Since its launch, LinkedIn has been the go-to social media platform for professionals in every industry. From its ability to connect like-minded businesses and career-focused professionals to its groups dedicated to fostering community and thought leadership, it’s a very powerful tool for companies, in more ways than one.

When it comes to utilizing the platform to its fullest extent, there may be some surprising strategies that most companies, including yours, may be overlooking. Below, a panel of entrepreneurs each shared one crucial LinkedIn feature your company should be using, and why each is so effective. 

LinkedIn Jobs

It makes sense that LinkedIn, a platform for professionals, is a prime spot to post your job opening. And yet, Andy Karuza, founder of FenSens, says he's come across a surprising number of companies that still aren't using LinkedIn Jobs.

"The companies I know that do use LinkedIn are having fantastic results with more qualified candidates -- and lots of them," Karuza says. "I think the best feature is that you can clearly see people's LinkedIn profiles, which includes recommendations, so you can learn a little bit more than just seeing a resume."

LinkedIn Sponsored InMail

David Henzel, CEO of LTVPlus, recommends using LinkedIn's Sponsored InMail to increase brand awareness, get more leads and generate sales.

"LinkedIn Sponsored InMail appears in the top of a user's messages so that it gets noticed and opened more often," Henzel explains. "You can also filter your target audience to send messages to the exact type of buyers that would be interested in what you have to offer."

LinkedIn Pulse

If you've ever received a notification that someone in your LinkedIn network has published an article, you've proven that LinkedIn Pulse, the platform's self-publishing tool, works. This easy-to-use feature allows brands to upload content, receive feedback and share it with others, says Stephanie Wells, founder of Formidable Forms.

"Few businesses leverage this feature," Wells says. "It's super effective because like-minded professionals are already on there scanning content, so it might as well be yours."

LinkedIn Groups

You may be in a handful of Facebook Groups, but are you in any relevant LinkedIn Groups too? According to Thomas Griffin, co-founder and president of OptinMonster, many people don't even know that LinkedIn Groups exist, but they're a great way to promote your business.

"You can join a LinkedIn Group related to your industry and connect with other professionals to increase your network," says Griffin. "Or, you can share your content and advice in groups to find new leads for your business."

LinkedIn Learning

Syed Balkhi, co-founder of WPBeginner, notes that LinkedIn has great courses that can help anyone develop useful skills. You can use LinkedIn Learning individually to improve your business skills, or even buy courses for your entire team.

"This has clear benefits because your employees will build skills that will help your business grow," Balkhi says. "For entrepreneurs, trying out LinkedIn's leadership courses can be especially helpful."

LinkedIn Live

Livestreaming has become incredibly popular on multiple social media platforms. While LinkedIn offers this capability, few brands are actually using it as part of their content marketing strategy.

"I'm only seeing a handful of companies make good use of the LinkedIn Live feature," says Nicole Munoz, founder of Nicole Munoz Consulting, Inc. "It's a great way to capture additional brand and audience value."

LinkedIn Sales Navigator

If you're in charge of business development for your company, LinkedIn Sales Navigator can be an incredible boon for your lead generation efforts.

"Sales Navigator connects brands with potential customers so businesses can generate more sales through LinkedIn," says Jared Atchison, co-founder of WPForms. "It uses an advanced algorithm to connect the best matches for the best results."

LinkedIn Premium

You've probably received emails and notifications from LinkedIn encouraging you to upgrade to a Premium account. If you're on the fence and wondering whether it's worth it, the answer is a resounding "yes," according to Kalin Kassabov, founder and CEO of ProTexting.

"People who take the time to check out your profile are potential leads," says Kassabov. "If you have a free LinkedIn account, you're limited in tracking who's viewed your profile. This is one reason it's worth trying a Premium account, where you have unlimited access to this information. You can always send them a quick message and ask if you can help them with anything."

Published on: Nov 5, 2019
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.