Social media is drastically changing the way customers interact with manufacturers. Not only are there more users on social media today, but more and more businesses in the B2B space are starting to realize the power of connecting socially with existing clients and new prospects to form a more lasting customer experience.
Linkedin is an effective tool for networking, business development, and for building the credibility of both organizations and individuals. Users on LinkedIn are there to showcase their careers, work experience and to find content and information that make their professional lives better. Of the 154 million Americans on LinkedIn, 45% are in upper management, and 91% of executives who use Linkedin use it to find content relevant to their field. In addition, many B2B customers report that content is a big factor in their decision-making process.
Consider these stats from a recent International Data Corporation (IDC) social buying study:
- 75% of B2B customers use social media to make buying decisions
- 50% of B2B customers use Linkedin as a source for making purchase decisions
- 76% of B2B customers prefer to work with recommendations from their professional network.
What does that mean for you?
This means that YOU need to have a strong online presence – your company’s website isn’t your virtual business card. For manufacturers – and other businesses, Linkedin serves as a cost-effective content marketing tool that your brand can leverage to connect with potential customers:
- Build brand awareness.
- Attract new customers.
- Attract new talent, especially with the workforce challenge manufacturing is facing.
- Acquire customer feedback and address concerns.
- Drive traffic to your website.
- Establish your company as an industry leader and ultimately build an online community where you become a valuable source of information.
If your company does not have an active Linkedin page, we highly recommend you create one - the opportunity to connect is too great to ignore.
How do you get started?
- Create and optimize your company page on Linkedin so others can learn about your company.
- Designate an official Linkedin champion.
- Create your Linkedin Marketing plan:
- Invite connections to your page – begin with employees and current customers.
- Establish your goals – do you want to generate more leads? Promote your brand? Etc.
- Share valuable content and become the industry expert.
- Diversify content – include a healthy mix of videos and photos, not just text-only content.
- Be an active participant – join relevant Linkedin groups and show your expertise through thought leadership.
- Use Showcase Pages to highlight any sub-brands, initiatives, or specific functions in your company.
- Get your employees on board – on average, when employees share their employer’s content, it has 2x the engagement than the shares by the company alone.
Leveraging the power of Linkedin can become an invaluable part of your marketing plan and one of the tools you can use to help build long term growth in your company.
At IMEC, we take pride in sharing useful information with our online community, highlighting our clients and other businesses who are creating competitive futures in Illinois, and of course our wonderful team of improvement specialists. Visit our page and follow us if you aren’t already!
If you need help tapping into Linkedin or shaking up your current marketing strategies, get in touch with IMEC!