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LinkedIn Beyond Professional Networking

It is time to think beyond using LinkedIn for networking and leveraging it for marketing. The platform offers a growing suite of marketing options that are worthy of consideration.

LinkedIn is used by 25 percent of U.S. adults, according to the latest data from Pew Research Center. Further, 50% of Americans with a college degree use LinkedIn.

Here are three marketing options to consider in your LinkedIn strategy.

LinkedIn Video

All users can now post video. Although this is not available for company pages, video is so effective that you can’t ignore this opportunity. LinkedIn says video content is shared 20 times more than any other type of content on the platform.

Be creative:

  • Interview a client
  • Interview an influencer
  • Answer FAQs
  • Give a tour of your space
  • Demo a product

Any video that is related to you professionally works. Keep your video short.

Website Demographics

If you want to ensure you’re optimizing your LinkedIn campaigns and content, one aspect definitely worth looking into is LinkedIn’s Website Demographics.

Website Demographics identifies the types of professionals who visit your site, based on their listed LinkedIn data.

Publishing

LinkedIn’s long-form publishing platform has gone through some significant shifts. Originally, all your first degree connections were notified when you published, but the distribution algorithm has been revised over time.

Today, your LinkedIn Publisher posts will only reach a select group of users and their engagement will define further distribution.

Even with the reduced reach, LinkedIn publishing is still worthwhile. Your posts are linked to your profile, helping to further showcase your knowledge, expertise and engagement in your industry.

Quality content will shine through. If you produce original, insightful and engaging content, you will boost your profile on LinkedIn.

Email Marketing on LinkedIn in 7 Easy Steps

With less competition than other social media platforms, LinkedIn can be an effective place for your paid outreach strategy. One option is LinkedIn Sponsored InMail, which delivers personalized messages direct to LinkedIn inboxes.

Give it a try with these 7 easy steps:

1. Go to Campaign Manager

Campaign Manager is the hub for all LinkedIn marketing campaign, including Sponsored InMail.  You’ll be presented with several paid options. Select “sponsored inMail.”

2. Set up your ad account.

You’ll be prompted to set up an ad account for your campaign. Select a memorable name for your account and your local currency. If you have a company page, you can link it to the account. Name the campaign.

Accept the default and select yourself as a sender. This will create the most credibility for your message. You can also designate any of your connections as the sender. Follow the prompts.

3. Develop a compelling message.

You need to say something valuable to your target audience to get ROI for this effort. Here are some general guidelines to keep in mind.

  • Messages that are less than 500 characters are most effective.
  • Add a custom salutation
  • Include links
  • Designate a banner image, 300×250 pixels.

4. Preview your InMail.

Test, test, test. Send yourself a test version of the message. You can also duplicate the campaign to set up A/B tests to determine the iteration that has the best impact.

5. Target effectively.

Be specific when selecting your target audience. Campaign Manager will estimate the size of your target audience based on the criteria you select.

6. Budget strategically.

Campaign Manager will suggest a bid range to reach your target audience. You are bidding against others who want  to reach a similar audience. The winning bid is determined via second-price auction, you will only pay enough to beat the second-highest bidder.

7. Launch!

Once you set bid and budget, you’re ready to launch. You can launch the campaign immediately or schedule for a future date.

10 Digital Marketing Wins on LinkedIn

LinkedIn continues to grow as the professional social media network. While it has never been the sexiest social network, it is a channel that no professional can afford to ignore.

Here are 10 ways to win with LinkedIn:

  1. Be the expert. Understand where your expertise lies in a very specific way and be the subject matter expert  in that area. Make sure your profile and business page demonstrate your expertise. Post articles and status updates that are focused in your area. Participate in relevant conversations. The more focused you are, the more you claim your territory as an expert.
  2. Stay updated. Keep you profile updated. When people get anniversary reminders for jobs they know you left years ago, they wonder if anything you do on the platform is worth paying attention to. Keep your profile and business page accurate.
  3. Connect with a relevant community. You are, in part, defined by your connections. Connect with related experts, industries and businesses. The company you keep on LinkedIn should serve to elevate your standing as an expert in your field.
  4. Personalize every interaction. Don’t accept LinkedIn’s default language for any interactions. Be authentically you on the platform. Send personalized invitations to connect and responses to messages.
  5. Be newsworthy. Take the initiative to share the latest news and developments in your area of expertise. it is not enough to validate what others say. Position yourself as someone who is in touch with the latest and share your insights with your community.
  6. Don’t lurk. Engage with your connections. Be visible by posting articles, liking, commenting and sharing.
  7. Monitor the data. Use the built-in analytics to learn about what content gets attention and to learn what your audience wants from you. Use the insight to refine your interactions on LinkedIn.
  8. Bring your brand to life. You and your brand are one online, whether you own your business or you are one of many employees. Be consistent in what you say and do to create a consistent brand experience for your community.
  9. Involve everyone. All employees, contractors and partners should connect with your brand on LinkedIn. This adds credibility and transparency, two important wins for your online presence.
  10. Focus your dollars on your goals. LinkedIn is trying to monetize the platform. That can be good when the opportunities are helpful to your business. Don’t assume that all paid opportunities will help you. Evaluate each careful and leverage only the paid opportunities that will help you read your goal.