For many businesses, choosing the right social media platforms can be difficult—but for manufacturers, it’s quite easy.
While consumer brands typically need to be highly active and creative across several channels including Instagram, TikTok and Facebook, business-to-business (B2B) companies can essentially go all in on LinkedIn. Sprout Social cites LinkedIn’s statistics suggesting over 80% of B2B marketers have their best social media success on LinkedIn and 4 out of every 5 LinkedIn members drive business decisions.
You might also choose to keep an active company Facebook page. However, LinkedIn is far and away the best place to focus your resources. Even better, business owners and leaders themselves can fuel company success on LinkedIn too, all before ever spending a dime on paid advertising. Here’s the blueprint:
Build Your Company Page
Organic marketing—meaning marketing without paid advertising—on LinkedIn starts with building your company page. As a reflection of your brand, it’s worth the time and effort to make your company page look sharp with your logo, a well-designed banner image, relevant information about the company, some light brand messaging, and a link to your website. Those are just the basics. There are many ways to further optimize your company page with product pages, careers, buttons, and other features.
Once your company page is set up, make it part of your content strategy to post regularly with company news, blog articles, and other updates. As with any other social network, consistency is key. Sprout Social notes that active, optimized company pages see a 5x lift in page views, a 7x lift in average impressions per follower and an 11x lift in clicks per follower.
Professionalize Your Personal Page
On LinkedIn, one of the most powerful ways to get more out of your marketing is also one of the simplest. If you’re a business owner or executive with even a modest presence on LinkedIn, sharing your company’s posts from your personal page can supercharge the engagement from users. If you’re not yet on LinkedIn, consider taking the leap and tapping into the world’s largest professional network. Either way, a personal page should be thoughtfully optimized with the same attention to detail as a company page. You’ll want a professional headshot as well as a professionally written bio and profile so that you look the part.
The business opportunities are endless on LinkedIn. With that, so are the opportunities to come off the wrong way and be seen as off-putting. Your company page is best left to your marketing agency and internal team in tandem. They’ll have the processes and checkpoints in place to ensure all company content is on-brand.
When you’re using your personal LinkedIn profile to search for and connect with prospects, both your personal and company brands are in your hands. Don’t be overly or outwardly salesy, especially when making new connections. In fact, some of your best sales on LinkedIn won’t be for your company. They’ll be sales that you make for your trusted vendors, industry partners and golf buddies by referring them for opportunities that you see in your daily feed. Sending referrals will show your connections that you’re not just in it for yourself, and will also strengthen your relationships with the people you refer.
LinkedIn groups are great for meeting new people without having to send random connection requests. You can certainly send requests if they’re personalized, concise and tactful, but groups facilitate intros, discussions, connections, and referrals. A quick search for groups with the keyword “manufacturing” yields 19,000 results. Already a comfortable and confident LinkedIn user? Start and manage a group of your own!
Publishing content is only part of the equation for success on LinkedIn (or any social network, for that matter). The other important part is to engage. Admins of your company page can react to, comment on, and share posts as your company—and you can do all those things from your own personal page separately. Ten minutes a day can be all it takes to engage from your personal page. Your marketing team will of course give it much more time, thought, and strategy to maximize your company page. At some point, you’ll likely find LinkedIn marketing to be so impactful that you’ll want to explore paid and targeted ads.
Looking for more insights focused specifically on marketing for manufacturers? Read our previous posts in this series:
The Starting Point Before Strategy
Starter Tools for Better SEO
Why (& How) Email Marketing Works