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LinkedIn Is No Longer Optional For Small Businesses

By Kristina Cisnero | 6 months ago | Strategy | No Comments

Image by Nan Palmero via flickr

Social networks are not an optional channel for businesses anymore; they are a must have, and for small businesses, LinkedIn is one of the most important. LinkedIn allows you to provide authenticity and credibility to you and your business. LinkedIn users come with a professional mindset, so go ahead, market yourself and your business—they are interested in hearing from you. However, there are still some small businesses missing out on the power of LinkedIn for their business.

Here are 4 reasons your small business should be on LinkedIn

1. Personal branding

When you go to an event to promote your business and introduce yourself to someone, the next step that person will take is to look you up online. A LinkedIn profile allows you to be found and showcase who you are, so be sure to take advantage of everything it has to offer.  To enhance your credibility, add rich media like videos, presentations, and sales sheets.

Think of your LinkedIn profile as a compelling presentation of your professional self that encourages the viewer to connect with you. A LinkedIn best practice is to speak in first person because the intent of your profile is to provide other users with a welcoming introduction to who you are. By speaking in first person you’re able to engage your audience and encourage them to continue the conversation with you.

LinkedIn Profile

2. Free marketing

A LinkedIn company page is a free marketing tool and if used correctly, can be an effective one. It’s not intended to replace your site; it’s more of a supplement to drive people to your site. The small businesses who are not taking the time to build out their company page on LinkedIn are missing a huge opportunity to connect with potential customers and increase awareness.

One of the ways your company page can help increase your brand awareness is through boosting your presence in search engine results. In order to do this make sure you know which keywords or phrases you want to rank for and then use them within the copy of your company page. For example, if you’re an orthopedic shoe company you will want to include keywords like, “orthopedic shoes”, “orthopedic shoes for women”, “orthopedic shoes for men”. You can use tools like Google Adwords and SEMRush to find out which keywords you want to show up for.

Serengetee's LinkedIn Company Page

3. Extended sales arm

The people in your LinkedIn network could aid your next sale. The power is in the network you have built and the connections you have made—think about vendors, the people you work with, and the people you meet along the way at events.

With LinkedIn’s advanced search capabilities small business sales teams can know exactly which companies they need to connect with, look into existing relationships that might provide an introduction, and find the right person to reach out to. It’s not only about who you know; it’s about who they know. That’s the real power of LinkedIn: the ability to tap into that connection and grow your brand through word-of-mouth.

LinkedIn's advanced people search

4. Attract top talent

If you’re trying to attract potential candidates, LinkedIn is the first place where all the smart ones will be looking. As a small business, make sure you build out your brand on LinkedIn, whether it’s through your company page or personal profile. In order to attract top talent, these pieces need to all be in line in order to build intrigue and awareness.

When you’re actively hiring, LinkedIn allows you to publish job postings, as well as the ability to use LinkedIn’s search to find potential candidates. By proactively searching you’ll be able to find candidates that fit your hiring needs, directly reach out to them, and drive them to your job posting.

LinkedIn's Hiring Capabilities

The biggest mistake a small business can make is not taking advantage of LinkedIn’s free small business offerings. Whether you’re just starting your business or already deep in the trenches, LinkedIn is a trusted network by small businesses, so don’t miss out on the ample opportunities it has to offer you and your business.

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4 comments
Kay
Kay

Kristina, you are spot on with this article! I work with private medical practices, and I tell them that being on linkedin is a MUST. The key to marketing is being where your target audience is, and "speaking" to them. Linkedin is a great vehicle to do just that!

Elizabeth Dehn
Elizabeth Dehn

Hi Kristina Cisnero,

Thank you for writing this article regarding the importance of a LinkedIn presence. I can remember when only certain industries were present on this site. I am so happy that more and more businesses and professionals are joining. I did an analysis of an online thumbprint of a local family-owned business for an assignment last quarter. It was an eye-opening experience and my conclusion was that every professional and business should have a LinkedIn account. Furthermore, analyzing the online thumbprint of your personal brand or organization on a regular basis can be very revealing.

Great Article!

Elizabeth Dehn

@elizabethdehn 

Kristina Cisnero
Kristina Cisnero

@Elizabeth Dehn Thanks for your comment Elizabeth! I'm glad you found my article helpful. Is your analysis of the online thumbprint of a local family-owned business available online? I'd love to read it and learn about your findings. 


-Kristina