My name is Steve Kearns, and I lead Social Media Strategy for LinkedIn Marketing Solutions, our ads business, and LinkedIn Sales Solutions, the team behind our Sales Navigator product.
I manage strategy and daily posting for 9 social media channels, including 2 LinkedIn Pages. In other words, I serve as the voice behind our two growing lines of business. It's up to me to decide how we communicate on social media and drive impact through our daily comms on social. It's no small task, but it's incredibly fun.
So, you may be thinking – what does LinkedIn, a company of 13,000 employees, have to say to small businesses?
I want to start out by saying "we hear you." We are a large enterprise. However, you're looking at our social media team right here. I sit at the receiving end of 150+ people who want to use our social media channels to promote their content, events and so on. So, much like you, I have to be very intentional about how I spend my time. How will I drive the results that matter in a world with a limited amount of time and limited resources?
Today I'll do my best to help you answer some of these questions. First, how do you keep moving toward the tasks that matter to drive measurable business impact? Second, what can you do with a LinkedIn Page? And lastly, why should you invest time on LinkedIn? We know you have 1 million things that you could be doing, and many social media platforms you could choose to elevate your brand's voice, but we'll share some more information about how LinkedIn can help your challenges around growth in the minutes that follow.
So let's begin with a challenge. Growth. 66% of U.S. small business owners cited growth as their number one challenge. That's a lot of small business owners. Growth is key to surviving and thriving as a small business, but it's clear that more than half of SMBs haven't quite mastered the growth equation yet.
Marketing can be a huge driver of the growth you want to see. And that's where LinkedIn comes in.
LinkedIn is the most used and most effective channel for content marketing among B2B SMBs. Here you can reach the right people, the right way in a brand-safe environment. And LinkedIn is a community of professionals more than 590 million members strong. Our audience represents the decision-makers of today and tomorrow. Exactly the people that you want to reach.
Right Environment With LinkedIn, you get a professional space fit for our community of professionals. We cultivate a high-quality, brand-safe environment. People trust the information and content shared on LinkedIn because it’s shared by legitimate professionals. In fact, 71% of people use information from LinkedIn to inform business decisions. For the second year running, LinkedIn was the most trusted social platform globally in Business Insider’s Digital Trust report.
Right Audience On LinkedIn, we’ve assembled the right audience—the world’s largest professional community numbering over 575 million members. These are the world’s business leaders, decision makers, influencers, today’s daily practitioners, and tomorrow’s future leaders. It’s everyone who matters to your brand. This is quality reach at scale. Professionals come to LinkedIn driven to exchange ideas and grow their careers. Unlike on other platforms, they’re in a professional mindset on LinkedIn.
Right Engagement Your time is better spent on LinkedIn because you can reach the right professionals in the right mindset to drive organic engagement. Quality conversations and content thrive in the LinkedIn feed, driven by member engagement and quality content from brands, publishers, and even members. And 50% of LinkedIn members are more likely to buy from companies when they have engaged in their social channels. In other words, you can drive awareness, encourage consideration, and even help your company convert prospects to customers on LinkedIn.
And of course, if you're choosing to invest in the LinkedIn platform, you want to make sure that your engagement equation is right. Fortunately, engagement on our platform is booming. So – how does this all manifest for brands on the platform? How do you get in touch with the professionals you want to reach on LinkedIn while building a strong digital community?
That's where LinkedIn Pages come in. Pages are your brand's digital footprint on LinkedIn. With them you can share videos, thought leadership content and more to help you grow your business and make it stand out from the competition.
Like I said, I manage our LinkedIn Page, and through a combination of a robust paid and organic strategy via our LinkedIn Page, we were able to grow our following on LinkedIn by more than 10X in just two years. This is the portion of the presentation where we'll talk nuts and bolts of how we did it, so let's get started. All it takes is 3 simple steps.
Step One can be boiled down to 5 essential actions (target, cadence, empower, join, and best practices) which we’ll dive into next.
We see LinkedIn customers gaining successful and consistent engagement when they post on their Company Page at least once a day. Brands can share their story on their LinkedIn Company Page by repurposing infographics, blog posts, videos, links to events, eBooks, and webinars. Be sure to regionalize any updates by utilizing regional admins. On a fully optimized company page (a great description, name, cover images, and links to make it clear to prospects and customers what your Company Page is about), remember that visual is the new headline, links drive engagement, and most importantly, know your audience. Tips to boost your reach include: Tap into industry trends and news @ mention people who are affiliated with a specific piece of content to gain exposure to their network Add hashtags to your post to join trending conversations Keep an eye on the storylines that LinkedIn curates each day—they are a great resource to see timely stories that are gaining momentum on LinkedIn When identifying 3-5 top voices in the company, these often are members of your C-suite or key individuals with expertise within your organization. From your Company Page, you should be promoting their best content to build both your brand’s and your influencer’s followership. Top publishers have seen an average of 120% growth to Company Page followers. Recent research indicates that only 45% of Americans trust institutions. At the same time, 63% do trust people like themselves. And you have access to these “people like themselves”—they are your employees.
Three pillars fall under Step 2: Target (the right audience) Strategy (build an objective-based strategy) Products (utilize sponsored content and inMail to promote engagement) After building a compelling organic presence, it’s time to compliment and maximize those efforts with paid opportunities to reach the right people on LinkedIn and engage them at scale. Experimenting with content organically allows you to have a pulse on what your audience wants to engage with. Understanding what performs best at an organic level helps you confidently choose which content to invest in with LinkedIn’s paid advertising. After determining how your organic content performed, use this data to determine your investment in paid. Reach and engage with the right people at scale. Once content/messages are identified that resonate best with your audience, it’s time to implement a paid strategy that connects your brand with your ideal customers at scale. Focusing on LinkedIn’s Sponsored Content and Sponsored InMail will jumpstart your paid strategy. Sponsored Content delivers your content directly to your target audience in the LinkedIn feed, allowing you to essentially capture people’s attention where they’re most engaged—while consuming information shared with them by their professional network. Sponsored Content is foundational in that you can think of it as our most versatile product. You can design your program to serve upper-funnel branding and awareness objectives or lower-funnel, direct-response lead goals, depending on your content approach. Sponsored InMail is a game changer in terms of taking personalized messaging to the next level. This product is the most direct way to engage your prospects on LinkedIn. Our customers use Sponsored InMail to drive tangible metrics including higher quality, lower cost leads, event registration, and pipeline. They do that by delivering targeted, personalized messages and content right into the LinkedIn messenger.
Let us help you understand what your audience is engaging with most and start by asking the most obvious question: Who is your audience? With Engagement Insights, analyze what your audience is reading and sharing the most. Website Demographics give you the opportunity to: Understand your audience better. Gain valuable audience insights—like job titles, company names, and industries—using the most accurate professional data, only on LinkedIn. Create tailored content. Compare different pages to learn which kinds of content resonate with different audiences. Customize content to your strongest prospects. Reach your ideal prospects. Use what you learn about your website visitors to target the people who are most likely to become qualified leads and customers. LinkedIn Conversion Tracking and Reporting enables marketers to optimize their campaigns in real time. Having the metrics that matter to you most at your fingertips is critical for managing campaign spend and informing your content roadmap.
In conclusion, remember these three simple steps: BUILD BOOST MEASURE, LEARN, and OPTIMIZE
Leveraging Organic Social Media
and Social MediaSteve Kearns
Social Media Lead, LinkedIn Marketing Solutions
How do you keep your head
above water and drive the results
What can your LinkedIn
Page help you do?
Why should you invest
time on LinkedIn?
of U.S. small business owners (B2B and
B2B2C) cited growing their business as their
(Source: LinkedIn Study)
LinkedIn is the most used and most
effective channel for content
marketing among B2B SMBs
(Source: CMI Study)
71% of people use information from LinkedIn to inform business
On LinkedIn, we’ve assembled the right audience—the world’s largest
professional community numbering over 590 million members.
50% of LinkedIn members are more likely to buy from companies
have engaged in their social channels.
With LinkedIn you get the...
Engagement on LinkedIn is booming!
engagement within the
feed is growing more
than 50% year over year.
Views in the LinkedIn
Feed are up 60%
from last year.
Millions of professionals
create over 130K
articles per week.
Drive your business forward with LinkedIn Pages
Reach your goal organically by following in the
footsteps of the LinkedIn Marketing Solutions
•Set engagement targets
•Maintain a steady posting cadence
•Grab attention with eye-catching formats
•Mix up your content
•Respond to comments
•Take advantage of hashtags
•Include a call to action
•Act on LinkedIn Page insights
Give your content a
boost with paid media
Measure, Learn, and
Optimize to Drive More
Boost Your Reach
Just follow these 3 simple steps
It's easy to cultivate an integrated
organic and paid strategy on LinkedIn
Build a compelling organic presence
Tell your brand’s story by posting
great content regularly
Anatomy of a Company update
What makes a Company update stand out in the
feed of your followers and drive engagement?
Here are the key characteristics, based on our own top performers:
•Keep it to 150 characters or less
•Ask yourself: Would I click this?
•Include a spicy point of view or
an interesting statistic
•Include a clear call to action
•Ask yourself: What will they
take away from this piece of
content?What will compel
•Create a shortened URL using
Bitly or other URL shortening
•Add tracking code parameters to
the end of your link so you know
where traffic is coming from.
Basic src and utm parameters are
best to track within Google
•1200x627 pixels is best
•Select something eye-catching
that will stand out in the feed
•Branded imagery is better for
recognition and consistency
•Ensure the image matches
• Keep the text light
Boost your reach via paid advertising
Native Ads (video or static) that appear in the LinkedIn feed
Personalized, targeted LinkedIn messages
•Keep it short and sweet
•Snackable stats work wonders
•Be conversational and concise
•Put your audience at the center
•Use Sponsored InMail for high-value audiences
• See performance
over custom date ranges
• Learn more about metrics
• Get to know your followers,
visitors with demographic charts
Measure and optimize to drive more impact
Remember the 3 simple steps
STEP 2: Boost
Look to your organic content
to determine your investment
Use LinkedIn Sponsored
Content and Sponsored InMail
to reach and engage
STEP 3: Optimize
Understand what your
audience is engaging with
via Engagement Insights
STEP 1: Build
Post great content regularly