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Expand Your Small Business Network, Get LinkedIn

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Leverage the Power of LinkedIn Networking to Grow Your Small Business

LinkedIn may not be mentioned in conjunction with most other social networks, but small businesses can still benefit from using it.

If you're running a company you're probably well aware of the ways that Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and Pinterest and the roughly one million other social networks can help you connect with potential clients or customers. But what about LinkedIn? There may be some negative perceptions about it - due mainly to the annoying emails the site constantly sends you - but like any other social site, it's probably worth checking out.

The thing with LinkedIn, though, is that the people who use it aren't what's typically viewed as the normal "social media user." When you hear that term you probably think of younger people, who are constantly updating their status on their iPhones and so on. But LinkedIn users are older professionals for the most part, and they also tend to be affluent. Think those people can't help you with growing your company? Think again.

These people often include small business owners much like yourself, and other professionals who might be able to help you through word of mouth , according to Business 2 Community. For instance, LinkedIn allows users to give each other "recommendations" for various things that others do or offer; do you think maybe having an endorsement from a prominent member of your community for the kinds of goods or services your company provides would go a long way? Close to half of the site's users say that they think LinkedIn is a good way to spread word of mouth, and nearly nine in 10 say they would trust the information contained on the site to make decisions. That could go a heck of a long way to helping your company grow going forward.

Like any other social network, though, there's an importance to striking a balance between using it regularly and overusing it, and therefore you'll want to be careful about who you contact on it. For instance, you might be able to find a notable person in your area, but if they don't know your business - or have no reason to have used it - then asking for a recommendation from them may be pointless, and come off as annoying to that person. Likewise, posting too much content every day will probably serve to turn off any people who are connected with you on the site. Everything in moderation.

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