Establishing Experts on LinkedIn

linkedIn-expertLinkedIn is a valuable social media tool for many businesses and is often overlooked as just a resume/job-seeking platform. While it is certainly beneficial for those uses, it can also serve as a tool for marketing your experts and ultimately your company. There is a lot of chatter about many different industries on LinkedIn and that leaves an opportunity to get your experts out there sharing industry knowledge.

How do you find out who is talking? Start by exploring the “group” section to discover who is talking about your industry – and what they are talking about.

1. In the search function, select “groups” and type in a keyword. See what groups come up and who is running the groups.
2. Ask yourself: What individuals are interested in the topic? Who is asking questions and who is responding? Where are my competitors in this space?
3. Continue this process by exploring other industry relevant keywords.
4. Begin your preliminary assessment of opportunities you can take advantage of.

How can I use my experts? Once you have gathered your research and determined where you and your company can make a splash, identify experts within your company that could comment and pose questions in the groups you have identified.

Keep in mind…experts are busy. Put together a process that makes posing LinkedIn questions and responding simple and easy for the expert. This is social media, so responses need to be prompt or they will be lost.

What if I want to start my own group? That is great! But, make sure you have a solid strategy behind it and a way to keep it active. Starting a group is like starting a blog. You want to make sure that it stays up to date and is beneficial to its members.

How do I show results? There are many different ways to assess the results, but a good place to start is to show how much traffic is driven to your website from LinkedIn already. Keep in mind that much of your content may be driven from your company page if you keep it updated.

To understand how (and if) LinkedIn is driving traffic to your website, start by taking a look at your company’s social traffic in Google Analytics or other analytic platform. This will give you a immediate assessment of the traffic driven from LinkedIn (in general).

Additionally, take a look at the posts your experts are commenting on and questions your experts are posing. Who is responding to them? How many people? How many member does the group have? Who is liking the posts? All of these can help assess success.

One last important tip! Make sure your experts’ LinkedIn profiles are up to date and position them as experts. It’s great if we know experts are commenting and posing questions, but how do group members know the experts are actually experts!? That’s where the personal LinkedIn profile comes in. It can give group members confirmation that the expert knows what they are talking about.