Business to business is often far more lucrative than business to consumer services. Business to business targets professionals who are in charge of budgets, and often business owners are far more definitive of what their needs and goals are.
Even in so far as health and wellness service providers, they can have a presence on LinkedIn, marketing directly to business owners and other professionals, as foremostly, it is more than likely that these people are 1) gainfully employed and 2) have healthy cash flows to spend on the business wanting to gain more clients.
Facebook has a huge audience following, and so do other social media platforms, but often they are populated with younger people, or people who are spending their time playing the free games.
It makes sense from an economic benefit point of view to therefore target clients on LinkedIn who are time poor, and want their lives to be more convenient.
When you can streamline your products and services in order to create solutions for time poor professionals with money to spend on items that make a difference to their lives, it is a way of ensuring that you start to seriously make those sales conversions.
Facebook is an incredibly great platform, but for products and services at the higher end of the cost spectrum that are more likely to be afforded by professionals and executives working in their own business, in a senior position or decision makers, targeting these people in a relevant industry has been shown to be statistically of great return on investment for businesses providing goods and services to these potential buyers.
LinkedIn is a great way to not only build professional associations, but it is a terrific way of engaging potential customers. A blog on this platform that provides helpful and useful information is a way to gain and sustain the attention of key decision makers and professionals.
The statistics from an article on Hootsuite indicate that:
- 50 percent of business to business decision makers use LinkedIn to inform their purchasing decisions
- 76 percent of business decision makers prefer to work with companies who they received a referral for
- 41 percent of millionaires use LinkedIn
Company Pages are Important to be Recognised as an Influencer
When a business has a company page on LinkedIn, it is recognised as a far more legitimate and professional brand than companies that have no presence on this social media platform.
LinkedIn is the place where executives, professionals and knowledgeable people share their important tips and directions for success, and where a base of information on a whole host of vocational and career related topics is available.
A lot of well known brand influencers write their articles on LinkedIn, and it functions as a platform where virtual networking becomes du jour.
Benefits for a Business in Being on LinkedIn
There are 300 million users on LinkedIn; while there are far more people on Facebook, they are there for vastly different reasons. LinkedIn is a platform where it is strictly there as a primary motive for people to feature their professional knowledge.
After hours socialising is done on social platforms like Facebook, and it is more known for free games, sharing memes, jokes, support groups for hobbies and personal interests. There is the Facebook Marketplace, but generally is it perceived as a large garage sale for second hand goods, not recognised as a retail business sales platform.
Business owners can update their company profile, and share blog updates on their personal and company pages, meaning that people in their personal network, and those who are interested in those particular topics in the industry will come to understand their expertise on the subject matter.
Generally it doesn’t take a whole lot more knowledge than another person to be regarded as an expert, you just have to have a more refined technique, more specialist knowledge or a more efficient way of doing something and be desiring to solve a solution, and people will be flocking to you for answers.
When people come to you for answers, and associate with your own personal brand, you are an extension of your company, so importantly you get as a corollary to putting out content a significant amount of brand trust.
Brand trust helps create recognition, and when you push the right amount of content versus a marketing placement, you are regarded as genuinely interested in solving a need, not just a pushy salesperson.
Lead Generation and LinkedIn
A lot of professional groups are available for people to join on LinkedIn. These professional associations often share a lot of information, and when you are answering questions that people pose on LinkedIn, they will come to you for more advice.
Lead generation happens really easily and simply on LinkedIn, and there are a lot of built in advertising tools that help to qualify leads. Direct marketing to people on LinkedIn via messages helps build more personal rapport, rather than pushing and boosting posts on a platform like Facebook. Engagement with a post does not necessarily translate to sales.
More personalised messages, targeted to the right people through a demographic selection grid via LinkedIn means that the advertising done on this platform is far more personalised, and works far better than a spatter of random and impersonal memes pushed onto a company page.
People may enjoy interacting socially with various inspirational messages given by a brand on a Facebook or Twitter page, but when they have serious purchase intent for business to business services, they are more likely to be looking for and finding information on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is a more desktop friendly site, although mobile apps are available, and these work well for searching for people and sending brief messages to your network. The best way to take advantage of consumer behaviour however, is to push long tail keywords with purchase intent into articles on a blog, and then post these to LinkedIn.
People are statistically more likely to purchase goods and services while they are sitting at their laptops or desktop computers, and this means that they have already done some prior research, and will be looking for more information.
When these are included in a LinkedIn article feed on a company blog, or personal posting underneath your professional identity this will assist in driving traffic to your website.
More time is spent on desktop sites, and when people are looking at spending more money on a particular product or service, the more information provided about the features and benefits of it, the greater the likelihood of a person making a purchase.
CRM Software and LinkedIn
Some customer relationships management software packages interface directly with LinkedIn, and when your customers are on this platform, you can get a better idea of metrics and behaviours in response to different blog posts.
You can also compare this traffic with Google Analytics for your website, compare your spend on LinkedIn to the number of sales conversions and see what types of opinions and interests each of your potential customers are engaging with.
This gives you far more insight into how to target customers and ensure they become repeat purchasers, and form brand trust with you.
Off Page SEO Benefits of LinkedIn
LinkedIn can create a huge source of web traffic; business content is shared on this platform far more than on any other social media platform such as Facebook. When direct advertising to customer inboxes is utilised, the opening rate of messages is also a lot more successful than post engagement on other platforms in creating sales conversions.
Inbound marketing from lead generation on social platforms is an important way to groom visitors into becoming customers. The process of lead generation is far more improved with tools like social media platforms, as it begins the process of lead nurturing, and wipes out having to convert potential customers from cold leads to warm and then to hot.
Marketing, according to one article is only responsible for 30% of sales leads, and this is done through content marketing, advertising, direct mail, broadcast media and other brand recognition strategies.
The best way to maximise a return on investment in nurturing leads is to convert these to sales, and focus develop away from generating new leads so much, but ensure that the process of conversion is refined.
LinkedIn is like a lead generation net, filtering out all of the disinterested parties, tyre kickers and time wasters, and enables you to find the customers who are genuinely ready to buy, and turn them into your loyal customer, rather than anyone else’s customer.
The process of using social media platforms is that it gives you the best opportunity to put your name out there, so people understand what it is that your company provides as a service or product, and the more your brand is pushed across audiences, you gain far more credibility.
The type of content you deliver on your website, and on social sharing platforms should be information associated with your product or service, and be bent around what your potential customer demographics are, and what types of solutions they are requiring.
They may come from pain points, or they may simply want to be inspired to change, and vastly improve their lives. Ensure that the numbers are pushed and statistics and research back up your claims. When you are able to push research into features and benefits, you increase your chances of sales conversions.
Time Saving in Conversions Via Social Sharing
In the days before social media, broadcast media would send ads into the lounge rooms of consumers, and direct mail campaigns would showcase the latest offerings.
Salespeople would work in call centres, having collected people’s details from surveys or previous charity giving, and often be abused and belittled in their attempt to make sales; the reputation of the telemarketer is that of pushy and inept salesperson, and their numbers are often blocked or they are hung up on due to making random cold calls.
The likelihood of being hung up on and abused is lessened when leads are generated from genuinely interested potential buyers, and when these leads are generated from social sharing, they are already educated about the product, about how much it is likely to cost, and will have done a lot of research.
The best type of sales conversion is where the customer is so educated by your content, videos, reports and emails that they are virtually experts themselves on your products and services, and they know why they need to invest in your business as their preferred service or product provider as their is a pre-existing relationship already assumed.
This also makes the conversion process completely effortless for the business owner, as the customer comes to the business owner, begging to part with their cash just to engage your services.
This is the most desirable effect, and LinkedIn can be used to create this distinct advantage. YouTube videos, created courses, content and other educational products make your company strategically positioned to be an industry leader.
As a business, you need to go where your audience demographic is, and for a business to business solution, or for a more high end consumer product and service provider, LinkedIn provides a whole host of gainfully employed decision makers ready to part with their cash as an investment in the best business to business or business to consumer content provider.
LinkedIn is a clear choice for where professional and reputable businesses are going to be found, and you want your business to be on there, and to be recognised as a top notch service provider.
It is a highly lucrative market, with easier ways to find leads with high purchase intent, so being on LinkedIn gives your business a strategic advantage over everyone else who has ignored this potential goldmine.
Lucas is the Managing Director and the Head of SEO Strategy at SEO Shark. He has over 15 years of experience in achieving SEO results for small and medium businesses as well as multinational and ASX-listed brands. He is also an author of multiple publications about digital marketing.