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Have you considered using LinkedIn for talent development and enhancing your business brand? Yep, without doubt, it used to be the place you’d go to find a job but that’s not quite the case these days.

At its inception, LinkedIn delivered a clear offering to its users. If you wanted a job, then it would put you in contact with employers looking for a new employee. It did this better than anyone at the time and then used the data harvested from its members to monetise by becoming an advertising platform. Smart move.

But to continue to grow, as any listed company needs to do, it needed to mature into something that all businesses would be happy to allow their individuals to spend some time on.

As a result, the social network has been repositioning itself as somewhere a business should encourage its employees to rhapsodise about where they work. If this seems like the choir boy telling you that church is a good place to spend your time, then you’d be spot on.

But Nielsen research has shown that, while only 33% of buyers trust a brand (so, not a small percentage), a staggering 90% customers trust product or service recommendations from people they know.

Let’s be clear, stats can be cut anyway you like, so this doesn’t unequivocally prove that LinkedIn is the place you should encourage your workforce to frequent. But if you think about the network and the sort of message that could be shared about your brand, and then finally who all those individuals have the potential to reach, you begin to see some wisdom in associating the Nielsen research with LinkedIn.

You should be owning the narrative around your business. If you’re not talking about your brand publicly, then you can bet that potential clients or consumers aren’t talking about it in private. Wouldn’t you want your employees to help inform those soundbites?

Also, if your employees are sharing thoughtful, eloquent, articulate and intelligent content it could be the clincher between zero engagement and sparking the start of a potential customer journey.

Encourage them to publicly post thoughtful content on a social network where your next big clients are hanging out, wondering when their next award-winning agency is going to turn up. After all, brand messages reached 561% further when shared by employees vs. the same messages shared via official brand social channels (that’s another exceedingly impressive stat, this time from MSL Group).

So, if you have a few reluctant employees, you should spend time with them, help them feel confident about sharing posts on LinkedIn, because chances are, this is the first place new (and existing) business will go to check out who you are and what your team is made of. Wouldn’t you rather that first impression come straight from the heart?

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