LinkedIn, the most B2B-centric of all social media channels and the largest professional network, boasts over 433 million users and a geographical reach of over 200 countries. As an accounting firm, you have an opportunity to directly connect with your target market by leveraging LinkedIn’s extensive network of professionals through your LinkedIn Company Page. You’ll also be able to engage with other businesses in your field, increase company awareness, drive traffic to your Website, collect new leads and establish quality relationships with your audience.
Since approximately 45% of LinkedIn readers are in the upper ranks of their industries, including managers, VPs, and c-level executives, LinkedIn is a great place to find your next B2B customer.
So how do you get started?
Set Up a Company Page on LinkedIn
Your company page is where you’ll be connecting with your audience, so make sure it’s a good representation of your company.
- Create a LinkedIn Company Page that includes a logo, cover photo, business description and company details. Be sure that your cover photo is visually appealing and that your company profile is about who you are as a company and with whom you want to build relationships.
- Consider adding a Showcase Page, extensions of your LinkedIn Company Page, to segment content or spotlight a particular service or product that you offer. Showcase Pages are a standalone feature and have their own followers and status updates.
- Encourage employees to have a professional presence on LinkedIn and to connect with your Company Page. Employees are your biggest brand advocates and their support helps to increase brand trust while expanding your firm’s online presence.
Plan Your Content Strategy for Company Updates
- Company updates are where you’ll be distributing important content to your target audience. In order to successfully produce content on LinkedIn, you’ll need a game plan and a platform to post your content. Work with key team members to develop a strategy for what types of content you want to create. Start utilizing your firm's blog to post content that you’ll be sharing on LinkedIn (and other social channels).
- Next, plot your content in advance by creating a global content calendar. Your content calendar will become a hub for organizing topics, campaigns and timing content distribution. Start thinking about topics that will appeal to your target market.
Create Compelling Content Designed for Your Target Audience
Now that you have your LinkedIn Company Page built, a platform to host your content, a basic content strategy, and a content calendar, take the topics you came up with and start sketching out the content that you’ll be sharing on your Company Page.
- Think thought leadership! Your content should position your firm as a trusted partner in the community. Provide value to your audience by creating content that is informative, inspiring, educating or entertaining.
- For those of you who want to pitch your company’s services or products on LinkedIn – be cautious! While LinkedIn is becoming more sales friendly, most professionals don’t want to read about your latest promotions. Save that for LinkedIn ads or if you’re dead-set on selling your services on LinkedIn, consider Social Selling to increase sales without being overly aggressive and losing followers.
Learn to Engage with Your Audience
Once your content is created, scheduled, posted on your blog and then shared on your LinkedIn Company Page, start thinking of ways to encourage your audience to engage with your content. This can be accomplished by creating a Call to Action (CTA) in your blog article that encourages engagement or by participating in conversations, responding to comments or asking thought-provoking questions on your Company Page.
Now Increase Visibility
Wondering if anyone is seeing your content? Now that you’re comfortable distributing content on your Company Page, it’s time to start considering how to increase your visibility.
- Increase your visibility on LinkedIn by posting company updates during LinkedIn’s busiest hours. Typically, the busiest hours for LinkedIn are Tuesdays through Thursdays in the early morning to about mid-afternoon hours. Keep in mind that every business is different, so experiment with posting your content at certain times and then measuring engagement to find the times that work best for your firm.
- Be consistent by posting regularly. Aim to post content at least once a day, but if that’s not possible be sure to post at least once a week.
- Incorporate SlideShare into your overall strategy to showcase your company’s thought-leadership presentations.
- Become active in your industry’s LinkedIn groups. Encourage key team members to start engaging in conversations by answering questions, sharing ideas and creating new topics with industry leaders and colleagues. Not only does team participation showcase thought leaders within your company, but it also builds credibility and brings awareness to your firm.
- If you have the budget, look into LinkedIn ads to sponsor updates or run campaigns for even more reach.
Always Monitor, Measure, and Optimize
Like any campaign or initiative, it’s important to measure the performance of your work. Knowing what types of content performed the best will not only give insight into your target market but will save your team extra time when creating the next content campaign.
- It takes some time to hone in on what’s successful and what needs to be tweaked within your content campaigns. Experiment with different messaging and different types of content that resonates the most with your firm’s particular audience (e.g. firm news, industry insights or informative information).
- Dive into your Company Page’s Analytics Tab and continually monitor your metrics. Measure what types of content are most engaging and decide where you need to refine your strategy.
Establishing your firm’s presence on LinkedIn is easy, but successfully providing value and communicating with your target market takes work.
- Encourage firm stakeholders to become involved on LinkedIn.
- Pay attention to the details, especially when writing your company profile description and choosing an engaging cover photo.
- Take the time you need to properly build out your content strategy by utilizing your content calendar.
- Create content that is informative, inspiring, educating or entertaining and provides value to your audience.
- Be consistently active and engaged with your audience and involved in industry group conversations.