It’s all business. Well, at least LinkedIn started that way. When people think about LinkedIn, they typically think about creating connections for job hunting purposes, for now, or in the future. More and more, though, LinkedIn has become an effective social media marketing tool. It can provide a means to share your links, help your search engine optimization (SEO) and share content with a like-minded, or targeted audience.
Launched nearly 9 years ago, with more than 135 million users globally, LinkedIn is considered one of the top 5 social media sites. Typically interaction on the site is business related. Users create profiles about their current and past employment, skills, and business interests. The site also offers avenues for people to engage in conversation around topics of interest, and to get feedback and business expertise from other connections and members.
There are several special features on the site, LinkedIn Answers allows users to ask questions of the LinkedIn community. In December, LinkedIn Polls was rolled out to groups. The LinkedIn application platform provides a connection to WordPress, TypePad, and Tripit, allowing members to post blogs in their profile.
Interest groups are largely employment related, though there’s a wide range of topics centered around professional and career issues. It’s in these groups that lies link–building capabilities. Anyone can set up a group on LinkedIn to generate interaction among professionals. But be aware that there are a lot of Groups on the site, hundreds of thousands of them. If you can build a niche group of influencers and niche professionals, there could be benefits to your business. These people will likely pass on quality content to others in their sphere of influence.
Make your Trinidad and Tobago group stand out from the others by choosing an area that is specific, out-of-the-box, or at least not similar to others in your field. By starting a group, you are that group’s manager and because of the credibility that brings you, you are afforded more control in displaying your links, and hopefully those links will be spread. Socialmediatoday advises using a LinkedIn group 4 ways to draw more people to your site.
- Place your website link in the “about this group” section
- Send a weekly message to the group with a relevant link
- Add your site to the RSS feed in the News Section
- Begin a discussion and include your link.
Drawing attention to your site by getting people to write about you is another means of building up your SEO. Blogs are increasingly seen as trustworthy sources of reviews and opinions, particularly if they are from industry bloggers with a solid reputation. But how do you get someone to highlight you in their blog?
Mashable backs using LinkedIn to identify, and to contact these writers. Rather than going to standard search to find a blogger site, they suggest conducting a search on LinkedIn. While the search will be narrower, this could be a good thing, filtering out less business oriented results. Use keywords to find relevant matches, and target by location. Read their blogs and determine the ones you like.
Once you’ve gotten a list of people that could be helpful, be aware that contacting people you aren’t connected to on LinkedIn can be a challenge, especially if they are not a 2nd degree connection (someone connected to one of your connections.) Since many of them are likely to have a Twitter account, look them up by searching their “Name + Twitter” and try contacting them. Let them know you have read their blogs, and invite them to email you about an idea.
If you can provide a fresh idea, or a great angle for some content they can write about you, they may consider you and your business for a blog post.
Social Media Marketing in Trinidad and Tobago is not always straight-forward and simplistic. It’s not just about creating fans, followers, and connections. It’s about discovering ways to leverage the social channels to improve your visibility and reputation. LinkedIn isn’t as dry as it may seem. While it may not have the customer-focused element, or obvious promotional opportunities as Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter, it can become an effective tool for spreading your offerings through influential people that could have just the connections you want.
Want to know how to better utilize LinkedIn Mobile? Read these tips from Marketing Profs.
Are you using LinkedIn effectively? If you’re interested in a copy of Hub Spot’s eBook “How to Generate Leads Using LinkedIn“ Contact us and we can also help you come up with a strategy for your social media marketing.