LinkedIn gives Companies a Voice – why you now need Followers on LinkedIn.

I’m a big fan of Linkedin as a professional resource. I find myself visiting daily, to see if anyone in my network has posted an article that is interesting, or linked to a piece of industry news. I check my Groups to see if there’s a new discussion thread that I want to chime in on. And occasionally I’ll even visit the “Answers” section to see if anyone is having similar issues to me, or if I can help with an answer or two.

But, the one thing that I’ve been scratching my head on is “How is the Company Page  adding value to my organization and my brand?”. Well today, at LinkedIn’s Connect:11 Conference in Manhattan, they revealed a significant change to Company Pages.

1) A Company can now publish an Update. So at last, you can send messages to your followers ( I always wondered why a company needed followers on LinkedIn)

2) LinkedIn has a marketing package that will allow you to target members with specific job titles and/or companies, and encourage them to “follow” your company. So you’ll be able to proactively build a following – a well-qualified following.

So now it’s possible to broadcast your message through LinkedIn, with the added benefit that anyone who “Likes” the update will automatically propagate it to their network. And presumably, someone who is following you is probably connected to many more like-minded folks who are also in your target audience.

It’s sometimes said that LinkedIn moves slowly. Their defense is that they are careful not to roll out something too early and cause pain to their users. This change to Company Pages has apparently been in beta-test for a while with companies such as AT&T and Dell, and has proven successful. From what I’ve seen it will make LinkedIn much more attractive to corporate marketers.

One final question. When, oh When, will LinkedIn release an iPad App?! At the conference today, there were many slides showing a tablet with what appeared to be an app running. But all I was told was “we’re working on it”!

Take a look at the new Company Pages. Do you think it will help your brand?

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