As of February 2022, based on global advertising audience reach numbers, LinkedIn has at least 808.4 million members.
Roughly 10.2% of all the people on Earth have a LinkedIn account today.
LinkedIn’s advertising audience reach grew by 11.1% over the past 12 months.
Let these numbers sink in for a minute!
This month, Team Vantage will discuss how small businesses & start-ups can use LinkedIn marketing strategies to enhance audience engagement and generate leads for business development. Start-ups or small businesses can also use LinkedIn marketing strategies to boost their brand exposure & convert customers.
Let’s begin the discussion by understanding the significance of LinkedIn marketing. We will also talk about how small businesses and start-ups can use digital marketing to propel their business forward.
Why LinkedIn Marketing?
Regardless of the business complexity, any small, medium, or large enterprise can use LinkedIn to build a network, share content and services – to drive customer engagement and even foster new relationships.
This social media tool offers the opportunity to foster partnerships in a professional interface.
At its core, LinkedIn is a complete professional social networking tool allowing a user to develop professional relationships and foster partnerships.
According to Sprout Social, business marketing on LinkedIn generates 277% more leads compared to those engaged in Facebook marketing alone. B2B marketers generate 80% of the social media leads using LinkedIn.
Start-ups and small businesses can use LinkedIn marketing strategies to generate more leads by precisely targeting their audience and educating them about new products and services.
LinkedIn is an effective marketing tool that can help start-ups onboard more customers – even with limited resources. Next, we will look at some common myths about LinkedIn marketing.
Myth – LinkedIn is not for small businesses
Posting on LinkedIn can be like a quagmire for those who are not used to the social media scrutiny that comes with being a content creator. Simply put, the effort you put into all that content creation and interaction may not always amount to the revenue returns you were expecting – unless you are very, very clear about the purpose of your LinkedIn activities.
This is why a lot of small businesses dismiss LinkedIn marketing.
In the 00s and 10s, social media exploded and blew global markets wide open for online businesses. After the initial frenzy died down, many traditionally offline businesses sensed that they were missing a piece of the pie – and they were right! However, a lot of mystery and confusion still surrounds digital marketing campaigns.
When clients come to us, we often ask them about how active they are on social media – specifically LinkedIn.
See, our clients range the spectrum from design studios to industrial manufacturing to retail businesses – but all of these have pretty similar answers to our question. Below is a broad range of the responses we get.
- LinkedIn is very boring, I have no idea how it will help my business.
- I don’t know what to say, I have not given it much thought.
- I tried for a few months but barely got any response.
- Nobody reaches out to ask about my services.
- LinkedIn is not for me, I run a lifestyle brand.
- It takes too much time to write that content so I gave up.
Busting the Myth
Let’s be clear. There is no magic trick, roadmap, or checklist to follow for a successful LinkedIn marketing strategy. However, there is a very clear, simple system that can help you access a wider market of clients on LinkedIn – regardless of your business niche. You need to put purposeful content out to real people at the right time.
You need to be able to do it consistently.
Of course, that doesn’t mean you have to run all over the place trying to create content day and night. Nor does it mean you have to hire a marketing consultant that charges a bomb.
There are easier alternatives within reach. However, before I tell you about these alternatives, take a look at these numbers so you can better see what I mean.
- LinkedIn generates 80% of all social media leads
- 38% of B2B marketers generate revenue via LinkedIn
- LinkedIn accounts for 46% of all social traffic to B2B websites
The key is to realize you don’t have to do it all from scratch. This is 2022, people. In 2022, digital marketing has evolved to a point where you can hire a reasonably priced virtual marketing team for the price of a few lunches this month.
Now, I know you are itching to move to the next part – How can I market on LinkedIn using my small business budget?
Let’s dive in and explore some remote marketing services that are completely affordable.
How can remote marketing help small business strategy
Consistently producing content that connects with your readers is hard.
Try saying that quickly three times.
Sure, people connect on LinkedIn via likes and comments. Trying to make sure you are replying to each one of them politely, starting a conversation and thanking them for their input can be difficult. Especially when you do it every single day.
People come to LinkedIn to connect with a professional network. Unless you are a marketer, you do not need to put in the manual labour of replying to each and every comment yourself.
Do yourself a favour and hire someone else to take care of it – virtual marketing teams are well-qualified and extremely affordable in this day and age.
Leaving the daily content creation and basic engagement to a qualified virtual marketing assistant can actually help free you up to make strategic connections wherever you deem appropriate. The following are some tasks you can safely delegate to a remote marketing team without breaking your budget constraints!
Help with audience profiles
As a business owner, you will need help figuring out your target audience and creating profiles to understand them better. This ensures you both your paid and unpaid campaigns hit the mark every time, resulting in conversion. A remote marketing team will help you understand questions like these listed below.
Who is my ideal customer?
Whom should I need to connect to generate leads and conversions from LinkedIn?
What type of content will attract my audience?
You cannot start connecting with everyone indiscriminately. Social media is a bottomless pit and you can quickly get lost or exhaust funds trying to reach everyone. Identifying your customers and figuring out what you can help them with is a huge part of brand growth. Understanding your customers takes a lot of research – a task that a virtual marketer is well-equipped to handle.
Help with market research
As a small business owner, you might not want to exhaust all your funds to find the right businesses to foster partnerships. Therefore, it is important to understand your market thoroughly.
LinkedIn is a complex social media tool that can be harnessed to get a better understanding of who your customers are and what triggers them to buy. If you are not able to find the right business and target market, your business might not be able to drive proper website traffic or conversions.
As a business owner, you want to study the market extensively. However, you may not have the extra time to learn market research in addition to running your business.
Understanding a whole new market is a time taking and confusing for beginners. Hiring a virtual marketing expert that can help you use their wealth of industry expertise and channel it into growing your own business.
Optimizing your LinkedIn profile
Images speak louder than words. According to LinkedIn, adding images doubles the number of comments on your LinkedIn profile. Personal brand images build awareness and establish a connection with the audience.
Here are some ways in which a remote marketing agency can help you optimize your profile.
- Talking about the project confidently
- Looking directly at the camera
- Using your face in your profile picture, not your company logo
- Using a high-resolution image
- Make sure you’re the only person in the frame
- Creating a background photo that promotes your services
Writing your LinkedIn bio
Writing your LinkedIn bio is one of the hardest things to do. It carries the weight of the services you offer and even influences how clients perceive you.
When we sit to write our LinkedIn bio, we often run out of words.
See, it is important to have your content match the services that your business is going to provide. The two have to connect with each other even in the mind of the customer. This is when your digital marketing steps in. You can ask your digital marketing team to curate the content matching the business tone and is crisp enough to connect with the target audience.
A virtual content writer can help you with the following tasks for your LinkedIn bio.
- Talking about the current business position and in-progress assignments
- Sharing the core values of the business and the successful projects completed
- Showcasing your business achievements to catch the audience’s attention.
- Filling in content that compels them to go to your website
How small business market research helps conversions
LinkedIn, like any other social media platform, is a constant stream of activity. But, as a business owner, there is already a lot on your plate and you might not be able to constantly update your LinkedIn profile or comment on articles.
Hire a marketing professional and instruct them on exactly how you want your profiles handled!
Marketing expertise can help you generate more business leads and side-by-side, your followers will constantly be updated about the activity.
Take a look at these two unexpected LinkedIn Strategies our clients have used in the past.
- Sharing valuable content.
Ross Simmonds is an influencer who has established himself as a top authority in niche content distribution. We often borrow a page from his strategies when helping our clients.
- Posting engaging content
LinkedIn users with over 10,000 followers share stories that don’t relate to their expertise. Engagement comes after Lead Generation. Our clients get better results when they become very specific about their LinkedIn goals.
Hiring a digital marketing remote team might help your business to find a great target market. A remote marketing team can add a lot of value to your business by helping you perfect your tone, find the right words to engage your clients and even figure out closing strategies.
Asking for recommendations
Market research can help your business maintain a customer-centric approach, identify opportunities for growth and even help your business compete more effectively. Proper market research can help you mine your LinkedIn connections and help you ask existing customers or contacts to recommend others who might be interested in your business. A few etiquette tips for contacting people.
Make your ‘ask’ very specific & appreciate their time.
- Make your ‘ask’ very specific & appreciate their time.
- Ask if they know someone else who may be interested.
- Show that you have read their profile and like their work.
- Thank them even if they cannot help you out.
Using LinkedIn Ads
LinkedIn advertising can help your business to target the audience that is a best fit for your business. This way, you will not have to chase your customers. They will come to your business as they will be able to connect with your services.
Make use of targeted advertising to reach a wider audience on LinkedIn. LinkedIn offers 200 targeting characteristics to target members by name, location, job title and more. This is where your previous market research comes in handy to help you reach those who are truly interested in your services or products. Virtual marketers can help you prepare LinkedIn ads and help with the following services.
- Text ads that appear on profile pages, notifications, search results, group pages and the homepage
- Sponsored content to amplify your business posts to a larger audience
- Sponsored email to send personalized messages to LinkedIn members
- Linkbacks and CTAs to help increase conversions.
Creating your personal profile
Creating a personal profile on LinkedIn can be a breeze if you are thorough with your market research. Audience profiling, competitor analysis and even brand messaging are key aspects to consider when you create or optimize your small business profile on LinkedIn. In addition to populating your profile, you will also want someone to perform engagement activities such as those listed below.
- Re-sharing content from the personal profile to your business page and vice versa
- Referencing and tagging the LinkedIn page in a relevant post
- Sharing progress with client work, behind the scenes information
Let me illustrate how this helps – with an example.
Elizabeth Leiba has over 98,000 followers on her personal and over 20,000 followers on her LinkedIn page. She creates content about her company’s impact on diversity and inclusion training. She promotes her brand and develops a professional network with the businesses with her profile.
You do not need 98,000 followers to harness the power of a personal profile. Look at some of our key takeaways from our research to get started right away!
Key Takeaways from our LinkedIn research
From our research, we have identified the following points that might help start-ups and small businesses for smooth business promotion on LinkedIn.
- Optimize your personal profile and use it to connect with industry professionals.
- Understand your audience and offer value through consistent content.
- Build trust before you seek recommendations or start networking.
- Just as in real life, be considerate, respectful and professional!
- Do great market research and use it to start conversations.
Is LinkedIn Marketing for you?
The most successful people on LinkedIn tend to give more than they take.
Remember, LinkedIn is a human first, despite all the algorithms on social media applications. Don’t be afraid to let people see the real you. Today, creating valuable content requires an entire team – but only you can provide the human touch by sharing with your marketing team what your audience likes and dislikes.
At Vantage, we help businesses, agencies, individuals and start-ups to help design brands that people can relate to. We work on website development, brand building and content planning. To know more about Vantage ITes and its services, contact us.
That’s all for this time. In the next blog, we will be conducting a walkthrough covering the different types of clients we have catered to in the past.