Developing a professional online network means developing profiles on online platforms. Some, like us, choose to focus first on LinkedIn, because it has a nice balance between popularity and professionalism. Yet, this single-platform model can limit what a small business’ online identity can develop into. So, we’ve moved beyond the one-platform and have started developing several platforms by creating content (blogging). Here’s how that transition is progressing.
Getting established: LinkedIn
Our goal with online marketing was to network with right people and organizations. As a boutique translation and interpreting provider, we need to communicate both with other industry professionals and potential clients. There’s two things that need to happen:
A few things became apparent as we put up these posts. First (the obvious), we can get people to know about us (Goal #1) by posting on LinkedIn. As we did, our ‘connections’ grew, which made us feel Goal #2 was happening as well. We focused on short, easily digestible, content pieces that communicated from the first person perspective. Here are the titles in chrono, demonstrating how our posts moved away from the ‘me and what I am’ posts to the ‘we and what we are’ posts.
Prepping for ATA--as a newly minted interpreter
A follow-up on ATA 2015. Putting it into practice.
Intran Solutions. Hello.
Is 'Authenticity in Communication' more than just what's said? A blog.
Impressions. Month three into a new interpreting business.
Second, we also learned about LinkedIn’s limitations. By this we mean that because we were engaging with the limitations of a relatively small LinkedIn community of interpreters and translators, the ROI for each additional post would continue to decrease. This showed up on our radar as we noticed the same people liking and commenting on our content, and the number of connections elicited from each post decreasing (sorry, there’s no easy way to show statistics on this). So, we began engaging other platforms.
Moving beyond the one-platform model
One option was to create a website and adding content through blogs. Links to those blogs would then be put up on other platforms, and on LinkedIn. Here are results comparing the resulting views from Linkedin vs. Not-LinkedIn platforms:
In going beyond the one-platform model, we’ve been able to create content that engages a wider audience and is better fitted to our mission. For us, this has meant that we write about ourselves in relation to respected and relevant organizations and theory. Here’s those posts in chrono so far:
Proz’s new affiliate TM Town. Innovation meets Ethics.
Selling interpreting by educating the client
Interpreters’ Social Responsibility
Using: Interpreting-specific resources
What it’s like to take ATA’s new computer-based test
Do I need an interpreter or bilingual?
How does finding work work?
Interpretation: Rendition not Redirection
First time at the annual NAJIT conference: Professionals and People
Signaling in the Translation Industry
We think that getting on board with LinkedIn in the earliest stages of starting a company like ours is a great idea, because we really have gotten in contact with a lot of awesome people. With this foundation being set however, we have been able to expand out to more of the right people and organizations by developing an identity outside of LinkedIn by writing content on our website and linking to these blogs on several other platforms.
Tian Huang and Michael Grez are the co-founders of Intran Solutions, providing authentic communication between Chinese and English. Find us at www.intransolutions.com.