July 15, 2021
5 Tips for Leveraging LinkedIn
As social media marketing continues to evolve and grow as a core strategy for brands wanting to attract new customers to their business, many have yet to bring any focus to one of the most powerful professional communities online. While Instagram, Tiktok, Facebook, and Twitter enjoy a majority of the focus and ad revenue from marketers wanting to build brand awareness, LinkedIn still feels like a different resource that requires a different set of tactics. Those differences, however, are the exact reason this platform can be a powerful tool to build brand culture—especially for developing business-to-business (B2B) relationships and brand authority. Here are five tips we think are critical to consider LinkedIn for your brand strategy.
Tip 1: Understand what LinkedIn is and isn’t
The main reason that LinkedIn is not included in a social media strategy is that the focus, and the purpose, of the platform, is very different from more traditional channels. While most social media channels have been designed to attract the user to create profiles and content around their personal lives and then give advertisers the ability to engage with their community with generalized targeting data, LinkedIn serves as a professional networking platform that has less to do with a person’s personal interests and more to do with their professional expertise.
LinkedIn is not a great platform to share lifestyle marketing and brand story, but it’s incredibly powerful when a company wants to build market authority for their brand. When building a brand strategy for LinkedIn, it’s important to create content that speaks to innovation, industry leadership, environmental sustainability, and social advocacy. Your goal is to attract other influential leaders in your industry or target partners to perceive your brand as an active member of the professional community.
Tip 2: LinkedIn has the most powerful targeting data
Most social media platforms are seeing much more strict regulation and social pressure for what personal data about their users they are allowed to share with advertisers. Privacy and security are making it much harder, and more expensive, for brands to penetrate and attract their key target audience to their content on these platforms. The economy of social media marketing has been hit hard in the past few years, and companies are taking a hard look at the ROI they receive from their efforts.
One frustration that many brands have had with trying to put together an ad strategy on LinkedIn is that it is too expensive. It is expensive, but it is expensive because there does seem to be a difference in quality and quantity of data that LinkedIn has regarding their users. As a general example, while it may cost two or three times as much to sponsor content on LinkedIn as it does on Facebook, the tools they offer to drill down to a very specific audience can provide a much higher yield of qualified prospects that can be influenced by your content. It’s like the difference between paying $50 that yields maybe 3 qualified leads or paying $500 that yields 150 qualified leads.
It’s the only social platform that can give you the ability to put your carefully curated brand content in front of potential brand advocates and target them by company size, job title, job function, industry, and interests. Is it more important to target a potential customer by their age and income or knowing they work in a specific profession, industry, or company that would benefit from your product or service?
Tip 3: LinkedIn is the content king
One of the key ways that LinkedIn differentiates itself from other social media channels is its invitation for brands to share much richer content with the community. Using video storytelling, which we highlight in this article, or long-form articles about areas of expertise your brand is developing, LinkedIn can give your audience the ability to expand your reach quickly and develop professional partnerships that help you grow your business.
LinkedIn also provides a built-in email marketing system, called InMail, that gives you the ability to build automated email campaigns that can be incredibly powerful. With InMail, you can build a message that is deeply targeted to your desired audience that will only get your message when they are on the platform, ensuring visibility. While a traditional email campaign may have an average open rate of 10 to 15% (for well-performing content), InMail average open rates are closer to 50 to 60%. You can specify from a wide range of CTAs that can be employed at the same time. These can include things like lead generation, brand awareness, website conversions, or even job applications.
The key to good LinkedIn content creation is remembering that this is a professional platform. So the content needs to be crafted differently than other social media campaigns. It needs to be more academic and business-oriented in order to draw the right audience engagement. This is less about the lifestyle experience of your products or services and much more about your corporate acumen and leadership and how your leadership is positively impacting your industry and audience.
Tip 4: Make LinkedIn a team strategy
Having your internal team involved in distributing the content you create for LinkedIn can be a great way of expanding your net to collect more interest. Professionals within your accounting department may have a vastly different sphere of influence than your operations or research and development team. Building some training for your team to share content into your LinkedIn strategy gives you a greater opportunity for success. Create a process for communicating when new content is released with your internal team so they can quickly and efficiently share that content with others.
One thing that many don’t fully understand is that a brand page on LinkedIn is completely different from a personal profile page. A brand page cannot follow other pages or share other partner’s content. That has to be done from individual profile pages. So, create a culture and training to help other members of your invested brand team to learn how to cultivate their LinkedIn reach and you will see how quickly the brand reputation grows and flourishes.
Tip 5: Always be measuring and iterating your LinkedIn content
If you’re going to be building a content calendar for your LinkedIn campaigns, be sure you have set up key goals and benchmarks for the expected return on those resources. Just like with any other social media channel, LinkedIn should be seen as a strategic resource to help you reach your higher-level goals. As we’ve mentioned, the campaign tactics for LinkedIn need to be fine-tuned to take full advantage of the specific opportunities that the platform provides. From strategic brand partnership networking to internal team retention, there are a wide variety of goals that can be set. Once they are set, there needs to be a regular review of content performance and adjustment to the plan to move the goals forward and expand the opportunity.
Your ability to build a brand position on LinkedIn is directly tied to your knowledge of your brand position, value, and promise in order to create a compelling voice that is sustainable. Having a FREE pool of professionals that will give you valuable insights on what parts and pieces of your brand story are resonating is absolutely priceless. Use that intelligence to help you craft and refine your brand position and let it inform your story in all your other marketing initiatives as well.
If you’ve not really thought about the value of employing a marketing strategy with LinkedIn, it’s time to reconsider your position. Creative Energy can help you build out an integrated LinkedIn campaign strategy to help you grow your market awareness and open new doors through this powerful platform. The best time to start is right away, so contact us today and let’s have a discussion about your needs and goals!