You’re reading this because you already know that LinkedIn is a B2B marketing goldmine. Unlike other social networks, most people active on the platform are not just killing time. They’re seeking out professional insights, which makes it a great opportunity for marketing.
The trouble is, LinkedIn marketing is less intuitive than the other major social networks. Crudely put, if you want to reach people on Facebook, you can probably just throw money into ads. Equally, you can grow your Twitter audience with a small amount of cunning by getting the right people to share your message. LinkedIn isn’t so simple.
So what can you do?
Thankfully, all is not lost. Indeed, if you know what you’re doing, LinkedIn marketing can be around three times more effective than Facebook or Twitter. That’s exactly what I want to share with you. As such, here are 5 LinkedIn marketing hacks that will help you get conversions, leads, or job opportunities.
Here we go!
The Write Post Edit Method
Well, not quite. Let’s take an example. Say you’ve just scored a guest post with a high authority site. Naturally, you’re going to want to tell the world about it. There’s just one problem. A big part of LinkedIn’s business model is being a publishing platform. Since they want you to publish directly to their platform, the algorithms don’t take kindly to external links.
As a result, content with an external link will get fewer views than a post without a link. This is an issue if you’re using LinkedIn for marketing. There are workarounds to this problem though.
The answer is the ‘write-post-edit’ method.
Simply put, you draft and publish your post without a link. The algorithm recognizes you don’t have a link and will start to show your content to more people than it otherwise would. Three minutes later you edit your post and insert a link to your content.
You will need to make some edits to the copy to accommodate this tactic. For example, pose a leading question to start with that relates to the article you want to promote. This will allow people to engage with your post before you insert the link to your content.
Another issue with this method is that when you edit a post to add a link, a preview to the webpage won’t be displayed in people’s feeds. To make up for this, be sure to include some visuals in the original post. This could be the header image you used in the post or a custom image you created using some easy to use graphic design software.
Keep in mind that the feature image for your post should be 1200x630 pixels. Obviously, this graphic won’t be a clickable link.
When using the ‘write-post-edit’ method, always add visuals at the posting stage.
You’ll also notice that your links are automatically shortened to LinkedIn’s proprietary format. You can avoid this by deleting the ‘https://’ from the beginning of your link.
However, there’s a small catch...
This will display your full domain address, but it won’t be clickable on a desktop. This doesn’t affect mobile, but you’ll need to make a judgment call based on what devices your audience uses the most.
If you decide to include an external link in your post, make sure it looks good by defining your Open Graph markup. Everyone in SEO is obsessed with their titles and meta descriptions, if you care about social traffic then pay attention to making your snippets look good there.
The Complement and Connect Strategy
LinkedIn was supposed to be an online space for users to make professional connections. As it stands, Linkedin is a platform where a lot of people just brag about their professional accomplishments.
Timelines often appear as a feed that can be summarized as - Me, me, me, me.
Hope you liked my Pavarotti impression :D
If you want to stand out on LinkedIn, and by that I mean not doing the same thing as everyone else, stop talking about yourself and instead connect with people. Then leave compliments. This isn’t difficult.
When you leave a comment on a post, say something nice.
Even better, start a discussion. If someone whose radar you’d like to get onto publishes a piece of content, write a response. Obviously, don’t tear them down or argue with their points.
As you grow your network, it pays to be strategic. Define who you’d like to connect with; this could be marketing managers or CEOs. When you have a target list for your LinkedIn marketing, identify ways you can create that connection.
A good strategy is to connect to someone within the network of your target first. This is a helpful stepping stone because when your potential target finally gets your connection request, the first thing they might check is “connections in common”. The odds of getting your request accepted is greatly increased when you have a shared connection.
This approach has particularly proved successful for securing top speakers when doing events marketing, which brings me nicely onto the next point...
The Monetizing the Buzz Approach
LinkedIn is a fantastic way to keep your company in people’s heads. The key here is to post about what you’re up to at a given point in time. Of course, there’s no sense in posting once a week to say you’ve had a successful Monday morning stand-up.
That’s a sure fire way to lose followers.
Rather, if your company or employees have been up to something out of the ordinary, let the world know. Especially if it involves external stakeholders. One approach we’ve used on LinkedIn to land new clients, with a lot of success, are offline events.
The strategy we used to promote these events was in two parts. First, we’d post content as you normally would on the LinkedIn timeline. We’d also use bots to direct message people in our target audience.
Shouting about an event you’re organizing sends a strong signal to people in your network that you are active thought leaders in your niche. Now, most of the people who are notified about the event won’t attend. That’s just a given.
Yet all that noise does have an impact.
The fact that you are holding an event conveys to your target audience that your business is active, and has useful information to share. You want people to know that your business has a bit of hustle to it because people like to work with successful companies.
This strategy of promoting events in LinkedIn has landed us several clients. I’d like to add here that none of the clients I’m talking about attended the events we organized. However, they all signed contracts shortly after.
The Creative Content Strategy
If you want people to engage with your content they need to understand what you are saying. This is why content marketers always talk about readability. In essence, this is how easy something is to read and digest. The principle is that if you write something dense and technical, fewer people will read it.
This ability to turn something complex into a thing that is easy to read on basically every online platform. LinkedIn is no exception.
While there is any number of factors which go into readability, your first priority should be to ditch the jargon and write in a way that non-experts can understand. If most people don’t understand what you’re saying, there’s no chance they’ll comment or share your content.
This is called accessibility.
You can see how successful content marketers apply these strategies when you review the results for the most popular content on LinkedIn through Buzzsumo. Unsurprisingly the majority of the most popular content on LinkedIn are tips related to employment.
Buzzsumo is a great way to find engaging content ideas for Linkedin.
You can see how the most popular article has a broad appeal. It’s not related to any specific vertical. You can find a screenshot of the most popular article on LinkedIn below.
You should apply this same formula to your content.
Let’s say you run a marketing agency and you want to show off a case study for a recent project. In theory, you could go with something along the lines of ‘How We Halved Abandonment Rates with a Combination of Retargeting and Personalised Follow-Ups’.
Now, you may have halved abandonment rates for your client, and that’s great and everything. The only problem is only other marketers will have any idea what you’re talking about. At best, you might freak out the competition a little, but you’re unlikely to get much engagement.
I can understand that. I don’t really like social media.
Yet there is probably already someone within your organization who’s a little bit more comfortable with LinkedIn. They’d likely be thrilled to do this on your behalf.
By growing your LinkedIn connections, and creating content people can engage with, you’ll increase the chance of people hearing about what you’re up to, and being interested in what you’re doing. This puts you in a great position as a thought leader or local influencer in your vertical.
Secondly, you can utilize other employees within your organization in a similar way.
Say the whole payroll is just you, an accountant, a salesperson and a couple of software developers. These are all people with skills and insights that can be shared. Most of them are already on LinkedIn, and so are other people carrying out their same job roles. Just like ⅓ of the world’s other professionals.
Encourage your staff to get involved with LinkedIn groups that are relevant to their positions. They can then leverage these groups to start creating personal brands of their own.
When you were hiring these people, you went out of your way to get the most knowledgeable and talented employees you could find. It’s time to start using them as ambassadors for your business. It projects a good image to prospective clients if your company is staffed by recognizable thought leaders in their different fields.
The last company-wide Linkedin marketing strategy is to create a branded LinkedIn header template that all employees can edit and add to their profiles. Venngage did this as part of a campaign to improve brand recognition and attract better talent.
This visual approach is an easy way to increase brand recognition. You can imagine how applying this branded approach across the workforce of a company would be memorable, especially for large companies. It’s also quite fun.
Used correctly, LinkedIn can be a great marketing resource for your business. It’s a platform where you can grow your professional network, generate leads, and place yourself as a thought leader in your vertical. What I’ve tried to do here is point out some of the barriers you’re likely to face in achieving these results, and explain what you need to do to get around them.
Hopefully, you’ll find these LinkedIn marketing tips useful, and you’ll be in a position to apply them to your own business endeavors. If you’ve got questions about any of the tips that I covered in the post drop me a message in the comments below.