LinkedIn Publisher is, in my opinion, one of the best platforms for increasing your own visibility on LinkedIn while encouraging engagement with your content.
LinkedIn may “only” have 480 million members, but the people in your LinkedIn network most likely consist of your target audience. This means you have a better chance of your key prospects seeing one of your LinkedIn Publisher posts than coming across a random landing page or even a blog post on your website. Even as a recognized expert in your industry, your website might not be as prominent as your LinkedIn profile, so optimize your positioning.
Personally, my Publisher posts get more activity and shares than any of my blog posts on my website despite the fact that I get 25,000 unique views and 100,000 visitors every month. It makes sense, then, to share my content in both places.
Publisher, Posts and Pulse
Before I go any further, let me clarify the difference between Publisher, Posts and Pulse:
- Publisher is the LinkedIn platform you use to create your content on LinkedIn. You can find Publisher on your LinkedIn homepage under “Write an article,” or on your profile page under Posts.
- Posts are the actual long form articles that you write. You will notice there are many features you can use to format your posts to make them more engaging. More on that below.
- Pulse is a newsfeed app that LinkedIn purchased and embedded within its timeline. There used to be a stand-alone feature within LinkedIn that allowed you to configure your preferences, but now it’s only findable in the timeline. You can still download the app on your mobile device.
Repurposing for LinkedIn
If you have already created content (blog posts, newsletters, eBooks, podcasts, interviews,) then why not repurpose it for LinkedIn? We have not seen any “Google slaps” for repurposed content so far.
You may need to invest another 30 minutes of time, but the potential for positioning yourself as a thought leader, as well as increasing your visibility and engagement, is high. LinkedIn Publisher supports hyperlinks, YouTube and Slideshare embeds as well as graphics. So use the marketing collateral you have already created to make your posts more engaging and drive more traffic.
Another bonus? Publisher content is searchable on LinkedIn, and it’s shareable, which means your post could potentially go viral. Published Posts can also be “upgraded” to LinkedIn Pulse. And that could mean exponentially more visibility. (Having said that, it is better to write good content and encourage activity on your Posts then try to write solely for the purpose of getting a Post promoted to Pulse.)
My friend John White wrote an article titled 7 Management Traits That Will Make All Your Employees Quit. That single article has received more than 631,000 views, and almost 6,000 shares and 2,000 comments. I don’t know about you, but that’s certainly more visibility than I get on my own blog! The result for John was thousands of new followers and connections on LinkedIn, invitations to be on several radio and blog casts, job offers, and several new substantial clients.
When John wrote the post he was an MBA student and in a job he didn’t love. (In fact, the post was originally part of his MBA thesis.) Now he has his own very successful business and writes for Inc. Magazine, amongst others. Not bad for a couple hundred words posted on LinkedIn.
Publisher – your LinkedIn blogging platform
When it comes to Publisher, you’ll notice that what makes a great LinkedIn post is not much different than the elements that comprise a great blog:
- The title should be catchy
- Use visuals that attract attention
- Insert good keywords or search terms in your title and in the content for greater findability
- Add quotes and/or videos for visual appeal
Best practices for Publisher
The number one best practice for using Publisher is, and always will be, to write high-quality content.
You can have all the tricks and tips and hacks in the world, but if your content sucks, it’s unlikely to get the necessary engagement to help position you as a thought leader or get more business. That being said, here are some guidelines that seem to help posts get seen and shared.
1. Make use of all the features
- H1 and H2 (headers)
- Bullets and italics
- Text and image alignment
- Bold, italics and underscoring
2. Make use of visuals (as mentioned above)
3. Use calls-to-action
- Click here
- Share this
- Watch this video
- Please comment below
4. Add an author bio at the bottom of your post
- Add a picture of yourself
- Hyperlink relevant copy
- Add contact info and even calendar links
5. Add hashtags when you publish
Your work isn’t done after you hit publish. You still need to make sure that you share your post as an update on all your social channels frequently (at least several times a week for several weeks).
If you apply these strategies to every post you will get more views likes and shares.
How to get more shares and visibility
To position yourself as a thought leader and get more activity on your posts, hang out with other thought leaders. Try these tips:
- Create an “Influencer List” post like “Top 10 Female Bloggers” and then share the post with those Influencers on LinkedIn. When you share the post on your timeline as an update, tag them there as well. Chances are they will share it with their network.
- Write a book/product review of a popular celebrity, book or company. And don’t be afraid to tag that person or company when you share your post on LinkedIn.
- Source Influencers as experts. Connect with your five closest influential friends and have them send you a quote on a particular subject. Don’t forget to tag and share it with them once the post is published.
- Interview an influencer. Send an influencer a few questions or talk to them on the phone, and write an interview post. It will be interesting to your audience and will likely be shared by them as well.
When I speak of influencers, I don’t mean just LinkedIn Influencers found on Pulse: I mean anyone in your network who is influential, and who has lots of followers and engagement. You can find those folks in LinkedIn’s Ranking.
I think the biggest problem with Publisher right now is that people are not being strategic or thoughtful with their posts, which leads to unnecessary clutter on LinkedIn. Unlike when Publisher was first made public, you now have to write even better headlines and have more arresting visuals to grab people’s attention. But if you know what you’re doing, and write good content, your posts are going to eclipse the junk out there. While you may not get results like John White, you are still likely to get more visibility (and activity) on your posts than on your blog. I regularly drive readers to my calendar with my posts, and I even got a book deal when Wiley saw an example of my writing on LinkedIn — so you never know what Publisher could do for you!
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