Linkedin is an essential yet often under-utilised tool by many B2B and not-for-profit organisations. This under-utilisation is often due to two reasons. When Linkedin first started, it was viewed as a recruitment tool. People could upload their resumes and make connections, ultimately leading to further employment opportunities. The second reason is time. Developing content for multiple social platforms is beyond the capacity of many B2B and not-for-profit organisations unless they are big enough to have their own marketing personnel.
This year LinkedIn turns 19, and since 2016 it has been taking steps to reposition itself and build out the platform to be more than just about jobs and recruitment. For example, the option for people to create LinkedIn Newsletters which was introduced in 2017 is one example of the steps they are taking to develop the platform. The newsfeed algorithm enables readers to be shown more relevant and interesting content based on their interests and preferences.
LinkedIn also plans to launch a Clubhouse clone to bring live audio podcasts to the platform.
One of the other changes LinkedIn has introduced is LinkedIn Creator Mode which will improve the opportunity for quality content to be posted and found on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn now has 810 million members worldwide, with the three top countries for membership being the USA, India and China . At 810 million users, it is not the largest social networking platform. Instagram has 1.2 billion users, and Facebook has 3 billion.
LinkedIn is not a platform that is used by members every day. Some estimate that most members will only log onto LinkedIn every three-seven days.
Given the evolution of LinkedIn, it is understandable that many B2B businesses and not-for-profit organisations have not kept up with the changes and are unaware of the potential LinkedIn presents for their business and organisations.
LinkedIn has been evolving and adapting to meet members changing requirements and needs. However, many businesses and organisations still question the time involved and whether it is worth it.
There are three reasons why it can be profitable for businesses and not-for-profit organisations to invest time in building their profile and presence on LinkedIn.
One of the interesting statistics linked to all three reasons why we should consider LinkedIn is that of the three largest platforms, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, LinkedIn drives more traffic to B2B blogs and sites. Hence, it not only creates lead generation but also drives traffic to businesses and not-for-profit blogs and sites. It also assists in establishing the organisation's authority and increasing click-through rates.
Part of the effectiveness of lead generation on LinkedIn is that businesses can target and link to C-suite decision makers within another organisation. Gone are the days when trying to contact a decision-maker in an organisation meant repeated phone calls or emails to administrative support in the hope they would pass the message on.
LinkedIn has made lead generation and connections to decision-makers much more accessible. For salespeople, this accessibility also subtly influences how their discussions are conducted. While there remains a place for cold calling the sales repertory, LinkedIn lets salespeople research the businesses before approaching the decision-makers. Hence allowing for a more nuanced approach to discussing the company's particular challenges.
Building brand authority is essential for businesses and for not-for-profit organisations. The way to build your brand authority on social media is through posting blogs and articles that are:
Developing brand authority on social media is essential for any business and not-for-profit organisation to thrive in today's business world. Millennials and Gen Z use social media to determine the trustworthiness of a company and whether the organisation speaks to their issues.
LinkedIn, a platform targeting professionals more than Twitter or Facebook, provides an ideal opportunity for businesses and not-for-profit organisations to build their brand authority. LinkedIn is unique in what it achieves because not only are the majority of C Suite leaders on LinkedIn, but 60% of LinkedIn users are between the ages of 25 and 34 years.
This allows businesses to build brand authority with this cohort of young people. It is essential when building brand authority to connect with individuals rather than amorphous groups of targeted clients.
It has been said there is no benefit in posting for posting's sake. In many ways, simply posting when there is no strategy behind it leads to content fatigue, damaging an organisation's brand. When we publish content with no strategy behind it, it comes across as "hit and miss", which does not build credibility or trust among clients.
We have written previously on the importance of avoiding content fatigue when engaging with clients. Concentrating on producing authentic, handcrafted, relevant and personal material that meets clients' needs is essential to avoid content fatigue. This is particularly true on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is the ideal platform to build our authority, credibility, and trust among our clients. When we use LinkedIn simply to post more work-related photos of ourselves or to virtue signal, we miss the opportunity to build our authority.
As mentioned above, increased lead generation on LinkedIn improves click-through rates, leading to increased sales.
However, LinkedIn is not simply a sales platform; there are different types of conversions other than sales. For example:
LinkedIn allows companies to extend how and what conversion rates are essential for their business. This can be done organically, which means it is a low-cost option for many businesses and not-for-profit organisations to increase their visibility, build their credibility and authority and increase conversion rates
LinkedIn is a powerful platform. To use it effectively does require more initial thought than simply uploading photos of your latest work function, which may be suitable for Facebook. Tweets also need to be considered in terms of how the tweets build the company's authority. However, the time and consideration are valuable because when LinkedIn is used effectively, it increases the organisation's authority, builds effective lead generation and allows companies to increase conversion rates.
Perhaps it is time to re-think LinkedIn.