You may or may not already be using LinkedIn. But even if you are, if you are with a smaller organization, chances are good that you don’t have a Company Page set up. If you market to professional business people, are in HR, are in sales, or market to other businesses, you need to get going!
Here are four tips you can implement fairly quickly.
Create Your Page
Believe it or not, the initial creation of your Company Page is a fairly quick process, and can be done in about three minutes, as long as you meet the following qualifications:
- Your company can’t already have one
- Your company must be listed in your experience section
- You have to be a current employee
- You must have a company email address
- The domain name of your email has to be unique to your company
- Profile strength must be minimum of Intermediate
- You must have “several” connections, though LinkedIn doesn’t specify what that means.
Make sure you have access to an image file of your company’s logo.
Once you’ve created your Company Page, make sure that on your personal profile, the listing related to your Company Page actually links to your company page. This will help more people find it.
If it doesn’t link to your page by default, you may have to delete your current position and re-add it.
Also, make sure your Company Page has a featured Image as well. LinkedIn simply refers to this as an image, although other social networks refer to it as a Cover Image or Cover Photo.
Note: The Services/Products is no longer offered by LinkedIn, so feel free to skip down to the “Share Your Link” section below.
Once you’ve set up your Company Page, make sure you add products or services as well. These are the way LinkedIn provides to showcase the best of what you offer. For each product or service, you can include the following: Whether it’s a Product or Service Category Name Image Description Key features (or really any bulleted list, up to 10 items) Product URL (page on your website about it) Contacts from your company related to it Relevant YouTube Video A couple other minor things You also have the ability to make variations of your Products & Services section, and target specific audiences with different versions. This can be very powerful, but I wouldn’t recommend worrying about it the first time around. You can also upload up to three Cover Images that are linkable. If you’re just starting out, I would limit yourself to just one. Make it about the product or service you really want to highlight, and link it to the appropriate page on your website. If you already have write-ups and photos of your products and services on your website, this one is fairly quick to set up.
Share Your Link
Now that your page is set up, it’s time to share the link!
First, you may not like how long the URL to your page is. If that’s the case, just visit bitly.com, enter in your LinkedIn Company Page URL, and it will give you a shortened version that still has an official looking URL. For example, the T&S LinkedIn page shortened to http://linkd.in/1ciegg7
While not extremely readable, it is a lot shorter.
Once you’ve got your link set up how you want it, share it! Include it on your website, in your email newsletter, and in any other place that will let you. Most other social media websites will let you list the link in one way or another.
Ask For Followers
Now that you’ve got everything set up, and the link is out there, you need to get some people liking your page. While I do recommend posting updates on there before you really work on building your audience, there’s something to be said for getting a few initial followers so your page doesn’t look pitiful.
Personally, these are the steps I take when asking someone to follow T&S on LinkedIn. You can do this with connections you already have, but when you add a new connection is also a perfect time.
First, If they’re responsible for marketing their organization on LinkedIn, find out if they have a Company Page and follow them there. If not, you can also first recommend or endorse them on LinkedIn, but only if you’re comfortable with doing so.
Next, send them a short message through LinkedIn asking if they’ll follow your Company Page. Include a link to the page in your message. Make sure they know that it’s perfectly okay if they don’t follow it.
Don’t mention in the message that you just followed, endorsed, or recommended them. It comes off as sleazy if you do so! You should have done so to help grease the wheels, but without any firm expectation that they do so as well.
Of course, you have to actually have connections before you can even do this. So if you’re starting out with less connections than you’d like, there are a few things you can do.
- Go through that stack of business cards you have lying around and look people up to connect with them.
- Connect to your email provider and/or import your address book.
- Use LinkedIn’s suggestions.
Remember, not everyone has the same connection philosophy. Some will connect with you whether they know you or not. On the other extreme, some will only connect with people they feel like they can recommend. Don’t assume others share your connection philosophy!
If you haven’t been utilizing LinkedIn for your organization, carve out an hour or two to get started. And if you need some help, contact us to see if T&S might be a good fit for you. We can set up your page for you, manage it on an ongoing basis, or just provide training.