LinkedIn: adding some sizzle to the steak

The quiet social network, LinkedIn, has been quite loud lately.

The quiet social network, LinkedIn, has been quite loud lately. However, until the recent activity and chatter surrounding its IPO, brands have largely overlooked LinkedIn as an effective marketing and communications platform. Brands have spent the last few years enamored by social media giants Facebook and Twitter because of their promise of connecting them with a community of brand loyalists. Let's be honest, LinkedIn's value proposition lacked this sex appeal.

But a well-constructed company page on LinkedIn can be an excellent tool for brand-building, expert positioning, and lead generation. Here are a few tips on how to build a better company page:

  • Think of your page as a brochure: Your company page is not a fan page nor is it a website.  It is online marketing collateral much like a print brochure.  Write your copy like an elevator pitch – concise and compelling. And don't forget to include keywords. This will help increase your page's "discoverability" in both LinkedIn searches and search engine results.
  • Leverage the tabs:  LinkedIn provides tabs to feature content around careers and services/products. Use this opportunity to recruit talent and showcase the best features of your brand. Integrate images, videos, and callouts to special offers.
  • Tap into word-of-mouth: References help us all get jobs and recommendations help us get business. Don't be shy – ask past and present clients/customers for a recommendation and publish it to the appropriate product or service tab.

  • Say something smart and broadcast it: As with other social networks, content is still king. Use this opportunity to demonstrate subject matter expertise and share a unique perspective on relevant topics. This means contributing to LinkedIn Answers, Groups, and integrating your corporate Twitter handle into your Company Page. 
  • Analyze, Analyze, and Analyze: As with other online platforms, LinkedIn provides analytic tools that will help a brand measure the effectiveness of its efforts, including follower growth and profiles, industry benchmarks, section page views, and visitor breakdowns. 

LinkedIn may be the eldest among the social media powerhouses, but it doesn't have to be your father's social network. With the right strategy, it can be a powerful communication tool that provides brands with the opportunity to have a mature dialogue with over 100 million people.

Nada Arnot is SVP and chief digital officer at RF Binder.

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