With over 65 million users, LinkedIn is a social network geared toward career professionals. It's a platform for promoting your home business, finding a job or freelance work, and connecting with joint venture partners.
If you have a home business that caters to other businesses (B2B) or have a business in which networking for partners or clients is important, you should have a profile on LinkedIn. If you're not there or haven't maximized all the features of LinkedIn, this guide can help. Like other forms of internet marketing, marketing a home business on LinkedIn is an inexpensive way to gain exposure.
Getting Started on LinkedIn
LinkedIn isn't centered on posting clever memes or what you had for breakfast. As a home business owner, it's a space to interact with aspiring professionals and potential partners, to build your client base, and to accumulate referrals.
- Learn more about how LinkedIn works.
- Create a LinkedIn login, if you're not already a member.
- Create a LinkedIn profile that focuses on how your home business can help other members. Your goal is to avoid a boring ho-hum profile, and instead to create a profile that attracts people to you.
- Consider creating a LinkedIn company page for your home business. You'll have the opportunity to set up a business page as you complete the resume section of your personal LinkedIn profile. Your company page will be automatically linked to the resume in your profile.
With these LinkedIn basics in place, you can get started on marketing yourself and your home business to other LinkedIn members.
Passive LinkedIn Marketing
Setting up a successful LinkedIn profile requires building connections and keeping your account updated to reassure potential clients, customers, and partners that you're easy to contact and reference. The passive approach of simply maintaining your profile can lead to the following opportunities:
- Exposure to people hunting for products or services. LinkedIn's search features allow others who are looking for what you offer to find your profile and browse your offerings.
- Introductions to potential clients. You can view your friends' and colleagues' references and connections while researching and messaging potential clients.
- Display recommendations from others on LinkedIn. As part of your public profile, you can showcase testimonials for you and your home business. These recommendations of your work ethic, product, or service can provide credibility that encourages people to do business with you.
Proactive LinkedIn Marketing
To proactively harness the power of LinkedIn, you can promote your home business in the following ways:
- Post regular status updates. Write about what you're working on and who you're working for. Include updates that would be of interest to your target customers and clients. Focus on how you help others achieve their goals.
- Participate in groups. Join LinkedIn groups related to your home business and your interests. Discussion participation can help establish you as an expert in your field. Don't spam or always talk about yourself. Instead, answer questions and be a resource that people can trust.
- Connect with those in your network and other group members. By sending personalized messages, you can connect with professionals that have similar interests or that can help you along your home business journey.
- Try LinkedIn advertising. Paid advertising on LinkedIn is an option for getting your home business in front of potential clients quickly.
- Upgrade to a paid LinkedIn membership. There are several tiers to choose from that can unlock additional contact options and other perks that may be a good fit for what you're trying to accomplish with your home business. LinkedIn offers a free trial of their paid features so you can test before committing.
Adding LinkedIn to Your Marketing Strategy
Adding LinkedIn to your marketing strategy can help you expand your network, find customers, and cultivate a professional reputation for your home business. Consider adding a LinkedIn badge to your website or blog, so visitors can easily find your profile and connect with you.