There are many platforms for taking your content and publishing it to increase its visibility and potential impact. In addition to marketing your content through email newsletters, guest posts on external blogs, and submissions via social bookmarking sites, the most popular option seems to be syndicating your articles through social media.
The variety and sheer scope of social media platforms today make it, as a whole, the most potentially impactful avenue for content promotion and syndication. Unfortunately, many content marketers have resorted to using it only for the simplest purposes: posting a link to a new post when it goes up, and nothing else.
While some platforms lend themselves to this style of promotion, you’re doing yourself a disservice if this is the only way you leverage social media. Too many platforms offer too many benefits to be ignored, and some platforms, like LinkedIn, are shockingly underutilized in the content marketing game. Because of this, there is a critical competitive opening, and if you use it efficiently, LinkedIn can be your secret weapon in your content marketing campaign.
The greatest power of LinkedIn is its ability to offer multiple connection mediums within one collective umbrella. By comparison, Twitter only offers two types of posts: tweets and direct messages, while Facebook offers three: timeline posts, posts on a friend’s or brand’s timeline, and messages to a friend or brand.
LinkedIn offers far more options for sharing and submitting content. You can share pieces on your own profile, similar to Facebook’s individual timeline, post on behalf of a company, share articles with another individual in the form of a message, post articles in the context of a Group, or post more salesy or advertising opportunities under the Promotions section. This diversified landscape of opportunities allows you to better hone your approach to circulating content. If you have a new sales sheet, you can post it appropriately in the Promotions section. If you have a niche piece related to a Group, you can share it there. If you have a piece of particular interest to you, you can share it on your own.
Having the power to adjust a piece’s visibility based on its context allows you to maximize its potential impact. This immediately makes your content more powerful than if it was simply shared out in one place no matter what type of content it is.
LinkedIn is also the perfect place to build and leverage a personal brand. While LinkedIn does offer the ability to create a page for your company or organization, it’s a better idea to share as an individual. People tend to trust and engage with other individuals far more than corporate brands, and because your professional and personal profiles blend into one on LinkedIn, it’s almost tailor-made for building and showcasing a personal brand.
You can do this by posting regularly in specific communities, building a reputation, and sharing your own individual opinions on news events and others’ articles.
Groups are one of LinkedIn’s greatest strengths. Organized by individual LinkedIn members, these sub-groups range from general to highly specific, with different sized audiences accordingly. For example, there’s a “social media marketing” group with more than one million members, but a much more specific “electrical and lighting product marketing” group with just over 20,000 members.
Chances are, there’s at least one LinkedIn Group highly relevant to your industry and your target audience at once, and several hundred other related groups to various other aspects of your business. Selectively involving yourself in all these groups will allow you to further maximize your impact.
Influencers are abundant in LinkedIn. You can pick these individuals out because they’re constantly getting involved in discussions, they’re often being asked for their opinions on specific matters, and they have large numbers of connections. These members tend to be involved in other social media platforms as well, and they tend to command a large social audience.
Because Groups are open, it’s easy to find and engage with influencers on LinkedIn. Simply reach out and have a conversation with them, and if they’re open to engagement, you can reach out as a connection. If you’re involved often enough, eventually you’ll catch their attention, and they’ll probably call you out or share a piece of your content, giving you an instant boost in visibility and credibility across the web.
By making new individual LinkedIn connections and witnessing ongoing discussions in Groups and forums, you’ll have a critical opportunity to learn how your target audience operates. You’ll easily find new ideas for content topics, evaluate how people react to your currently syndicated content, and learn how to better write in a voice that appeals to your readers.
Like with any social media or content-focused campaign, you might not be successful right away. It’s going to take time to build an influence and iron out all the little flaws with your approach as you learn more about the environment. Each brand will require a slightly different strategy, and each industry will have a different number and size of LinkedIn Groups available, but almost any type of business that employs people should have a landmark presence under the platform’s umbrella. Give your strategy time to develop, and eventually you’ll reap the rewards.