In the B2B marketing world, we often hear about how LinkedIn can help improve engagement with customers. At Carve Digital, we might hear something like this, ‘I want to use social media! Let’s make sure we LinkedIn this blog post or post something about our upcoming webinar.’
While posting content to a company’s LinkedIn (LI) page is all well and good, just like other digital marketing activities it takes having a strategy in place to see real results! But, easier said than done, right? What does a LinkedIn strategy look like? What elements are must-haves? What’s fluff? And, how do you know you’re on the right track? Let’s cover some best practices that can take your LinkedIn efforts to the next level.
Don’t stop at the awareness stage
Most marketers treat their company’s LinkedIn page as an extension of their website. They post news releases, industry content, infographics, blog posts, job openings, new employee initiatives, etc. – all to share information about the company, as well as educate and inform audiences. What many marketers miss out on is the next step – pushing beyond the top of the sales funnel to lead generation! Often clients successfully pull prospects in, but then they stop way short and inadvertently abandon would-be customers, just as they’re moving down the sales funnel.
Turning LI into a lead generation
In addition to sharing relevant content with readers, be sure your posts have something unique to offer. Along these lines, content needs to include specific call-to-action messages. If you’re in the Unified Communication (UC) space and you’re now offering SD-WAN, this might involve highlighting an upcoming customer or partner panel your hosting that talks about an SD-WAN project. A CTA might also include pointing to a case study or including a registration page to an upcoming webinar. Speak clearly and directly to your audience, first getting them hooked and then encouraging them to take the next step. To beef up your CTA, also include high-quality visuals. Even stock photos can help make an attractive post. A study by LinkedIn shows posts with images receive 200% more engagement than those without them. (Source: LinkedIn).
Target customers with Showcase pages
In addition to making sure your LI page is chocked-full of relevant content and engaging CTAs and visuals, also consider Showcase pages. A subset of a company’s primary LI page, showcase pages enables businesses to target customers and provide in-depth content. It requires segmenting your audience and mapping content – also called creating ‘buyer personas.’ (Need help? Check out our blog – Everyone is not your customer (or partner): Why you need buyer personas). The most successful LinkedIn pages feature two or three updates each week. It’s a commitment to build high-quality pages, but these efforts can also pay off big time! You’ll push buyers along from the interest stage of their journey to consideration, purchase, and eventually advocate!
Cisco is an example of a company that’s doing an excellent job using Showcase pages. The organization has numerous LI pages featuring different products and services, such as its Data Center and Cloud computing services. Visitors can get regular updates on product releases, ask questions to technical experts, plus the content has timely CTAs urging readers to review other data center-specific content. The Data Center and Cloud computing page is highly targeted, speaking directly to technical decision-makers responsible for data infrastructures and mission-critical workloads.
Measure your success
Just like with other marketing efforts, teams that leverage analytics are the most successful because they can pinpoint how their strategy is working. LinkedIn Analytics offers tools to measure critical indicators of success, looking at company updates, followers, and visitors. Teams can dig into the data to uncover what days and what content is getting the most engagement and view demographics regarding the audience. Marketers can also see their total number of followers and spot trends in follower growth. Source: LinkedIn Analytics). Using this information they can tailor content, CTAs, and visuals – ultimately boosting social engagement and profits.
Putting your plan into action
There are 500 million reasons why LinkedIn is a staple in the B2B space! Not only does it have millions of users, but it also gives marketers access to 2X the buying power of the average web audience. (Source: LinkedIn). The good news is, the same winning strategies apply to all LinkedIn pages. Part of your strategy should always include engaging employees as advocates, asking them to share links and page updates with relevant contacts. To build engagement, it’s also critical to stay consistent and include links to LI pages in external communications, such as drip email campaigns, newsletters, explainer videos, and blogs. If you want help ‘getting social’ and getting smart about LinkedIn, talk to Carve Digital! We got you!