What is it? Why is it? And how to use it.
September 2006: Facebook decides it will no longer require a college email address to make an account, opening social media to everyone, including businesses. Fast-forward to 2022 and every company has at least considered what social media means to them—and most have a presence.
So, with a proliferation of platforms, and its ubiquitousness in culture, we’re all aware of social media. We’ve all browsed feeds, written comments, and been served countless advertisements. And yet, with all the experience before them, companies struggle time and time again to use social media in optimum ways, ESPECIALLY on LinkedIn.
As the most business-facing social media, LinkedIn seems like a no-brainer, especially for B2B companies. Often, they’ll happily share some motivational content, post some pictures of teams, and celebrate big job or company achievements with a post! Truth is, this likely offers zero value.
Most folks know what LinkedIn is. It’s a business social platform for networking. But sometimes knowing what a platform IS NOT holds the key to isolating and realizing value.
At Burgard, we regularly educate clients that LinkedIn IS NOT:
A place to celebrate achievements. We get it. When good things happen at your business you want to share them. It feels good! And we are used to acting this way on our personal socials because our friends and families care (or at least smash the Like button as if they do)! The reality is, most folks browsing LinkedIn could care less that Warren won salesman of the year. Or that the company holiday bar crawl was a success. They just don’t. Stop wasting their time.
A place to show off company “culture.” Company culture is relevant and meaningful. It includes truths like: “We value all our staff members from the janitor to the CEO equally as humans—they are all worthy of the same respect.” Clients can see these truths and want to partner because they share these values. Company “culture” might be a zany happy hour for Cinco de Mayo or the silly gift everyone surprised the owner with. People may say they care when asked, but they don’t. It’s a waste of their time to read and your time to post. It comes across as self-centered when you ought to be broadcasting client-centeredness.
A place to talk about yourself. Everyone knows a company celebrates itself. All companies think they are good companies. So to post about your “amazing values” or “dedication to service” is simply more white noise. Everyone says it. Everyone is posting about it. And no one wants to read it. (It’s likely no one cares.)
So, what IS LinkedIn for?
Sharing things that matter to your clients and prospects. What pains and problems have you solved? What are some great accomplishments OF YOUR CLIENTS? How have you provided great service—and can you talk about that service from a client’s perspective?
LinkedIn is not for self-centered self-promotion. Although you will see it over and over again, behind closed doors and behind campaign dashboards it is not working. Be client-centered, be different, and thrive on LinkedIn.