In February 2014, LinkedIn opened up its publishing platform to the public and rolled out access to everyone in English speaking countries early this year. It was later rolled out to everybody on the platform. Because of this, it increased LinkedIn’s capability of spreading invaluable content and in turn, generating valuable traffic. In regards to that, here are just a few methods and tricks you can use to utilize LinkedIn as a traffic generation asset to your brand or your business.
Publish some content on the platform
Especially if you don’t have another outlet (like a blog) to perpetuate your personal messaging, you may consider publishing a few long-form pieces on LinkedIn. A job seeker might demonstrate expertise or leadership with a few posts about their experience or philosophy. A salesperson might generate leads by writing about the effectiveness of their product or service to solve problems.
If you’re having trouble getting started, LinkedIn has some topical suggestions. My advice: most bloggers (myself included) have the opportunity to fail a lot before publishing better-received pieces. If you have time, get some feedback on your content, edit (or even table it) before publishing it to LinkedIn.
Because our professional reputations are important, anything intended to demonstrate competence ought to communicate what you want it to. This communicates a level of expertise. An elaboration of your professional point of view, which plays a crucial role in authority.
Be judicious with your updates
LinkedIn is not Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. The posting behaviors that are commonplace on these networks are unusual on LinkedIn. I rarely will see personal updates on LinkedIn (and they look really out of place) – and oftentimes people who post excessively are painfully obvious in my LinkedIn feed. The folks at Buffer suggest that the ideal number of LinkedIn posts per month would be about 20, with the rule of thumb to post as often as your content dictates.
They say that each post will reach about 20 percent of your network, which is pretty extraordinary compared to other social networking sites. This communicates a higher level of professionalism all around. By not spamming your network, it makes them more receptive to you when you have something to communicate.
Pay For It (Via Advertising)
Content marketing platform NewsCred ran some tests with LinkedIn Sponsored Updates and found they were able to generate $17 for every $1 they spend. LinkedIn Sponsored Updates are used in tandem with the updates you are already posting from your company page. You can choose to “amplify” a post that you want to reach more people and you can target users based on all kinds of demographic data (job title, industry, education, location, etc.).
The issue with paying for traffic, of course, is that the visits stop when the money runs out. Paying for traffic on LinkedIn can earn you followers as well as traffic, however. Interestingly, NewsCred found that the cost per name (CPN) — i.e. the cost per lead generated — decreased over time. That means that their content reaches more people for less money.
It happens because the content reaches more people, which generates more followers, comments, and likes, which increases organic reach. Even more interesting, NewsCred reports that 60-65% of the leads were “medium-high
or high quality” compared to just 20-30% on Google Adwords. Baller. Okay, so you can get traffic, leads, more organic reach, and the cost decreases over time that’s a pretty sweet deal.
Be warned, however, that it’s very easy to waste money on paid acquisition if you don’t know what you’re doing. I’ve heard horror stories of forgotten campaigns that run for months before someone realizes the mistake. The paid acquisition also requires rigorous testing and re-testing. If you want to make $17 for every $1 you spend, you better be ready to earn it.
You’ve got to have great content, interesting updates and strong calls to action. Don’t start paying for amplification until you’ve got all of this squared away. That said, if you’re trying to reach a B2B market, LinkedIn Sponsored Ads area a solid way to expand your reach and drive traffic to your website. For a deeper dive on Sponsored Ads, check out LinkedIn’s e-book Driving Quality Leads with Content.