Chances are that when it comes to LinkedIn, you're doing it wrong. If you're using LinkedIn as a job board an occasional promotional channel, you're not alone, but you're not leveraging the real advantages of this underutilized platform. LinkedIn can be the hardest working (and most cost-effective) social platform for your firm – if you know the right strategies and tactics to better engage. We all know that the name of the game on social channels is engagement, but that doesn’t mean that brands want someone to click the “like” button blindly. Rather, it’s about developing content that drives consistent readership, community building, and authentic advocacy. The best way to do this is to create a strategy specifically for LinkedIn.
DEVELOPING A LINKEDIN STRATEGY
Step 1 is pretty obvious: getting your brand on LinkedIn. Creating a Company Page (not a profile that makes your brand look like a person, as some businesses did in the earlier days of Facebook) helps to establish your brand on the platform and helps users learn more about your company and what you do. Once the Company Page is live, share it with your employees. This is important because employee profiles – those that indicate their role in the organization and link to the Company Page within their profiles – are some of the best opportunities for potential clients and recruits to learn about your business.
If your business already has a Company Page, you can use LinkedIn’s Company Page insights tools to get information about your followers and visitors so that you can determine what kinds of content to share based on their industry, job function, and seniority level to better engage them in the future.
Once you’ve done that, review your existing content, along with your upcoming announcements, any thought leadership opportunities you’re pursuing, and planned marketing activities. Evaluate that content according to the page insights you have to determine if this will be valuable to your audience. If it’s not relevant to them on the surface, is there another way to present that information? Can you reframe it for that particular audience?
CREATING CONTENT THAT RESONATES
One of the biggest questions on any social platform is this: how often should I post? Post too often and it’s overwhelming; post sparingly and you don’t really make an impact. LinkedIn’s best practice, based on the last decade of company content strategies, is to post once per weekday to encourage engagement and foster familiarity among followers. However, this doesn’t mean posting for the sake of posting. If you don’t have compelling content to share, it’s better to post less often than to force content that doesn’t resonate or isn’t relevant to your business.
But what is that relevant, resonant content? Top-performing post types vary from brand to brand, but generally speaking, company news, industry articles (preferably with quotes from your company’s top experts), and thought leadership pieces resonate best. Regardless of the type of content you post, LinkedIn notes that posts with links can see up to 45% higher engagement than those without links – so include links where you can. Links to share may include those that lead to company white papers, e-books, case studies, industry articles, how-to guides, and bright infographics.
Once you know what you want to share, it’s important to know how to make sure it gets noticed and ultimately drives engagement. Keep in mind that while LinkedIn Company Pages are search-friendly – and should feature company descriptions that capture what the business does in the first 155 characters to avoid being cut off in search results, for example – individual posts are more user-friendly. This means that users are looking for eye-catching headlines, thumb-stopping imagery, clear calls-to-action, and introductory post copy that is short and to-the-point.
LinkedIn Company Pages also have the option to add additional pages to show off long-term business initiatives through Showcase Pages. These may be used to show off different product lines (like Microsoft does with Showcase Pages dedicated to Microsoft Office alone) or business units (like those dedicated to a specific service offering or practice). These can help to establish connections with specific audiences and share targeted messages with them.
This is just an introduction to LinkedIn's capability to drive lead generation and engagement organically, of course. Once a clear content strategy is in place on LinkedIn, the sky is the limit for creating better content that resonates and ultimately drives action.
This content was originally shared as an event hosted by the Delaware Valley Green Building Council worth 1.5 GBCI CE hour and 1 AIA LU.