On a recent B2B marketing workshop that we organized in Mombasa, Kenya, an entrepreneur asked me to give a genuine comparison between LinkedIn and Facebook as instruments of driving brand awareness.
Which one did I think was better of the two, he asked.
“LinkedIn is the better social media marketing platform to use for creating B2B brand awareness and content marketing strategies. Not only is it geared toward all businesses and professionals, but also provides the vital marketing strategy that has been used from time immemorial, networking.
LinkedIn is similar to Facebook marketing, but instead of talking about the latest celebrity gone crazy, the content in LinkedIn discusses the dangerous importance society places on celebrity idols. LinkedIn gives brands and businesses more marketing and networking opportunities than any other social media outlets.
I would honestly advice any online entrepreneur who is considering to implement a B2B Social Media Marketing Strategy, to give LinkedIn brand awareness tools first priority.” That was my answer in so many words.
There are 3 main features on LinkedIn that will help you build brand awareness and play a crucial role with your content marketing strategies. These include company pages, profiles, and groups.
Starting a company page on LinkedIn is the best way to get your brand out on the market. A company page allows you to share job opportunities about your company and talk about the behind the scenes operations going on. Talking about your company on the page will allow other businesses to see what goes on behind the B2C marketing and trust your brand more. It also gives potential employees interest and knowledge about your company.
Your LinkedIn Company Page is the perfect place to post self-centered information on the company, such as product releases and press releases, which should not be on your content marketing company blog. Users can follow your page to get updates on the company, and any employees on the website will automatically follow the content.
Your company employees should be on LinkedIn but this alone will not ensure success with your B2B marketing. Encourage them to make their pages professional in a way that positively reflects the company.
The employees are one of the most important factors in the image of a brand and they will help raise awareness of it thanks to the vast networking capabilities of the website. Make sure all employees are linked to the company page correctly so the correct name and logo appear on their profile.
Groups is a section of LinkedIn that acts like a discussion forum on the internet. Yet groups are not informal and full of attacks like internet forums are. Instead, they are similar to breakout session at a conference.
Unfortunately, company pages cannot join LinkedIn Groups. This however does not mean you should not tap into this awesome marketing feature. If you are serious about using LinkedIn to create brand awareness, owners and managers need to set up their own profile in order to participate in LinkedIn Groups.
Once you have a personal profile set up, find groups that relate to your business. For example, if you sell clothes on a retail website, join groups about retail marketing or eCommerce schemes. There will be hundreds of groups to choose from, so join groups with more members and posts each month.
By using the above 3 features, you can rest assured that your brand is causing ripples in all the right places and that you are using LinkedIn effectively to create your B2B brand awareness.
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Take Away Tips
- When you are creating your company page, LinkedIn will use your company name in the URL. If your company name is long, it is harder to link to your page. Abbreviate your company name at first in order to make a manageable URL, then edit your company name after initial set up.
- Add aesthetic graphics to your company page, including your logo and a great cover image that accurately represents your business.
- Don’t worry about crafting the perfect description of the company. The About section will be pushed to the bottom of the page once you start adding content.
- When in groups, follow users who positively contribute to the discussion and like their posts. This is a great way to increase brand awareness.
- Do not post too often in groups at first. Instead, participate in discussion without talking about yourself twice a week for about a month. Once you have established yourself on groups, start your own discussion and share relevant links or your company’s blog posts.
- Invite customers to join a group you participate in if it is relevant to them.
- Create your own group once you have many customers and partners on LinkedIn. Make sure you have enough connections to make the group active in discussion, or else it looks bad for your brand. Hire a community manager to keep the discussion moving long term.