WSI recently hosted a webinar sharing tips for strengthening your network and brand with digital marketing on LinkedIn. Gunnar Hood, a WSI consultant in Oklahoma City and author of our eBook specifically about LinkedIn, shared his experience as an expert with B2B and professional service companies. You can catch up on the recording here.
Business Case for LinkedIn and the New Normal
The impact of COVID-19 pushed people out of their comfort zones. While uncomfortable, it is also the best way to grow.
Because so many in-person meetings, networking events, and tradeshows were put on hold in 2020, LinkedIn became an even more attractive option because it:
- Boasts 63 million decision makers and 30 million company pages
- Accounts for 80% of B2B leads from social media
- Triples the visitor to lead conversion compared to other channels
- Is voted the most trusted network.
Unfortunately, 98% of LinkedIn users miss the bullseye… but that means that the 2% who leverage the platform effectively can hugely out-perform their competitors.
Virtual networking is a scalable relationship building tool as it is time efficient, informed, broadly visible, free, and available 24/7. No wonder, then, that 75% of decision-makers prefer remote interactions and self-service options – enough to make hefty purchases on these interactions alone.
Personal Brand Visibility
An all-star LinkedIn profile increases your reach by 50+%. Our WSI eBook is available through your WSI Consultant and guides you through the eight different things you need to complete. But building a standout profile can be hard if you don’t like writing about yourself. If that is the case, it makes sense to get help from the specialists.
The key to an engaging profile is to ensure it is buyer-centric, i.e. focus less on what you do and more on how you help others solve their problems.
Take advantage of the new Featured section to share rich content such as slides, PDFs, videos etc.
Use the Social Selling Index tool to keep score – aiming for a score of >60 which, when combined with an all-star profile, puts you in an elite category.
Build Better Connections
Although getting over 500 initial connections is a milestone to work towards, the quality of your connections trumps quantity – especially because LinkedIn is “watching” and will suggest more of the type of connections you have.
Targeted search results across categories returns not just people, but articles, content, and jobs related to your search. This gives you greater exposure to relevant connections which you can narrow down by researching them for common ground and then creating curiosity through views, likes, comments, and following them.
When inviting your ideal candidate to connect, use the Connect button on the profile view so that you can personalize your message. Again, craft your message to be about them, and not about you. Do NOT use automation – it isn’t personal and it is against LinkedIn policy.
Attract Through Thought Leadership
If there is someone you would like to connect with despite no common ground, thought leadership is the means for you. 97% of B2B use LinkedIn for content distribution making it one of the biggest content publishers.
Only 0.4% of users share content weekly. Differentiate yourself by publishing weekly for a competitive edge. Check out the LinkedIn Pages Playbook for inspiration on what to publish. Be engaging (especially when a post of yours is attracting a lot of interaction), be human, and space out your personal posts by at least four hours.
Encourage likes and comments, and then respond within 24 hours. Only tag people who are likely to comment to keep the LinkedIn algorithms happy.
58% of B2B marketers say LinkedIn ads deliver the best value and 42% plan to increase their LinkedIn ad budget. This is thanks to how targeted the audience can be and the various ad formats available:
- Single image or video
- Sponsored messaging:
- Messaging ads (currently shown to get a 52% open rate)
- Conversation ads