“LinkedIn is so overwhelming to me.”
I hear that from many clients, colleagues, and friends who don’t know where to start when it comes to LinkedIn. How does being on the platform turn into a new job, sales, or key networking connections?
The thing to know about social media networks – LinkedIn included – is that they are always evolving. What is true in April may not be true in October. It’s important to stay on top of social media trends, which most professionals (understandably) don’t have time for.
That’s where people like me come in.
Let me walk you through the secret to achieving LinkedIn visibility as things are today – August 12, 2018.
1. Stop Posting Article Links
Posting an article link is the fastest way to get next to no traction on LinkedIn.
The platform is trying to generate conversation between users, which means any posts with metadata – the image, title, and summary that comes with including a link – will quickly die in the newsfeed. (I will, however, be thrilled if this post defies this rule.)
That being said, producing articles is still important for inbound marketing. When someone clicks through to view your profile, they will see the most recent article you’ve written toward the top. I recommend posting articles at least monthly.
2. Generate Thought-Provoking Conversation
LinkedIn is doing a great thing allowing organic engagement to develop. Facebook has all but halted any chance of organic reach, forcing businesses to invest in the platform’s robust advertising tools if they want any traction at all.
If you can generate engagement (likes, comments, and shares) on LinkedIn, your posts will gain traction in the newsfeed. If you have an optimized headline and LinkedIn profile, visibility should result in business and valuable connection requests.
What does it look like to generate thought-provoking conversation?
I recommend staying true to your personality and what interests you. I love sparking conversations like the one below, which generated nearly 6,000 views.
Also stay true to your personality. If you have a great sense of humor, leverage it. Genuine communication will resonate through the computer or smartphone screen.
This post came to me while viewing the stats of my profile and took off, generating 66 likes, 47 comments, and nearly 11,000 views. I had people reaching out to me in private messages and connection requests referencing the “office boy” post.
Don’t be afraid to test things out: subject, tone, type of post.
3. Leverage Hashtags
Remember LinkedIn Pulse? If you don’t, it was LinkedIn’s curated content platform. If you were picked up by LinkedIn Pulse, your article views would skyrocket.
The equivalent of that system now is hashtags, which LinkedIn recently rolled out in a way that is starting to stick. LinkedIn has recommended including hashtags in posts for awhile, but one could never be quite sure what that accomplished.
Now they’ve made it an actual thing. You can follow specific hashtags to see posts that reference them in your newsfeed and you can include them in your posts to extend their reach. I recommend using as many (relevant) hashtags as possible whenever you post.
4. Go Down the LinkedIn Rabbit Hole
Yes, I’m telling you to throw best productivity practices out the window and allow yourself to travel deep into the abyss of mindlessly perusing social media.
Here’s the thing: LinkedIn will penalize your posts if you aren’t commenting on other people’s posts. If you don’t believe me, try it. Post daily to LinkedIn; use hashtags, don’t include a link, and try to generate engagement. If you don’t engage other people’s posts during that time, your reach will be limited.
Then change things up and start commenting on other people’s posts. Get into back-and-forth conversations with people. Say more than, “Great post!” Actually engage.
The visibility of your posts will increase. Believe me. Take a look at my profile as an example. The trends of people looking at my profile ebb and flow with me going down the LinkedIn rabbit hole to engage with others.
5. Change Up Your Content
Finally, change up your content. In other words, don’t be one-note. Allow yourself to explore different subjects, different mediums (video vs. posing a question vs. an image), and different times of the day. Tag people because they really would like to read the content, not to bait them into commenting.
As you test things out, you’ll find a rhythm that works for you and your visibility will soar. Then it’s all up to you to sell and network to your heart’s content.
About Chrissie Wywrot
Chrissie Wywrot is a B2B lead generator and personal brand strategist who works with passionate entrepreneurs and professional athletes. To learn more about her services, visit her LinkedIn profile or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.