Social media in general and LinkedIn in particular, are proven effective channels to conduct content marketing and direct marketing as well.
Small business owners, professional individuals and big companies alike are using LinkedIn banners, articles and pages in order to communicate with their followers and fans and at the same time, to attract more people and spread the word about their brands, values, businesses and so on.
What do we know about LinkedIn?
Well, despite what you may think, LinkedIn is one of the main marketing channels when it comes to social media. Yes, it’s LinkedIn, that obscure social media website that it is not Facebook neither Instagram nor Twitter, the social channel people think to be popular yet, they also think that nobody uses it except for professional reasons.
Think about this: LinkedIn is not only popular but it is also very effective for your marketing strategy. How so?
According to a research published by EConsultancy, “LinkedIn is now responsible for a staggering 64% of all visits from social media channels to corporate websites”. “By contrast, Facebook accounts for 17% of such visits, while Twitter is on just 14%”, the study concludes.
Is this relevant? Well, of course, it is. And not only relevant, this information is valuable for all marketers who are trying to make ends meet in this over-the-top competitive market.
We already covered 2 topics from LinkedIn. We talked about how to create LinkedIn Ads that can boost your business and we also took a dive in what are LinkedIn video ads. But this time we will get a little close on how to optimize your LinkedIn profile and how to create LinkedIn banner.
How do you optimize your LinkedIn account for traffic?
We know that social media delivers when it comes to marketing. We have also learned that LinkedIn is a great choice for a marketer and that is able to get you greater results than what other social media websites and platforms are able to deliver.
However, in order to achieve great results, one must adapt to each channel in particular and LinkedIn is no different than any other means of marketing in this perspective. You need to learn how to strategize and how to optimize your profile in order to get relevant traffic to your website.
Let’s take a look at some of the most effective options you have at your disposal:
- Optimize profile
- Join relevant groups
- Create a business page
- Publish consistently
- Republish content
1. Start by optimizing your profile
This step is similar to what you know already if you have dealt in the past with other social media channels. The optimization of the profile is essential on Facebook, on Twitter, Instagram, and for LinkedIn marketing as well.
However, there are some differences between these social channels and this is why is important to adapt to LinkedIn and optimize according to its system and meaning in the first place.
What is LinkedIn?
This is the first question you should ask yourself. Then, ask yourself about how people use this channels and what is its main purpose.
For all we know, LinkedIn is a business platform. It’s a social media channel designed for professionals who share their interests, their skills, their strong points and get connected with peers and companies. It is also a great channel for companies who are searching for professional and skilled people they can hire or work with as third-party contractors.
All these mean that LinkedIn is mainly a business platform. It is a gateway for professional relationships and it works perfectly in that way. At the same time, it can be a perfect channel for content marketing and in order for it to be effective, it needs to be tied up to a professional and well maintained, optimized account.
Here’s what you need:
- A summary. Tell people who you are, what are you doing, what is it that you want to achieve.
- Make it easier for people to contact you. This means that all your contacts should be there, easy to access by anyone who wants to talk to you.
- Be honest about yourself and also, be specific about what you do and what your goals are. Use numbers if possible.
- Check for grammar and other important relevant things that may become issues if not addressed properly. Read your descriptions and your profile several times and proofread the texts before publishing.
Here, you can write down a few things about you – which I am sure you already did – and, as you can see from the above image, you can upload media and link back to some of your websites or external articles.
Your media and links will appear on your profile summary which is one of the first things anyone will notice upon landing on your page.
2. Join some relevant groups
The first thing you need to understand about content marketing is that in order to be successful, you need to give something in return. People will come to you and follow you if you have something of value to share with them.
However, in order to spread your message to the audience that shares some of your interests and as a consequence, who might be interested in your content, you need to be able to reach them.
A great and yet effective way to reach out to your peers is via groups. And yes, LinkedIn has this feature and it works in a similar way Facebook groups work.
Here, you can get access to a massive directory of all LinkedIn groups. Choose the ones that fit your interests and engage in conversations with your peers. Pay attention, however, to how you promote yourself. There are groups that will not allow direct promotion via links.
So, try to promote yourself by asking questions and answering questions of the community. Give them the motive to follow you, to visit your profile and to read your blogs and websites.
Or, you can choose to let LinkedIn discover some relevant groups for you, based on your interests and skills. In most of the cases, it will give you exactly what you need and it will save you the effort of searching the entire list, one by one, by yourself.
TIP: If you have a community to back you up, you can always choose to start your own group and manage it according to your own rules and values.
3. Create a page for your company (business page)
If you are marketing a business or if you are running a business at the same time, creating a dedicated page on LinkedIn is essential. It will allow you to present your company to the world, engage with the community and post relevant info and articles on its behalf.
The following video will teach you the essential steps you need to undertake in order to create the page:
Here’s a list of the top company pages on LinkedIn. You can get inspired by them and learn a thing or two about how to set up your own if you want to be successful.
The above image displays one of the most popular pages and at the same time, one that makes the top of the lists when it comes to being informative and easy to navigate. Besides the information and updates, notice how Hays invested in a proper and clean design as well. And, at the top, the page features a simple yet beautifully design header banner which adds a lot to the overall aspect of the page.
The LinkedIn cover photo may as a consequence prove to be essential for your page design. Fortunately, you don’t need any special designer skills in order to put it together. At least, not in 2018, when there are many options available for marketers and business owners. I am referring of course to the online designing tools that would allow you to create the perfect LinkedIn banner in just a few minutes.
Bannersnack is one of these tools. It gives you the perfect environment for creating your LinkedIn banner in just a few minutes, with minimal effort but with great results. Your banner will look professional, clean, attractive. Moreover, you get access to a series of LinkedIn templates that will more certainly help you get the – sometimes – required inspiration.
Here’s yet another example of a great LinkedIn cover photo that comes from Nike.
The LinkedIn banner is a collage of some of their most popular products. Simple and effective, I’d say. And, finally, another great example from Woolworths.
Their banner is also clean but at the same time in line with their visual identity.
LinkedIn banner size:
Well, if you want to design your page banner by yourself or with a third party app you should know that the recommended resolution was set at 1584 pixels x 396 pixels, and for the profile image at 400 pixels x 400 pixels.
However, if you are going to use Bannersnack for design, there are no worries, the app has already built-in templates for an LinkedIn cover photos.
LinkedIn banner templates:
4. Share info as often as you can
Another secret to your content marketing success on LinkedIn is to be consistent. In this case, as in any other related content marketing cases and strategies, you need to create a working plan. And, this plan requires not only interesting ideas to write about but at the same time, a schedule of consistent posting that will convince people to return to your feed and read it on a regular basis.
According to Buffer, LinkedIn marketing can drive more traffic to B2B websites and blogs than any other social media channel. However, in order to achieve that, you need to be able to write and schedule regular posts.
TIP 1: You can also spend some money, if you have an advertising budget, and choose to spread your word through LinkedIn sponsored posts. They can be quite effective if you are just starting up and you have little or no followers, fans, employees etc. Advertising gives you access to as many people as you want to.
TIP 2: How long should a LinkedIn post be? Well, according to this article, a normal LinkedIn article should not be shorter than 300 words. On average, they go over 1000 words. Therefore, the LinkedIn post size should be as long as you need it to be.
5. Republish content
Do you have an article, a blog post, an Infographic or a guide that performed well on your own website? Do your peers and your readers seem to dig one or some of your posts especially?
Well, you can try to repurpose those pieces of content on social media as well and as we have already seen it, so far, LinkedIn is able to deliver great results in this area.
You do not need to publish the same content over and over again. However, if it seems to be popular, you can choose to rewrite it and adapt it to the present day (update it). Or, you can publish excerpts of some of your best blog posts on LinkedIn and provide the audience with links to the original content.
LinkedIn is one of the few social media channels that are able to deliver great results in terms of marketing but who is most of the times neglected by marketers due to its lower popularity. Sure, it is popular among professionals and businesses but most of its users are considering it as a way of sharing their skills and their online CVs and less as a social media channel for communication and publishing information.
However, we’ve learned that LinkedIn is capable of delivering unexpected results for a marketer, results that sometimes are better than what Facebook, Instagram or Twitter are capable of. And this is why the optimization of the LinkedIn account becomes paramount.
We’ve seen some of the best strategies for a marketer on this platform and why they need to be implemented. What do you think? Are there any other steps you might consider worthy of being mentioned on a similar list? Illustration by Anita Molnar