Build a LinkedIn Company Page for Your School District

 
 
LinkedIn, the professional social network, rather quietly last year began adding some

Image representing LinkedIn as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

pretty cool enhancements to its site that public relations professionals should know about. As you may or may not know, LinkedIn now has more than 90 million members hailing from more than 200 different countries. Unlike Facebook and many other social networking sites, 33 percent of LinkedIn users have graduate degrees (compared to about 21 percent of all Internet users).

In addition, most users of LinkedIn range in age from 35 to 55, and more than 100,000 members of LinkedIn are professional recruiters. One of the most recent enhancements is company pages, and that’s where you come in.

 
Because thousands of companies and non-profits are already listed on LinkedIn with a “company page” generated by LinkedIn anyway, it’s wise to take advantage of the opportunity and build a page about your school district that’s accurate, lists your services and achievements, lists your job openings, and builds a community around your schools. To add a company page, click on the “Companies” tab at the top of your profile page. When the page comes up, you’ll see an “Add a Company” button on the top right of your page. Click on that.
 
To add a page about your company, you must have a company email address with your company’s email domain (name@yourcompany.com). Email addresses at gmail, yahoo, etc., won’t work. In addition, don’t forget to check and see if your district already has a company page. Follow these steps:
 
  • Enter your district’s official name and your work email address.
  • Click “Continue” and enter your district’s information. Try adding your mission statement or a brief description about your district.
  • If your page already has an administrator, the “Overview” tab will show this message: “To edit company pages please contact an admin. See admin list.” Clicking on “See admin list” will show your administrator. In most cases, you won’t see an administrator, so now is the time to name yourself as the administrator (after checking, of course, with your superintendent).
Once you’ve created your company page, something cool will happen. LinkedIn members who specified their workplace when they signed up — and most do —  will automatically show up on your district’s company page. LinkedIn will also populate your page with former employees, alumni and new hires. To edit the information on your company page, click on “Admin tools” in the upper right of the page and select “Edit.” Make your changes and the click “Publish” to save.
 
In the right hand column of your company page, you’ll also see that once you’ve entered your district’s main address, phone number and website, LinkedIn will automatically add a Google Map to the page.
 
To ensure that only certain people can make changes to your page, be sure to go to the Overview page. Once there, you’ll see “Company Pages Admins.” Click on “designated users only,” and click on the “Publish” button. You can also add the names of other administrators if you’d like others in your office to have access to page changes.
 
As you become more familiar with your company page, you might try embedding YouTube videos on your overview page, linking your page to your district’s
Twitter feeds, and elaborating on your district under the “Products and Services” tab, where you can also add photos.
 
To add your district’s Twitter account, visit “Edit My Profile” and click “Add Twitter account” next to the Twitter field. Twitter will ask you to verify your account name and password. Once your accounts are joined, you can change this setting at any time.
 
To learn more about LinkedIn company pages, go to the LinkedIn Learning Center. In addition, Mashable has a comprehensive how-to about company pages.

Hello…Is Anybody Out There?

Other posts in this blog have addressed the various ways that school PR pros can set up schedules for updating social media channels, along with tools available to monitor social media activity. While attention has been given to strategies for responding to negative posts, some thought should also be given to how to respond to less volatile, but still important posts.

If your district has established a social channel, be it Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or any other outlet, you should expect that random questions will be asked in those forums. These questions may be completely out of left field and have nothing to do with what you perceive to be the topic of the day. But, it is the most important matter on the mind of the person who posted it and as such, demands your attention.

The obvious first step is to monitor those social medial channels where your district has a presence. And that doesn’t mean just 8-5, Monday through Friday. Social media authorities repeat over and over that the busiest times for social media use are evenings, nights and weekends. Be sure to develop a plan that allows for monitoring for questions during those busy times.

If you have the answer readily available, just go ahead and answer the question. If you don’t know the answer, you can respond with that information. A quick response that may not have the answer to a question is better than no response. If you need to defer to the subject matter expert, at least let the questioner know that someone is working on their behalf and an answer is forthcoming…and then make sure it happens!

Measuring Engagement on Your Facebook Page

School communicators who are looking to make strategic, data-driven decisions often struggle to find good measures of engagement.

On Facebook, this is not a problem.

Which of your messages resonate with key audiences? What does your audience want to hear? What are people talking about? Check your wall, and more importantly, check your insight scores.

Facebook provides data about the number of users who engage with each of your posts, the number actively talking about them, and the percentage who share your posts, helping them to go viral.

How can you use this information?

    • Give people more of what they want and less of what they don’t.
    • Test messages that you will use on other communication platforms.
    • Demonstrate to your superintendent how your community is responding to your messages and to your Facebook page in general.

Facebook insights