LinkedIn Is The Social Media For Small Business Marketing

Linkedin B to B Marketing for Small Businesses

Linkedin B to B Marketing for Small Businesses

Over the past decade, social media has gone from a novelty for college kids to a business necessity. Everyone from Sir Richard Branson, the founder of Virgin Group, to the intern working for one of his companies is on the web promoting using social media

Unlike other social media sites, however, LinkedIn is not a place to share silly pictures of cats. This is social networking in the truest sense of the word. The goal of any social media is to build relationships and the ones built on LinkedIn are purely professional. It's a place to hire or get hired, to find customers, and engage with current clients.

The Value of LinkedIn for Small Business

If a hotel is looking for an architect, where are they more likely to search: Facebook or LinkedIn? LinkedIn has a B2B visitor-to-lead rate four times higher than Twitter and seven times greater than Facebook. LinkedIn is a market for business, so it's much more likely to draw serious customers.

Best of all, those conversions come free of cost. LinkedIn is a way to stay networked with clients and business contacts, but it also functions as free advertising. Someone looking for a home decorator might see that a friend in their network used your service and endorsed you, immediately building trust. Instead of wading through the phone book for a company they know nothing about, potential customers can learn about your business and see who you have in common.

How to be Successful on LinkedIn for Small Business

Inbound marketing is all about generating leads for your business. Your LinkedIn page is an extremely efficient tool in this quest, as shown by the visitor-to-lead conversion rate. Here's a quick guide to showing how a business can use its LinkedIn page for building leads.

Making New Friends. Which is more likely to be effective: walking up to a stranger in a bar, or being introduced by a mutual friend? To get visitors to your page, they have to find out about you somehow, whether it's by you initiating contact or by a mutual friend's recommendation. Tip: Optimize your LinkedIn page with valuable content, so people in your network are more likely to share it. Make use of your extended network to find potential leads who already have something in common with you.

Converting visitors into leads. The first step is to turn the average browser into a lead, or a known contact in your business cycle. You must give a visitor a reason to share their contact information, and this is accomplished by offering content that will be valuable to the visitor. Tip: Give potential leads something in return for their contact information. Promise subscribers email newsletters with information or special deals on products and services.

Nurturing a lead. According to Gleanster, 50% of leads are not ready to buy. Nurturing a lead means maintaining the interest until the lead is ready to buy. Tip: Don't oversell and run leads off. Instead, build trust by offering useful information that will answer any questions they might have. This establishes a relationship of confidence, so a lead doesn't see you as a business trying to "sell" them on something, but as a knowledgeable friend.

LinkedIn for small business is the best social network for developing leads. However, just creating a profile is not all it takes. There are specific ways a business can use LinkedIn to generate the most leads, which require a nuanced understanding of how inbound marketing works