Small business marketing is tough. It requires smart use of resources to get the most bang for your buck. One of the hottest social media platforms today for companies to reach and engage potential clients is LinkedIn. But what’s the best strategy and should you be using a personal profile or the company’s profile page
LinkedIn Personal Profile or Business Profile: Which should You Use?
I’ve been helping small and medium-sized businesses with their digital marketing for over three years now. During that time, it seemed the fields of accounting, finance, and business consulting got the most benefit from LinkedIn. That is, they are more B2B (business to business). I’ll be honest, I just didn’t think dentists, veterinarians, doctors or any other small businesses with direct to consumer orientation had much reason to be on the platform. Their space was Facebook, Instagram, Google Ads and YouTube, that is if they’d jumped into the video marketing arena.
The Climate of LinkedIn is Changing.
But LinkedIn is changing. About 10 days ago I was at a business conference in the Bay Area (San Francisco area for those of you not from California) where Gary Vaynerchuk spoke. He crushed and obliterated the idea that no one SHOULD NOT be on LinkedIn. Moreover, he covered how everyone is jumping into this platform now to share, connect and engage, similar to Facebook seven years ago.
On LinkedIn, you have a personal profile like Facebook. Then you can set up a business page for your company, which you should do. The question has come up of where to “be active” on LinkedIn – your personal page or your business page? In other words, should you post content on your company page or your personal page? The subject has a lot to do with personal branding. It has to do with being the face and voice of your company and the best way to do that.
To answer this, I made this video which, along with this blog, will hopefully answer your questions and give you some direction.
LinkedIn Personal Profile or Business Profile?
So – the question is: Is it better to build up your business profile or your personal profile? The answer is – your personal profile.
Your Business Profile
A business profile on LinkedIn is very static. In other words, it doesn’t change much once it has been set up. It has all the information about the company. For example, it might have how many staff you have. It will have where the company is located and all such important but general information about the company. And you should have company posts that give a sense of the culture of the business, what the company does, what the newest projects of the company are, testimonials from clients about the company, etc.
Your Personal Profile
Now, when it comes to building a personal brand and connecting on LinkedIn and generating sales on LinkedIn – this is all about your personal profile. I am considering that you might be the CEO or Founder of your company, or maybe a President, or the doctor or manager. This is the person (you) who should be posting on LinkedIn and making connections and causing engagement which leads to buyers, new clients and future profits.
With your personal profile you can engage with people. For example, you want to acknowledge work anniversaries and promotions. You want to comment on their posts in a valuable and contributing way. DON’T be “spammy” or “sales-y”. And you don’t want to include links to a sales page or product or something that isn’t helping the conversation. You want to “like” their posts. And you want to make comments on articles posted by people connected to your industry and whom you want to be doing business with.
Schedule Your Personal Marketing Time
This – being actively engaged on LinkedIn, is important. Consider it an investment in your own personal marketing and “reach out” time.
Take 15 minutes every day, or 30 minutes every 2 days to go in and engage with people. Look for hashtags (#) that are related to your niche and comment and contribute your passion and knowledge about the subject. Make yourself known and be interested in what these other people are doing. Check out this article on how often to post on LinkedIn (and other social platforms).
A key point about what profile to use is this: we are seeing only about 10% of people engaging with a business’ profile. It’s obvious why – it’s not alive therefore it can’t respond. Just this statistic alone can show you that the business profile isn’t going to ever get you the engagement that you can generate with a personal profile.
Next point is this; put value-rich content from you on LinkedIn. You want to be posting articles regularly – once a week would be fantastic, once a month is alright. For instance, you want to post articles and posts with pictures and videos about what you and your company are producing and offering that other people can engage with. These posts need to be USEFUL. Information that is going to educate and help other users engage with you and go, “Oh, that is something I can use in my company or life to handle my problems.”
Your goal is to share anything you can that is going to inform, entertain or make the reader’s lives easier such as helping them with challenges or problems they run into.
I hope this has helped clarify the point between the business profile and personal profile. And I hope I have given you some guidance as to the types of things to start posting and where to look to engage with others. So, get going on LinkedIn. Build your company profile appropriately. And then get active using your personal profile to grow your brand and grow your business.
CEO, Walker Kreative