Our last post addressed the rise (and undeniable importance) of social media engagement; but what happens when you need to reach clients using a far more targeted and in-depth approach? LinkedIn provides an online network specifically for businesses, which allows you to really get stuck into current activity within your industry - and - as your connections grow, so will your online presence.
We've come up with 6 key ways you can go about expanding your list of connections.
1. Engage your employees
Your first port of call for growing your connections list is right on your doorstep. Give your loyal employees a real reason to connect with you as opposed to just being another box to tick when filling their own LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn's Best Practices Blog states that "Employees are 70% more likely to engage with your company updates." Use this to your advantage and provide useful content that will encourage them to spread the word amongst their own contacts - after all, who better to help promote your company, than your company!
2. Get talking!
By regularly* (note italics) starting conversations and becoming involved in LinkedIn discussions, you will naturally boost your SEO ranking, direct crucial audience members towards your profile and gain credibility in your field. Speak out about the industry, current news topics and your company's views and your business network will come to life.
*Let's address this issue of regular activity. Noticing that the most recent 'monthly' post on a LinkedIn company page was from July 2008 is a huge warning beacon for profile viewers that you aren't worth following. Remind your connections that you haven't vanished off the face of the earth by keeping your content up to date - and make sure that your profile settings are switched to "notify your network", or all your updates will go under the radar!
3. Join groups
For privacy reasons, LinkedIn does not allow its users to connect with people who have no existing contacts in common with them. By joining groups of interest, LinkedIn will allow you to start connecting with other members of the group as well as following and contributing to relevant discussions.
For example, if you are in the leisure industry, joining the "Fitness and Health Professionals" group will allow you to connect with any of its 56,564 members and receive daily or weekly updates centred on the topic of health and fitness. Keeping up to date with competitors and what's going on in the industry can keep you ahead of the game and provide you with inspiration for your next engaging post?
LinkedIn offers a great facility which enables you to clearly map out your business structure to prospective contacts. Users will be able to easily connect the dots between parent companies, partnerships, trusts, and other business relationships. Take advantage of this. The more backlinks the parent company creates between its subsidiaries, the more each party will benefit from shared connections.
Make the most of LinkedIn's key features and fill your profile so that no stone is left unturned when inputting your company information. Use your branding where possible - especially in your profile icon, so that users experience brand continuity across all of your online platforms. Treat your page as if it is your website and your brand identity - and your network - with thrive.
Finally - be bold and venture outside of the LinkedIn bubble. By distributing your LinkedIn profile across various channels; your email signature, prominent locations on your website, other social media profiles and any promotional activity you become involved with; you can start to create vital backlinks which will direct more users to your profile.
Bigwave Media offers a range of social media services from training, content and management to campaigns. To find out more get in touch, tweet us @bigwavemedia or follow our very own LinkedIn profile for all the latest.
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