News That Means Business

June 16, 2014

Tap the Power of LinkedIn: 7 Steps to Success in the World’s Largest Online Business Community

It’s a community of over 300 million professionals in 150 industries worldwide – many of whom make key decisions for their companies. And it offers unique tools for reaching the key people on your business radar. Invest a little time in mastering this leading B2B platform and you’ll reap some unique returns. Here are seven steps to help you get started on LinkedIn or enhance your current experience there.

  1. The Company Page
  2. If you own or manage a company, this page is your storefront, your business card. It communicates the essence of your brand and tells your corporate story. Through it, you can connect to your network of current and potential customers and keep your organization top of mind through updates to your page. Through LinkedIn’s search function, other members can find your products or services easily.

  3. Content is Key
  4. Your success depends on strong content that describes what you do and why you’re unique. This content should be succinct and share-able. Every time a visitor engages with your content by sharing it with followers, your message is amplified, your reach extended and your profile raised.

    What makes content share-able? Useful information – tips, trends, offers – will likely be shared. If that useful information is paired with an interesting visual, the likelihood of sharing increases. Include video demos, case studies, free downloads, white papers, e-books on your company page. What’s not likely to get shared are promotional posts (unless they are very entertaining ads). This doesn’t mean that you can never be self-promotional on your page. You will want to make new product announcements, for example, and include client endorsements or testimonials. Be guided by the 80/20 rule that says 80 percent of your content should be informational, and only 20 percent promotional.

  5. Update and Target
  6. You’ve created a great page, but now the work is just beginning. To keep it effective, you need to continue posting regularly, at least a couple of times a week. This keeps you and/or your company alive on the pages of your followers and keeps your own page looking active and current. Where will you get enough content? First, remember that quality of content is more important than quantity. One substantive post is better than five spammy ones. Consider a tip of the day or a comment on industry news, preferably in the morning when LinkedIn members are most engaged. Share a post from a follower or comment on an interesting article and include its link. Share relevant comments from your page or share a post from a thought leader. Pull in content from your company or personal blog or Twitter feed. Invite reviews of your products/services. Start conversations by replying to comments. Or post a provocative question to your followers (their answers might make great future posts). You’ve got more content resources than you think you have.

  7. Win the Search Game with Optimization
  8. Optimize your LinkedIn company or personal page just as you do your website, seeding keywords throughout your text. These keywords will point LinkedIn members searching those terms to your page. The Google search bots also scan LinkedIn pages. Select a word or phrase that describes your core offering: “copyright attorney,” “online security software,” “commercial real estate management.” Then add a few variants or use a few of the key words on your website. Incorporate keywords into your main description and repeat them frequently in the first paragraphs of the descriptive text and in sub-heads.

  9. Build a Following
  10. What’s a LinkedIn page without followers?  Expand yours by constantly reminding your contacts of your LinkedIn presence. Put the “Follow Me” button on all your outreach content: website, blog, all social media, corporate stationery and business cards, print ads and collateral, annual reports and in the email signature block of your entire staff. Mention your page via your social media accounts. Call attention to your latest LinkedIn posts on your blog. Invite your customers, partners and prospects to follow you. If you have a company page, encourage your staff to have personal LinkedIn pages. Personal pages have automatic links to the member’s company pages, giving you amplified exposure to the networks of your team.

  11. Use Metrics to Measure Your Company Page’s Performance
  12. If you use Google Analytics for your website, you know how useful performance metrics can be. LinkedIn’s analytic system will deliver the same type of data for your company page. Review these reports regularly and revise your content according to the keywords, visuals and topics commanding the most engagement. Among other valuable feedback, these stats will also give you a picture of visitor demographics and provide you with a comparison of your page vs. others in your industry or market.

  13. Get Known as an Expert
  14. LinkedIn is known for its discussion groups, where business people and professionals “meet” to exchange advice and share information and ideas. There are over 2 million of these, covering thousands of industries and special interests. Participation is limited to individuals, so you can’t join a group or comment as a company, but your executives can join and comment from their own pages. Encourage their participation in relevant groups to build your company’s name and reputation through the expertise of your management.

    Thought-leader status is earned by consistent participation and a helpful attitude. Answer questions, share experiences, but DON’T sell or promote your products/services overtly. Your expertise and attitude will drive customers your way, not your sales pitch.

Don’t miss out on LinkedIn. Get more active, using the seven tips above. Once you engage with this unique platform, you’ll find you can’t do without it.

April 10, 2014

Boost Your Search Engine Ranking: The Inside Scoop

Filed under: SEO,social media — Caryl Communications @ 4:44 pm
Tags: ,

Boost Your Search Engine Ranking: The Inside Scoop

By Don Campbell, founder of DJ Campbell Marketing

When you research a topic using a search engine such as Google, Yahoo! or Bing, you get a list of websites to click on. You probably already noticed that the top few listings, and those along the right side, look somewhat different than the rest of the sites on the list. That is because they are paid listings or ads. Bing and Yahoo! display them in a box. Google identifies them with an icon. The ones below these paid listings may seem to be in no particular order. Actually, they are not at all random. These listings are known as organic search results, and the ideal location for your company’s website is right up on top. So what determines the order, and how do you get your site in one of those prime spots? Search engine optimization (SEO) and social media optimization (SMO).

Here’s a quick look at how a search engine works. The leaders – Google, Bing and Yahoo! – use “crawlers” to find relevant sites in response to an entered search term. The “crawlers” operate according to a sophisticated and frequently changing set of algorithms. A number of SEO methods ensure the “crawlers” will identify your site as relevant to the search and place it in a prominent position on the searcher’s list. Here are a few examples of SEO tactics:

–    cross-linking between pages of the same site, specifically to the site’s key pages

–    writing content that includes frequently searched keyword phrases, making the site relevant to a wide variety of search queries

–    updating content regularly

–    adding relevant keywords to a web page’s meta data

SMO is similar to SEO in its goal to drive traffic to a site. Search engines are now using the recommendations made by users of social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ to rank websites on the results pages. A “like,” “share” or “retweet” on a social network is viewed as a “vote” or endorsement of a webpage’s quality. Search engines are using such “votes” to rank a site on their results pages. A few important tips for boosting SMO include:

–       reviewing analytics to determine what kinds of posts get “liked” and “shared”

–       tailoring content to your target audience

–       increasing the number of followers

–       scheduling posts and tweets frequently to ensure consistent visibility

Although the algorithms utilized by search engines are ever-changing, the tips above will help in optimizing your company’s site for SEO and SMO. I hope to see you at the top!

Please reach out to us with questions. You can reach Caryl Communications at 201-796-7788 or Don Campbell at 908-262-7070 and don@djcmarketing.com.

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