The Big 4, Social Media Edition: LinkedIn
While the impact the Big 4 accounting firms have on the profession is undeniable, so is social media’s impact. Introducing the social media Big 4.
The Social Media Big 4
LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are undoubtedly the leaders of the social media sphere. In this blog post, we’ll be diving into LinkedIn best practices for both individual accountants and firms. In two weeks, we’ll go through Facebook, followed by Twitter and Instagram. Let’s get into it.
Your Personal LinkedIn
Seeing as it is the largest professional social network, you’d be doing yourself a disservice by not actively participating on LinkedIn. This platform is a great place to find new clients, stay in touch with current clients, share thought leadership, engage with other leaders and grow your network.
There are many features to help you succeed on LinkedIn, including:
- Private and public groups
- Newsletters native to the platform
- Showcasing skills, endorsements and certifications
- Different content formats such as polls, videos, PDFs, carousels, etc.
- Live and in-person events
- Scheduling posts up to three months in advance
Personal LinkedIn Best Practices
Because LinkedIn is a professional network, users treat it differently than platforms like Twitter or Facebook. First things first, your profile should be kept up to date, have a clean, friendly headshot or image that depicts you and a bio that explains what you do. Customize your LinkedIn URL to be your name by clicking “Edit Public Profile & URL” in the top right corner of your profile page. It’s a good idea to add the link to your firm’s website or your personal contact page in your contact info section.
Personal Posting Best Practices
As for posting best practices, post often, at least a few times a week. If you have great content to share but don’t want to post it right then and there, schedule it for a certain date and time of your choosing. You can encourage commenting by asking thought provoking questions. If you create thought leadership pieces or write blogs, you can share them as articles directly on LinkedIn, without using links. Since it’s a professional network, users are on LinkedIn mostly during working hours, so that’s when you should be posting.
Build your network by connecting to your target audience and others within the profession. However, don’t send salesy automated messages. This is an immediate way to stain the reputation you’ve spent time building. While LinkedIn is a professional network, it’s important to show your human side and speak in a tone that’s authentic to you.
Engaging With Others
Don’t get so caught up in your own posts that you forget to engage with others. Resharing and commenting on others’ content, especially your clients’, coworkers’ and target audiences’, is a great way to build connections and increase your visibility. Remember: what goes around, comes around, so don’t be shy! If your firm has a company page on LinkedIn (which it should!) sharing its posts is a great way to increase the awareness and visibility of your firm. People trust people more than they trust brands, so be an advocate for your firm.
Company Page Best Practices
It’s incredibly simple to set up a LinkedIn page for your firm. If you haven’t already done so, you’re missing out on getting your content in front of a huge audience. Many of the personal best practices also apply to company pages. You should have a clean image, likely your logo, as the profile picture, a branded cover image, a short bio about your firm and the link to your firm’s website (or another site you want to send visitors to) as the page’s call to action.
Page Posting Best Practices
Sharing a variety of content can help your firm increase engagement and stand out. Posts with images and videos tend to perform better than text-only posts. Because people trust people more than brands, sharing the people behind your firm is a great way to build trust. You can not only post relevant things they’re doing, like speaking at a conference, to your page, but also reshare their personal posts to your page.
Page Content Ideas
As with personal pages, company pages should post often. This doesn’t always have to be your own content though. You can reshare content from industry publications, employees, partners, etc. If your firm has a newsletter, you can natively post it to LinkedIn as well. Newsletters tend to perform well. Another great feature of LinkedIn is the ability for page admins to switch between engaging with content as themselves or as their companies, so take advantage of that and engage as your firm. Considering the current accounting staffing crisis, LinkedIn is another place to get your job openings in front of potential candidates. LinkedIn is widely used by jobseekers to find and apply for jobs, so your firm is limiting its reach by not posting openings to the platform.
Growing a Page Following
Lastly, LinkedIn makes it easier to grow a page’s following than most other platforms thanks to its “Grow your followers” feature. Admins of the company page can invite up to 250 connections to follow the page each month. As Stevie Wonder once sang, “If you don’t ask, you don’t get.”
Your Page, Your Analytics
These are general best practices, but each firm is different, so look at the analytics within LinkedIn to see what performs best and where to improve. All in all, LinkedIn may be the biggest of the Big 4 social media platforms for accountants and firms. If you’re not using it to its full potential—on both a personal and firm level—you’re missing out on a great way to engage with others and limiting your reach.
Don’t miss out on the power of LinkedIn! If you’d like to make social media marketing easier and ensure your firm is following all the best practices, The Growth Partnership (TGP) is here to help. We provide outsourced social media marketing services tailored to your unique needs, so you can focus on what you do best—providing exceptional accounting services. Get in touch with us today to discuss your options and elevate your LinkedIn game.