No Budget? No Problem: 7 Free LinkedIn Marketing Tactics
January 30, 2017
Part of our mission statement at LinkedIn Marketing Solutions is to develop tools marketers can use with any size budget. You can reach the audience that matters most to your organization whether you’re running Sponsored Content, Sponsored InMail, and Display Ads in tandem, or just testing the water with a few Text Ads. There’s no budget too small. Even no budget at all.
Our team has seen success in our own LinkedIn marketing with a healthy combination of paid and organic. The free opportunities you will learn about below are easy wins for any organization.
Here is an overview of seven free ways to market your business on LinkedIn, each with not-so-typical tips to make the most of them. Use these activities to expand your organization’s reach and influence, with instant ROI.
1. Get Active on Your LinkedIn Company Page
Your LinkedIn Company Page is your biggest piece of real estate on LinkedIn. Treat it like the marketing tool it is by strategically updating it with content designed to appeal to your target audience. You can even filter posts by topic, so each visitor will see only the most relevant content. Here are a few easy tips:
- Keep your headlines and text short; about 140 words with a clear call to action
- Use video and unique images for visual interest and avoid stock photos
- Make page management easier by integrating it with popular social media management programs
Get more tips: 5 Non-Obvious Ways to Improve Your LinkedIn Company Page
2. Spotlight a Brand or Business Unit with Showcase Pages
Some members of your audience may only be interested in a specific brand or initiative, and that’s okay. Showcase Pages allow you to give your various audiences exactly what they want without overloading them with content.
Showcase Pages are linked to your Company Page, but allow you to create and share content that appeals to different segments of your audience. For example, the LinkedIn Marketing Solutions Showcase Page has a completely different look and feel than the LinkedIn Company Page. To make your Showcase Page more effective:
- Use keywords in page names so they are easy to find via search
- Add a LinkedIn follow button to website pages that correspond to Showcase Pages
- Cross-promote with your Company Page
3. Use Analytics to Inform Content and Boost Sharing
Your Company and Showcase Pages have robust analytics built in. You can see when people are engaging, your audience demographics, and which content performs best. Use these insights to help you decide what type of content to publish and which topics you cover.
4. Show off Your Thought Leadership with Long-Form Posts
Use LinkedIn’s publishing platform, LinkedIn Pulse, to establish your organization’s thought leadership, from the C-suite down to the bottom of the org chart. To drive the highest engagement:
- Take some time to learn the platform and plan what you want to say before you write
- Be specific – how-to posts and in-depth content work best
- Include visual interest in the header and throughout
5. Establish Authority on LinkedIn SlideShare
You can embed LinkedIn SlideShare presentations directly into your Company Page updates. These presentations can be simply slides, but can also include video, and can be used for unconventional formats like tall infographics. Use these tips to make a SlideShare that gets noticed:
- Take advantage of SlideShare analytics to optimize and improve
- Embed clickable links in your SlideShare to provide your readers with next steps
- Be generous with images – the most popular presentations have 37 or more
6. Maintain Engagement with Regular Updates
One you have your Company or Showcase Page up and running, build your community by updating at least twice a day. Keep these tips in mind:
- Follow the 4-1-1 rule created by Tippingpoint Labs and Joe Pulizzi of the Content Marketing Institute: For every self-serving update, share one audience-centric update, and four pieces of relevant content written by others
- Interact with your audience by responding to comments to keep the discussion going
7. Enhance Your Audience Personas with Advanced Search
Along with using free analytics data (tip #3) to learn more about your audience, you can also tap into the wealth of first-party information LinkedIn members provide. Use this information to better understand your target audience so that you can ultimately serve them a better content experience. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Examine job titles and skills to uncover potential topics and motivational factors
- Review endorsements to find out what your audience values and the language they use
- Get granular by filtering results by location, current company, industry, and more
While these LinkedIn marketing activities do not require a monetary investment, they do require time and commitment. It’s a good idea to approach these free activities just as strategically as your paid efforts. Start with clear goals and choose the KPIs you will use to measure success. Then, document your strategy for using LinkedIn’s free and paid tools to achieve your goals.
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Photo: Christopher Michel