We’ve heard it before and it has also gradually become our mantra here at Digital Works: Companies can no longer survive without their colleagues’ efforts on LinkedIn – we need our colleagues to play an active role in the sharing of content, employer branding, as well as for sales and relationship management.
Below I review a number of the most important focus areas, as well as how your employees and colleagues can contribute to your company’s success on LinkedIn.
Branding, visibility and awareness
- LinkedIn, with its 380 million users, is an essential place to establish a professional presence. Half of the users have more than 500 connections, so I suppose your colleagues might have some of the “right” connections?
- LinkedIn is perfect for creating visibility by sharing content. Every time you like, share or comment on a post on LinkedIn, the message is shared with your network. It is therefore essential that your colleagues are helping to spread the good stories from the company’s page.
- As your colleagues actively participate on LinkedIn, they also build their personal brand which strengthens both the individual and the company at which they are employed. And confidence in the skills of individuals can have a major impact, especially when selecting suppliers in the B2B market.
- People are on LinkedIn throughout the day – even in the evening and on weekends, when they often browse through their network’s activity – and that is where the battle must be fought as a company. Because people will not visit our website or our LinkedIn page by themselves. We must ensure that our message is placed where the users are.
- 77 % of LinkedIn users are already using the platform to research both individuals and companies – so why not have a professional presence there?
Our colleagues are absolutely essential in shaping how the company is perceived as a potential future workplace. We can, for example, clearly see that when we (or our clients) have job vacancies posted, it increases the number of visitors to the employees’ LinkedIn profiles. That’s because “we want to know who we might be working with.” Most of us would of course prefer working with skilled and competent people, who we can also learn from.
So consider whether you should initiate some of these actions in your company:
- Updating of employee profiles with a focus on visibility of internal competencies (also a relevant factor in relation to future customers and partners)
- Involving colleagues in relation to the spreading of job postings, to make sure that the employees’ networks also become aware that you are seeking people – just think of how many of one’s former fellow students one is often connected with
- Better use of the Company Page to ensure that the company appears as an attractive workplace.
More and more customers, particularly in the B2B market, are now connected with suppliers on LinkedIn. In fact, the number of B2B customers who are connected with suppliers on social media increased by 57 % from 2012 to 2013. But Social Selling is more than just making connections with customers – it also includes, for example, using LinkedIn to:
- Find relevant leads
- Strengthen and maintain relationships
- Preparation before meetings
- Booking of meetings and invitations to seminars
- Ensure continuous visibility to relevant target groups.
According to Forbes, up to 78 % of sales people who make use of Social Selling perform better than those who do not use social media. Those who exploit this potential also have 45 % more “chances” (on average) per quarter and are 51 % more likely to achieve their goals (Source: LinkedIn). So, there is good reason to use LinkedIn in sales.
Why should you “play along”?
There is much to gain as an employee by playing along in the efforts to share the company’s content.
- You ensure continuous visibility – also towards those you are not in regular contact with
- You get wider visibility – if just one person, for example, likes your update, you get visibility throughout their entire network
- It creates credibility – by sharing content, your experience and the like, you can create credibility in your network about your knowledge and skills
- You can expand your network – increased visibility on LinkedIn generally also means more connections.
LinkedIn has also conducted a study that shows that every time an employee shares 6 pieces of content on LinkedIn, the following happens (on average):
- The employee receives 6 profile views
- The employee makes 2 new connections
- The company page gets 3 visits
- The company page gets 1 new follower.
Remember, however, that if you ask your colleagues to contribute to the sharing of the company’s content, it is important to have regular feedback. Remember to share the good stories and emphasize the difference it makes that all employees participate.
Getting started using LinkedIn more actively in your company
When people are reluctant to use LinkedIn actively in their work, it is often due to the lack knowledge of the possibilities. It can be anything from the use of the platform, to the personal settings, or that they do not think their profile radiates professionalism. Consider how you should prepare your colleagues solidly on the new effort. What about, for example:
- Morning meeting or after-work meeting about LinkedIn
- Internal training on profiles and settings
- Training/presentation on the value of an active presence for both individuals and the company
- Internal training on the use of the platform for social selling
- Internal meeting about “how to act on LinkedIn”
- Guidelines and how-to’s on the “professional profile”
- Exchange of experience in the use of LinkedIn.
We have gathered a few articles to help you get started:
- Infographic – Optimize your LinkedIn profile
- 6 LinkedIn tips you might not know
- The CEO’s guide to LinkedIn