While people used to think of LinkedIn primarily as a recruitment tool, it’s also become an indispensable vehicle for content marketing.
When sharing content through organic social media channels, business-to-business (B2B) marketers are more likely to use LinkedIn than any other platform. Around 66 per cent say it generates the best overall content marketing results for their organisation.
But if your organisation hasn’t climbed aboard the LinkedIn content marketing train, and you still tend to use the platform largely for networking and hiring, there’s no time like the present. Here are three simple steps that can help your business make the most of it.
1. Get your hands on the right tools
First things first. Before you start creating posts, take the time to familiarise yourself with the platform’s content marketing features. Down the line, these tools will be important for ensuring your message is read as widely as possible – and by the right people.
LinkedIn Publishing is the primary tool you can use for writing, editing and sharing articles via your profile. It offers options to draft multiple posts, add multimedia elements, source third-party content and optimise your articles to improve visibility.
Another way to harness LinkedIn’s potential for B2B marketing and advertising is Campaign Manager, the site’s all-in-one advertising platform. The tool is part of LinkedIn’s Marketing Solutions, which are designed to help users build an online presence, establish business relationships and reach prospects.
One of Campaign Manager’s key benefits is the option to specify your target audience. By selecting specific criteria such as job titles and locations, your chances of reaching the right people become much better.
Mercedes-Benz, for example, was able to target newly promoted professionals with parameters such as management level and recently updated job titles in its ‘Update in Your CV, Update on the Road’ campaign. The company reached nearly 2 million new car buyers, achieving conversion rates that were three times higher than auto industry benchmarks.
2. Choose a format that fits
Once you’ve familiarised yourself with LinkedIn’s content marketing tools, decide what type of content you want to create.
LinkedIn enables you to share all kinds of content, from videos and images to polls, but for the purposes of this guide we’ll focus on posts and articles.
Posts are the shorter option, and probably the one you’re most familiar with. These are capped at 1,300 characters, and they’re the type of tidbits you can ingest while scrolling through your feed. They work best if you have a great data point, an exciting update or a thought-provoking question to share. But for anything that can’t be summarised in 200 words or less, you’re better off crafting an article.
Articles are blog posts written by your organisation (or people like us!) and hosted on LinkedIn. When it comes to length, you have two choices: long, captivating deep dives, or short and snappy takes on a particular topic. According to LinkedIn, the middle ground – articles ranging from 400 to 600 words – are less likely to do well, so best to stick to one end of the spectrum.
If you do choose a longer-form post, make sure to break it up with bullet points, subheadings and images – readers want depth, but not at the expense of digestibility.
3. Get writing
You want to produce content that reflects your knowledge, expertise or opinion on a certain subject – bonus points if the subject draws attention to your business.
If you’re writing an article, keep in mind the fundamentals of great thought leadership. For inspiration, consider the three types of thought leadership you could explore in your content:
- industry – your perspective on current affairs or trends
- organisational – the unique mission of your business or company
- product – how you’re producing superior customer solutions.
Or, you could lead with a human interest story, like Microsoft Australia often does. From profiles of new parents to inspiring life stories, Microsoft’s LinkedIn pages use the company’s best asset – its people – to get readers clicking while raising brand awareness.
When you’re writing a shorter post, it’s important to lead with a strong hook and prioritise clarity and punchiness. But whatever the format, the most important thing to consider is your audience. How is your article or post adding value to their day? What is it teaching them that they don’t already know?
Ultimately, the best way to guess if your post or article will be successful is to put yourself in your readers’ shoes and ask: would I click on this?
To see what we mean, you only need to look at LinkedIn’s Water Cooler page, where the company lists the articles and posts that have performed the best over a three-month period.
The most engaging article from early 2021, titled ‘Tim Cook may Have Just Ended Facebook’ and written by Justin Bariso, offers clear value in the form of newsworthiness. The next two on the list, ‘The next normal arrives: trends that will define 2021 – and beyond’ from McKinsey, and ‘9 trends that will shape work in 2021 and beyond’ by Brian Kopp, offered LinkedIn readers something equally valuable: a glimpse into the future and a chance to become – and appear – more informed.
We can help
If you need help writing original content for LinkedIn – and delivering it consistently – feel free to contact us. Our team of experienced writers can produce articles or blog posts from scratch, working from supplied information, interviews and/or our own research.
Or, if you have a draft in the works that needs some polishing, we can edit or proofread it to ensure it’s of the highest quality for publication.