Thursday, January 31, 2013

Are You Using a LinkedIn Company Page?


Have you started your LinkedIn Company Page?  If not, go in and give it a shot.  If you have a personal profile on LinkedIn and list your business as your employer, you may only have to search for the company to 'grab' it.  You will need to show you are an owner or someone connected with the company to start using it.  If it isn't already listed, go to the Companies Home page on LinkedIn and click on Add a Company.  

LinkedIn Company Pages are becoming more popular, although they haven’t caught on quite like Facebook Pages have.  While Facebook Business Pages work well with any product or service that is consumer driven, LinkedIn Pages target professionals and businesses, but they can also target anything a professional would purchase, because business people are consumers too.

An example of a LinkedIn Company Page with all the bells and whistles is Dell Computers.  Their page is constantly being updated, has almost 395,000 followers, lists 43 products and services, has tons of great video and has a full page of career and employee information.  Their page uses graphics, video, and well written content to pull readers and followers into their company.  You can have this same type of site too with just a little work.

A Web Site if You Need One

If your business doesn't have a Web site, it’s possible to use a LinkedIn Page as your Web site.  I'm not suggesting you go without a Web site, but there are still plenty of small businesses that don't have one.  If you are one of those, take a peek at the LinkedIn Pages.  They may be a fit for your business.  It's certainly low cost, free actually, and fairly easy to put up.  

Home

There are several ways you can make a LinkedIn Company Page a home for your business.  There are also a few limitations.  Four tabs line the top of your LinkedIn Company Page and you can’t change them nor can you change the order they are in.  You do have options as to what you put on those pages though and you have enough variety that it would provide plenty of information about your business for someone searching for your type of product or service.  In case you were wondering, yes, Google and the other search engines will find this page.  In fact, they may find it before they find your Web site.

Your new LinkedIn Page has a Home tab where you can post information about size, location, contact information and the story of what you do in the About section.  The other tabs available are Careers, Products/Services and Insights. 

Are You Hiring?

If you have job openings, they can be posted under the Careers Tab.  A warning with this one, though.  You actually have to  pay $195 for 30 days to post the opening on LinkedIn .  So this isn’t quite as nifty as it might initially appear, at least for a small business.  Once you do post a job opening and have a premium careers page, it allows you to showcase your best talent, promote job opportunities, and provide insights into your company culture and hiring practices. Without the premium option, the Careers tab will show a listing of your employees who have profiles on LinkedIn. 

 How Many Products or Services Would You List?

The Products or Services tab is a good one and most small businesses will find this helpful.  Here you can post information, photos or videos, and offers for each of your products and services.  Detailed descriptions about the attributes of the product and/or service entice the reader to click on any link you might include.  Don’t forget to incorporate a special offer or coupon to stimulate purchases. 

Yes, They Have Analytics

The Insights tab is the last section.  The information here will be primarily about employees and viewers of your page.  A visitor to your Insights tab will see any new positions your employees have and list previous employees they may know.  Visitors will also see other companies that were viewed by other visitors. 

For you, the Insight Tab has the page analytics.  This data can only be seen by an administrator of the page.  You learn who is visiting your company page, which areas of your page interest them, and how this data compares against similar companies.

While LinkedIn Company Pages are only about two years old, now is the perfect time for you to start yours.  Start using it to promote your business.

Click here for the Marketing Pathways' Company Page on LinkedIn.

What do you think?  Can a LinkedIn Company Page be used as a Web site?  Do you use one for your business?  Is it as effective as a Facebook Business Page?

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