Want to get your brand online? What to choose; Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, WordPress, Blogger the list goes on and on. So when new sites pop up (which they, do all the time) it’s hard to know if it’s worth time setting it up, I mean how do you know if your business will actually benefit from a new platform? that was until LinkedIn joined the list.
LinkedIn is a social networking site for companies and professionals, at least that’s the best way I have to explain it. LinkedIn’s mission is to “is to connect the world’s professionals to enable them to be more productive and successful…to help you, your connections, and millions of other professionals meet, exchange ideas, learn, make deals, find opportunities or employees, work, and make decisions in a network of trusted relationships and groups” Sounds pretty good right? LinkedIn has been growing steadily since it was founded in Reid Hoffman’s living room back in 2002.
In the month after the launch (5th May 2003), LinkedIn had already gained 4,500 members. Now, almost 10 years later, LinkedIn has more than 150 million members worldwide. If you’re looking to do some networking, or a background search on future employees or just to find some job opportunities, then you have pretty good odds with LinkedIn. Let’s put this into Irish numbers, we have about 600,000 accounts, and you can bet that that figure will rise, (and significantly) in 2012. In the UK, there are more than 9 million members. So that’s more than 9.5 million contacts available to you or your business at the click of button, not bad right?
Right, so 150+ million potential clients, but what do with your LinkedIn? How can you actually develop your brand through the site? Well its straightforward, once your signed into your account (or the account you want to use to set it up) go to the ‘Companies’ tab on the top of the page and then go the left hand corner and click ‘Add New’. Enter your company information and your good to go. Remember this is public. Anybody who searches for your site can access this so write wisely (but it can be updated at any time you want so no need to stress too much).
Once your company profile is up and running, a company overview and the products or services offered by your business will be available to the public. Great way to get some free advertising! In your company page you can start a topic of conversation, which can help you engage with those who ‘follow’ your company after all social networking is all about engaging! On a company page, as with your own personal profile, LinkedIn will assign you a URL. This can be customised and your name can be added, helping your Google traffic ranking and increasing your online identity. From your company page, you can also get Google analytics which can help you identify your followers’ demographics and help you understand who is engaging with your company, at least in LinkedIn.
Yes, there are a lot of options for getting your brand online these days. But, if it’s a professional network, a place to meet and build relationships with potential clients then LinkedIn is a must for your business. It takes just a few minutes to set up and gives you access to a whole new business world. Can you afford to let this opportunity pass you by?