One week ago I gave you advice on why you should use the LinkedIn publishing platform once you get access to it, and you will get access to it in the not so distant future if you don’t have access to it today. Whether you’re a content creator, a business, or a professional, the LinkedIn publishing platform provides a compelling way for you to get found in, engage with, and derive business value from LinkedIn. So, now that you’re ready to start blogging on LinkedIn, here’s my recommendation for writing posts that will get read in the news feeds of your followers. Note that this platform was only recently launched, so my advice might change in the future, but based on what I see and understand now, these are my recommendations:
1. Blog for the LinkedIn Demographic
I wrote about this in How to Use the New LinkedIn Publishing Platform, but this will be the most challenging concept for businesses to understand. I believe that your content should be unique to LinkedIn and geared towards the LinkedIn demographic. If you just want to copy and paste your blog post, I don’t think you’re going to be as effective on LinkedIn as you could be – and I think at some point you might get hurt by Google’s and/or LinkedIn’s algorithm(s). Companies that excel at social media marketing target their content and voice towards each unique community in social media. You should as well. Look at it another way: For most professionals who don’t have a personal website, LinkedIn IS their website and the new publishing platform WILL become their blog. You will have to compete with them for readership in the not-too-distant future.
2. Watch Your Frequency
Every social network plays around with their news feed or timeline and thus have an algorithm similar to Facebook Edgerank. LinkedIn is no different. LinkedIn has to decide what posts to display on who’s network updates, and I would tend to believe that if you publish too frequently, that might be hurting your chances for maximum impressions for each post. Just look at the LinkedIn Influencers: They’re not publishing on a daily basis, are they? With that in mind, I myself only plan to start publishing on a weekly basis, and I would recommend that you keep that to your approximate maximum as well. As I said
3. Don’t Underestimate the Power of the Visual
Visuals show up prominently in the LinkedIn newsfeed as they do everywhere else. Make sure that you use a visual at the top of your blog post that resonates with the professional demographic that make up LinkedIn.
4. Headlines are Critical
Time is short, and while your content might go out into the LinkedIn network updates, that’s only half off the battle: Your headline must be short, concise, and give professionals a reason to click through. A look at the most popular headlines of Influencer posts will give you and idea of some great headlines that you can try to emulate for success.
5. Keep Your Post Short
My posts are on the long side (this one is around 1,050 words), but your posts don’t need to be. My rule of thumb would be to make your post at least 300 words, but there is no reason why you have to blog longer than 1,000 words here on LinkedIn. Once again, I believe that for professionals where time is money, many simply don’t have the time to read through a longer post. Keep it short and simple when possible.
6. Link with Love
Just as you should update your LinkedIn profile with visual elements to showcase your work and content across the web, you should also do so here when you blog on LinkedIn. I wouldn’t overdo it, and I would definitely make it look natural and organic, but linking to provide a greater resource is an absolute best practice in blogging anywhere. “Link with Love” is also about recognizing other authors of content that you can link to if they influenced you, or marketing partners if you did something with them that is relevant to your post (see 9. below).
7. Share Your Post Inside AND Outside LinkedIn
If you want to get your content read on LinkedIn, don’t just share it on LinkedIn: Share it everywhere you can! Other social networking sites and your email newsletter are a great start. And, while I don’t recommend you creating a blog post and summarizing it on the LinkedIn publishing platform, I do recommend creating a LinkedIn publisher post and then summarizing it on your blog to a link back to LinkedIn!
8. Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile
Needless to say, every post that you publish might lead people back to your profile. If you want to be considered an authority on the subject, you’d better have an optimized LinkedIn profile! Here are my most recent collection of LinkedIn profile tipsfor you to follow.
Right now LinkedIn only provides you the option of embedding YouTube videos and Slideshare presentations, but if you have one that is relevant to your post, that can only help in better engaging with your audience – and building greater loyalty for your future posts. While the below YouTube video is not just about the new LinkedIn publishing platform, I was on a Google Hangout with Eric Enge from the leading digital marketing agency today where I discussed the future of social media in 2014 and why the new LinkedIn Publishing platform changes everything.
Note: The above was embedded using a custom 600 x 338 size.
Finally, while there might be some things that you can’t embed, I did want to give you a catch to listen to my latest podcast where I talk further about understanding the compelling power of the new LinkedIn publishing platform. You can also “embed” other things into your posts in the same way with a link until LinkedIn gives us the ability to embed more sources of media.