In a recent study of 5,000 B2B and B2C businesses, HubSpot found that LinkedIn was 277% more effective for lead generation than Facebook and Twitter, with a whopping conversion rate of 2.74%.
And yet, many businesses ignore LinkedIn as an option at all.
This under-utilized tool is offering businesses the opportunity to generate real results, but many organizations aren’t using the network to its full potential.
The following are five tools within the LinkedIn community that businesses aren’t using to their full advantage.
Follow these tips to start squeezing more marketing juice out of this major social network!
1. Products & Services Tab
LinkedIn’s Products and Services tab is a feature of LinkedIn’s Company Pages. This tool allows a business to naturally feature a business’ products and services. Within the tab are multiple opportunities to link directly to internal pages on your website, such as product pages or demo landing pages. You can encourage viewers to recommend your products and leave testimonials.
Get Started: Activate your Products & Services tab and add five different products. Once you add five, further customization opportunities become open to you, including the opportunity to feature a specific product. Consider driving traffic to that page from other social networks by posting about it (with a link, of course). Why not encourage your customers to recommend one of your products in your post!
2. Products & Services Target Audience Variations
Another component of the Products & Services tab (and the most unique feature not available in any other social network) is the ability to create variations of this page to target specific personas. For example, you can define a persona based on LinkedIn profile information, and then create a variation of your Products & Services page that is designed to resonate well with that specific persona. Using this tool, you can display the information and products that are most relevant to your viewers, and thereby increase likelihood of a click-through to your website.
Get Started: Create two personas based on two of your main target audiences, and create custom Products & Services pages that would be relevant for those personas. Monitor your results with custom tracking tokens.
3. Status Updates
Status updates are a very familiar social tool for marketers, since we post them all the time on Facebook and Twitter. An update is a post that generally includes a link and a photo, and is a great way to drive traffic to your website. Unfortunately, many marketers are not yet investing time into using status updates on LinkedIn, even though the opportunity to do so is a major contributor to the strength that this channel can provide to your marketing.
Get Started: Start posting status updates more regularly, and measure the effectiveness of this tool for driving traffic and leads to your website. Not sure what to post? Consider using the questions your leads and customers ask on a regular basis as fodder for your updates.
4. Company Page Statistics
Data, data, everywhere! Are you looking at your LinkedIn data? As you use your company page more and more, you should be measuring engagement, as well as tracking who is visiting your page. This data will help you determine whether or not you’re properly attracting the best audience for your business.
Get Started: Visit your company page statistics and take a look at how many people visit your page month-to-month, the job roles and industries of your visitors, and what tabs within your company page they view. Decide which metrics are most important to your business, and track monthly growth. Bonus: LinkedIn offers great data for LinkedIn groups as well, and it’s public to everyone, not exclusively to the group’s owner!
5. LinkedIn Ads
There’s nothing wrong with using some paid ads to support your organic efforts. (Just make sure paid efforts aren’t your sole focus!) LinkedIn has a self-service ad product that you can use to target specific personas and drive visitors to a landing page on your website. HubSpot has seen a significantly lower cost-per-lead for LinkedIn ads compared to other paid channels, so it’s worth a controlled experiment for your company.
Get Started: Go to https://www.linkedin.com/ads and set up a limited campaign that drives visitors to a specific landing page on your website. Dedicate a small budget to a campaign test. Use tracking tokens to track visits and leads generated from the campaign, and then decide whether or not to continue based on performance.
When you start using these tools, make sure to measure the change in your traffic, leads, and conversion rates over time. (Check out HubSpot’s software for an easy way to do this.) Are you seeing a similar conversion rate as the one in the graph above?
LinkedIn’s variety of useful tools makes it a fantastic channel for B2B marketing and an effective way to drive better business results. Keep experimenting and see how much value you can get out of it for your company.
What other LinkedIn tools have you used that have been valuable for your marketing?
This post is authored by Rebecca Corliss, leader of the social media lead generation team at HubSpot. Follow Rebecca on Twitter as @repcor.