What are the benefits of LinkedIn for business? While it seems every few months a new social media site seems to take the attention of the masses, LinkedIn has been a long term lurker. In fact, in Q2 of 2020, LinkedIn grew it’s revenue by 24% and with 675 Million monthly users its the perfect place to build an audience for your business or gain connections to grow your career. In this article, I’ll be sharing the benefits of LinkedIn and also speaking to Alex McCann. He is the owner of Altrincham HQ, which is Number 1 in the UK for social media marketing on FreeIndex.
Who is on LinkedIn?
In 2018, LinkedIn reported 590 million users and that has grown by 14% to the 675 Million monthly users. To put that into context, Facebook has 2.5 billion users, Instagram 1 billion users followed by Twitter with just under 330 million.
Users are split relatively evenly between men (57%) and women (43%) and its more popular in the States then WhatsApp, Twitter and Snapchat – an important statistic for any UK business planning on going international. Globally, the biggest chunk of LinkedIn’s users is 25-34. With over 30 million companies on LinkedIn, it’s an important platform for anyone looking to grow their professional connections and also connect with potential Customers.
What are the benefits of LinkedIn for Businesses?
According to the 2020 Hootsuite Social Media Report over 43% of people use social media for work purposes. As a platform, LinkedIn is a platform where most users go to seek out work-related content, unlike some other social sites.
It is also a great place for lead generation for business to business marketers. LinkedIn is a perfect place to showcase your business to potential customers. Not only can you search for and connect with people in your Industry, ‘Inmail’ allows you to send them a direct message. This has been proven to have a much higher open rate than email. In fact, Mailchimp email campaigns on average have an open rate of 21% compared to LinkedIn’s 52%.
As well as creating a personal profile you can also create a company page. This has an added advantage of being able to separate your personal brand and business brand while keeping up with your personal business connections. Hashtags are also used like twitter, as a way to have your posts and statuses discovered, as well as a way for you to discover others.
What does a Social Media Expert have to say?
Alex McCann is Number 1 For Social Media Marketing in the UK on Freeindex. He started his company Altrincham HQ in 2009 as a response to how he saw the world. Noticing a massive disparity between city-centre businesses and smaller local firms in their use of social media to promote their businesses he began managing social media accounts that provided businesses great engagement and ROI . His reputation for successful campaigns has grown leading him to work for the likes of the BBC, NHS, Manchester Arndale, Selfridges, United Utilities, Costa Coffee and Manchester City.
Alex was also was presented the ‘Freedom of Altrincham’ award for his incredible efforts promoting the town over the last decade. Its the highest honour you can be bestowed by the town with records dating in back to 1425!
As well as social media management Alex started to provide social media training. Understanding that many small businesses may not yet be in the position to outsource social media or have a full-time person working on it, these training sessions have been a great way to deep dive into the best channels for your business or personal brand.
We partnered with Alex McCann of Altrincham HQ to create a Free Online Workshop, ‘How to Stand Out on LinkedIn’ which takes place on Tuesday 21st July 2020. Beforehand, we chatted with him about his business and how we can use social media to help our businesses.
How do I increase my followers?
This is one of the most asked questions when it comes to Social Media. Alex’s answer is simple. He believes posting great content consistently is important, but stresses that followers, likes, comments and shares don’t pay the mortgage. Sales do.
With that in mind, when looking at your business or your personal brand these three pieces of advice will help:
- Be Authentic don’t be fake, make sure you are true to your own values.
- Produce Content and play to your strengths. Whether that is written, graphic, video or audio. You don’t have to do everything, just what works for you.
- Help Others turn up every day and help people. Whether that’s a comment on their post, a referral or sharing an article they have written.
What should I avoid doing on Social Media?
While this article focuses on the benefit of LinkedIn for business, Alex’s advice can be used for any social channel that you use for your business. Everything you post online is a reflection of your values and your beliefs, so it is important to stay true to these when writing anything.
Some of the most common or obvious mistakes Alex sees are:
- The biggest mistake by far is not engaging on others posts: You can’t just post and go on social, you need to treat engagement as integral to your social media success.
- Providing really vanilla business advice peppered with Swear words to make it sound more interesting than it actually is.
- Death By Canva (the popular online graphic design tool) People want personality and originality and using Canva to produce quotes is not a replacement for either.
What other advice can Alex give you?
Like many businesses, Altrincham HQ has been affected by Covid-19. Alex has already worked with brands in Canada, Italy, New Zealand, America and Dubai in the past and continues to grow his business globally using virtual masterclasses. As well as his upcoming Free Online Workshop, ‘How to Stand Out on LinkedIn’ on 21st July, you can connect with him on LinkedIn.
When asked for the books he would recommend business owners read, Alex suggested:
Do you have any hints or tips on how to use LinkedIn? Let me know in the comments below.