The most trusted social media platform, a lead generation driver and the WORLD’S largest professional online network - LinkedIn is a social platform like no other. It’s perfect for an array of businesses, it’s growing at an incredible rate and it’s a hub for connection, collaboration, education and industry insights.
LinkedIn can help any business build brand authority. Brand authority plays a vital role in building trust with a consumer. The more consumers trust your company, the more likely they’ll be to buy from you and invest in your products and services.
But how can manufacturers use LinkedIn for increased brand authority? It’s simple and we’ve got it all covered in this post. If you’re keen to learn more about how manufacturing marketers can use LinkedIn for increased brand authority, look no further.
- What is brand authority?
- Posting consistency
- Employee advocates
- Informative and reactive content
What is brand authority?
Brand authority can have many definitions. If a company has expertise in their industry or field, then this would indicate that a brand has authority. Brand authority is a reputation and an element of trust others have assigned to a business.
Although brand authority is decided by your consumers, it doesn’t mean that they have the control over your brand reputation. In fact, building your brand authority all comes down to you. It takes time to develop and it’s something that requires constant consistency across all operations in your business or organisation.
Trust is the foundation of many consumer and customer relationships and without it, you won’t have many long-term loyal brand advocates. Brand authority helps consumers trust a company, it helps consumers make decisions and it can be a deciding factor as to whether a consumer will become a loyal customer or not.
If you have strong brand authority, consumers will more likely invest in your brand knowing their money is well spent. Whether that’s trusting your expertise, your experience or your work.
One of the many ways to build on your brand authority is to utilise the capabilities of LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a multifaceted platform that can offer an array of opportunities; however, there’s some best practices to follow to ensure you’re getting the most out of the platform and we’ve covered them all below.
By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.
Consistency is important on any social media platform. The more you post quality content, the more engaged your audience will be and the more recognised your brand will become. Being consistent across your LinkedIn will allow you to grow your audience engagement and reach. If you post weekly on LinkedIn you’ll more likely see a two times higher engagement rate as well as cultivating loyal brand followers, building brand authority, becoming visible on SEO and generating better leads.
If you post weekly on LinkedIn you’ll more likely see a two times higher engagement rate as well as cultivating loyal brand followers, building brand authority, becoming visible on SEO and generating better leads.
Companies who are more active on LinkedIn and share content consistently, get 30 percent more views than an incomplete profile, so it's a no brainer! Don't overthink the frequency of your posting. As long as you're providing quality content each week and you've got a purpose and goal for each post - you'll be standing yourself in good stead for LinkedIn success.
Remember, each time you post, it's another chance to grab the attention of your prospective audience and consistent brands are worth 20 percent more than those with inconsistencies in their messaging. What works for one brand might not work for you and that's why experimenting with the platform is essential. The best way to decide when to post is to have a LinkedIn strategy in place that gives you peace of mind about sharing content online consistently.
Top tips to consider:
- Set a goal: each post you share should have a goal. Is it to recruit new customers, are you wanting to ask a valuable question or are you developing brand awareness?
- Have a schedule: which days will you post and at what times? This allows you to bulk write high-quality content without the need to rush. Be prepared.
- Produce high-quality content: engaging, thought-led high-quality content will always create great outcomes. Ensure the content you're sharing communicates your brand and business values properly.
- Analyse your performance: always keep track of what works and doesn't work on your profile so you can implement productive changes in the future. LinkedIn has many features so you can see the engagement and reach of certain posts.
Employee advocacy is essential for your LinkedIn - FACT. In simple terms, employee advocacy is when people promote the business they work for on their social channels. Every time a member of your team posts about your business or brand on social media - they're acting as an important advocate for the brand and providing free promotion.
Your employees might already do this and if they do, it's a bonus. People love sharing their successes and important milestones. But if you're wanting to make the MOST of employee advocacy it may require some direction. After all, your employees are advocates and have social channels you can utilise for lead generation and brand authority- use it wisely.
To make your employee advocacy more effective, it's a good idea to have a schedule and direction in place. What products and services do you need to promote? Do you have a campaign you want to share and launch? Do you want different sectors of your business to focus on different posts and shares? Whatever your goals are as an organisation, your employees can play an important role in promoting and driving your business forward.
Getting your marketing team on hand to help would be a great start to enhance your employee advocacy. You would pre-write content for your team members to share, you could suggest some positioning statements they could use or you could encourage them to use a company hashtag. Whatever you decide - ensure it’s aligned with a goal and a wider vision.
Employee advocacy can increase your reach, it can enhance your engagement, it can have a positive impact on your sales and it can position your business as a thought-leader in your industry. There's never been a better chance to get your team on board until now.
LinkedIn, like many other platforms, provides the option of sponsored updates and paid advertising. This form of promotion is effective, if done correctly it's guaranteed to provide results that are tailored to your goals and demographic.
If you haven't considered the power of LinkedIn ads then now is the time. They can increase leads, conversions, brand authority and ROI. Because of the positives, 80 percent of B2B content marketers utilise LinkedIn ads as part of their marketing strategy.
To run ads, you must have a LinkedIn Company Page and then you're good to go. Many LinkedIn ads offer more than 200 targeting characteristics meaning you can customise your reach, demographic, objectives, ad format and MORE. The diversity of this platform means that you can experiment, test ads, evaluate results and progress over time ensuring that you're having positive outcomes every time.
Although LinkedIn paid ads may seem confusing at first, they can increase purchase intent by 33 percent and LinkedIn's lead conversion rates are three times higher than other major ad platforms, including Google Ads. So if you're not equipped with a trained team to utilise the power of ads, it's worth investing in an expert team who can maximise your money for the most optimal results.
The functionality of hashtags on LinkedIn are different to other social media channels like Instagram and Twitter. However, they do still have the same function and goal: to increase reach, brand authority and engagement.
Hashtags allow you to reach a wider audience that spans beyond your existing connections. They can provide authority to your content and they can be another great way of increasing your engagement by featuring in the feeds of those who follow certain hashtags.
On LinkedIn, you can add hashtags to your posts or follow hashtags for certain content, updates and insights you require. To do this, simply type in the hashtag into the search bar and a feed will come up giving you the option to follow.
But how do you find the appropriate hashtags? Well, to utilise the power of hashtags it's important you're using the correct ones for your proposed demographic. Here are some tips.
- Location-based hashtags are a good start. If the content you're sharing is specific to a location, it'll likely be of interest to those in that area.
- LinkedIn will suggest hashtags based on your profile, content and previous updates - these can be found in the text box before you post an update. Don't be inclined to use these though, only use them if they apply to your content.
- If you're attending an event or sharing another brand, research to see if they have branded hashtags, that way you'll fall under their content and reach their audience too.
- Check what hashtags your competitors are using.
- Search for hashtags within your sector to see where your audience may be talking and sharing content. You can follow these hashtags for industry insights too.
- Use LinkedIn Analytics to gain insight into previous hashtag reach and engagement to see if you need to switch things around a little.
- Have your finger on the pulse! That's right, always watch out for emerging trends and be one step ahead.
LinkedIn hashtag best practices:
- Avoid spacing and write them like this: #Manufacturing #ManufacturingMarketing
- Stick to less than five hashtags. You don't want to come across as spammy or annoy your connections.
- Avoid punctuation in a hashtag as it will damage the hashtag and it won't work - just like a space would. Keep hashtags whole words for optimal results.
- Keep your hashtags short and simple. If you want people to use your hashtag in their content too, keep it memorable and to the point.
- Using hashtags in sentences is a seamless and effective way to use hashtags "Our blog post on #ManufacturingMarketing is one not to miss!".
- Always double check your hashtags, you want to make sure you're appearing in the right categories and searches possible.
Informative and reactive content
Every piece of content you post on LinkedIn should serve a purpose. You want to ensure you're maximising the attention of your audience as much as possible and providing value to their feed. Providing quality content will not only build upon your brand authority but it'll also position you as a thought-leader in your industry.
You could share industry insights, you can repurpose previous content (blog posts, Ebooks, webinars, podcasts) or you could respond to industry news and be reactive with your content. If you're strategic with your posting methods, you'll ensure that the content you share is informative and thought-led, not ad-hoc with no purpose.
- Remember, consistency is essential.
- Have a plan in place for your content - know what you're posting and when. Maybe you might choose to have a theme: Monday - industry insight, Wednesday - company USP, Friday - content promotion.
- Live video gets 24x more engagement than other types of posts.
- LinkedIn recommends adding an image to your posts as it can increase your posts performance rate.
- Utilise hashtags.
- Re-publish and share your posts with relevant industry groups on LinkedIn.
Engage with your audience! Respond to comments, engage on forums, comment on posts and bridge the gap between social media communications and your brand personality.
Humanising your brand through communication can allow for a deeper connection made with your audience - in return boosting your brand authority and online presence. Providing communication on your LinkedIn profile can build trust with your audience and make room for engaging conversation and audience insights.
Having a positive relationship between you and your customers is essential and social media is the perfect opportunity. If you're responsive with your engagements, consumers are more likely to gravitate towards your services knowing they'll receive a reply. Consumers love reliable brands that they can lean on for support, guidance and expertise. Start implementing the engagement now and be prepared for positive results.
How you can use LinkedIn to drive sales and engagement in the manufacturing industry
55+ million companies are currently on LinkedIn and there are two point nine million business groups on the platform. LinkedIn is growing, it’s going places and there’s no shortage of opportunities. However, to succeed on LinkedIn there are various tips and tricks you should be utilising to get the most out of the platform.
In our FREE downloadable we cover everything B2B manufacturers need to know about LinkedIn. From adding value through thought leadership to how to connect with your IDEAL target audience. We cover it all. So if you’re ready to grow on the world’s largest professional online platform - download your copy today!
However, it's not quite ready yet - we're just adding the finishing touches. So, for more information on how LinkedIn can help propel your business forwards, please don't hesitate to get in touch with our expert team with any questions or queries. We look forward to hearing from you!