Have you thought about WHY you should post to certain platforms? Are you even posting to the right platforms to capture the attention of your target audience?
Our series continues as we dive into the major social media platforms to help you make better decisions about what platforms to use and why you should use them. We’ll even talk about why you might not want to use them.
This week, we’re exploring what has been dubbed the “most-trusted” social media platform: LinkedIn.
The Basics About LinkedIn
If you have never been on LinkedIn, now is the perfect time to log in or create an account. Why? Since its launch in 2003 the platform has grown to more than 756 million registered users seeking new connections, finding jobs and growing their businesses. It’s truly a social media powerhouse.
Through the COVID-19 pandemic, many people turned to LinkedIn to look for jobs, find additional resources and to share areas. Approximately 40% of all users access the platform on a daily basis, racking up over 1 billion interactions each month.
LinkedIn’s Platform Features
The platform offers a variety of features allowing users to view and create content, network with business connections, recruit, as well as search for new and exciting business opportunities.
Below are some of the most popular features available to users:
- Home Feed – Similar to a Facebook feed, here you will see the latest news and updates from business and groups you follow, as well as those within your network
- My Network – These are the people you are connected with on the platform. LinkedIn will even regularly serve you suggestions based on current connections, education, employment, and more to help you expand your network.
- My Profile – For personal profiles, think of it as a living resume or your professional advertisement! Share your business experience, qualifications, awards, and skills. Connections can leave you recommendations and vouch for your abilities as well.
- Business Profile – Businesses can also take advantage of creating a company profile to connect your business with your individual team members, share business updates, company initiatives, promote knowledge leadership, and more.
- Hashtags – This one may seem like a given but hashtag use on LinkedIn continues to grow and be effective in helping users find your page. You can follow your favorites and the platform will even suggest potential opportunities where you can jump in on the #conversation.
- Jobs – a great tool for job seekers and job posters alike. Easily search for open positions and apply, or as a recruiter, post openings and reach out to potential candidates.
- LinkedIn Live – Like several platforms before it, LinkedIn followed suit and recently implemented the ability for users to stream live video content to their professional audiences.
- Articles – Publish articles about your experiences and interests! They’ll be shared with your connections and followers in their news feeds, and sometimes through notifications. You can create articles on both your personal and business profiles.
- Groups – Similar to Facebook groups, they are a great way to connect with others within your industry or to keep your fingers on the pulse of the latest updates.
- LinkedIn Learning – Formerly Lynda.com, LinkedIn acquired the online course provider in 2015 and it has since become a staple feature of the platform offering 16,400+ courses in 7 languages.
- Stories (discontinued) – Towards the end of 2021, we saw LinkedIn remove their story feature from their platforms. However, LinkedIn says they learned their users didn’t want disappearing video, so this leads us to wonder if renditions that lend themselves to Instagram Reels or TikToks may be in their future.
Why You Should Consider Using LinkedIn
Hire, Market, Sell, Learn. It is upon these four pillars LinkedIn bases its business solutions strategy. Success, powered by relationships.
Interesting fact: LinkedIn’s CEO, Ryan Roslansky, started with the company because of a job posting in 2009.
It is estimated that over 40 million people search for jobs on LinkedIn each week. Thus making the job board beneficial to both job seekers and job posters for finding people who are legitimately qualified.
For businesses looking to hire new employees, you can post jobs for a fee, as well as let potential employees apply through the site. Since the site is based on people searching for keywords, you can keyword your ad, making it easier for qualified candidates to find you. When hiring managers can’t screen applicants in person, that makes digital tools like LinkedIn even more relevant.
As a business owner, you will need to create a business company page. It is important to upload as much information as you can there. Add your logo and a cover photo as well.
Additionally, you can grow your brand, generate leads and drive website traffic when you take advantage of LinkedIn Advertising. With so many engaged users, the platform is prime for social selling. You’ll put that advertising budget to good use with the ability to target specific audiences. You can also engage them through LinkedIn Messaging, simple text or dynamic ads.
By asking your current employees to follow your page, you can share relevant business updates. Bonus, they can then share those updates with their own networks. You can also cross-promote your page on Facebook, Twitter and email newsletters.
Learn more about how to grow your presence on LinkedIn.
If you are a B2B company, then for you this platform is definitely where it’s at! Build a better sales plan with LinkedIn’s Sales Solutions. This feature offers insights and more reliable data on which you can base your goals.
LinkedIn has proved itself to directly lead to new business. The prospect pipeline from discovery call to demo to sale can happen before the week is out. But to do that, you’ll need a killer social selling strategy.
The future of skillbuilding is here! As we already mentioned, LinkedIn Learning offers content from more than 16,000 online courses that are constantly updated. They’re also available in seven languages.
By utilizing this feature, you can help your employees and organization grow with LinkedIn Learning’s online training. By investing in your employees, you’re investing in the continued success of your business through their professional development.
Getting started can be hard and might seem impossible, but check out these small businesses that started on LinkedIn and have since grown their reach and connections.
- Finkleman Immigration Law – This law firm wanted to present themselves as a knowledge leader and found fast traction through sharing relevant articles and informational videos oriented towards the audiences he wanted to reach.
- Seed Equity – Providing investment banking services to startups and growth companies, this brokerage utilized targeting, dynamic ads, and sponsored content to attract new investors.
- Holiday Inn Express – This hotel chain utilized LinkedIn to inject humor into the conversation with sponsored content
Some of the Pitfalls
Just because you can, doesn’t necessarily mean you should. Like any platform, it comes with its own set of pros and cons. Here are a few reasons why LinkedIn might not be the right fit for you.
- Time – Like any other social media platform, you have to dedicate the time to it. How much time is a decision you need to figure out. An occasional post once or twice a week likely will not help you gain an audience. If time is a major issue for you, a third-party agency (like The Social Ginger, of course) can help you with conceptualizing new content, filming, editing and developing a content strategy.
- Shorter Attention Spans – According to SimilarWeb, the average user spends 7.5 minutes a day and visits approximately 6 different pages within the platform. That means you need to capture user attention as quickly as possible and optimize your posting schedule to when your audience is online. Developing a strong content strategy will help with this.
- Personal Branding – To really be successful with LinkedIn, you will want to dedicate time to developing your personal brand and relationships with those you connect with. This means updating your headshot, creating a catchy headline, completing all the information areas within your profile about you. Most importantly, it means to engage with others by reading, commenting and liking their content. If this is not an area you are willing to develop, then this may not be the right place for you.
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