10 Ways Small Businesses Can Use LinkedIn to Drive Leads

LinkedIn is one of the most powerful social media platforms for lead generation and business growth. With over 722 million users worldwide, it offers small businesses immense opportunities to connect with professionals, establish thought leadership, and generate qualified leads.

This comprehensive guide will explore the top 10 proven tactics small businesses can leverage to drive leads on LinkedIn.

Craft an Engaging LinkedIn Company Page

Your LinkedIn Company Page serves as the hub for your brand on the platform. Invest time into making it as robust and engaging as possible.

Key Elements to Include:

  • Compelling banner image reflecting your brand identity
  • Detailed description of services/products offered
  • Company history, mission, values and culture
  • Media tabs showcasing product videos, brochures, presentations etc.
  • Reviews from happy customers
  • Jobs tab advertising open positions
  • Comprehensive list of Company Pages you are following

A polished Company Page establishes credibility and gives prospects ample content to engage with.

Publish Regular Long-Form Articles

Consistently publishing long-form articles on LinkedIn establishes you as an authority in your niche. Well-researched educational articles also attract organic search traffic.

Tips for Great LinkedIn Articles:

  • Target keywords prospects search when researching your offerings
  • Provide actionable advice and insider tips
  • Include stats, expert quotes, case studies for credibility
  • Insert relevant images, videos, infographics
  • Promote your articles via Company Page and existing connections
  • Monitor analytics to identify high-performing content to produce more of

The more value you provide, the more qualified leads you’ll generate.

Leverage LinkedIn Groups

Joining and participating in niche LinkedIn Groups related to your industry enables direct access to your target prospects.

Best Practices for Group Engagement:

  • Join Groups aligned with your ideal customer profile
  • Proactively contribute valuable insights as discussions
  • Share your latest articles and content
  • Avoid overt sales pitches
  • Connect with active members directly
  • Monitor Group analytics to double down on active Groups

As you establish authority, you’ll organically attract prospects.

Run Targeted LinkedIn Ads

LinkedIn advertising enables precise targeting based on location, industry, job role, and interests. Leverage it to reach ideal prospects at scale.

Tips for LinkedIn Ad Success:

  • Target by job title, company, Groups to limit waste
  • Test different objectives – leads, traffic, brand awareness etc.
  • Analyze cost-per-lead to identify most profitable segments
  • A/B test ad copy, creative assets, and calls-to-action
  • Create separate ad sets for different offerings
  • Retarget engaged visitors to increase conversions

The platform makes it easy to track ROI on ads and optimize accordingly.

Cultivate Killer Company Updates

Company Updates on your LinkedIn Page are a free way to organically engage your existing network.

Ideas for Great Updates:

  • Share latest blog articles
  • Recognize employees and company milestones
  • Promote events, webinars, and offers
  • Give insider tips and how-tos
  • Spotlight customers and case studies
  • Publish links to PR, awards, and press coverage
  • Follow relevant hashtags like #smallbiz for exposure

Post 1-2 times per week to stay top of mind without overwhelming connections.

Connect with Prospects Directly

Proactively connecting with targeted prospects on LinkedIn is a quick way to establish relationships and start conversations.

Who to Connect With:

  • Existing customers and partners
  • Prospects in target market segments
  • Complimentary businesses for partnerships
  • Industry influencers and analysts
  • Engaged visitors to your Company Page

Personalize connection requests to improve acceptance rates. Look for common ground to break the ice after connecting.

Host Focused LinkedIn Events

The LinkedIn Events feature provides a turnkey option to host virtual events focused on your niche.

Event Best Practices:

  • Host webinars, workshops, and fireside chats
  • Feature special guests like customers or partners
  • Promote extensively before and during via Company and personal accounts
  • Make sure content delivers on the promised topic and value
  • Record event for future lead gen
  • Enable lead capture via gated registration

Events establish your brand as a thought leader and gather leads in a live setting.

Join and Interact with LinkedIn Showcase Pages

Showcase Pages highlight brands, products, and topics. Join relevant Pages to directly engage prospective customers.

Showcase Page Strategy Tips:

  • Join Pages aligned with your products/services
  • Like and comment on updates to increase visibility
  • Share Showcase Page content to your own network
  • Monitor analytics to see which Pages yield most engagement
  • Connect with individual members who actively engage

Showcase Pages grant exposure to pre-qualified, interested audiences.

Send Targeted LinkedIn InMail

LinkedIn InMail enables you to directly contact prospects who aren’t connections. Use judiciously to break through to buyers.

Best Practices for InMail Outreach:

  • Personalize messages using prospect’s name and interests
  • Communicate clear value focused on their needs
  • Keep first InMail concise and friendly
  • Follow up but avoid being pushy
  • Continually refine target prospect list for best open rates

InMail breaks through the noise to start meaningful conversations.

Spotlight Your Team’s Expertise

Your team’s LinkedIn profiles offer another touchpoint to highlight your expertise. Encourage them to showcase achievements.

Profile Optimization Tips:

  • Use branded backgrounds and customized public profile URLs
  • Include rich media like presentations, videos and portfolio projects
  • Share long-form articles published on LinkedIn and other sites
  • Recognize work anniversaries, awards, patents and certifications
  • Participate in LinkedIn Publisher Program for added authority

Optimized individual profiles strengthen your brand and credibility.

Monitor LinkedIn Analytics

Track LinkedIn analytics regularly to identify high-performing initiatives and course correct as needed.

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Key Metrics to Track:

  • Company Page views and follower growth
  • Most popular published articles and updates
  • Best performing Groups and Showcases
  • Lead conversion rates by initiative
  • ROI of advertising and InMail campaigns

Continuous optimization is crucial for LinkedIn success. Focus on what works.

Conclusion

LinkedIn is the #1 social media platform for B2B lead generation, enabling small businesses to directly connect with their ideal customers.

By crafting an optimized Company Page, consistently publishing valuable long-form content, advertising to ideal prospects, hosting virtual events, and proactively messaging targeted prospects, small businesses can drive significant qualified leads on LinkedIn.

Track key metrics diligently to double down on top-performing initiatives. With its unmatched professional targeting options, LinkedIn should be a core pillar of any small business’ lead generation strategy.

What has worked well for you on LinkedIn? What other lead gen tactics would you add? Let me know in the comments!

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