Facebook vs LinkedIn – Which Channel is Right for my Business?

OK, I’ve been deliberating this topic for quite some time and having several discussions with uber gurus – but here is my take on the best uses of Facebook and LinkedIn and how we will be advising our clients.

There are differences of opinion about these things, but from what I have seen and observed, it seems that the overwhelming value that Facebook offers is for B2C (business to consumers) and B2b (business to small business – micro operators, start-ups etc), and on the other hand, I believe that LinkedIn offers true value for the B2B (business to business) arena.

David Olsen from Dynamic Business, revealed last month that 18% of Australian businesses use social media to promote their businesses (my guess is that some would be doing it well and others would be investing inordinate amounts of time for very little return).  Disturbingly he also found that only 35% have an online presence at all, but that’s a blog topic for another day.

So in social media terms, for companies involved in direct selling to consumers, Facebook provides a unique and highly-interactive way to communicate with consumers who are looking to make personal purchases.

For other businesses, Facebook would be of lesser value, and here’s where I feel that LinkedIn has the advantage.  Particularly for larger companies keen to preserve their profile, LinkedIn to me, has a higher level of credibility and is seemingly predominantly populated with career and business-focussed members making it ideal for making corporate opportunities and contacts.  You can also use it to connect online with business contacts you’ve made onground as well as making extended connections by being introduced to people that are already ‘pre-endorsed’ by your existing contacts whose judgement you trust and whose business goals you share.  You then have the power, potentially (use carefully, folks) to recruit them as potential clients of your own.

Say you read about someone in BRW or the Financial Review and are impressed by them and want to meet them, you can look them up on LinkedIn, make contact and begin a conversation about how you might collaborate.  Importantly, you can also connect your LinkedIn profile with your blog, tweets, website and CV as well as track what your colleagues are up to.

So, the choice is yours… my advice is to use any and all channels that are potentially useful, just be strategic about how and why you choose each one, and then potentially all social media roads will lead to your front door.

I would love to get your feedback on this…

Publicity Queen

Yours in PR

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