While most companies know that LinkedIn could be useful if they took the time to use it, very few companies have taken the plunge. We’ve found four excellent LinkedIn case studies that demonstrate what’s possible when you get heavily into LinkedIn marketing.
Back in 2010, software firm Goshido were looking for funding to help with the development of a new product. Instead of using the usual routes to search for funding, their Chief Executive, Frank Hannigan, decided to use his extensive LinkedIn contacts list and secondary contacts to source a €25,000 investment.
He chose to target specific connections personally, as well as asking them to pass on his request to any of their contacts that they thought might be potential investors.
Overall, 700 investors were contacted during the first week and the results were spectacular. Within just eight days Goshido had raised €162,500, with 30% of investment funds coming from LinkedIn users alone.
Early in 2012 Citigroup that their brand was not as strong among female professionals as male ones. To combat this they created a group ‘Connect: Professional Woman’s Network’ with the aim of creating a networking site where female professionals could meet and discuss issues relating to their working lives. This, they reasoned, might enhance the perception of CitiGroup’s brand among women.
Within a few months of the group being created it broke the 30,000 members mark. It currently has 142,000 members and, with over 1,000 comments being made each week, is one of the most active groups of it’s kind on the network.
In terms of brand positioning it’s a great success. It’s also a valuable resource which, if used carefully, could be a source of feedback, insight and, potentially, new staff for Citigroup for years to come.
Cathay Pacific Airways
Having created a new flight route from Hong Kong to Chicago, Cathay Pacific Airways were looking for an effective advertising strategy.
Turning to LinkedIn, they created a targeted advertising campaign, using Sponsored Polls, Display Ads and Recommendation Ads, with a focus on members of relevant groups – such as China Networking Group (which has 38k members). They also developed their LinkedIn Company page and used status updates to generate engagement around the brand.
The campaign received an impressive 1,300 poll responses and generated around 100 recommendations, many of which supplied their contact details so that Cathay Pacific was able to follow up with them directly.
Philips were concerned that they weren’t being seen by professionals as a leader in innovation in the healthcare industry. They wanted to increase the credibility of their products among top professionals and set about this by investing in a series of LinkedIn Groups and sub-groups.
By hosting and curating high quality debates, as well as using polls and other engagement features, Philips managed to attract 73,000 followers to their Group, which has gained 4,400 discussions since its creation. Four popular subgroups have since been created for detailed discussions of niche issues in healthcare.
It’s an indication of how serious Philips take their LinkedIn strategy that they have given moderation responsibilities to their MD and Chief Medical Officer, among a wider team of staff.
By actively managing and promoting their LinkedIn Company page (something surprisingly few brands have invested in), Philips has also attracted over 250,000 company subscribers. With status updates posted every few days, this generates a constant flow of engagement and new subscribers.
If lead generation and conversion are important to your business, you should know LinkedIn has the highest rate of any social network – 3X higher than Facebook and Twitter.
Did you also know?
Does this create a marketplace for doing business that generates revenue with measurable results? See for yourself. Here are 11 company case studies that prove the ROI of LinkedIn.
- DOCUSIGN: the global standard for eSignitures, bought LinkedIn’s little-known sponsored InMail in bulk to target by geographic area, company size and job title for a 6-month lead-generation campaign. Sales rose +45% from 550 participants before the LinkedIn effort to more than 800 after.
- EUREX: One of the leading derivative exchanges, wanted to drive broader connections, build relationship and create engagement. They updated their LinkedIn company page, posted relevant updates and use targeted LinkedIn display ads. Company page Followers grew from 500 to 13,000+ in 3 months; 81% of Followers engage exclusively on LinkedIn; LinkedIn Followers are 42% more likely to engage with EUREX and 43% more likely to recommend to a friend.
- GOSHIDO: a software solution that makes is easier for people around the world to work together and collaborated, used LinkedIn to find seed capital for its own creation. This was done by identifying and leveraging connections who could be potential investors. Approximately $150,000 was raised.
- HEWLETT PACKARD: is the first company to hit 1,000,000 Followers for a Company Page. They also set up a specific Discussion Group to attract small businesses that has 5,500+ members; 75% who actively engage in discussions and who are 2X more likely to recommend HP. Since a video tell more than 1,000 words, here’s the story.
- NEAL SCHAFFER: a leader in helping businesses and professional strategically (and fellow MBA Faculty Member at Rutgers CMD), used Success Stories from LinkedIn. One day Neal saw a comment of one of his LinkedIn Groups, “Prove to me the ROI of social media.” He saw the person lived in the same county and he was connected to his brother on LinkedIn. He offered to meet the person for coffee. The connection led to two referrals that turned into clients within weeks.
- POSTCARD MANIA: Joined LinkedIn groups for the various types of small businesses the company targets, and judiciously contributed to discussions and questions about marketing. The company uses relevant content like “8 Ways to Grow Your Local Business for FREE!” Each of the eight ways was a “snippet” with links to get more information, each of which collected the person’s contact information. Postcard Mania has generated 600 leads and $72,000, just from LinkedIn.
- PENMAN PUBLIC RELATIONS: used LinkedIn to research a client’s planned launch of a high-end gaming system from their client, Hardcore Computer .Penman found that connecting with potential product users individually through LinkedIn offered more straightforward feedback and less “groupthink” than focus groups often deliver. They got more traffic to their website and more research responses (100′s more) at a fraction of the cost of focus group research.
- PJA: An advertising and marketing agency in Boston, invested an hour a day targeting searches for such keywords as “VP of marketing,” specific ZIP codes and company names, to identify key contacts to call, InMail, email, or forward the agency’s portfolio. They tracked who looked at the company’s LinkedIn profile. They participated in discussions catering to CMO’s. It led to inquiries, agency pitches, and new accounts, including Guidewire and Chase.
- SAMSUNG MOBILE: tries to attract upscale influencers who seek out the latest, leading-edge technologies in mobile devices. They post status updates on their LinkedIn Company Page and launch previews that leads to and API powered microsite with news about one of their latest mobile devices. They are able to target 20,000,000 LinkedIn members across 7 countries through their page, updates and mircosite; 33% says they are more likely to purchase from Samsung Mobile after following them on LinkedIn.
- VIRAL SOLUTIONS: An automated relationship marketing company, has company partners actively participating in relevant LinkedIn Groups. They discovered that 50.7% of top sellers belonged to 30+ groups compared to only 11.5% of their counterparts. As a result, 58% of the company revenue now comes from LinkedIn Groups with an average deal size of $7500.
- WILD APRICOT: Offers membership management and website development software for non-profits and associations. In 2010, Wild Apricot created a LinkedIn Company Page in mid-2010, They took advantage of the Company Pages recommendation feature, which allows members to post product and service reviews. They tested the recommendations on their website. They tested: 1) a recent user survey, 2) a link to an online software directory and 3) a link to the LinkedIn product reviews, along with LinkedIn’s logo. Showcasing LinkedIn recommendations on our home page raised conversions by 15%.
If this was of value to you and you’d like to receive other updates, follow BarnRaisers on LinkedIn. If you’d like to know more about the ROI of social media, you can download our Complementary eBook, 166 Case Studies Prove Social Media Marketing ROI at our website. It’s been downloaded 65,000+ times. Or, you can always just get in touch.
Did these case studies prove the ROI of LinkedIn to you? Did they also tell you how and why it could work for you? Did it give you ideas for your business?
Meet Rob Petersen
About the Author » Rob Petersen Rob Petersen is President of BarnRaisers, an online marketing solutions company using social media, the power of community and the proven principles of relationship marketing. Rob was EVP/Chief Strategy Officer for Omnicom and has held leadership positions at FCB, Euro RSCG and Saatchi & Saatchi.
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