LinkedIn Strategy: 5 Steps to Get Started

LinkedIn Strategy: 5 Steps to Get Started

Should you be using LinkedIn? That depends on what you want to achieve. I’ve been helping a couple of clients to develop a LinkedIn strategy, and in the process, have been creating my own. To date, I’ve spent less time on LinkedIn to focus on Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+. LinkedIn is perfect for professional networking, so I’ll be more active there going forward.

LinkedIn shines in that it’s a network for business connections, rather than a purely social networking site; you won’t find the animated GIFs and cat videos that you find on the other sites.

Let’s look at how you could develop your own LinkedIn strategy.

1. Set Up Your Personal Profile

If you’re new to LinkedIn, here’s a good way to get started if you’re active on Twitter. Larry Kim suggests treating LinkedIn more like Twitter:

“… there was a huge opportunity there to network in more meaningful ways with a far larger group of people than those I’ve already met and connected with.”

Here’s an excellent video on setting up your profile page.

2. Set Up Your Company Page

Once you’ve established your profile, and have made some connections, it’s time to set up your company page. To set up a page, choose Companies from the Interests menu. On the left, you’ll see recent updates to company pages, and on the right, a button to create your own.

LinkedIn has a useful best practices page for company pages.

3. Join Relevant LinkedIn Groups

LinkedIn has thousands of groups you can join, and allows you to join up to 50. If you don’t have time for even one group, let alone 50, consider that:

  • You can contact people directly in groups even if you’re not one of their connections; and
  • Groups help you to be found — if they’re open, you can be found on the Web too, so you might get a search rankings boost.

Groups can be members-only, or open. On an open group, you can share your updates to Twitter and Facebook. “Open” truly means open, because discussions can be viewed by anyone on the Web. This can benefit your search engine rankings.

4. Integrate LinkedIn With Your Marketing Activities

On LinkedIn, your options for marketing include:

  • Your profile page;
  • Your company page;
  • A blog (yes, you can blog on LinkedIn);
  • Groups.

Blogging on LinkedIn is simple. Go to your home feed, and click the pencil icon in the Share an Update field. You can add an image, and format your text as you can in any blog editor.

Tip: your LinkedIn blog is ideal for sharing and repurposing material you’ve posted on your own blog, or elsewhere.

Monitor LinkedIn Regularly

You can stay up to date with LinkedIn via the Pulse app, and can like and share content,  with your connections via LinkedIn Connected.

As with all social media networking you get out of it what you put into it.

So, is LinkedIn for you? If you’re a writer, certainly. the more contacts you have the better, and if you’re an author, ditto. LinkedIn offers many groups for self-publishers, so you can stay up to date with the latest news, and find connections for cover design, editing, and marketing your books.

Get started on LinkedIn, and check it out; you can form connections with past clients, and new ones.

Let’s connect on LinkedIn.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

Get coaching, and build your skills at Angela’s online store.

New: Buffer Takes Charge of Your LinkedIn Updates Now

Buffer now updates LinkedIn
Buffer now updates LinkedIn

Wonderful social media scheduling company Buffer has just announced that you can now add your LinkedIn profile and company pages to the app. This means that you can schedule updates to LinkedIn.

This is wonderful for me, because I tend to ignore LinkedIn in favor of Twitter and Google+.

From the announcement page:

After announcing the addition of being able to post and schedule to Google+ pages a few weeks back, we’re super excited to bring you another one of the most popular feature requests to Buffer this week: Buffer for LinkedIn Company pages.

Schedule your social media updates on YOUR schedule

I love that Buffer not only lets you schedule your updates, you can create any schedule you please, for any social media profile or page on the networks. Want frequent updates? Add more updates to the Buffer schedule tab. Set any schedule you please, for any day of the week.

Not only can you set your own schedules, and have a different schedule for any social media profile and page, Buffer gives you analytics too, so you can do more of what works.

Yes, I know I sound like a total Buffer fangirl. That’s OK. I am – anything that saves me time and energy gets a huge tick from me.

If you’re not using Buffer, and if social media exasperates you because it can be such a time sink, try Buffer. You’ll be glad you did.

, and on Twitter: @angee

Social media marketing: you need to be more than the town crier

I hope that you’re fitting social media marketing into your marketing mix. Don’t be deceived however, and imagine that SMM is ALL you need. It’s not.

You need to be more than the town crier… or even the global village crier. :-)

As Is Your Online Marketing Strategy All Tweet and No Meat? says, you need to:

To Create an Archive With Long-Term SEO Value — If you’re only investing your time and resources in Facebook and Twitter, you’re not building any archive of persistent content. That’s a problem because your persistent content is what shows up in Google’s search results. Blog posts, white papers and videos posted on YourSite.com will get indexed by Google and drive people to become leads and customers for years. Posts on Twitter and Facebook don’t have nearly the same long-term search value.”

Social media marketing is a great adjunct to all the marketing, online, and offline, you’re already doing, but it can’t be the only thing you’re doing, because it’s too ephemeral.

Long-term marketing on the Web: build your visibility

For long-term marketing results, build your visibility. You need pages of stuff — site pages, blog posts, articles — all of which will support your business’s long term growth. Would you believe that I’m still getting sales from Web articles I wrote way back in 2001?

Invest in content, and you’re investing in yourself and your long-term business success.

[tags]social media, marketing, SMM, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn[/tags]