with you on LinkedIn, is a great way to start. You will then have access to their connections whom you can invite to connect with you.
LinkedIn makes it easy to network as you can perform targeted manual searches according to industry/job description etc and invite those potential prospects to join your network. Joining Industry groups that your target market is interest in is also a great way to create awareness around your brand – just make sure that you are an active participant as opposed to an onlooker if you want to make a difference. These industry groups can provide invaluable insights as well as a way to engage directly with other participants.
Your employees LinkedIn presence should also be taken into account, specifically your executives as they are trendsetters and can attract followers in a shorter space of time than a company page.
Regular Updates and Engagement
Updating your profile may be the first step but it doesn’t end there. You need to consistently nurture your page to remain relevant. Updates ensure you remain and continue to be constant feature on feeds of individuals and businesses within your all-important network.
Your goal is to give people a reason to engage with you and this can be done through content creation. Your posts need to be practical, relevant and add value. There are a host of ways to create content through articles, presentations, e-books etc. Your objective when it comes to networking with LinkedIn is to generate leads and become the go-to place for information/advice. You want to ensure you remain top of mind. You don’t always need to post articles, offering a key insight or advice to questions being asked is another easy way to engage.
Regular engagement should be a key component of your networking with LinkedIn strategy. We recommend creating a schedule as consistency shows that you are reliable and will keep you relevant. According to LinkedIn, “People who share content once a week are nearly 10 times more likely to be contacted for new opportunities.” Their research also showed that links get 200% more engagement, images receive a 98% higher comment rate and videos have a 75% higher share rate.
Ensuring your page is active, with relevant and value-add content, as well as contributing to existing conversations is crucial to networking with LinkedIn.
LinkedIn Advertising Options
Making use of LinkedIn’s paid products is an effective way to reach your intended audience and LinkedIn’s campaign manager allows you target your potential customers in a number of ways.
Sponsored content is a powerful way to generate new and consistent leads as it publishes your updates to specific users who do not currently interact with or follow you. Although this type of advertising is provided by most social media platforms, LinkedIn differentiates itself by allowing you to be very specific and detailed ensuring you reach your ideal target audience. Remember to ensure there is a call to action on all sponsored content to effectively generate leads.
You can also make use of direct sponsored content. Unlike sponsored content, these posts won’t be published on your company page and won’t be seen by your followers. They are only seen by the specific target audience you selected. This enables you to test content with a select group before posting it on your actual page.
Email marketing campaigns can be effectively run through sponsored InMail. This functionality allows you to direct personalised messages which have unlimited character counts to your target audience. InMail allows you to interact and message people who aren’t currently in your network and your message is sent directly to their LinkedIn inbox. Networking with LinkedIn through InMail is relatively simple as the dashboard is user-friendly and you can easily organise your various campaigns.
And finally, there are text ads. These are highly customisable, and LinkedIn offers pay-per-click and cost per impression options.
Networking with LinkedIn
Networking with LinkedIn and generating successful leads that convert, boils down to optimising your company profile, utilising industry groups effectively and creating vibrant and engaging content. Its always tempting to kick off with advertising campaigns but take a step back and ensure that you have laid a strong foundation through your profile and connections. And finally, consistency is key!
Do you need help generating leads for your business on LinkedIn? We can help. Contact me.