What is LinkedIn?
LinkedIn began as a sort of online Rolodex, but has expanded to become a full business-oriented social site. From connecting with past and present colleagues to keeping up with the latest business news, LinkedIn is the place to be. Groups allow users to connect by industry, location or interest, and users can follow specific company pages for updates.
The company has updated its user interface and features to mimic some of the other social media sites, like Facebook, giving users the ability to “like” and “share” content. You can also interact with the site either as an individual or as a business, giving companies the flexibility to maintain a presence for their brand that is separate from the individuals working at the company.
Who is the audience?
LinkedIn attracts professional adults, and 79 percent of users are age 35 or older. The site’s 277 million users span 200 countries and territories, and the site is available in 20 languages. The United States (93 million users), India (24 million), Brazil (16 million) and the United Kingdom (15 million) lead the pack in terms of number of LinkedIn users. College graduates, people with higher incomes and people who are employed are more likely to use LinkedIn.
Why do I need it?
Nearly 60 percent of B2B referral traffic comes from three social media sites: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Three million companies have LinkedIn company profiles, and executives from all 2013 Fortune 500 companies use the platform.
LinkedIn allows you to have a personal profile, and company page and secondary company pages called Showcase pages. Think of the personal profile like an online resume, only much more robust and interactive. Think of the company page like another business website. And think of the Showcase pages as campaign-specific or brand-specific landing pages that allow you to run content around a specific topic.
What to post?
LinkedIn is the place to show off your business social media expert. Share industry news and the latest trends, in addition to sharing your company blog posts and job openings. It’s by far the best site for B2B connection, so consider how your company can link up with other businesses, commercial clients and professional referral sources. Posts with images and Web links do better than plain text. LinkedIn also allows you to sponsor posts (pay to promote them to a larger audience), and you can target social media marketing for your recipients by location, industry, company size, even job title and age.