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Published March 14th 2014

Which Social Network Should I Target? All About LinkedIn

This is part three of our series; Which Social Network Should I Target? You can find the previous two parts here for Twitter and Facebook

The focus today is on LinkedIn. Launched in 2003, the professional network now has 277 million users worldwide. We’ve asked several industry experts for their advice on when the network is suitable, top tips for targeting content to LinkedIn and on common mistakes they see. This should help you decide if LinkedIn is the best network to focus your efforts on.

6 Expert Opinions on the Value of LinkedIn

Jennifer Lashua - Intel

When is LinkedIn suitable?

LinkedIn is the de facto professional network and it’s not just about jobs anymore. There’s approximately 6x more content than job posts so it’s certainly not a forum to be ignored.

It’s an ideal platform for establishing your company as a thought leader in the industry. Share content that educates and makes people look smarter and you’ll do well, providing your target market is there to listen and interact.

What’s your top tip for targeting content to LinkedIn? 

Conversations will typically be much more intellectual than on other networks so it’s critical you keep a professional tone, avoiding slang and emoticons. Keeping content informative rather than sales-y is always the better strategy.

Any further advice for being effective on LinkedIn?

There’s many advertising opportunities available through LinkedIn’s own ad platform. You’ll find it’s much more sophisticated than Facebook’s, allowing you to target very specific groups of users by location, age, job title and much more.

Omar Johnson – Rosso Rosso

When is LinkedIn suitable?

LinkedIn is a great platform for b2b marketing, there’s a wealth of professionals on the network and the powerful advance search function is possibly it’s greatest hidden gem as you can gain access and communicate with decision makers in your target organization.

What common mistakes do you see?

The most common mistakes I see is incomplete profiles and people treating it as an online CV service, you will only get results if you put the work in and understand you audience/sector and it’s used for them.

What’s your top tip for targeting content to LinkedIn? 

Connect with your peers and analyze what they are doing successful for their audience, give your own original insights on content that reflects you company/brand.

Which brands do a good job on LinkedIn?

FedEx and Hubspot do a really good on LinkedIn, their pages are regularly updated and they have really good engagement.

Eve Mayer - Social Media Delivered

When is LinkedIn suitable?

LinkedIn is the largest professional social network and has a network with a higher density of high income professionals than most others. You should use it if your company is recruiting as most other companies do. For more advanced companies, you should explore using LinkedIn as a prospecting tool for B2B organizations especially.

What’s your top tip for targeting content to LinkedIn? 

For LinkedIn company profiles, the company should fill out completely and post compelling content once per weekday. You can follow the Social Media Business Equation, which includes 20% inform, 20% entertain, 40% interact and 20% conversion to business goal. More about this is in my book; “The Social Media Business Equation” by Eve Mayer.

Dennis Yu – BlitzMetrics

When is LinkedIn suitable?

LinkedIn is best when you have a senior executive crowd or sparse B2B market. Using a combination of groups and company pages, you can drive significant traffic. LMS (LinkedIn Marketing Solutions) is following in Facebook’s footsteps, so you can expect more enhancements to their news feed ads (called sponsored updates), custom audiences, and retargeting.

What’s your top tip for targeting content to LinkedIn? 

Just be careful to keep your post frequency at least 3 times a week and to have a more serious tone than what you say on Facebook. The CPMs are often over $120, which is 10 times that on Facebook. So make sure your targets are narrow. Run sponsored updates, not traditional ads.

Mandy Edwards – ME Marketing Services

When is LinkedIn suitable?

LinkedIn is a network that is popular with business professionals. The ones using this are ones who are looking to network with peers, those searching for jobs or those who own B2B businesses.

What common mistakes do you see?

Make sure you have a professional profile picture. I once received a connection request from someone in a wife-beater tank top. Also, fill out your profile to 100%. The more information you give, the more likely you are to be connected with.

What’s your top tip for targeting content to LinkedIn? 

Since this is a professional-heavy platform, create content that resonates with them – leadership topics, personal development, etc. Another tip would be to personalize your connection request message – do not use the standard message. Use the space to tell them who you are why you want to connect.

Phaedra Stockstill - South Louisiana eConsulting

When is LinkedIn suitable, should I focus on it?

Although we have entered the scary age of big data, determining which social media channel provides a good opportunity for your brand is still pretty simplistic. You should start by asking questions like:

  • Is your audience there?
  • Are they engaging and actually participating in that channel?
  • Will you be able to devote the time needed to develop this social channel?

For example, if you’re targeting CMOs of Fortune 500 companies, then chances are they’re not spending much time on Instagram. Head over to LinkedIn though and you’ll find thousands of them. It all depends on your audience.

What’s your top tip for targeting content to LinkedIn? 

It’s also important to keep in mind that what works well on Facebook and Instagram won’t necessarily work well on LinkedIn. Cute cat photos aren’t going to go down so well! Your goal should be to establish yourself as a thought leader, so you need professional content that’s relevant to your community.

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