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How to Leverage LinkedIn

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Leveraging social media can drastically increase your visibility with those who matter most to your business. Engaging online in the right ways can give you more visibility, leads and sales, and better customer engagement.

Knowing which social media platforms will have the most significant impact on your business growth is vital. LinkedIn is the world’s largest online professional network. Once upon a time, it provided a marketplace to find jobs and internships. It has become far more.

If you’re trying to connect with business owners, luxury travelers and Fortune 500 executives, LinkedIn is the platform where you should spend your time. According to LinkedIn, 45 percent of content readers are managers, CEOs, vice presidents and other executives. These people are not sharing the house cat memes so often seen on other social media platforms. On LinkedIn, you can help the right people discover your brand or product through a well-planned content-marketing strategy.

LinkedIn has 756 million users, so it’s extremely likely that your clients and prospects frequently use this platform. Here are a few tips to consider.

Add a background photo. By now, you (hopefully) have a professional main profile picture with your face taking up around 60 percent of it. Your background photo is the second most important visual element on your page (see mine below). Selecting the appropriate background photo will help your page appear in more searches and help keep your business and personal brand memorable.

Be smart about the summary field. Countless people ignore this field when creating their pages. The summary section provides the perfect opportunity for a first impression. Bring your skills, stories and experience to life here.

Follow and add relevant connections. Seek out influencers in your industry and add them to your network. It’s beneficial to connect with them for potential collaboration, and you can share their valuable content with your audience.

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These five LinkedIn strategies can help you establish yourself as a marine industry authority:

1. Provide value. What you share with the world is your value. Providing value helps you show up more frequently and have more opportunities to build followers and trust. The same instruction applies to LinkedIn (and all social media platforms). If you’re interested in engaging with your audience, share valuable content. Stay hyper-focused on what matters most to your network. This content could come in the form of educational tips, inspiring stories, new products and more.

2. Set goals. What are you hoping to achieve? Are you looking to increase awareness and visibility for your business? Are you seeking leads from potential customers? Whatever your goals are, make them measurable. For example, if you’re looking to gain visibility, check your LinkedIn page analytics to see if you’re achieving a decent reach.

3. Know your audience. Marketing to the right people is critical. It’s important to know the likes and interests of your target audience. Understanding more than the audience’s demographics will help you create valuable content and impactful marketing campaigns that make an impact on those you are trying to reach.

4. Grab attention with mixed media. Use a variety of videos, photos and text to engage your LinkedIn network. From my experience, sharing videos with a short, written summary is most effective. Experiment with different formats, and see which works best for your audience.

5. Use hashtags. Hashtags are a way to categorize content. They help LinkedIn members explore relevant topics and engage in meaningful conversations. Using the right hashtags can also help your content appear more frequently across the platform.

Making smart use of LinkedIn can help you establish yourself as an authority and build trust with your target audience. Ultimately, this tool can give you more visibility, leads and sales. 

Becca Eisenberg is the chief revenue officer and co-founder of ex.plo.re, where she helps marine brands and sales professionals stay at the cutting edge of digital marketing and technology innovation.

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