Even if you're a sole trader, and especially if you are currently out of a job, I recommend you add a Company Page on LinkedIn.
Why? I'll explain how, and why you should do that in this article.
What is a LinkedIn Company Page?
Separate from your LinkedIn profile, a Company Page is a place where you can tell the world what your company does, gain followers, and post updates, and even show job opportunities where you're using LinkedIn for the hiring process.
You can also use a company page named after yourself to show what you do as an individual, especially if you wear more than one hat, and have different areas of work such as a side-gig. You may be a writer and also a digital marketer, for example.
What benefits does a Company Page give you?
Firstly, you gain credibility with a permanent location on LinkedIn that can be found by anyone on LinkedIn.
Secondly, LinkedIn members can simply click once to 'Follow' your Company, and will be notified when you add updates to the page. It's a frictionless way to stay in touch.
You can share updates from the company, rather than from your personal profile, and they will appear on the Company Page.
BONUS: When somebody accepts your connection on LinkedIn, the first thing they'll now see is the opportunity to Follow your Company Page. But only if you have one, and it's linked to your profile.
You now also have the ability to invite your LinkedIn Connections to follow your Company Page. Your invitations will appear along with normal connection requests from individuals.
You are given four options at this stage, to create a Page. For some reason LinkedIn stops using the term Company Pages and just uses 'Pages' at this point. You can add a page for a small business, medium to large business, add a showcase page, or add a page if you are an educational institution.
Adding name and basic details to your Company Page
The illustration below shows the basic information to add for a company page. Logo size is recommended to be 300 x 300 pixels at a minimum, and you can also choose a specific URL for your page on LinkedIn, subject to availability. This is useful for search visibility, so choose a clear and meaningful URL.
Adding graphics to your Company Page
You can use free graphic tools like canva.com to size and adjust graphics and logos to add a header graphic to brand your page.
Adding hashtags to your Company page
You can associate up to three hashtags with your company page. Your page will be able to like, comment and reshare posts on these hashtag feeds. So you can like, comment and reshare as a company, rather than as an individual.
You can also add a button to lead, for example, to your website home page, contact page or landing page, and in addition, you can associate a LinkedIn Group you manage with the page.
There's also the opportunity to add descriptions of the page in different languages which will help visibility and understanding if you work internationally.
A further option is to add different locations for the business which is naturally useful for those organisations serving customers face to face. A 'bricks and mortar' presence helps to reassure people that it's a real, live entity.
New Lead Generation form
A new feature for 2022 is the ability to add a lead generation form to your page. This allows LinkedIn Members to request further information or, say, ask for a free demo, with their details being pre-populated in the lead generation form and then sent to a collection area. Nice, frictionless way to generate leads.
But quite why you can't just have these emailed to you as they come in is a mystery. You need to log in to get them, and you don't get any notification of when there are new leads to follow up. A bit dumb.
On the page, the lead generation form appears below the 'about' section describing the company.
Linking your Company Page back to your LinkedIn Profile
Once you've created your Company Page, you should go back to your profile, and either edit, or add, your experience as a member of your company.
Typing the Company Name in will do a look-up in the LinkedIn database, and you can highlight and select your company. This means that the Company logo will now appear next to your experience entry, and a click will take your profile visitors to your company page.
This is far more impressive than simply having the default 'grey building' appear next to your experience entry. This looks more like a filing cabinet than a building in my view. Boring and plain vanilla.
The LinkedIn Search Visibility Hack: Adding Showcase Pages
You can add additional pages which are linked to your Company Page called 'Showcase Pages'. You can use these to highlight particular services or products.
An added benefit of creating a Showcase Page is that you can name it strategically to be found in searches on LinkedIn. So if you're a widget producer, you can add Showcase Pages for Recycled Widgets, Green Widgets, Low Carbon Widgets, etc.
Why you should add a Company Page even if you have no formal 'Company'
It's about visibility and branding, and also allows you to fold in disparate experience under one 'company' entry. Even if the Company name is just your own name, having a tangible, visible entry on LinkedIn gives you extra gravitas - as well as an identifiable icon sitting alongside your experience entry.
So, for example, you can have one 'job' at your company which is showcasing your experience as a writer. You can then add a second job (which can also be a current role) where you talk about your experience as a digital marketer.
I use an approach like this on my own LinkedIn Profile - see the screenshot below.
Being creative with your job titles to add in extra keywords likely to be used in LinkedIn searches is a good practice here:
Which of these job titles do you think will be seen more often in search?
- Digital Marketing
- Digital Marketing | PPC & SEO Specialist | Social Media Consultant
And of course, you can also garner followers, and reap the benefits of better search visibility with the strategic use of Showcase Pages to highlight niche areas of your capabilities or products.
Using a company page strategically if you are currently unemployed
Recruiters will often search for a candidate having the job title identical to the one they are searching for. If you have no current position, just past roles, that can be a big negative.
So give yourself a job at the 'Company of You' with the job title(s) of the position(s) you are looking for. You can explain what roles you seek and what your relevant experience is in that job experience section. This makes sure you are found correctly in recruiter searches.
Use a company page to publish a newsletter
You can also publish LinkedIn Newsletters from your company page rather than from yourself as an individual. This is a great way to keep in touch with prospects — the first edition of your company newsletter will be sent to all of the people following your company inviting them to subscribe.
A LinkedIn Company Page also will allow you to use LinkedIn Advertising if you want to boost the content you are sharing on your Page to audiences which you can define and target very precisely.
So get building your Company Page on LinkedIn today!
Get started right away here: — https://www.linkedin.com/company/setup/new/