By Kelsey Blevins, PR Account Coordinator
LinkedIn is home to more than 300 million users worldwide, including executives from every Fortune 500 company, so you want to make sure you put your best foot forward. Over three million companies have a LinkedIn Company Page and there are many benefits of creating one for your company.
The most basic benefit is the ease of networking, however, a Company Page can also add credibility to your organization. Not only can you display positive recommendations from past employees and clients, you can share real time updates to help the public learn more about what you do and how well you do it. By interacting with other LinkedIn members and participating in industry discussions you can demonstrate your knowledge and expertise, and eventually others will begin to identify your company as a thought leader in your field. As you post and engage, new leads will begin to come to you organically as people like what they are seeing.
But, how do you get the most out of a Company Page?
When setting up your Company Page, the first, most obvious step is to fill out your ‘About section.’ Try to include relevant keywords within the first 115 characters to improve SEO. Remember, not only are you trying to convey the essence of your company to visitors, you are trying to inspire them to take some sort of action.
Additionally, make an effort to answer all of the questions. You may find it irrelevant to state how many people work at your company or when you were founded, but this is information people generally want to know.
Next, shift gears to focus on branding by adding a banner and logos to your page. Remember, the banner is the first thing someone sees when vising your page, so it is critical to have a striking image that reflects your business and/or brand. Keep in mind there are two different logos and you should upload a photo for each. The first logo that LinkedIn asks for is the one displayed at the top of your Company Page, while the other ‘square logo’ will appear next to your updates on each follower’s home feed.
Now that LinkedIn has done away with their Product and Services tab, you have to use your Company Updates and Showcase Pages to share content about specific products and services. Showcase Pages allow you to customize messages and engage different audience segments based on their product interest. They are fairly easy to set up and good idea if you service a variety of different industries. As an additional bonus, showcase pages feature large page banners, which allow you to showcase dynamic product images and attract more interest.
First and foremost, post updates frequently and consistently. LinkedIn suggests once per weekday at the least. You don’t want to give everything away, include just enough information in your update to prompt a user to click on your link to find out more.
It is a common misconception that you should only post on LinkedIn during business hours, meaning Monday through Friday between the hours of 9am and 5pm. In all actuality, updates see the most engagement in the couple of hours before and after work, and do well during weekends.
When crafting your posts, keep it concise, to the point and include a call to action. Most commonly people include a link, which can drive twice the amount of engagement. Always include an image or some type of rich media (infographics, videos, SlideShare presentations, etc.) with your post. Updates with images generally result in a 98% higher comment rate. YouTube videos can play directly in a user’s LinkedIn feed and can result in a 75% higher share rate. When in doubt, start a conversation with your followers by asking a question, but make sure it is relevant to your audience. Monitor, analyze and refine your content using the analytics provided by LinkedIn.
Above all, regularly interact with followers. Answer their questions and respond to their posts. In general, ‘talk’ to them as much as possible. It’s recommended that companies large and small assign one staff member as the dedicated social guru to regularly engage followers across every platform.
You always have the option to pay for ads and sponsor updates, but for now we are going to concentrate on free initiatives that you should complete before you pay for anything. Link all of your businesses’ marketing channels, such as emails, newsletters and blogs to your Company Page. It is fairly simple to add a “Follow” button to your website, and you should have one for each social media channel you are a part of. You may also consider putting a link to your page in the email signature of your employees.
Speaking of employees, they can help you increase your followers without much effort at all. No, they do not need to send out a mass email to everyone they ever met asking them to follow you. They simply need to follow the page themselves and engage with content as they see fit to expand the reach of posts. DISCLAIMER: It is not always rainbows and butterflies when mixing personal and work pages. Do not require employees to engage with your page, only encourage them. It is also a good idea to set a few guidelines for employees to follow in order to avoid unwanted missteps.
Bottom line: a LinkedIn Company Page is one more location where potential employees and customers can find out more about you and although it is a professional network, you should treat LinkedIn as another social network driving potential clients and customers to find out more about your goods and services.
Mashable does a great job keeping their updates very short. Most of the time they fit on one line, making them easier to read and digest, and they don’t give the article away. They write just enough to make me want to click on the link to find out more.
Kellogg Company is an example of a well thought out and managed Company Page. My favorite aspect of their page is how they humanize their brand with behind-the-scenes employee events.
One brand that gets the difference between social media channels is Coke. The majority of the time they do not post the same content across all of their channels, and if they do, they reimagine it in some way. If you like Coke on Facebook you will see more consumer-focused and fun posts, while if you follow them on LinkedIn you will find content targeted to a professional network with topics like business innovation and jobs.
Aside from the traditional company pages, companies and brands are stepping outside of the box. Recently, I came across a campaign for Taken 3. By simply following the Showcase Page you are entered into a contest to have Liam Neeson’s character, Bryan Mills, make a video endorsing your particular set of skills.
If you fancy us, make sure to give us a follow on LinkedIn.