Linkedin Basics for Small Businesses

Tips and Tricks

What is LinkedIn?

LinkedIn offers entrepreneurs a social media platform that focuses on professional connections, business to business (B2B) networking, and expertise to foster the growth and success of individuals and businesses. Strategic networking, brand building, and industry visibility is cultivated. The platform provides a unique locale for establishing a strong online presence, professional connections, and an opportunity to display your business' expertise and build credibility. Our blog will demonstrate the advantages of using LinkedIn, and how to use it effectively.

LinkedIn is the world's largest professional networking platform for the business community. Individuals on LinkedIn use it to find jobs, internships, connect and strengthen professional relations, and get news about specific industries. Founded by Reid Hoffman in 2002, LinkedIn's Mission is to "connect the world's professionals to make them more productive and successful."

With over 930 million members, LinkedIn is recognized as the leading site for job seekers and employers.

• According to Statista, LinkedIn is the leading social network used by prospective employees in the United States when researching businesses, ranking above job research and company review platform, Glassdoor, with the share of respondents being 60 percent for LinkedIn.

• Of the 930 million members in 200 countries and regions worldwide, 77% of LinkedIn users are from outside the United States, even though it's LinkedIn's biggest market with over 194 million users. In second and third place are Brazil and China, with 60 and 50 million users, respectively.

• There are 63 million companies listed on LinkedIn, from Apple to Small Businesses worldwide.

• 117 Job Applications are submitted every second, of which 45 percent of hirers on LinkedIn use skills data to fill their roles.

LinkedIn for Small Businesses

LinkedIn is an excellent place for small businesses to advertise their business and values. As a social media platform designed around professional networking, there are several reasons for all companies to incorporate LinkedIn into their marketing strategy.

LinkedIn enables employees to recognize themselves as a company member and take pride in their work. Individuals using LinkedIn can share information about the company to build brand awareness while highlighting the work-life culture around your business. They may even have various connections through different industries or locations that small business owners don't know about by sharing this information, your employees can gain broader company awareness on LinkedIn.

Do you have case studies or projects that you'd like to share?

LinkedIn is the perfect place for sharing the work and dedication your team brings to projects for a wider audience. In contrast, as an employer, you will have more people interested and become aware of the work you're creating and finding employees.

Creating a LinkedIn Page

To make a strong and distinctive presence on the platform, it's essential to tailor your LinkedIn Page with industry-specific attributes, visually attractive banners, and compelling company descriptions. By customizing your Page to reflect your brand identity and values, you can capture the attention of potential customers and clients.

For example, a graphic design agency could use vibrant visuals and concise descriptions to showcase its creative expertise. At the same time, a software development company might focus on highlighting their technical prowess and innovative solutions.

For small business owners, you will create a personal profile for you as an individual. Next, you will create a company page.

Setup a Profile on LinkedIn

To begin, you will create an individual profile on LinkedIn. Add your photo, enter work history and information related to each position. Adding information adds credibility to your profile. Next, add skills, ask for recommendations, add links to your website, projects, and keep updating from there. LinkedIn offers tips on how to create a good profile.

Make connections with folks you know, follow relevant pages and groups, engage with community content and build a personal brand.

Create a LinkedIn Company Page

Once you have your profile setup, you can add a company page. LinkedIn company pages feature contact info, services, employees, and other information. People can follow your page and as a page you can like posts, follow groups, etc.

LinkedIn Showcase Pages for Targeted Marketing

LinkedIn's Showcase Pages provide an excellent opportunity to highlight specific products or services, catering to different segments of your target audience. Creating separate Showcase Pages for other offerings allows you to tailor your messaging and content to resonate with specific customer needs. This targeted approach increases the chances of attracting and engaging the right audience, ultimately driving conversions and sales.

For example, a fitness apparel brand could have Showcase Pages dedicated to athletic wear, yoga gear, and running shoes, each showcasing unique features and benefits.

Showcasing Your Company Culture and Job Opportunities

A strong company culture and attracting top talent are crucial for the long-term success of any small business. LinkedIn's Career Pages serve as a platform to showcase your company culture, values, and job opportunities. You can attract talented professionals who align with your business objectives by highlighting your unique work environment, employee testimonials, and growth opportunities.

This helps you find the right individuals to drive your company forward and enhances your overall brand reputation.

On LinkedIn, employers can run job ads. Some jobs can be posted for free, but most require a daily budget to run on the platform. Daily budgets range based on the industry, competition, etc.

Increasing Brand Visibility with Sponsored Content

LinkedIn's Sponsored Content feature allows you to promote your posts to a broader audience, ensuring that your content reaches the right professionals and increases brand visibility.

With targeted advertising options, you can precisely define your audience based on industry, job title, and geographic location. This targeted approach ensures that your content is seen by the individuals most likely to be interested in your offerings. By leveraging Sponsored Content, you can amplify your reach, generate leads, and establish your brand as an industry leader.

Building Relationships through LinkedIn Groups

Engaging with LinkedIn Groups provides a unique opportunity to connect with a specific audience within your industry or niche. You can establish thought leadership, contribute to industry conversations, and build relationships with like-minded professionals by actively participating in relevant groups. Sharing valuable insights, asking questions, and offering solutions can help position your small business as an expert.

Additionally, showcasing success stories and testimonials from satisfied clients or customers within these groups helps establish credibility and fosters trust in your brand.

Take Action and Stand Out

In a crowded marketplace, leveraging LinkedIn's features empowers small businesses to differentiate themselves, gain visibility, and build a solid professional network.

By tailoring your LinkedIn Page, utilizing Showcase Pages and Career Pages, engaging in LinkedIn Groups, and sharing success stories, your small business can stand out on the platform and impact your target audience. However, it's important to remember that success on LinkedIn requires proactive action.

Creative and Informative Content Ideas for Small Businesses to Stand Out:

• Write an article about your small business about various topics or issues related to your industry. Unlike other social platforms, LinkedIn allows you to publish long-form articles from your Page. CCS wrote a recent LinkedIn article about Online Networking and Making Connections on LinkedIn.

• Poll your audience on various topics, including current industry events related to your business

• Highlight Employers to build a sense of community within the workplace

• Publish case studies through your business to show people how you’re the industry leader.

Advertising on LinkedIn

LinkedIn advertising offers businesses many benefits, including access to a highly engaged professional audience, precise targeting options, and the opportunity to establish thought leadership. Companies can generate leads, nurture relationships, and drive conversions by leveraging the platform's advertising features.

Precise Targeting and Thought Leadership:

LinkedIn's Campaign Manager provides businesses with the necessary tools to create, manage, and optimize their advertising campaigns on the platform. This powerful tool allows businesses to set budgets, define goals, access dynamic visual reporting and detailed action breakdowns.

By leveraging Campaign Manager's features, companies can make data-driven decisions, fine-tune their targeting, optimize their messaging, and drive meaningful engagement with their target audience. This precise targeting ensures that your ads reach the right professionals, increasing the likelihood of conversions and achieving your advertising goals on LinkedIn.

Utilizing InMail for Targeted Outreach:

LinkedIn's unique feature, InMail, provides businesses with a direct communication channel to professionals on the platform. InMail allows you to send personalized messages to LinkedIn members, even if they are not in your network. This feature opens doors to targeted outreach, relationship building, and lead generation opportunities.

For example, a payroll company could use InMail to contact HR managers at companies they want to collaborate with, offering their expertise and initiating valuable conversations.

InMail is a powerful tool for establishing connections with key decision-makers, industry influencers, and potential business partners, ultimately expanding your network and fostering growth.

Growing your Business on LinkedIn

As you gain more followers and connections, standing out from your industry competitors is essential to maintaining your professional label as a small business. To achieve this, developing a comprehensive content strategy on LinkedIn that is differentiated from other social media platforms.

At Comprehensive Consulting Solution for Small Businesses, we help small businesses by finding a target audience, developing a strong LinkedIn Page, and other business goals. Contact us for a free consultation.