LinkedIn is a popular social network for business people and for companies and small businesses. It is now the leading business social network and continues to grow. Using this platform to promote yourself and your business can be extremely effective and recent changes have made it even more powerful as a method of free online marketing.
Although there is a premium version, you can set up your LinkedIn profile for free. The free option still gives you the ability to expand your network and share your talents, abilities and portfolios with the wider business community.
Create your LinkedIn profile page so it represents you as an individual, and highlights your business experience, education, qualifications, and a sample of current and previous projects. You are trying to build your profile so that you accurately and positively present yourself as a professional in your field of business. Once you have built your profile you can start to build your contacts and gather recommendations and endorsements from the people in your network.
Always add your company website or blog url, and it is worth adding the other social media links that you use too. Some people create a LinkedIn page of their company and this can be handy in terms of searches but we tend to find that it is more effective if you create a profile in your own name and list your company name and website on the profile. LinkedIn has become a business network that links people together, not brands and company names. And it is designed to list the company names and make them searchable anyway.
Groups in LinkedIn are a great way to build your network and reach out beyond your own circle of business contacts. It is easy to do and if you choose a subject for the group that is of interest to many people, you will quickly build up a following.
The best thing about LinkedIn is the opportunities it provides to promote yourself and your business as an expert. You can share articles that you write yourself and post on your own website. Becoming an authority on a subject is a powerful way to build up brand recognition and trust amongst potential business contacts and clients.