LinkedIn & B2B; Love at first sight
LinkedIn has lately seen its use not only skyrocket – it currently has more than 774 million users in 200 countries and growing – but how it is used is also evolving. It continues to be a great tool for job searches, but now the world’s largest professional social network is emerging as an ideal option for all those B2B companies.
We talk about B2B marketing or sales when a company sells its products or services to other companies, excluding the end consumer, which is known as B2C. So it is logical to think that LinkedIn has become the favourite place for companies or professional B2B marketing profiles to get leads or quality sales.
Remember that a strong personal brand is associated with an equally strong brand. We are like that, we associate people with brands, that’s why when we are asked, we rarely go to buy fruit at the Virgen del Rocio fruit shop, we go to Ana María’s fruit shop.
So before you start dressing up your company so it looks as nice as you imagine it, take a look at yourself and make yourself look good by following these simple steps.
Make the most of LinkedIn at user level
1.Leave nothing to chance. All the information you put is not enough. And remember look before you leap. The strategy must be hidden behind every word. Optimise the SEO of your profile, use keywords so that those who search for you find you faster. The “skills” section is ideal for showcasing your best skills.
Sell yourself as only you and your parents know how. In your elevator pitch, you have 2,000 characters to give free rein to your self-promotion. But remember to be brief, interesting and say something, not just empty words.
Something like what you do, how you make your clients’ lives easier and why you are the one to do it. By the way, if in addition to your flattering words you get a recommendation from a work colleague, that would be great.
Don’t forget your profile picture and a professional background banner that you can identify with but that is related to your work. Don’t put a picture of your sister’s wedding in a garden with a huge lake in the background. Beautiful, but you sell office equipment, focus.
2.Participatory and proactive. In addition to creating your own content, it helps a lot to interact with potential clients or colleagues as you have common topics and interests. But don’t just “recommend”. Show your interest by commenting and justifying your opinion.
You can be part of the other side, publish content that you know will start a conversation, ignite the flame of debate. This way you can attract not only first-degree contacts, but also second and third-degree contacts, thus widening your field of action.
3.Quality before quantity. To achieve a good and efficient network of contacts, you must be clear about who you want to address. If you want to generate engagement, you must have an action plan with structured messages adapted to each person.
The network of contacts must be professional and of high quality. LinkedIn knows this and is constantly suggesting people to whom you can send an invitation. Don’t add for the sake of adding or connecting for the sake of connecting, focus on your company’s target audience, especially if your objective is B2B.
Don’t lose sight of the groups. There you can network, make your product or service known or interact with colleagues in the same field of work. We are talking about quality interaction, with interesting content.
4.Evaluate. To check whether you are achieving the objectives you have set yourself, you can use LinkedIn’s Social Selling Index.
How to use LinkedIn B2B
Once you have created your company page, you need to optimise it. Give as much information as possible with SEO in mind. As you have done with your personal page. Talk about the company’s values, vision, mission and products or services. Add a button on your profile, a personalised Call To Action, to visit the website, contact you or get more information.
Hashtags also serve a good purpose as they will help make your profile more searchable. Use the most appropriate ones for your business and if they are popular, all the better.
Cover images should be sharp, without many elements and of a suitable size, i.e. 1128 x 191 pixels.
Once you have it ready, start promoting it to your customers, employees and contacts. This will gradually build up a network of professional contacts who may become potential customers or suppliers.
In order to reach your objectives, you must first have them well defined. That goes without saying. Once you are clear, LinkedIn offers a wide range of tools to help you get seen and heard.
LinkedIn in B2B marketing
In order to promote your company using B2B marketing, you first need to know B2B marketing in depth. The main key is not to forget who you are. The corporate identity of the company is one of the keys to B2B marketing.
It is necessary to transmit the values of the company and its philosophy. Hold events and spread quality content through different media.
Reinforce your online presence by creating a website with a blog with quality content, inbound marketing and SEO and SEM campaigns. And don’t forget the sometimes mistreated email marketing. It is very effective as long as you segment your campaigns to the right audience.
If they find us, we want them to find us as good, or better, than unfounded expectations. Once we have a solid foundation, then you can start shouting your company name from the rooftops in the hope of hordes of customers wanting to know more about you.
LinkedIn advertising campaigns are a very good strategy to get business opportunities or brand awareness. The five types of B2B ads that we find are;
–Sponsored Content ads are the advertising format that is integrated into the timeline of users who enter the selected audience.
–Sponsored InMail allows us to send segmented messages to our target of interest as long as they are active on the network.
–Text Ads are quicker and easier to create. They are displayed on the right side or at the top of the feed. Use CPC or CPM bidding (click here if you are unsure of the meaning of these acronyms) to control spend as you prefer.
–Dynamic Ads appear on the right-hand side and are the most eye-catching for their creativity as they are automatically personalised with each user’s profile information.
–Display Programmatic Ads allows you to plan your ads on LinkedIn through the programmatic advertising platform you usually use.
LinkedIn as a B2B (commercial) weapon
Since 2020, and as LinkedIn itself announces, the American company has a share of more than 80% in lead generation and has positioned itself as one of the preferred social networks for B2B. Marketing and sales experts have been able to take advantage of these circumstances to create contacts, increase leads, build relationships and sell.
One of the main reasons for this is that as a business network, you will mainly find contacts from colleagues in the business sector and from many other companies. Therefore, it becomes the best showcase to display your company profile to the most effective customers to make sales.
This is where decision-makers and executives meet. Whether it’s to spy a little, or to sound out the market. They are looking for valuable and interesting content to read. They are authoritative and highly capable of making important decisions. So imagine the great opportunity to deal directly with who you’re interested in, without any hindrances or middlemen or assistants.
Data collected by Hubspot, a developer and marketer of software products, marketing, sales and customer service tools for businesses, reveals that LinkedIn is the social network most used by managers and executives of Fortune 500 companies.
By the way, the Fortune 500 is a list published annually by Fortune magazine that presents the 500 largest U.S. companies open to any investor based on sales volume.
Again quoting Hubspot, they found that LinkedIn is responsible for more than 50% of social traffic on B2B websites and blogs. Not only that, and here comes the most devastating data, LinkedIn is 277% more effective at generating leads than Facebook and Twitter. 92% of B2B marketers surveyed use LinkedIn.
Some of the direct benefits of your company’s use of LinkedIn are, first and foremost, increased visibility and online positioning. By being seen by more people, more potential customers will visit you and that increased traffic will be quality traffic. Other companies will be able to find you easily through LinkedIn’s own search engine.
If you carry out the segmentation properly, only real potential customers will contact you and this will position you as a leader in your sector in LinkedIn’s algorithm (Thought Leadership). We can also take advantage of the showcase that the social network offers us through the Showcase Pages.