If I asked readers of this newsletter, “Are you on LinkedIn?”, my guess is that 95% of you would say yes. But a better question is this:
Are you deriving value from it?
I’ve immersed myself in this platform over the past couple of years and wanted to share my biggest lessons learned about how to make it work for you. Let’s hop right into it.
Use your personal (not company) profile. Your company profile is generally worthless on LinkedIn. This network is about human beings and LinkedIn’s algorithm makes that very clear. Posts from your personal profile will garner exponentially more reach than those from your company profile.
Craft helpful insights for your specific audience. No one cares who you are or what you do until they believe you understand their challenges and have helped others like them address those things. Yet most people use LinkedIn as a place to pull out their megaphones and shout about themselves. “Here’s our new product line. [link to website].” “Check out this press release. [link to website]”. If you want people to listen, craft unique, helpful insights.
Write your content to be consumed natively (on LinkedIn). LinkedIn wants to keep people on LinkedIn. Makes sense, right? The platform will actually diminish the reach of your post when you include a link. Concurrently, people go to LinkedIn to consume information on the platform (not to leave and go to your website). You have 1300 characters to create value for your audience. Think of your posts as mini editorial articles in a trade journal. If you absolutely need to include a link, say “Find a link to ____ in the comments” and drop in your URL there instead.
Connect with relevant people. The more people you’re connected to, the greater your content’s reach will be. Just focus on the right people: Industry leaders, customers, past customers, prospects, vendors, partners, etc.
Join the conversation. Spend some time each week commenting on other people’s posts. You’ll grow your footprint and position as a thought leader as long as you’re creating value.
Respond to comments. Comments signal to LinkedIn that your content is engaging, which in turn expands its circulation and visibility. So encourage dialogue in your posts and respond when people comment.
Consistency matters. Posting monthly (or even weekly) won’t likely accomplish much. Could you start by committing to Monday, Wednesday and Friday posts for three months?
Write your content in batches. Some days you’ll feel inspired to write your take on something in the news or a lesson learned from a customer meeting. Other days you’ll be grasping for straws. Could you block off an hour each week to just write? Keep a running list of topics and batch your writing effort so you always have a couple extras in the hopper.
Try a video post. LinkedIn loves video. And people like working with real people. So try using Loom.com to record a video of yourself speaking insights instead of writing them. Alternatively, interview one of your subject matter experts for 10 minutes over Zoom or Teams about an issue you know your customers experience. Then have your marketing folks chop up the recording into two-minute highlight videos.
Hopefully, this is enough to get you moving in the right direction. Go get started!