Social Media Best Practices: LinkedIn

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Social Media Best Practices: LinkedIn
October 1, 2021
RxLocal Team

LinkedIn is the hub for professionals looking to build their careers. Acting as a hybrid between a traditional job site and a social media platform, Linked gives its nearly 750 million users the ability to network like never before. Whether they want to look for new opportunities, make new connections, or learn a new skill, LinkedIn is the place to do it. In the United States, over 93 million people use LinkedIn on a regular basis, totaling 28% of the population. In the rankings, LinkedIn is the fifth most popular social platform in the US 一 and it’s one that you should pay attention to.

LinkedIn isn’t just for individual use, either. Over 30 million businesses currently use LinkedIn, including 92% of Fortune 500 companies. On LinkedIn, you can connect with other businesses, share insights, and gain credibility as an expert in your field. Within your own network, you can interact with current employees and reach out to potential ones. These capabilities make LinkedIn a powerful tool for all fields, pharmacy included.

Because LinkedIn is used to connect with professionals rather than patients, you may wonder if it’s worth your while 一 since patients are typically your target market. LinkedIn’s ability to reach a different market, though, is exactly why you should invest in it. You can use any other social media site to grow your patient base, but only LinkedIn can help you to effectively grow your professional network.

When you create a LinkedIn account, you also create an opportunity to grow and expand your pharmacy. And, with the right practices in place, you can maximize your account, build your network, and become better equipped to treat your patients. To get started, learn about LinkedIn’s audience, posting norms, and rules for content creation. Then, get set up to get linked in.

Who Uses LinkedIn

LinkedIn is made up of millions of professionals who share a common goal: building their careers. Despite their similarities, LinkedIn still reaches a specific type of professional. According to the Pew Research Center, the average LinkedIn user can be defined by 5 different demographics: gender, age, location, education, and income. Thus, LinkedIn users tend to be:

  • Men (31% are active users)
  • Middle-aged adults between 30-49 (36% active users)
  • People living in suburban areas (30% active users)
  • College-educated people (51% active users)
  • People who make at least $75K (50% active users)

As the statistics show, LinkedIn is dominated by college-educated people and upper-middle-class people 一 which, unsurprisingly, are two categories that professionals often fall into. On the other hand, LinkedIn is one of the only social media platforms to reach more men than women, as well as more people in suburban areas than in urban areas. Clearly, it reaches a unique demographic.

Of all the social platforms, LinkedIn is the most specialized. This creates an opportunity for your pharmacy to go where others don’t go and to expand your pharmacy in a different way than your competitors.

For a closer look at LinkedIn’s demographics, as well as the demographics for the other top social media apps, consult our blog.

What to Post on LinkedIn

Because LinkedIn reaches a different audience than other social media platforms, plan to post different content than you would on apps like YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest. As a general rule of thumb, LinkedIn isn’t the place to advertise your services, promote your new items, or offer discounts. Instead, it is the place to share your industry knowledge and insights, to show the work your pharmacy is doing, and to create a community of like-minded people. When you decide to start posting, keep your audience (and your purpose) in mind.

When it comes to actually making your posts, LinkedIn offers several options: you can write a message, share a photo, or upload a video. However you decide to go about it, use these content ideas to help you start brainstorming:

  • Share professional opinions 一 Stay active on LinkedIn and in the world of pharmacy by sharing your thoughts on current events in the industry. Talk about the newest technology, the latest legislation, or the best advancements being made right now in pharmacy practice. Weigh in on controversies and share your recommendations for moving forward. Opinion posts can engage other pharmacists and start a conversation. They can also demonstrate your knowledge and build your credibility among colleagues.
  • Offer advice 一 Another way that you can share your expertise is by posting advice for other pharmacists. Whether you want to discuss tips and tricks, things to be aware of, or a few of your favorite best practices, share advice and establish yourself as a trusted resource. Sharing also gives you the opportunity to collaborate with others and mentor those who are new to pharmacy practice.
  • Repost from leading sources 一 As you start posting, you may find that you lack inspiration or insights from time to time. When this happens, don’t panic: you can still keep posting without creating your own content. In this case, repost from leading voices in pharmacy. Keep up with pharmacy organizations like NCPA and CPESN, then make it easy for other professionals to do the same. This can help you stay on top of the industry and be a resource for others.
  • Celebrate accomplishments 一 LinkedIn is a professional platform, but it can still be made personal by sharing notable achievements. If you or your pharmacy has recently won an award, been featured on a new channel or blog article, or received positive feedback from your patients, take the time to share it on LinkedIn. Celebrating small victories is an excellent way to boost morale and show your network that you’re staying involved.
  • Share job openings 一 In addition to finding new colleagues, you can use LinkedIn to find new employees. If you have a new opening for a pharmacist, technician, or support staff role, use LinkedIn to get the word out. You can post an application via LinkedIn Recruiter, or you can simply share that you’re hiring with your network. Either way, you can attract new team members in one easy, convenient location.

For a complete list of content to post on LinkedIn and other platforms, visit our blog.

When to Post on LinkedIn

After picking what to post on LinkedIn, you still have to decide on the right time to post it. That time, of course, depends on when your audience is most active online. According to Hootsuite, a popular social media management platform, LinkedIn users frequent the app most on weekdays between 8-11 AM. The best time of all, they say, is 9:00 AM on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Generally, LinkedIn users check their accounts as soon as they clock in at work 一 as part of their morning routine 一 so if you post early, you have a higher chance of being noticed by your network.

As far as how often you should post, Hootsuite recommends between 1-5 times per day. Posting frequently can keep you relevant, but posting too much can cause your engagement to drop. Thus, it is best to opt for a middle-ground and see how your audience responds. Then, adjust your posts accordingly.

Other Features to Try

LinkedIn offers capabilities that go far beyond creating and sharing content. When used correctly, they can expand your horizons and your network at the same time. When you log on to LinkedIn next, give these features a try:

  • LinkedIn Premium 一 The easiest way to get the most out of LinkedIn is to use the Premium version of the app. In addition to standard posting, messaging, and recruiting capabilities, LinkedIn Premium offers a whole host of features, including advanced search, unlimited network visibility, expanded profile views, and more. LinkedIn Premium can be used for individuals or businesses for a monthly fee, but a 30-day free trial is available to all users.
  • LinkedIn Recruiter 一 If you plan to use LinkedIn to hire new employees, the Recruiter can be a great addition to your toolbox. It allows you to view potential candidates in and of your network, reach out to them, and then manage them throughout the entire recruitment process. The Recruiter can eliminate the hassle of traditional job openings and help you find the right person for your pharmacy even faster.
  • InMail 一 LinkedIn offers its own two-way messaging system called InMail. The messaging capability gives you a convenient place to talk to other professionals in a private environment. Here, you can start conversations and build connections that can help you later down the line. You can also use InMail as part of your recruitment process with the help of Message Ads. InMail is a Premium feature, but LinkedIn also offers a standard Messaging feature for all of its users 一 which lets you talk to up to 30 different people in your inbox.

Network Like Never Before

Of all of the social media apps that your pharmacy can take advantage of, LinkedIn is arguably the most unique. It can give you the opportunity to expand your pharmacy’s reach from beyond your front doors and out into the world beyond. By connecting with other pharmacists, technicians, and professionals, you can increase your knowledge of the industry and keep your practice up to par. The time to start is now.

Looking for even more ways to grow your social media presence across multiple platforms? Discover RxLocal’s Social Media Assistant and find out how you can watch your numbers grow and your pharmacy succeed.