LinkedIn Adds the Ability to Follow Companies

    by Jeanne Hopkins

    Date

    April 30, 2010 at 9:05 AM

    follow With over 65 million professionals using their network, LinkedIn doesn't often get the buzz that Twitter and Facebook commands.  However, a new tool introduced today gives LinkedIn members the ability to follow companies. 

    Similar to a Facebook Fan Page, being a company follower on LinkedIn will get you specific status updates such as recent hires and promotions, new job opportunities and company profile updates. With the initial launch the interaction opportunities are fairly basic, but as the feature matures more opportunities will be released to improve communication between companies and individuals. 

    It is extremely simple to follow a company .  For instance, you can follow HubSpot by going to our LinkedIn profile and click on the "Follow Company" link in the upper right-hand corner of the page.

     

    As part of a new piece of research, we're seeing how quickly we can grow our followers on LinkedIn's new company profile tool (and will share that information with our readers in the next week). 

    When we started evaluating the new LinkedIn tool it was mid-afternoon, and in the course of just three hours, we gained 128 followers (we have 140 employees).  This beats out Salesforce.com with 86 followers and 4000+ employees.  Another well-known company, Twitter, has 381 followers and 500+ employees. 

    How did we do it?

    1. We sent an email to all of our employees asking them to follow HubSpot.  We also asked our social-savvy team to ask their networks to follow HubSpot on LinkedIn.

    2. We sent out a Tweet from our HubSpot account.

     

    linkedin tweet

    3. We posted a Facebook update on our Wall. 

    4. We posted a Discussion Topic in the Inbound Marketers group on LinkedIn. 

    Granted, it is late in the day, and not everyone is paying attention to their email or social networks.  But, with a little effort, a company can gain an advantage in the Social Marketing wars by leveraging an easy-to-use tool from LinkedIn. Company followers are listed, along with a blurb and LinkedIn profile.

    hubspot linkedin followers Besides going to a company's profile page to follow, you can click on the company name in a person's LinkedIn profile and an option to follow that company will appear.

    Many people will think that this new tool is no big deal.  But, just think about the opportunity to have customers, prospects, potential employees and other connections following a company, your company.  

    We hope that LinkedIn will continue to add features so B2B marketers can optimize this business social network even further.

    What do you think of the new feature? Are you going to follow companies on LinkedIn? 

    Photo Credit: Marloes*

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