Creating LinkedIn content for business

LinkedIn is a powerful tool for business, designed to connect professionals with other individuals and organisations from across the globe. This makes it perfectly placed for B2B businesses to reach potential new clients, for companies to bolster their employer brand, and for individuals to build their own personal brand within their field.

Social media is a form of owned media. Businesses with a greater number of owned media channels, such as blogs, newsletters, YouTube channels and podcasts, increase their digital footprint which means a greater potential reach to prospective clients and followers. Owned media can be used to enhance other paid, earned and shared media to create an effective, fully rounded PR strategy.

The professionalism that is rooted in the foundations of LinkedIn means it needs a different approach to more consumer-focused platforms such as Instagram. Here are some tips for creating compelling LinkedIn company content which will reach desired audiences and generate awareness, interest and trust for your organisation.

Treat LinkedIn like a 24/7 online networking event

Just because LinkedIn is a business platform, it does not mean people want a full feed of their connections shouting about what they have done or achieved. Much like a networking event, people who drone on exclusively about themselves or their company can come across as boring and tedious.

When meeting other business professionals in real life, chat ranges from small talk, to topics of mutual interest, to what is going on in the wider field, and beyond. Replicate this on LinkedIn. Ensure content is not all self-promotional by sharing value-adding content which positions your organisation as a thought leader within the field and a trusted, insightful and engaging voice.

What type of content is most effective?

Two-thirds of the content shared on LinkedIn should be made up of these value-adding pieces. Share updates on what is going on in the wider industry, make insightful observations about the general business world, highlight other people’s work, or give advice in the form of how-to LinkedIn Articles (more on that later).

The key to value-adding content is to make it relevant to the intended audience. Engage them, educate them, inspire them to think of things from a new angle. This kind of content indicates mutual interest in the same topics and that you are knowledgeable about those topics, helping to build relationships and trust.

As well as helping to build this kind of reputation, value-adding content tends to generate more interactions as people engage more with the content. Interactions are vital on LinkedIn as they have a huge effect on LinkedIn’s algorithm and often when an individual likes or comments on a post it will make its way onto the feeds of people in their network.

Although value-adding content is the main relationship builder on LinkedIn, promotional posts also have their place. This kind of content is shouting about things the business or individuals within have achieved such as awards and new client wins, or to promote the products or services the business offers. Posts of this kind should make up around a third of posts. This tells people who land on a LinkedIn page what the business is about, what it does and how it will help.

Always remember that LinkedIn only shows two lines of text in newsfeeds, so all content, whether promotional or value-adding, must grab the reader’s attention so they are inclined to click ‘see more’ rather than scrolling straight past.

How to capitalise on the LinkedIn algorithm

LinkedIn’s algorithm is based on recent interactions, which is why aiming for the two-thirds to a third split of value-adding to promotional content is so important.

Posting more value-adding content will generate more interactions and the algorithm will prioritise the business with the people who interact with it. When you post something promotional, the interactions that have been generated by value-adding posts will help to tip the algorithm in your favour.

Furthermore, by building trust and relationships by sharing genuinely insightful and interesting content your network will care about promotional posts when they are shared. If your network like you, they are more likely to support your achievements with a “well done” comment or share a new service launched because they believe in the business.

How to generate interactions on LinkedIn

As with other forms of social media, asking questions is a great way to encourage your audience to interact with your posts. Ask “what do you think?”, “how would you do it?”, “what is your favourite example of X?”. This goes back to the online networking event concept. By asking questions like this, you establish a two-way dialogue of sharing ideas rather than a one-way lecture. Creating a conversation inspires people to get involved, spreads your reputation among relevant people and bolsters your position within LinkedIn’s algorithm.

LinkedIn has introduced a polling feature similar to Twitter and Facebook. Use polls to find out more about your audience – what they want to see more of or where their opinion lies on relevant topics. As well as encouraging interactions, insights from these polls can help you identify what kind of posts will engage your network. After a set period of time, the results of the poll are displayed, so think about questions which might encourage comment or debate from your network.

As mentioned previously, LinkedIn Articles are ideal for longer-form posts and basically function as a blog platform integrated within LinkedIn. This is a great way to share value-adding content such as advice blog posts, but also can be used for promotional posts, such as long-form pieces about business developments, new hires or acquisitions.

A huge benefit of LinkedIn being owned by Microsoft is that it has the capacity to share documents, such as PDFs, word documents or PowerPoints for other users to download directly from LinkedIn. This is a seriously underused function of LinkedIn and can be used to share newsletters, webinar slide decks and more.

Interacting with posts by other people and businesses is as important as posting. Inserting your business into relevant conversations will help to further your reach on the platform as more people will find their way to your profile. Generating likes and comments in response to your interactions on other people’s posts will also help your position in the algorithm.

Are hashtags useful on LinkedIn posts?

Hashtags on LinkedIn help categorise posts so they are easy for other people who want to talk about the topic in hand to find. If you search hashtags, you will find a whole catalogue of people having relevant discussions. Hashtagging posts will make them more visible to the intended audience and help place posts in searches.

Like Twitter and Instagram, posts should not be spammed with loads of hashtags in an attempt to reach as many people as possible. Have a browse through the hashtags you may want to use to see what is being spoken about and how many people are using them. Use this research to choose hashtags which are hitting the mark to make the most of them.

If you are interested in finding out how we can help your LinkedIn and wider social media strategy alongside wider PR activity call today on 0161 871 9140.

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