Recently, LinkedIn published a guide with a series of useful tips and hints for companies and organizations that want to improve their presence in the world’s largest professional network, increase engagement, and convert relevant leads.
But you don’t have to read the entire guide – here at Xtra Mile, we prepared a summary of its main highlights.
Telling Your Brand’s Story on LinkedIn
The first impression people will receive from your LinkedIn profile will be your ticket to your business’ success in the digital era. The key for building loyalty and creating quality leads lies in creating a quality community around your brand.
So you opened a LinkedIn page. Now what?
Now your real work begins! You have to reach relevant audiences, build long-term relationships with them based on trust, and convert them into quality leads. The road to these objectives passes through – first and foremost – the way you tell your brand’s story. As Simon Sinek said already in 2009: “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it.”
The first step is to conduct an in-depth study of your audiences. What is the content that interests them? What challenges are they facing? What are the professional goals they strive to achieve? The answers to these questions should guide you in creating content. People will only follow your brand if you give them quality content that provides them with value.
It’s important to remember – don’t start sharing content on autopilot! One of the things that distinguish between a professional and an amateur LinkedIn page is Content Strategy. On the amateur page, the content and messages are all over the place. Such pages usually have some texts, some statistics, and some articles with different and inconsistent messages.
Develop a professional and focused content strategy where your content conveys your brand’s message, tells your brand’s story, and shares knowledge that cannot be found anywhere else. It’s the type of content that will make your LinkedIn profile unique, interesting, and engaging. Excellent examples of inspirational, successful, and original profile pages are Netflix, HubSpot, Google, Apple, and LinkedIn itself.
Keep in mind that your content strategy is the meeting point between your target audience’s interests and your organization’s goals. Your content strategy has to tell your brand’s story and deliver a message that will win your reader’s hearts and minds.
Be original – upload content in various visual formats; use infographics, images, carousel ads, slides, and, most importantly – videos. A LinkedIn study found a 20-times higher probability that users would share a video instead of text posts. Companies like Netflix and HubSpot, for example, share content in special formats like behind-the-scenes videos.
Use the unique voice of your employees. The 1980s are over – and with them the era of cold, alienated corporations. Your employees are your company’s attractive face, not the boring numbers, reports, and statistics. Users worldwide are eager to see human faces; they want to see your employees showcasing your organizations’ vision.
Don’t hesitate to interview them. Encourage them to produce content, write posts and articles, and share them. Give them the credit they deserve. According to Edelman’s Trust Barometer, people perceive organizations as more reliable and authentic when their employees convey the message rather than the brand itself.
Add hashtags to your posts to get more exposure, so that anyone looking for topics relevant to the post can easily reach you. Create a list of all-important hashtags in your field of expertise. Insert up to five hashtags per post, so LinkedIn’s algorithm wouldn’t think you’re a spammer.
Add a call to action (CTA) to encourage your followers to respond, like, share, comment, download documents, visit your website, and contact you. Posts with a call to action generate up to 45% more engagement than posts without it!
How Can You Know You’re on the Right Track?
As part of your content strategy, set clear objectives of how many followers and engagement rate you want to achieve. Without defined targets, it’s easy to get lost, and there are no KPIs that can measure your profile page’s success – qualitatively and quantitatively.
Use LinkedIn’s Analytics feature in a controlled manner and regularly to track the data on your profile page: growth percentage, followers’ location, impressions and reach, engagement rate, etc. The quantitative data LinkedIn measures enable you to verify if you’re on track towards the goals you set. Don’t hesitate to change the strategy or update your messaging if your current strategy is ineffective.
LinkedIn is a super professional social network that enables you to reach customers, professionals, talent, and stakeholders from all over the world – with remarkably high precision. However, LinkedIn imposes some requirements: your profile must be reliable and high quality, you must make your marketing groundwork before.
Don’t start sharing your content on autopilot because it just won’t work. Instead, do an in-depth study of your audiences to understand them. Define clear quantitative and qualitative objectives, and build a content strategy to tell your brand’s story simply. Upload content in various visual formats – especially videos. Use the unique voice of your talented employees to reinforce and echo your brand’s story. Add hashtags and calls to action. Last but not least – use LinkedIn Analytics regularly to track your progress.
Remember that the key to building trust and creating quality leads lies in building a quality community around your brand, based on honesty and authenticity – the golden words of our era.