In a previous blog post, I covered the reasons why dealership owners, management and staff should create and maintain LinkedIn profiles. If you and your dealership took the time to create your own profiles, then you have a solid foundation to create and host a Company Page on LinkedIn.
Company Pages are offered for FREE by LinkedIn. Aside from being free why should your dealership invest time into a Company Page? According to The Wall Street Journal, 41 percent of small businesses believe that LinkedIn provides them the most potential to generate business. This percentage will grow as more and more businesses use LinkedIn effectively via their profiles and Company Pages. The use of LinkedIn’s Company Page is the other half of the equation, so you must create one to realize the potential of LinkedIn.
Where do I start developing a Company Page? Go here and follow the steps.
BUILD & CREATE CONTENT
Dealers should use Company Pages as a bridge to their main goal, which is driving traffic to the dealership’s website and/or storefront.
Here is the type of content that you should create and add to your page:
- Keywords and phrases: Reference your dealership’s brand guides and marketing materials to complete sections on your LinkedIn Company Page.
- Overview Tab: Add a detailed introduction of your dealership in the “Overview Tab.”
- Products and Service Tab: Add a detailed description of your products and services in the Products and Service Tab.
- Create and post content that is interesting, relevant and timely: Your Company Page should reflect the tone, interests and activities that your desired audience wants to see. For example, the 2015 riding season is here and you find an interesting story about riders’ refresher courses. Add this story’s link to your Company Page. Content that informs, educates and entertains your audience will increase responses and your dealership’s credibility.
REACH & INTERACTION
Your first level followers should include your dealership staff and loyal customers. Any dealership staff who adds your Company Page under their LinkedIn profile employment section will automatically follow your dealership Company Page. These followers are positively invested in your dealership, thus the ideal starter audience to begin conducting rapport and dialogue via your Company Page. Here are the actions this audience can do to start interacting with your Company Page:
- Recommendations: The audience should vouch for your models and services because 86 percent of U.S. consumers are influenced by recommendations and LinkedIn receives over 1 billion annual recommendations, according to marketingthink.com.
- Comments, likes and shares are used to interact with your dealership’s interesting and relevant content on the Company Page. Your audience should show interest and interact with the content, in order to increase activity and build dialogue.
- Endorsements are personal reviews of the dealership. What are your dealership’s strengths, unique characteristics and abilities that consumers look for? Loyal customers and staff know the answers and should add and support these qualities on the Company Page.
There are three popular avenues used to build a following for a Company Page:
- Through your first-level followers and their engagements with your Company Page, you will start to attract second-level followers and third-level followers. The followers of others are how you can build a bigger audience that is like-minded. Birds of a feather usually follow together on social media.
- Advertise the LinkedIn icon and link to your page on your website, other social media sites, newsletters and emails.
- Follow and engage on other Company Pages: OEMs, community organizations and local chapters and clubs.
You can also consider paying for “Follow Ads” that target a specific audience.
LinkedIn has a built-in FREE analytics tool linked to your Company Page. In order to determine what content is effective, you will need to record analytics on a regular basis. In order to justify LinkedIn as a marketing tool for your dealership, it is useful to keep regular records of activity.
Click here to learn more about LinkedIn’s analytics tool.
Your Company Page is not just another marketing tool, but a gateway to opportunities, education and professional growth. When you have taken the time to build and maintain content, engagements and active followers, you are building a positive professional image on a professional medium. You build a professional Company Page with substantial content and connections and less on the fluffy stuff like memes and funny photos. A well-maintained Company Page can showcase your dealership in its best light.
Amanda White is an account manager for PowerSports Network.