When LinkedIn went live in 2003, it made its mark as a place for professionals to network and job hunt. People signed up, posted their resumes and waited for good things to happen. Now the social networking site is evolving into a robust tool for helping individuals and businesses succeed.
Thatâ€™s right, businesses. There are 2 million business pages on LinkedIn. Viewers can learn about a business, â€śfollow itâ€ť to hear about its latest products, and of course, search for job openings. Many employees also are linked to their employerâ€™s company page, making it easier for businesses to find connections and sales prospects.
If youâ€™ve kept a passive LinkedIn account for years, consider strategies for using the service to benefit yourself and your company. "Is there a place for small business on LinkedIn? Absolutely, yes,â€ť says Lori Ruff, a social media trainer who wrote the book Rock the World with Your Online Presence with her partner, Mike Oâ€™Neil.
â€śIf you ask small business people where their business and leads come from, most will tell you itâ€™s from referrals,â€ť Ruff says. â€śThey can mimic that same behavior in the online space, and they will be more successful because it just enhances everything. You can speak to 10 to 15 people at a networking event, but on LinkedIn you can speak to hundreds of people and tell them so much more.â€ť