iStock 000023310739XSmall How to Optimize Your LinkedIn Company Page for B2B Lead Generation LinkedIn is proving to be the No. 1 social network for B2B.

The B2B Content Marketing Report 2013 Survey Results revealed that 85% of technology marketers believe LinkedIn is the most effective social network for distributing their content.* In addition, HubSpot found that LinkedIn’s visitor-to-lead conversion rate is 277% higher than Twitter and Facebook.

These stats make an impressive case for getting active on LinkedIn. One way to do this is by creating and optimizing your LinkedIn company page.

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Laura Wallis, an online marketing consultant, on LinkedIn company pages. According to Wallis, “LinkedIn company pages are an overlooked opportunity that many B2B marketers fail to take advantage of. However, if you optimize your LinkedIn company page, you can drive more leads to your website and landing pages.”

Wallis recommends the following five steps to optimize your LinkedIn company page:

1. Include relevant keywords

Last year, over 5.7 billion professional searches were performed on LinkedIn, which is why it’s critical to optimize your company profile for your keywords. Add keywords and relevant content to your company overview page and product listings. The “company specialities” section in the overview page is another great place to list your keywords.

2. Add your products and services

According to Wallis, many B2B marketers will throw together a quick company overview page but fail to take advantage of LinkedIn’s product and service listings. However, completing this section can drive more leads to your website. Here are some reasons why:

  • You can include a clickable banner at the top of your product page and bring more visitors to your blog, website or landing pages. Wallis recommends that you clearly state that the banner is clickable, as most people don’t know about this feature.
  • You can include videos along with each product or service listing to help engage your audience.
  • LinkedIn allows you to post detailed product information along with your contact information on each page. If someone wants to contact you directly from LinkedIn, they can do so without going to your website.

3. Get followers

As with any social network, you should spend time growing a targeted following. Here are some ways to build your LinkedIn follower base:

  • Share relevant content in your status updates. LinkedIn recommends that you post status updates in the morning or midday if you want to engage business followers. LinkedIn also recommends that you “post at least 20 status updates per month to maximize your reach to approximately 60% or more of your unique audience each month.”
  • Add a LinkedIn badge to your website and blog to encourage your audience to connect with you on LinkedIn.
  • Include a line or button in your email signature that asks people to follow your company on LinkedIn.
  • Make your other social networks aware of your LinkedIn activities so they can connect with you on multiple networks.
  • Use LinkedIn’s Follow Company Ads to target your ideal followers.
  • Encourage your employees to complete their profiles, share your content and comment on your posts and discussions.

4. Ask for recommendations

At a recent Spiceworks event, a panel of IT buyers revealed that the No. 1 thing they want to see in your marketing is unbiased reviews from customers who have used your products. LinkedIn is an excellent place to get these recommendations.

According to Wallis, many people don’t realize that you can ask any of your contacts for recommendations. You can also request recommendations for specific products or services, in addition to recommendations for you as an individual.

Plus, LinkedIn members are twice as likely to recommend a company that they follow.

5. View your analytics

LinkedIn provides a variety of analytics on their company pages, including:

  • Statistics that show how all of your updates are performing.
  • How well your content is engaging your followers.
  • Your reach.
  • Follower demographics, including their role within their companies.
  • Reactions to your specific products and services.

Reviewing your analytics can help you see what content is performing the best and help you get a better understanding of your target audience.

And finally … Wallis stresses the importance of getting started with your LinkedIn company page now. “The main thing you must do is create a foundation and start building followers,” says Wallis. “It takes time, but if you build a foundation now, you’ll be ahead of the game, as most people aren’t yet aware of this opportunity.”

What about you? Are you using LinkedIn company pages? If so, what advice would you offer? Please leave your comments and questions below.

*The findings may be skewed, as many of the respondents came from a LinkedIn group.