LinkedIn is the world’s leading social media platform for business professionals. It’s growing fast. In 2015, LinkedIn had about 380 million users. That number grew to 900 million users in 2023.
If you’re in business, then LinkedIn is a must for you. In addition to sharing your content, you have the opportunity to connect, learn and grow as a business leader. It has never been this easy for B2B companies to connect.
With so many other social media networks out there and more and more sprouting up each day, deciding where and how to spend your marketing time can be a bit of a challenge. Though it’s considered one of the top social media platforms for business, LinkedIn is often an afterthought for many business owners. When it comes to B2B marketing, LinkedIn is the best place to be. Think about it. It’s a social network full of other business professionals looking to connect. Using LinkedIn to it’s fullest can help your B2B business make meaningful connections that could lead to growth.
So to help you build a better audience online and make more meaningful connections that will actually help your business, we’ve put together this post of 10 easy tips to building a better LinkedIn B2B marketing strategy.
Table of Contents
Building Your Profile
1. Claim your public profile URL
This simple step goes a long way in helping people find your profile. Don’t settle for the URL that was issued to you when you created your page. Creating a public URL will look nice and clean like this: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ryancshelley
You can customize your URL by clicking here and modifying your public profile URL on the right-hand side of the page.
2. Add a Cover Image and Recent Profile Image
Adding a cover image to your profile gives your page personality. It is important to remember that LikedIn is a professional network, so pictures of your cats is probably not a good idea.
You can add a background cover photo to your profile using these steps:
- From your Profile page, click the pencil icon to Edit Profile.
- Then click the pencil icons to either change your avatar image or cover image.
Note: LinkedIn specifies that your cover photo must be a JPG, PNG, or GIF file under 8MG in size and should have a resolution of 1584 x 396 pixels for the best look.
When choosing a profile image, make sure that it is a current and professional picture of yourself. Social media networking works best with authenticity and if the image you are using is outdated it says a lot to the people you are connecting with. If you don’t have access to a professional photographer, you can easily do it yourself using your smart phone. Here is a great article about taking a great profile picture.
3. Optimize your LinkedIn profile for SEO
SEO is important in every aspect of your online marketing. Most people don’t realize that you can actually optimize your social media pages. LinkedIn is a very SEO-friendly site and you can optimize your profile to get found by people searching inside of LinkedIn for keywords you want to get found for. Make sure that you add these important keywords to various sections of your profile such as your headline or in your summary.
4. Show Off Your Work
After all, you did put a ton of effort into it. LinkedIn allows you to add a variety of media such as videos, images, documents, links, and presentations to About section of your profile. This allows for you to show off different projects, provide samples of the work you’ve created, and it better optimizes your LinkedIn profile.
Pro Tip: Use SlideShare to create interactive presentations. Since LinkedIn owns SlideShare, they have integrated the two platforms together. After uploading a presentation, you can simply click the “Add to my Profile” button and it will be added to your LinekdIn profile.
5. Showcase Your Services
Showcasing your services helps your business get found in search. On your Profile page, you’ll see the option to Showcase Services. Click Get Started and you’ll see an overview of the services you can showcase:
Click Continue and then select your services.
After you save your settings you’ll see that your services appear on your profile. This makes it easy for connections and potential clients to see what you offer.
After you create and optimize your profile, it’s time to start building connections and marketing yourself on LinkedIn.
6. Check your Network Updates (or share your own)
What is a Network update? Network Updates are essentially LinkedIn’s version of the Facebook News Feed. Just like with other social media platforms, you should check this feed periodically to get an idea of what your connections are up to and engaging with. You also want to share updates of your own, such as industry-relevant content or content you’ve created yourself.
7. Identify Yourself
By allowing others to see who you are if they view their profile, you will create a better first impression. This is easy to enable.
- Visit your Settings (click your thumbnail image in the top right and click Manage next to Privacy & Settings)
- Click Change next to Edit Your Public Profile and then edit your visibility settings.
8. Check out who’s viewed your LinkedIn profile
With the Who’s Viewed Your Profile feature, you are able to see who has viewed your LinkedIn Profile. On your Profile page, scroll down to Your Dashboard and you’ll see the Who’s Viewed Your Profile tab. What’s really great about this tool is that it shows how you compare against the profile views of your connections, people in your company and even other professionals in your industry. Pretty powerful stuff and LinkedIn gives it to you for free.
When prospecting for inbound this, “who’s viewed your profile” tool, can give you some amazing insight. Maybe someone you’ve wanted to connect with has viewed your profile? This could be that “in” you were hoping for! One important thing to remember. If you didn’t do the step 6 above, this feature is not available to you. So make sure you Identify yourself and reap all of the benefits!
9. Leverage the power of LinkedIn Groups
One of the most powerful aspects of being in LinkedIn Group is that if you’re a member of the same group as another user, you can bypass the need to be a first-degree connection in order to message them.
Now there are a few stipulations to help make sure people don’t abuse this privilege.
- You must be a member of LinkedIn for at least 30 days
- You must be a member of the particular group for at least 4 days
It is also important to note that LinkedIn allows you to send up to 15 free 1 on 1 messages to fellow group members each month. This is across all groups you belong to, not for just one group. Your 15 messages each month excludes any back-and-forth replies that are the result of an original message.
Group members also have the privilege to view the profiles of other members of the same group without being connected. So in essence, if you join more groups you’ll be able to send more messages and view more profiles or prospective connections.
Groups are private and membership must be approved Learn more about LinkedIn’s group membership guidelines.
10. Personalize Connection Requests
People are more likely to accept your invitation to connect if it’s personalized. When you click the “Connect” button, add a friendly note letting them know why you would like to connect. Tell them what you have in common, how you know them or where you met, and the value you bring to the connection.
Bonus Tip: Train Your B2B Sales and Marketing Team for Success
One of the key factors in the success of a B2B marketing strategy is the role of the people behind your company or your brand. For the successful implementation of a B2B marketing strategy using LinkedIn, people should see the credentials of your employees through their LinkedIn profiles.
With the right sales training, your business can also benefit from having highly trained employees because their LinkedIn profile will look more appealing. It would entice more potential B2B clients to do business with you.
Training your sales team for success means honing not only their sales skills but also their overall life skills, such as not easily giving up when a prospect turns down an offer. It gives them a more powerful drive to think of more effective solutions, such as providing customers with more options (e.g., flexible payment terms and lower interest rates for a higher upfront payment or vice versa).
Here are the things that sales training can offer:
- Provide an in-depth understanding of new sales and marketing strategies that work for a B2B business like yours. Also, your employees will get updates on the latest trends when it comes to B2B marketing, and can apply them to your next B2B marketing campaign.
- Assess each of your employee’s strong points and weaknesses when it comes to sales pitches and customer engagement. It would mean increased sales skills and more sales for your business.
- Electronic learning or e-learning allows self-training using web-based educational materials so your salespeople can learn at their own pace without pressure.
- Classroom sales training is group interactive, wherein members can share their experiences. Also, it promotes better collaboration and brainstorming.
- Training your sales team for success means allowing them to unleash and maximize their sales and marketing talents at their optimum level, benefiting your customers and your business.
Whether you work for a fortune 500 company or run your own business, LinkedIn is a great way to make meaningful B2B connections on the internet. By leveraging the power of your profile and adding valuable content to the network, you can grow your audience and influence online.
LinkedIn is also a powerful tool for companies. By optimizing your LinkedIn Company Page, you can drive targeted B2B leads straight to your business. To help make sure yours is set up correctly and optimized for the latest layout, featuring a compelling and high-quality banner image, we’ve published a free guide about how to optimize your LinkedIn Company page.
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published November 2, 2015 and has been updated for accuracy and freshness.