For certain types of small businesses (not to mention salespeople, professionals, and executives), LinkedIn is the most powerful and important social media site of them all. It might not have the hundreds of millions of members that Facebook and Twitter do, or get as much publicity, but it does have something the others don’t: a professional focus.
In other words, most of the very biggest potential customers you have – the decision-makers that can make or break your company – are on LinkedIn. Better yet, when they go on LinkedIn, it isn’t to share photos from their children’s birthday parties; it’s because they are looking to do business.
For that reason, it’s important that your LinkedIn profile be complete, and in great shape. Here are the five most important elements you need to pay attention to:
1. Your photo. For a lot of people, this is an afterthought, but it shouldn’t be. Your photo should be one that makes you look happy, professional, and competent. Your LinkedIn profile is no place for a glamour shot you had done at the mall, or a snapshot taken at your brother-in-law’s barbecue.
2. Work history and qualifications. This is where most people start, but they often don’t go far enough. While your LinkedIn profile doesn’t have to be a resume, it should include any significant career highlights and achievements, your educational background, and any awards or honors you’re particularly proud of.
3. LinkedIn professional groups. These are virtual networking groups where you can see what’s happening in your industry, keep tabs on competitors, share ideas with your peers, and even make introductions to new potential customers or clients. Best of all? Participating in LinkedIn groups shouldn’t take you more than 15 minutes a day.
4. Professional recommendations. What do other people say about you, your work, and your business? Pay attention to those answers, because they are more important than anything you say about yourself. The more recommendations you have (especially from high-profile customers and those at well-known companies), the easier it is for potential clients to decide to contact you.
5. Contact information. After you’ve done all of this great work making your LinkedIn profile into a powerful social media marketing machine, make sure your effort isn’t wasted. From phone numbers to e-mails and websites, it should be a cinch for potential customers to reach you.
LinkedIn can be a wonderful tool for making introductions and increasing sales. Are you using it as effectively as you could be?
If you’re looking for a web design social media marketing partner that can help you turn ideas into actual bottom-line results, contact us today to set up a free consultation.