Wednesday, March 7, 2012

How Small Businesses can Leverage LinkedIn to Grow their Business

By Danielle Restivo

Linked In is often referred to as the go-to social network for business. It is known as a great source for finding jobs and networking with other business professionals online.
To learn how small companies can make the best use of Linked In CanadaOne went to the source. Here is what Daniel Restivo, the manager of corporate communiations at Linked In, had to say.

  1. Build a Company Page
    Building a Company Page is an easy (and free!) way to establish your business’ presence on LinkedIn. It’s a centralized location where millions of LinkedIn members can go to stay in the loop on company news, products and services, business opportunities and job openings. Company Pages are also a great business intelligence tool. By following competitors and companies you admire, you can glean essential business inisghts. You can see who’s hiring, recent departures, or people with connections you might like to do business with.
  2. Drive Word of Mouth
    Client referrals are one of the best ways a small business can grow their customer base. This is just as important online as offline. Increase your word of mouth referrals by asking your happy clients to write you a recommendation. These will appear on your Company Page, Profile and News Feed.
  3. Gain Insights
    Visit LinkedIn daily to get valuable insights about your connections and their activities. Follow the top trending news each day on LinkedIn Today so you’re up-to-speed on industry news. Use LinkedIn Signal to search public status updates for topics or brands you’re interested in.
  4. Position yourself as a trusted expert
    There are thousands of LinkedIn groups discussing everything under the sun. Be sure to review the discussions in the group first. This will help you determine whether the group is active and how you can add value to the discussion. Searching for groups by topic and industry gives small business owners the opportunity to specifically target and make the necessary connections. Proactively answering questions in your area of expertise can help build your reputation within the group.

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