But first, were you aware that LinkedIn has a company page (similar to Facebook). With 85 million business members, who wouldn't want a business page there?
Normally the profile pages that you set up on LinkedIn are for your own personal use. It's against LinkedIn's terms and conditions to set up a personal profile page as a business. But LinkedIn has seen that by capturing and promoting more business information in this community, it could make way for a lot more engagement and knowledge-sharing.
If you haven't yet created your LinkedIn company page, simply click on COMPANIES on the top navigation and then ADD COMPANY.
Here's some new features worth examination:
#1: Banner images link through to your website.
How cool is that? Your own free banner advertising that's linked back to wherever you want it to! Why not create an image with “Become a fan of our Facebook page” and link it back to Facebook if you want to cross-pollinate a little, or link one to your service pages and the other to your about us page?
#2: Support for video.
There's now space to add video on your product or service “home page” as well as on each individual service page. You do have a company video, don't you?
With more companies waking up to the power of video blogging, technical videos and video training, this may be an area for you to develop if you haven't already. Check out these articles for a comprehensive guide to video blogging and get 16 tips for successful online video marketing.
#3: Get recommendations and display them on your page.
Recommendations are your silent salespeople and will help sell your products and services far better than anything you can say personally. We all know the power of word-of-mouth marketing, so use it to your advantage.
These recommendations are user-aware, which means that LinkedIn will show you recommendations by people within your network if they're available. How cool to see someone you're connected to who has recommended a service that you may be thinking about purchasing!
#4: “Follow us on LinkedIn” button.
You may need to copy their code and pass it on to your web builder to insert if you don't have access into the coded area of your website. If you are able to add it in yourself, simply cut and paste the code into the place where you want the button to appear.
#5: Feeds blog posts and tweets to overview page.
Let your followers find out more about your company via your company blog posts. Each time you write a new post, it will filter onto the overview page automatically. If you write in a more relaxed style on your blog than your website, that gives another dimension to the company voice.
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There are even analytics. You can now see your page views and a whole lot more—such as visitors to your services, clicks on any images with links you've added, which industries are interested in your company and even which companies have been looking at your page. It's moving so fast you need to tune in daily to see what else is new.
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Take a look at Dell's page. Here they've really used just about everything they can on their company page and it looks great.
#6: Client recommendations without visiting LinkedIn.
How about the ability for a client to click on a “Recommend” button on your own website that populates back to your LinkedIn business page where prospects are able to read those product or service recommendations? As soon as you add your services to your business page, LinkedIn will contact you with the HTML coding to set it up. Very neat.
#7: New group functions.
If you run a group, there are also some great new features for group administrators. Even though spam seems to have quieted down with members simply not tolerating it, there are a couple of extra settings that have recently been introduced for group moderators to tighten things up even more.
A group moderator can now introduce a trial period for new group members. This means that new members will have their discussions parked until the moderator has had a chance to authorize them. Once the trial period is over, the new member will be able to post freely.
There are several permissions and restrictions to choose from, so you may allow a new member to answer posts but not post their own content for a period of time set by the moderator.
The new group member can view posts awaiting moderation by going to the “Activity” page from the “More” dropdown in the group's navigation bar.
While we're on the subject of groups, if you're running your own group, are you making good use of all of the tools available to you?
You have a choice of:
- Deciding whether you'll allow automatic entry or approve people as they ask to join. Some groups do this to ensure that there are no competitors in their group or that the person who wishes to join fits the group criteria; i.e., is a director in a directors-only group.
- Sending a welcome message filled with interesting information and links about what your group or company group has to offer and resources available.
- Sending a group announcement weekly to all group members that's also populated as a discussion within the group. While I think weekly is far too often, I like to send an announcement every couple of months. This is not the place to spam your members, but to ask questions and gain feedback in the form of an email so everyone gets it.
- Completing the group “rules” page so that members have a clear understanding of what they can and can't do within the group.
#8: LinkedIn Share button.
The Share button is also a new feature and does exactly the same thing as a Facebook Share button. An exception is it updates your LinkedIn network connections. Here's the link to get your very own piece of coding. By reading the tutorial here you can even add it to your WordPress blog.
These are only a few of the latest bells and whistles that have recently become available. You can read more about getting the most out of LinkedIn with these articles. There really is so much the site can do for your business!
Have you used any of these functions? What are your thoughts? What would you like to see added to LinkedIn? Please share your feedback in the box below.
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