Marketers have noticed LinkedIn’s explosive growth over the past few years. At the close of 2017, LinkedIn had an impressive 500 million members. As LinkedIn debuts new features and ways to connect, it’s expected to become an important channel for both B2B and B2C marketers this year. To leverage LinkedIn effectively for 2018, organizations need an effective and creative strategy to boost their content marketing efforts. Here are the top tactics for crafting and promoting successful content on LinkedIn.
Publishing on LinkedIn
Over 100,000 articles are published each week on LinkedIn. From these stats, it’s clear that LinkedIn has become a content powerhouse.
LinkedIn Publisher makes it easy for users to post original articles or republish their blog content. While company pages can’t publish directly, brands can leverage their employees and executives to create and publish content. Doing so benefits both the company and employees by developing thought leadership and brand awareness.
Successful articles (defined by shares and other engagement metrics) have two things in common: engaging headlines and valuable content that helps professionals. Let’s take a deeper look at both to see what defines success.
Effective LinkedIn Headlines
An effective headline is vital to a successful LinkedIn article. Buzzsumo performed an analysis of 10 million articles shared on LinkedIn. Here’s what they found:
- Articles with “How To” in the headline gained the highest number of shares, followed by list posts with phrases like “The X…” and “X ways…”
- For list posts, the top numbers used were 5 and 10. For example, “5 Ways to Ace Your Next Job Interview.”
- The top-performing words in headlines were “best,” “data,” and “top.”
- The optimum headline length is between 7 and 10 words.
From the data, we see that LinkedIn readers want educational content and insights that improve their jobs and industry. When the benefit for readers was clearly stated in the headline, the article received more shares. The most successful LinkedIn headlines are clear, and brief, and promise value to the user.
Qualities of Effective LinkedIn Content
Content geared towards professional advancement performs best on LinkedIn. Readers want to see articles that benefit their careers and businesses. Articles published on LinkedIn should address your audience’s pain points and/or contribute to your industry in a meaningful way.
To see what makes an article successful, OkDork analyzed 3,000 LinkedIn posts. Here’s what they found:
- Articles with 8 images gain a higher number of shares, likes, comments, and views.
- Break up posts using headings. Articles with 5 headings performed best.
- Long-form articles between 1,900 and 2,000 words had much higher views.
- Articles with a neutral tone and easy readability (using the Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease test) gained more shares, likes, and views.
As you can see, LinkedIn users appreciate educational articles packed with visual aids. Successful content published on LinkedIn is comprehensive, well-formatted, and easy to read.
Content Marketing for LinkedIn Company Pages
Company pages are a great way for followers to interact with organizations. As a networking platform used by professionals, the content shared to company pages should help people reach their professional and business goals. Users are interested in doing their jobs better, so content should be educational and address pain points. Avoid posting personal and controversial material, and steer clear of overt sales pitches.
Here are a few post ideas for LinkedIn company pages:
- Curated Articles: You don’t always have to share your own content. Select relevant articles to share with your audience, but don’t forget to add your own opinion and original insights.
- Company Culture: Both job seekers and visitors want to know what it’s like to work at your company. Posts about company culture could include employee experiences and milestones, to company events, and office tours.
- Case Studies, Whitepapers, eBooks, & Guides: Comprehensive, educational content performs well on LinkedIn. Include a snippet of your content to pique curiosity.
- Blog Posts & Published Articles: Link to relevant blog posts and articles that provide solutions to your audience’s pain points. For example, here’s a blog post that Marketo promoted on their LinkedIn company page.
- Company News: You don’t want to brag, but exciting changes or honors make great posts. Job openings should also be shared on company pages.
- Industry News, Research, Studies, & Stats: Demonstrate to audiences that you keep up with trends and important studies that impact your industry. Posting data establishes thought leadership and expertise.
- Training Webinars: If you provide educational resources, LinkedIn is one of the best platforms to promote. Include a link to register for the webinar.
According to LinkedIn, posts with images have a 98% higher comment rate, so always include an image in your updates. The ideal post frequency is once every weekday. While many experts suggest posting early in the morning or right after work hours, use your company page analytics to find an optimal posting time.
LinkedIn Features to Try
LinkedIn has several features that content marketers can use to enhance their strategy. Though ads are not included here, many businesses have found success with sponsored content. You can learn more about sponsored content on LinkedIn’s advertising page.
In the summer of 2017, LinkedIn debuted its native video feature. Previously, users could only embed a link from YouTube or Vimeo. Using the LinkedIn mobile app, users can now simply record and upload videos directly to the site. If the success of video content on Facebook is any indication, this feature will be highly valuable to marketers.
LinkedIn Groups is a valuable networking feature that can also be used to share content with industry followers. Join a group that’s relevant to your business, contribute to discussions, and share content you’ve already created. Participating in groups can go a long way in establishing authority and thought leadership, as well as driving site traffic.
Utilize SlideShare to publish visual content like infographics, presentations, and product demos. Optimize your SlideShare with keyword-rich titles, descriptions, and tags so users can easily discover your content through search engines and within LinkedIn.
LinkedIn’s Company Page analytics can be used to discover trends and topics that resonate with your audience. Marketers can also use demographic data to better understand visitors and the content they want. One helpful feature is LinkedIn’s companies to track, which can be used to monitor and compare the performance of competitors’ pages.
Final Thoughts on LinkedIn for Content Marketing
Above all, keep in mind that LinkedIn is a platform for professionals. It requires a separate strategy from other social channels but is well worth the extra effort. Let us know your thoughts and the success you’ve seen from using LinkedIn for content marketing.
Editor’s note: This post is by nDash community member Jessica Turner. Jessica is a freelance writer and content marketer with a background in digital marketing in tech and politics. To learn more about Jessica, or to have her write for your brand, check out her nDash profile page.