Simply using the LinkedIn publishing platform isn’t going to be enough if you really want to see results. Just as with your blog, there are different ways to write content and optimize that content for engagement and better rankings. For LinkedIn specifically, it’s important to understand what makes the platform unique. It’s a fairly new feature to the social network, just launching in February 2014, so finally in 2016 more and more businesses as well as individuals are taking advantage. In other words, the sooner your can understand that landscape and how it can fit into your content and SEO strategy, the sooner you can keep up with the competition.
A Quick Recap: How the LinkedIn Publishing Platform Works
Just as it sounds, the publishing platform allows LinkedIn users, both free accounts and premium, to post full articles that will then be shown in a live feed on the LinkedIn homepage for users (just as you see with Facebook). In the past all the feed really featured was job promotions and switches and sometimes short-form articles and links, so allowing long form content to be published gives users a way to find new information and see what their connections are up to and producing.
As discussed above, the main attraction to the publishing platform is that it will show up on your user’s newsfeeds, meaning your content will be shared with your connections and followers. However, your articles will also become a part of your professional profile, displayed in the “Post” section at the top of your page, as shown below:
In addition, by publishing on this platform those who are not connected with you can search for you/ your topic and then follow you from your long form posts, which mean that they will get an update whenever you publish something. As you can see, the reach opportunity is enormous, which we’ll touch on in the next section.
Unfortunately, only individuals can use the publishing platform, not company pages. Company pages can still link to articles, but it’s the employees who will need to publish articles and get the business’s message out there to connections and the LinkedIn audience. You can learn more about this here.
Note: There is also something called a “LinkedIn Influencer,” which is a special title the network gives to some of their most famous users (similar to the Twitter verification process). Publishing long form articles does not make you an influencer; it just gives you more influence! Influencers have always been able to use a platform like this on LinkedIn, it’s just now open to everyone.
What Makes the LinkedIn Publishing Platform Unique?
- You’re working with a smaller, more targeted audience. LinkedIn is obviously much smaller than Google and it has much more strict targeting and demographic information in place, so it’s easier to get your content seen by the right people. In other words, your reach is much greater.
- You can therefore make more meaningful connections. Because you’re working with a smaller audience, you can really start to build relationships with people that matter. You’ll have time and the ability to connect on the platform, which isn’t always something you can do when it comes to your blog readers.
- It’s great for recruiters. The content that someone writes and posts is an excellent reflection of his/her work, and it’s right there in the most accessible place. Recruiters are already using LinkedIn, so this can help give a more well-rounded picture of a candidate.
- You could be featured in LinkedIn channels. If you have an article that gets a lot of attention and is high quality, there is a chance it will be noticed by the LinkedIn team and then be featured on a LinkedIn channel, which greatly expands your reach. This is pretty rare, but it is easier to make happen than trying to break into Google news.
- You can see Analytics for all of your articles. You will get an email detailing the demographics and numbers of those who clicked on your article. This can help make it easy to see where you need to improve and what content types you may want to mimic, and it all shows up right there in your inbox.
6 Ways to Find Success for Your Company with the Platform
So how exactly can you optimize these posts to give you the most success? You’ll find that many of the tips below are the same tips you would remember when optimizing for Google, but there are a few that are different. These tips include:
- Always mention/ write about your company news.
Keep in mind that only individuals can publish articles, which means it’s important to write about your company every now and again. If there is news happening, your company will surely post a link to its LinkedIn page, but you can also do a write-up. This can further help expand your reach and get the word out there.
- Keep your topics niche.
Remember that you’re writing for a smaller and more targeted audience. It is therefore important to keep your articles specific. This is the best way to really show your expertise. Just as with your blog, it’s all about understanding your audience. For LinkedIn, your audience likely falls into a pretty specific sphere, so take that into consideration when writing.
- Share your posts within LinkedIn groups.
If you publish something, let the LinkedIn groups that you belong to know! This can help you expand your reach even further and really gives you the opportunity to show your credibility. It can help you earn shares and natural links, and most groups appreciate when a member created something. Don’t abuse it, but if an article is relevant, don’t forget to share.
- Keep your posts updated.
No surprise here, but it’s important to keep your articles updated. Continue to publish so that you keep things fresh. Nobody expects you to keep your LinkedIn articles as up-to-date or as frequent as your actual website’s blog, but you should post every few weeks to show followers that you’re still active.
- Publish only unique articles.
For some reason, those using this platform seem to think that it’s OK to duplicate content because it’s on a different search engine. Because Google still indexes LinkedIn articles, duplicate content is not recommended. This can get you in trouble, but it also won’t do much for your readers if they’re seeing the same content when they click on your blog.
- Videos and infographics work great.
Just as with Google, videos and infographics work great. They’re engaging on this platform as well; so if you can publish them then go for it. You can essentially utilize this platform as a blog, so anything you would think about adding to your blog will work here.
How to Get Started
If you want to create a post, you will simply see a small pencil icon next to where you would share an update. Click that icon and then copy and paste your article onto the page that will pop up. Hit “Publish” and it’s as easy as that!
Give the feature a try and then let us know what you did to be most successful in the comment section below. Were there any optimization tactics that you used? Were certain articles more popular than others in your experience?