Recently LinkedIn unveiled a publishing platform, initially only for influencers, but now open to all users. This tool is essentially a blog, and the main aim of it is to provide you with a forum to publish your own industry insights, research or opinions. It gives you the power to become an influencer, and if your content is compelling enough, this may open doors for you.
WHY IS THIS GROUNDBREAKING?
While you have always been able to start a blog, the true power behind LinkedIn’s platform is that your audience is already there. As soon as you publish, it goes to your network, and as soon as your network "like" or comment on your article, it goes to their networks. The more compelling your post is, the more likely it will be shared, which can snowball into growing a wider network grows.
WHAT TYPE OF CONTENT SHOULD I WRITE?
The biggest mistake you can make when publishing on LinkedIn, is pitching for your own company. This is not a forum for putting your name in the spotlight, not in a promotional way anyway. Publishing on LinkedIn should be about compelling content, and although you do want to promote your name and company, it needs to be subtly done through interesting content. You own industry insights, research you have conducted, interviews, or opinion pieces on a current industry trend, these are you best routes for shaping your posts. Good content promotes feedback and questions, which is engagement with you and your brand, a far more powerful outcome than pitching to an unengaged audience.
HOW SHOULD I FORMAT MY POSTS?
You need to assume that your reader is minimal time, so you only have a few seconds to hook your audience. Your title should provoke interest, and the content should be easily scannable.
What does this mean?
Your content should be easy to read, and broken into short paragraphs and sub-headings. Large slabs of text will turn people away, especially those new to viewing content published on LinkedIn. This isn’t the great American novel you are writing, it’s your insights, and you need to make them as accessible and concise as possible.
HOW DO I PLAN FOR SCANNABLE CONTENT?
Before you write you post, have a plan about what you want to talk about. Each point should be it’s own separate paragraph. Someone may be drawn to what you have to say about “HOW YOU CAN GET BIG RETURNS INVESTING IN PROPERTY”, which you may have halfway down in your post. They may only want to read that paragraph, so let them access it easily. Then it is their choice if they want to go back to the top. Online reading is not always nessesarily linear, so make sure you signpost the most important bits.
DOES IT MATTER WHAT INDUSTRY I AM IN?
No. If you are on LinkedIn, there is a strong chance there are many others like you on there, meaning you have a relevant audience. LinkedIn Pulse streamlines content based on peoples interests and industry, so if your content makes a mark, it will also be published here for an even wider community. Some industries will have a huge number of contributions, such as Digital Media, and some will only have a few. You also need to be patient, it may take a few posts before you start seeing genuine traffic.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE
One of the main issues I see with LinkedIn content that users submit, is the posts are not scannable, and simply large slabs of text. Make your post easily readable, compelling content, and avoid the pitch, and you will it grow legs and take a walk around your LinkedIn community, and quite possibly, further afield as well.