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The Social Network You're Ignoring - But Shouldn't Be

September 19, 2014

Posted by: Grant Owens

The Social Network You're Ignoring - But Shouldn't Be

We’ve talked before about the importance of Twitter marketing for B2B companies. Thanks to its rapid growth and high profile users, Twitter gets a lot of love from consumers.

But, there’s another social media network that many professionals overlook and shouldn’t.

LinkedIn has been around since 2003, and over the years has gotten little love compared to the sexier consumer-focused social networks. It’s often seen primarily as a platform for job seekers and overhyped resumes.

While there are plenty of opportunities for job seekers, like all good social networks, LinkedIn has taken on a life of its own.

Make Local Connections

When you think of social media, you probably think of making connections around the world. And most platforms are fantastic for meeting customers and partners who may never be in the same city with.

The beauty of LinkedIn, though, is that it’s naturally conducive to connecting with people right in your city. For most B2B companies, these are the people you will actually be doing business with, but because of insane schedules, you may never run into.

Here at DevDigital, we’ve harnessed the power of these connections with our monthly Executive Event. We scoured LinkedIn for members of our community who were C-level or higher at their companies, and reached out to invite them to the party. It was all done through LinkedIn, and millions of dollars of potential business has been done through putting these people all in the same room.

Go Around the Gatekeeper

Many people have a “gatekeeper,” someone who controls their email or phone lines. These gatekeepers can often be harder to get through than the person you actually want to connect with.

LinkedIn circumvents this because you can send the contact a direct invite. After they connect, you can send a brief follow up message that will hopefully get the conversation going.

Of course, you can do the same thing with any social media the contact uses. LinkedIn has special value, though, because many business leaders don’t actually Tweet or get on Facebook very often, and many of those accounts are now managed by VAs or other assistants. For now, at least, LinkedIn still has the potential for truly personal connections.

Use Publishing to Gain Momentum

One of the unique features of LinkedIn is the publishing platform. Originally reserved for “Influencers,” LinkedIn opened up the publishing platform to all users earlier this year.

It can take months or years to build a blog or podcast following. A good headline and relevant content, however, can get you immediate attention on LinkedIn. Once you start a following, it becomes easier to establish your expertise.

Of course, like everything else in business, you want to provide value. The LinkedIn community values excellent content from a personal perspective.

We’ll talk in upcoming posts about how to use LinkedIn to gain traction in your business, but step one is join. If you haven’t already, jump in and see what’s going on over there.

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