From Lead Generation to Business Development and Customer Relationships – LinkedIn Works
LinkedIn is a goldmine for qualified leads because it is the most trusted social network. In terms of numbers:
1. It generates 277% more leads in comparison to other popular social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook.
2. Its conversion rate is 3x the rate of competing ad platforms like #Google Adwords.
3. LinkedIn was the top-ranked social network on Business Insider’s 2019 survey on Digital Trust.
4. Businesses are investing more time, money, and effort in LinkedIn. Q1 numbers of 2020 reflect this sentiment in terms of year on year (YoY) increase in LinkedIn sessions by a 22% and 158% increase in LinkedIn Livestreams. Furthermore, its marketing solutions recorded a 44% YoY growth for the same period.
5. LinkedIn asserts that 80% of its users have a major impact on the business decisions of their organisations.
6. Even in the absence of engagement, LinkedIn posts remain visible to viewers for 24 hours whereas Facebook posts can get buried within 5 hours and Twitter posts may disappear from visibility within 18 minutes.
Content Marketing on LinkedIn
In terms of the intangible factors, many LinkedIn experts believe that the absence of pop-up ads and clickbait makes LinkedIn less repulsive to users. Instead, connection requests and social media interactions are guided by the content on your profile, posts, comments, articles, and campaigns. Hence, content marketing is pivotal to generating and converting leads via LinkedIn.
Ideally, you must get the basics of social selling right & the following tips will help you:
Take a few minutes to upload a recent photo, complete 80% of your profile, company page and make an instinctive list of your target audience. Remember, a clear picture of your face can increase your profile views by 21 times and increase your inbound messages by 36 times. This will allow you to initiate your marketing, while you take a few days to complete your profile to an all-star level, improve your Social Selling Index and define your buyer personas. Furthermore, incorporate the feedback of your customers and colleagues about the strengths and weaknesses of your brand experience
2. Next, start improving your all-star profile and company page
with a customised URL, banner, featured articles, showcase pages (on company page), testimonials/recommendations, endorsements, etc. If your profile is good, you increase the traffic on your activities and company page and vice versa. Moreover, you also improve the chances of converting viewers into connections or followers. Do remember to utilise search engine optimisation (SEO). Initially, you could avail some keyword generators that are freely available online (eg. Semrush or Wordstream. Eventually, you may wish to seek the assistance of a LinkedIn coach, expert, or social media agency to assist in maximising your marketing outcomes.
3. Search and follow decision-makers, influencers and/or active networkers on LinkedIn.
Study their followers, activities, groups and interactions. This way, you can shortlist the posts and articles where you wish to contribute. You have the choice of following the profile or a hashtag. For example, if you want more content about LinkedIn marketing and you find this article useful, you can follow my profile or the hashtags #linkedinmarketing and #trevisantips.
To do this, go to the search bar, type #Trevisan or #finances and then click FOLLOW.
You will then see posts with this hashtag in your feed.
4. Imitate their practices of tagging, messaging or re-sharing of posts
and motivate them to reciprocate in a similar fashion. LinkedIn is a treasure trove of valuable content from industry experts, thought leaders, influencers, and LinkedIn marketers. If you can add value to their content through a comment, engage them in an interesting conversation or re-share their content with your own insights, do it. This makes you visible and relevant to them and their audience.
5. Are you using too much technical jargon?
Be simple in your expression. If the content is written in English, you can try to achieve an 80+ readability score on the Flesh-Kincaid Reading Ease Test. According to this test, a score of 80-89 makes your content readable to 11 years old, whereas a score of 64.5 makes it readable for a 13-14-year-old. Many online tools can evaluate the readability of your content for free. An easy to read content also attracts views, comments, and shares from users who are not native English speakers and you cannot ignore the possibility of leads in their connections i.e. your 2nd and 3rd-degree connections.
6. Motivate your co-workers and employees to become active on LinkedIn
Statistics suggest that employees are 14 times more prone to share their organisation on LinkedIn as compared to Facebook. Furthermore, they are more inclined to engage with co-workers by almost 60%. This improves content distribution, brand distribution, and responsiveness to content correction.
7. Content Calendar
Create a content calendar that reinforces your core message without becoming monotonous or inflexible. Your calendar needs an effective rotation across timings and days as well as content i.e. fact-based posts, personal stories, insights, consumer awareness, infotainment videos, tutorials, updates, practical advice, question-based posts, re-shares with your narrative or even a combined summary of trending social media content. Depending on your viewer engagement, you could share 3 to 6 posts along with one or two articles per week and arrive at the best time schedule for your calendar.
You can also conduct an occasional LinkedIn Poll to gather viewer sentiment & organise a LinkedIn Event. Polls about user preference and events help generate leads while other types of polls are useful in creating a lead funnel. On the other hand, events give you an opportunity to immediately invite participation via LinkedIn, promote your existing content, gain visibility amongst your followers, and create valuable inputs for subsequent articles and posts.
Create some messaging templates that can be customised to match the persona of your recipient. Thereafter, send Inmail messages or customized invites to your target audience. If you are a member of a LinkedIn group, you can send them direct Inmails, even if they are beyond your network. A well-crafted message can motivate them to interact with you and not see it as spam or an unnecessary intrusion.
(We have some available to purchase for less than the cost of a sandwich here!)
Study your analytics dashboard, pages & notifications. In the case of free members, even if you get some anonymous visits on your profile, the dashboard informs you of the industry, location, and designation of such visitors. This information lets you know whether your content is being seen by the right audience. For example, if your intended audience is a procurement or purchase manager but your profile visits are those by CXO level personnel or operations managers and your content does not attract engagement from your intended audience, then you need to rework your content marketing.
12. Paid memberships
If you see progress in the marketing outcomes, paid memberships can make them better i.e. improve visibility of your content and network suggestions. LinkedIn posts get automatically curated onto the feed of the users that the LinkedIn algorithm considers being professionally compatible with you. The algorithm becomes more efficient with membership upgrades, especially with the Sales Navigator. To know more about free and paid memberships, you can avail a simple guide and find out if you really need to upgrade to a paid membership plan.
13. Be regular
The impression that you may leave on your connections by being silent for weeks and then posting several updates in a day is not positive. Be regular with your updates and manage your posts accordingly.
14. Incorporate Slideshare
If your blogs and e-books not working effetively, LinkedIn has another viable solution in the form of SlideShare:
Just a single successful SlideShare can lead to higher engagement with your content and as a result will add to your list of followers. Select a trending topic, mine it with a robust visual image and check for results regarding readability and shares. You can easily register with SlideShare, and share content in visually appealing manner. Here is my example: https://www.slideshare.net/MelanieGoodman2/20-tips-to-attract-followers-to-your-linkedin-company-page (NB Scribd will begin operating the SlideShare business on September 24, 2020)
Several content marketing teams are taking advantage of their potential by making use of the LinkedIn content strategy. Jump in the race today, being better equipped and surpass the competition.
15. Like and tag your own posts to increase exposure
Some might consider liking their own LinkedIn posts embarrassing but it does, in fact, provide a lot of value. Personally I’m not comfortable with this concept but it would be remiss of me not to explain it.
Those that have already liked or commented on your post will continue to see notifications about new likes and comments on the post, which will perhaps encourage them to comment as well. People are much more likely to interact with your content beyond just reading or watching it if others have left comments.
You should also tag your posts using hashtags and – if applicable – tag people in the post using @.
Finally, remember that using LinkedIn for content marketing isn’t about self-promotion. Where possible, you should make a concerted effort to engage with your followers. This means liking, sharing and commenting on relevant posts. It’s important to remind your followers that you are human and that the content you post isn’t automated.
In summary, to use LinkedIn for content marketing correctly, you need to understand the nuances of the platform, as well as what your target audience wants to see and engage with.
The points outlined in this blog will provide you with a foundation from which to improve your efforts but buyer behaviour is constantly changing, so what works today might not necessarily work in a month’s time. Keep that in mind and constantly refine your efforts. Work out what works for your business and repeat it!
For bespoke LinkedIn marketing advice schedule an initial phone consultation here