Don’t Forget About LinkedIn

by Bernie Arnason

In social media circles and discussions, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+ seem to get the most attention these days, as companies of all sizes define and execute a social media strategy. But LinkedIn should also be a part of the thought process, if it isn’t already, particularly with Pivot’s telecom service provider clients.

With over 225 million members, LinkedIn is the largest social network of working professionals. It’s a business-to-business networking gold mine, allowing members to connect with other working professionals and the companies and brands that are important to their line of work.

For our telecom service provider clients, offering business class services has never been more important. Revenue from legacy telephone services are in decline as regulations are catching up with marketplace realities, and “guaranteed revenues” are now at risk. Diversification is now mandatory and business services provide one of the most attractive growth opportunities going forward. Whether it’s managed IT services, hosted voice services, or business IT support services, there is a wealth of opportunity for companies that decide to pursue them. Footprint and distance aren’t as important as they have historically been, allowing service providers to greatly expand their reach.

With a growing focus on business class services, LinkedIn should be a part of an overall business services marketing strategy. When done correctly, you can discover new business relationships, strengthen existing ones, and build thought leadership and credibility. Beyond traditional networking tools that connect you with prospects, you can also place targeted ads, create or join professional groups of like-minded working professionals, and conduct informal polls to gain some introductory insight.

Like other social media efforts, LinkedIn should not be viewed as a direct sales tool. Rather it’s an inexpensive tool to build and strengthen relationships with existing and prospective business clients. It’s an indirect sales and marketing tool, providing a great conduit to your hopefully growing business customer segment, enabling valuable interaction. We strongly recommend clients consider LinkedIn as a part of your overall strategy. If you would like more specific ideas on how to take advantage of LinkedIn, contact us for more details.

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