Updated: Apr 19, 2018
Starting a B2B business? Then LinkedIn Marketing is perfect for you. LinkedIn is a social media platform designed for professionals and is especially useful for reaching an engaged audience and generating sales leads.
Why LinkedIn Marketing?
LinkedIn is a great social media network with a reach of over 500 million professionals. If you are selling B2B solutions (e.g. web design), then LinkedIn is your best bet.
LinkedIn audiences are more engaged, resulting in better lead generation and conversion rates. On average, Linked has 3 times higher conversion rate (2.74%) compared to Facebook (0.77%).
LinkedIn offers three advertisements types for marketers; 1) Sponsored Content, 2) Sponsored InMail and 3) Text Ads.
Sponsored Content is a form of native advertising that appears in LinkedIn news feeds. You can reach your target audience on any device (e.g. desktop, tablet and mobile). Sponsored Content allows you to use rich media like images and videos to stand out.
Sponsored InMail is unique to LinkedIn and allows you to deliver personalized, relevant content through the LinkedIn Messenger. Yes, those "personalized" messages are in fact advertisements. You can drive conversions, reach target audiences and conduct A/B testing.
Text Ads are pay-per-click (PPC) or cost-per-impression (CPM) advertisements. Creating text ads is easy and you can launch your campaign in minutes. Customize the marketing message for your target audience and pay only for actual clicks.
Getting Started? Create a LinkedIn Business Page.
A business profile will help you tell your brand story, showcase products and share updates with your target audience. Create content for your business page by writing articles, creating promotional videos and infographics to engage your target audience.
No LinkedIn Business Page? Learn how to create one with our step-by-step guide.
Leverage On LinkedIn Communities
Join Groups. Groups help you stay informed and keep in touch with people in your industry. You can create your own LinkedIn groups or join existing ones. Use LinkedIn to expand your circle of influence by participating in discussions and adding links to your articles.
Connect With Influencers. Yes, LinkedIn has social influencers too! Connect with thought leaders like Guy Kawasaki and Richard Branson. Comment on their posts, share ideas and articles to drive traffic to your business page and website.
Using LinkedIn As A Marketing Tool
We have summarized these 6 simple steps to help you use LinkedIn as an effective marketing tool to grow your business.
1. Define Your Audience and Marketing Goals
Start by setting your marketing goal. Do you want to build brand awareness? Or generate sales leads? Setting clear goals will help you develop an effective LinkedIn marketing strategy.
Next, define your target audience. For example, if your business sells data analytics tools for social media marketers. You want to build brand awareness among decision makers (e.g. social media managers) and convince them to try out your data analytics tools.
2. Optimize Your Business Page
Similar to Search Engine Optimization (SEO), your LinkedIn Business Page has to be optimized. Increase your search ranking on both LinkedIn and search engines by following these simple tips.
Use relevant keywords in your LinkedIn Business page and company profile. These keywords should describe your business, products and help users find your business.
Link your business page. With more inbound links, your business page will rank higher on search results. An easy way is to link your LinkedIn to your website, blog and other marketing materials (e.g. marketing emails). Also, get employees and colleagues to add your business to their work experience.
Share relevant content. Content marketing is important for all social media networks (including LinkedIn). Create and publish fresh, interesting and relevant content on your LinkedIn Business Page. With more articles published and indexed by Google, your business page will achieve higher search ranking.
3. Grow Your Followers
When people follow your LinkedIn Business Page, your updates appear in their news feed. With more followers, you have a higher organic reach when publishing articles.
Some useful tips to growing LinkedIn followers include getting employees, customers, partners to follow your business. Send emails, newsletters and use blog posts to encourage people to become followers.
4. Be A Thought Leader
Content marketing is by far the most effective LinkedIn marketing strategy. Publish educational articles and content that your target audience will be interested in.
While it's tempting to actively promote your products, sales focused content does not perform well on social media platforms. Instead help readers perform their jobs better, answer questions and provide solutions.
As a business owner or marketer, actively participate in group discussions. Provide useful insights and solutions and include links back to your business page or website.
5. Finding Sales Prospects
Looking for sales prospects on LinkedIn can be as easy as searching for people with a specific job titles. For example, if you are selling office furniture, you can start by searching for LinkedIn members with the job title "Real Estate Manager".
Depending on your network, most prospects are only two or three connections away! Expand your network by adding people you meet at networking events. It's a great way to expand your influence and find prospects.
6. Promote Your Brand
After optimizing your organic traffic, try using LinkedIn's PPC advertising options, 1) Sponsored Content, 2) Sponsored InMail or 3) Text Ads.
When implementing LinkedIn marketing campaign, it is important to track key metrics (e.g. conversions) for your marketing campaign.
After launching your LinkedIn marketing campaigns, you need to track the effectiveness of your advertisements. Get feedback and create engaging content that resonates with your target audience.
There are several ways to analyze audience preferences and behavior on LinkedIn:
For paid campaign performance, use LinkedIn Campaign Manager analytics with conversion tracking.
Make informed business decisions and generate leads by actively monitoring your LinkedIn analytics to understand your target audience's preferences.
What's Next For LinkedIn Marketing?
LinkedIn is a unique social media network that presents both challenges and opportunities for B2B marketers. When used well, businesses can benefit from higher conversion rates.
Marketers should start by creating fresh content to attract visitors. Then grow followers by inviting employees, customers and partners to follow their LinkedIn Business Page. Constantly improve LinkedIn marketing campaigns through actionable data analytics.
Start using LinkedIn as a marketing tool to reach an engaged, professional audience and generate more sales leads.
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