Website vs. LinkedIn - Why You Need Both
LinkedIn is an excellent platform for any professional or service provider looking to connect with potential clients and grow their business. It can help build credibility, enhance brand awareness, and foster trust through social proof.
However, whilst LinkedIn is an invaluable tool, it doesn’t replace the need for a personal website. A personal website serves as a powerful communication tool that allows you to connect with your audience on a deeper level, resulting in a stronger community and increased client engagement.
Creating a Personal Brand Experience
Having your own website allows you to guide your potential clients on a personalised journey that LinkedIn's standardised format can't fully achieve. Your website is a platform where you can create an immersive experience of your brand.
When potential clients visit your website, they gain an authentic understanding of who you are and what you believe in. It's an opportunity for them to experience your brand in its truest form, without the constraints imposed by a standard social media format.
Having your own platform allows you to craft an experience specifically designed for visitors, deepening their bond with your brand. It’s a tool that can greatly enhance your professional image, enhance your credibility, and ultimately, draw in and convert new clients.
Your website is also your personal showcase. It's where you can highlight your unique value proposition, express your brand identity, and communicate what differentiates you from the competition.
Boosting Your Professional Image
While LinkedIn is a valuable tool for building professional credibility, a website can amplify this credibility even more. Beyond simply providing business information, a website serves as a tangible demonstration of your commitment to your industry and your profession. It sends a signal to potential clients that you are serious about your business and invested in their needs.
More than just a digital brochure, a website creates an immersive brand experience, enabling you to establish a meaningful connection with potential clients. It's a platform where you can differentiate yourself, stand out from the crowd, and present yourself as a professional.
Investing in a professional website shows your dedication, professionalism, and belief in your business. It indicates that your business is thriving and capable of serving clients' needs.
In essence, a website is a meaningful investment in your professional future and a clear demonstration of your dedication and commitment.
Establishing Your Expertise and Sharing Valuable Content Through Blogging
Creating valuable content on your own website, such as blogs, vlogs, or podcasts, allows you to showcase your expertise and provide value to your customers. By regularly publishing insightful content, you not only demonstrate your thought leadership but also give your audience a reason to visit your site.
This content can be shared on social media and newsletters, driving more traffic to your website. This strategy not only enhances your online visibility and SEO but also fosters trust, establishes authority, and deepens your connection with potential clients.
Potential clients usually want to be sure you're the right fit before they commit. There are many ways to do this, depending on who your clients are and what you do. A great way is to give them a taste of your services.
This could be a workshop, an e-book, a free class, a special introductory offer, or a downloadable guide related to your work.
Using your website, you can easily add these offers to the client's journey. This helps your clients go from their current problems to the results they want. Think of these offers as stepping stones that let potential clients see your skills and understand how you can help them reach their goals.
Building Your Email List
Having your own website also opens up the opportunity to create a community and grow an email list. Unlike LinkedIn, where connections and communications can be more transient, establishing an email list on your website provides a direct line to your audience.
With an email list, you can regularly engage with your clients and potential clients by providing updates, sharing useful resources, or offering exclusive deals, you can gradually create a stronger connection with your audience over time. It's also a fantastic way to keep your audience engaged with your brand, build rapport, and nurture potential clients through the sales funnel. By providing relevant and valuable information, and addressing their specific needs and concerns, you build trust and a strong relationship with your audience. This process increases the likelihood of converting potential clients into actual customers and grow your business.
Maintaining Control Over Your Online Presence
While LinkedIn allows for creating articles and posts, they don't offer the same control and personalisation that a personal website does. Building your business primarily on social media platforms is akin to building on rented land – you're at the mercy of these platforms' algorithms and policies. If any of these platforms were to go down or if their algorithms change, your connection with your contacts could be jeopardised. Therefore, having your own website (and an email list!) is essential for maintaining control over your online presence and ensuring long-term connectivity with your audience.
While LinkedIn is a great tool for boosting your visibility, it doesn't quite stack up when it comes to search engine rankings. A well-optimised website, on the other hand, can stand out in search results, making it more likely for potential clients to discover your business.
SEO is like the beacon that guides people to your digital doorstep. With a well-optimised website, you increase your online visibility, making it easier for potential clients to find you. So, when it comes to expanding your reach and attracting clients, having both a LinkedIn profile and a personal website forms the ultimate combo, ensuring you're found by the right people at the right time.
So, what's the verdict on Website vs. LinkedIn?
While LinkedIn is great for connecting and increasing your visibility, it has its limitations. This is where having your own personal website comes into play.
Your website is your professional platform, where you can showcase your style, create a polished image, and offer a tailored experience for your visitors.
But that's not all. It's also the place to highlight your expertise, provide a glimpse of your skills, capture email addresses, and have full control over your online presence.
In summary, the winning approach for attracting and converting clients involves having both a LinkedIn profile and a personal website. Together, they form a well-rounded combination that addresses all your needs.
Caitlin Pieters is a Website Designer and Creative Strategist based in Nottingham, UK. She loves working with small business owners who need a website that connects and converts. For curated tips and guidance on all things website design and creative strategy, sign up to her monthly newsletter here!