This week, we continue our exploration of LinkedIn as a social media and content marketing platform for small businesses, contractors, nonprofits, private practices, Main Street and online storefronts, and all the little people who don’t staff an entire floor of HQ with marketing analysts. But we turn our attention to the LinkedIn Company Page now.
We’re the do-it-yourselfers of the business world. Usually, we’re the Chief Cooks and Bottle Washers of the Biz.
Sometimes, it’s as if all the staff and line functions fall to us. Ye gods and little fishes, we’re busy!
Brass Tacks: What to Do with Your LinkedIn Company Page
First, Consider and Decide Whether You Can and Should Keep One.
Depending on the voodoo that you do and where your market lives and works, online and off, you may not need a LinkedIn Company Page.
If you serve wealthy retirees, who don’t maintain a LinkedIn presence of their own, maybe you don’t need to bother. But, if they’re using LinkedIn to get their morning news before they hit the links, maybe you need to be there.
I recommend, at the least, setting up a LinkedIn Company Page and committing to add new content to it once a month. We’ll talk about what types of content should be your focus in a bit.
It’s like getting a puppy. You have to be able to feed it and dedicate yourself, or someone on your staff, to its care.
Set Up Your LinkedIn Page and Make It Purty.
LinkedIn’s got an easy-enough-to-follow instruction set.
Before you start, it might help to have all your materials rounded up and ready to go:
- Company description: You’re granted 250 to 2000 text characters (tc) to say what you need to say. Tc includes spaces. I use lettercount.com to edit my tweets, which are limited to 140 tc.
- Company website address: Also, this is one of main reasons why you should go ahead and set up the Company Page. Incoming Link Juice from a major property like LinkedIn. Every little bit helps, y’ know?
- Company logo and pretty background imagery: I’m including a screenshot from LinkedIn themselves. Click on it to get to the referred page. Apparently, four months ago they were playing with logo changes. Friends, I did a little digging on our behalf to track that down. But, it looks to be just another bunny trail, and like Sweet Brown herself said, “Ain’t nobody got time for that.”
- First post: Absolutely, your first post can be “Hello World!” Or, something welcoming your network to your new Company Page and how happy you are to see them there, tra la la. Think of yourself as the hostess with the most-est, and you’re greeting people at the door.
Do’s and Don’ts with Your Small Business LinkedIn Company Page
Do get “your people” connected with your page.
Don’t have employees?
Have employees, but they don’t have LinkedIn profiles of their own?
Incentivize them as well as your subcontractors, past and present, to formally claim their relationship with your company. The more people associated with the page, the larger its center of mass, so to speak.
Presumably, that plays into some algorithm somewhere that determines which content sees the light of day. You know, from a feed inside a mobile screen while your company follower or two wait in line at the taco truck.
Likewise, encourage friends and family to follow the page.
Your Company Page has its own URL website address. Copy that from the browser bar and paste that bad boy into a post from your personal LinkedIn profile. Again, your the host welcoming friends and family, taking their coats, pointing them to the kitchen.
Do the same across both your personal and professional social presences. That is, share your LinkedIn Company Page on your Facebook Page and your personal Facebook profile. Rinse and repeat with Twitter, email database, email signature file, website footer, etc.
Don’t forget all of your printed marketing collateral: mailers, door hangers, table toppers, business cards, loyalty punchcards, product packaging, etc.
Don’t use your LinkedIn Company Page only for job postings.
For the love of all things holy, don’t broadcast promotions and other spam!
It’s not about you. It’s not about your company. It’s about your field, your followers, and establishing your reliability as a trusted resource for whatever it is you do.
Let your self-referential posts be no more than 10-15% of your content mix.
Do use your Company Page as an “information hub.”
That’s how LinkedIn refers to it.
While that’s enough for an opener, I agree with Econsultancy–raise the stakes. I’d like to highlight a few of their points, leaving the rest as an exercise for you, dear reader.
Do share news and thinkpieces from your field.
Let your LinkedIn Company Page grow into a place where followers meet each other and discuss business happenings and related professional matters. Just like they would do at an after-work cocktail party you host at your offices.
It’s okay to share about your processes and people.
This doesn’t count in your 10-15% of Company Back-Patting.
Example: You’re a small pottery studio in a mountain town with a thriving walk-in business during the winter season when the snow bunnies are in. You need to stopgap and build that trade into the summer months.
So you set up a Company Page. Some of your best posts will be quick videos (30-90 seconds) of wheel throwing, glazing, or kiln firing.
Other successful posts for you might be DIY, how-to articles from other companies’ sites, even maybe content generated by your competitors.
A rising tide raises all boats. Be part of the tide coming in, kid.
Example: You’re an electrical contractor in a mid-market city. Here are some things you can post that don’t count toward your 10-15% of gratuitous self-aggrandizing:
- Work anniversaries
- Employee awards
- Introductions of new hires
- Interviews with the founder or business manager about how to get started in the field, how to get through lean times, how to diversify, what new tech means on the job site today, insights into the future of the business.
- Blog posts from your site on all of the above.
- Bonus points for guest blog posts to your site from local influencers.
- Even more points for sharing similar content from shops like yours who aren’t competitors thanks to geography.
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