Here's How LinkedIn is Used for Branding
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Uniqueness is the key to standing out as a business. As cliché as it sounds, it really is true and is the reason why one among every 5 competing businesses do exceedingly better than their rivals. How do you become unique? There’s a plethora of means to achieve that and each as fleeting as a butterfly. I narrow it down to two highly effective ones. Inherently standing out or being different. Guess which one is easier. You’ve got it, being different is easier than standing out. Sure, standing out isn’t that difficult but personally, different is better. That said, how do we achieve either?
By choosing a shade from between the greys of marketing and BRANDING, that’s how. Each tool is dependent on the other for success but for now I’d like to focus on the merits of cementing an identity through branding. To laser it down, we’ll be looking at LinkedIn as the stage to your Brand’s identity.
Unlike other social media websites and their immature audiences, LinkedIn is what Blackberry Messenger (You guys remember the nostalgia right? Before college teens took over) wishes it could have been – the perfect social media platform for the corporate universe. Representatives of companies, individuals with high designations and even CEO’s of popular brands use LinkedIn for interaction and business communication. Here is the perfect audience that looks to you to either stand out or be different, or you end up being a part of someone else’s audience. Let’s not have that limelight taken away just yet. Read on to know how to hold on to the limelight.
Optimize your LinkedIn profile: Editing and optimizing your LinkedIn profile is like preparing for the show in the green room backstage. Naturally, your profile photo is the first point of visual attraction for your audience. The company logo fits into this space in absolute HD. Adjoining your profile photo is your headline banner.
Here comes the core message that your brand wants to convey at the given time. You can also use the background creatively by either showing your achievements or the companies you have worked with. If you wish to go all in, you can also opt to customize your page URL but remember if you choose to write your name it might not work as expect hence you need to be prepared beforehand. Remember, Content is King.
Make meaningful connections: Connections play an important role in building your network and that is exactly what makes LinkedIn such a great corporate platform. Once, the profile is optimized, you need to start sending connection requests to the people you know. For each accepted connection request, LinkedIn will suggest their connections and through them, a tertiary circle of connections.
Planned correctly, you can reach anyone you want in the corporate universe. Look at it this way, it’s like a game of treasure hunt and each connection is a dungeon with a task. Accomplish it and 3 more doors open, you choose one to repeat the cycle and come back to existing open doors in case you end up at a dead-end.
Publish content: The best way to get people’s attention on LinkedIn is by publishing content on a regular basis. When you publish content (images, videos and blogs), you appear on the newsfeed of the people who are connected to you. You need to make sure that the content you publish should be appealing to the readers.
As I mentioned earlier – Content is King. This is where marketing plays the push to your brand’s pull. You push your content to the right connections and your profile generates the pull. The pull is only stronger if there is a good bank of content available for your connections to browse through. This is why all social media platforms have an infinity scroll, to keep your connections scrolling. You need to ensure that your profile has enough content for them to scroll through.
Promotion: Interest your connections with events happening in your company. Sit with your marketing team to create the content of impact for them. This includes hosting or sponsoring events, milestones that your company may have achieved, new talent on your management panel, awards, recognitions, press releases, product launches and such.
One thing that LinkedIn is not – despite the in-built platform tools and popular opinion – is a platform to sell on. Corporate platform that it is, the place is strictly business and business only. Promote your 50% discount on Facebook and Instagram, where it belongs. Here you promote the brand and not the product. Your ideals and your vision are the things that would attract the connection bees not your product.
Each platform has its own unique tools and qualities with an entirely different audience dynamic to cater to. Therefore, branding strategies differ from platform to platform. Still, the fundamentals of branding – which is to promote your brand and not the product – will always be constant.