Answering this question depends on how we define everyone and how important LinkedIn is compared to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, SlideShare, SnapChat, or any other social media applications.
The answer ultimately depends on:
- Your business model
- Who your ideal clients are
- Who the people are that you want to attract into the top of your sales funnel
Once you have an idea of who matters most and who your ideal clients are, you should develop buyer personas.
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of one or more of your ideal clients. Buyer personas are based on research and educated speculation and explain what is most important to your ideal target audience.
During your buyer persona research, you will analyze your sources to determine information such as:
- Where they get information from
- Their favorite blogs
- Their favorite podcasts
- If they read print publications
- If they have favorite TV shows
- The conferences they love going to
- The organizations they are part of
During your buyer persona research, if you discover your target audience is using LinkedIn, your business should most certainly build a LinkedIn presence.
If it comes out that LinkedIn is one of their favorite places to be online, they have 500+ connections, belong to a bunch of LinkedIn groups, and check LinkedIn at least once a day, that is important information for your business to use.
Use LinkedIn as a tool to determine:
- Where/what buyers are researching
- What your potential clients are talking about
- What prospects care about
- How you can help promote content
- How to interact with prospects
- How to effectively social sell
The decision of how much effort and resources you should invest in LinkedIn is extremely dependent on who your ideal clients, stakeholders, and people are, and how you want to attract these buyer personas.
Often, B2B companies are under the impression that Facebook should come first. Facebook can be an important channel, and with over a billion users it certainly needs to be taken into consideration. But it needs to be validated -- and not by guesswork.
Your social media strategy should not be littered with hunches and guesses. It must be validated with real data, and buyer personas should be a hypothesis to get you going. Treating your buyer persona as a hypothesis allows you to make an informed guess and then review the data monthly, quarterly, or annually to see:
- If LinkedIn is working overall for your business
- Which aspects of LinkedIn are working for your company
- Which aspects of LinkedIn are not working for your company
The big tip with LinkedIn groups is to make sure you are sharing valuable content and participating in the conversation, as opposed to spamming irrelevant content such as promotional lead generation offers.
Your best bet with groups is to spend a lot of time listening before you participate. The next step is to participate once you’ve familiarized yourself with what they care about. Once you add value, you can start asking for something in return such as sharing a blog post, visiting your website, or viewing your content.
The decision on LinkedIn is heavily dependent on your business model and whom you are looking to attract into your funnel.
Are you optimizing your LinkedIn profile and company page to best attract your target audience? Share your thoughts in the section for comments below.
To learn more about optimizing your business and personal LinkedIn accounts, download our eBook “3 Revenue Growth Opportunities Your Business May Be Missing.”