Are You Making These 5 Common Mistakes On LinkedIn?

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If a B2B business is incorporating social media into their marketing plan, LinkedIn is likely their focus. Aside from the amount of time LinkedIn can take up, so many small B2B owners also get frustrated that they're not getting any business from it.

It takes a long time to build up your social media reputation... just as it did your professional reputation offline. Here are the top 5 mistakes we see B2B owners making on LinkedIn:

  1. Not undertanding your B-2-B target audience and putting up content that's geared more towards a consumer's mind: Paying close attention to the content you post on LinkedIn and where you're posting it is so important. Before posting articles or topics, identitfy your target audience on a peice of paper. This may seem elementary but you'll be surprised how your content and the groups you post in start to change when you look at that paper before posting.
  2. Not paying attention to your industry's social influencers: If you're not sure who your industry's social influencers are, just Google "ABC Industry's social influencers". Take a few minutes to browse through the articles/blogs and find the 10 people that are mentioned the most and follow them on all of your social media accounts. Even if you only use LinkedIn for business, you'll be able to pull content that influencers post on Facebook and Twitter and repurpose it for your LinkedIn posts. 
  3. Not participating in groups: Choose groups that your target audience will most likely be participating in and don't post anything too sales-y. Try to start genuine conversations or pose timely questions and don't give up after the first few times if no one participates. Also don't post the same thing in multiple groups because it's likely similar groups have the same members.
  4. Keeping your settings so that no one can see you looked at their profile: I think this feature bothers everyone. It's uncomfortable to look at someone's profile knowing that they're going to be notified. It makes people feel stalker-ish and even prevents them from browsing around. The advice here... "Get over it!" The biggest reason you want to leave your settings so that people CAN see when you look at their profile is so that YOU can see when someone looks at yours. And that's a golden opportunity. When you get notified that someone has looked at your profile, send them a quick private message along the line of: "Hi (fill in name)! I noticed you looked at my profile. I checked yours out and saw that you (pick out something that you would have in common with this person or something that would spark a reason for you and this person to potentially do business). Let me know if there's any way I can help you with something. Glad we're connected on here. Look forward to hearing back." THAT'S IT. It's simple, you made them feel good about looking at your profile and that you looked at theirs, and you took the opportunity to offer your services to one more person.
  5. Using a business page rather than your personal profile: A business page is better suited for Facebook. LinkedIn is set up for professionals to connect so you should view your profile as your business page. The platform is about networking and no one networks or builds a relationship with someone's business, they do it with PEOPLE. Keep your profile updated regularly and be sure your photo is professional and easy to see. Make sure that you brand your profile so that your business is apparent and stay focused on being "human" instead.