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What Can LinkedIn Do for My Business?

LinkedIn is a social network for business.

LinkedIn is a business-focused social network that claims more than 150 million members, including companies and individuals.

For SMEs, LinkedIn offers a range of opportunities that are different from those provided by consumer social media such as Facebook and Google Plus.

The site can be used by businesses in a number of ways, including:

  • promoting new products, services and ideas
  • finding sales leads
  • extending sales into new geographical areas
  • making, building and renewing business relationships

LinkedIn’s facilities

Many users don’t fully use the facilities that LinkedIn has to offer, and the new ones which are continually being developed. Simply building a profile and connecting with known acquaintances is only using part of the site.

Other valuable opportunities include:

  • synchronising your Twitter account to your LinkedIn profile, ensuring that Tweets are more widely read
  • linking blog posts and other social media accounts to your LinkedIn profile, which will help increase the number of followers
  • asking for customer recommendations which will go on your public profile, and giving recommendations to other businesses as appropriate
  • meeting potential business partners and associates among complementary businesses, with which you can link to make joint bids for work
  • finding out about industry events such as conferences, networking sessions and webinars, particularly those held by specialist business advisers
  • showcasing projects and applications on which you have worked
  • finding supplier recommendations from other members, particularly those with whom you have a connection or who are in the same Groups as you
  • building networks of contacts through specific industry Groups
  • extending connections through links to contacts of contacts
  • tapping into expert opinions to find answers to questions, and following them through Tweets and other posts
  • sharing your own knowledge and building a reputation as someone who knows their industry well
  • showing up-to-date records of training, conferences, speaking engagements, qualifications and related activities, – all of which can be helpful to people searching for specific skills

It’s very important to keep a close eye on LinkedIn updates, such as new applications, because additional opportunities are regularly made available.