What is LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is a business-oriented social networking site which is primarily used for professional networking. LinkedIn is used on a monthly basis by over 21.4 million U.S. visitors and over 47.6 million globally.
LinkedIn and Business
- As of January 2011, LinkedIn counts executives from all 2010 Fortune 500 companies as members; its hiring solutions were used by 69 of the Fortune 100 companies as of December 31, 2010.
- More than one million companies have LinkedIn Company Pages (formerly known as company profiles
- LinkedIn represents a valuable demographic for marketers with an affluent & influential membership
- Thousands of developers are using LinkedIn APIs to create innovative tools and services for professionals –LinkedIn
Well, now all that information is impressive but how can it help you and your business?
Unlike Twitter, Facebook or other popular social networking sites, LinkedIn is for professional networking. LinkedIn has numerous benefits for the Business to Business companies and also has distinct benefits for Business to Consumer companies.
Here are some of the benefits for companies using LinkedIn:
1. Build your Professional Network via the power of Social Media.
Things done via real world networking can be accomplished more quickly and efficiently via an online professional networking environment. LinkedIn establishes the perfect environment for building your network. By using LinkedIn, you can review a supplier‘s, accountant‘s, or lawyer’s recommendations, reviews and experience before making contact with a new connection.
Additionally, Linked provides an opportunity to grow your network. When you visit a potential connections profile, LinkedIn will display the degree(s) of separation between you and the connection. For example, if you were to look at Kevin Bacon’s LinkedIn profile, you would see that your accountant knows Kevin’s attorney and the attorney knows Kevin. Using LinkedIn as a networking tool, you can see your mutual connections with third parties. This can assist you in making an introduction to an important supplier, distributor, strategic partners or future employees.
2. Increase Exposure with a LinkedIn Company Page for Product(s), Service(s) and to Attract Quality Employees
Companies can create a LinkedIn company page which features their company’s products or services. This will increase exposure for your company because there is one more location on the web where potential suppliers, employees, and distributors can find out about your product or service. Additionally, listing your company will vastly improve traffic to your website by allowing you to place a link to your site on your profile or company page.
Finally, on your company’s page your company can post job opportunities. Other LinkedIn members who are seeking employment can search for jobs via LinkedIn and your company will have a better opportunity to fill vacant positions with highly qualified employees. Furthermore, potential employees who are using LinkedIn compared to typical job hunting sites are probably the type of innovative go-getters that a company would rather hire.
3. Increase Credibility and Attract New Business
No matter what the company is, it can always increase its credibility. LinkedIn offers a great opportunity to receive recommendations from past employees, clients, etc. (These reviews are not publicized unless approved by the company.) By requesting recommendations from individuals with whom you have done business, you can increase your credibility with potential business connections. LinkedIn members can also follow companies which keep them up to date with important company information.
By receiving recommendations and having followers on LinkedIn, a company presents a great opportunity to grow their business. Who wouldn’t want to work with a company with numerous positive reviews and followers?
In summary, it is important for a company to be on LinkedIn in order to build a business via the power of professional social networking. A business is about sales but it is also about connections and networking on a professional level. LinkedIn offers numerous opportunities to increase you referral and knowledge base, attract new business, attract quality employees, increase credibility and expose products/services.