Building your personal brand on LinkedIn takes a lot of time and patience - and unlike what many think, creating and optimizing your LinkedIn profile is just the first step to building your brand.
Remember: Your LinkedIn presence, not your LinkedIn profile, is your brand.
The most critical part of brand building on LinkedIn is how you establish your presence. How do you lead with value? How do you engage with your network? And to start off, how do you make sure you reach the right people through your posts?
Building your LinkedIn presence starts with getting in front of the right people
One of the hardest parts of building your LinkedIn presence is keeping your network engaged. And if you're familiar with how LinkedIn algorithms work - and how they often change without notice - even the concept of reaching the right audience in the first place can be a challenge.
As with all social platforms, LinkedIn wants its members to stay on the platform and be more engaged, which is why its algorithms favor certain content types over the others.
Take a look at the sample posts below with links versus those without any links, which I posted two weeks ago (as of the time of writing) at around the same time.
Sample 1.1 (Post with a link):
Sample 1.2 (Post with a link):
Compare them with these posts without links, which I posted at around the same time as that of samples 1.1 and 1.2.
Sample 2.1 (Post without a link)
Sample 2.2 (Post without a link)
You can see, based on these sample posts, that the first post with a link garnered only 535 views compared to another post without a link posted at around the same time, which gained 7,729 views. That's 14x more views than the first one.
The second post without a link garnered 9,789 views - a whopping 42x increase in views - compared to the post with a link, which received only 232 views.
What I've observed is that, if you share a post with "double links," i.e., a company page update that links to an external site (see sample 1.2 above), you'll just pull your views down the drain. It goes nowhere.
If you want to maximize your LinkedIn post reach, go for a text-based content without links
As a writer, I still prefer to share what I know through written content, particularly long-form content or articles. The new LinkedIn algorithms, unfortunately, don't give much exposure to articles like this one.
But there are ways to get more views on your LinkedIn posts, which is what I'll be sharing with you today.
To help you figure out the best writing style or approach to an all-text LinkedIn post, here are a few practical tips:
- Write a relatable story anchored on a LinkedIn-initiated hashtag
- Craft an all-text version of your article
- Share some quick tips targeted at your intended audience
- Start a poll and ask your network to tag other people to the post
- Share your opinion on topics that your network cares about
- Give something of value for free
- Share a personal experience and relate it to professional themes
The goal of this article is not to teach you how to make your posts 'go viral', but how you can consistently craft all-text posts in order to magnify your LinkedIn reach.
Let's get started:
1. Write a relatable story anchored on a LinkedIn-initiated hashtag
Using a hashtag can help your post get discovered by more LinkedIn members. For example, I leveraged LinkedIn's hashtag, #WhenIWas15, and I saw a significant amount of post engagement.
2. Craft an all-text version of your article
I see a lot of LinkedIn members who've stopped publishing articles. Why? Because the reach of LinkedIn Publisher posts is too low compared to the amount of effort exerted in crafting an effective piece. But the good thing is, you can do something about it.
To help boost the reach of your LinkedIn post, create an all-text, shortened version and post it as a usual LinkedIn update, along with the link to the article, and make sure, too, that you place the link in the first comment.
Again, LinkedIn's algorithm will "demote" any post with link, so put the link into the comments. Just tell your readers about it so they can go to your comment if they want to check out the full article.
This is a win-win strategy - it helps to boost your reach through the all-text post, while also helping you get more clicks on your article.
Tip: With my posts, I will till they've gained a considerable amount of reach (usually after an hour or two), then I place the link into the body of the post and remove the first comment. This is because it's quite challenging to find the first comment once your readers start commenting, as well - most people won't do the hard work of finding that link.
3. Share some quick tips targeted at your intended audience
Consider these two essential factors when you're posting some quick tips: Your audience and your expertise.
First, the tips you share must be useful to your intended audience. If possible, find out how much they know about your topic so you don't end up talking about something they already know or they don't find useful at all.
Sharing tips that your audience finds "too basic" or "too advanced" won't do as well, so do your research first.
Second, it should be aligned with your expertise, or about something you're passionate about. Your readers can sense the authenticity of your post, and if you're passionate about your topic, you'll connect with those who can relate to your post.
And by the way, make your quick tips easy to read and focus on a single topic in each post. Bullet points work well with quick tips.
4. Start a poll and ask your network to tag other people to the post
This is effective when done the right way. Some people don't want to get tagged all the time, others are grateful to have been notified. It all depends on the timing and the purpose of your poll.
So why is this effective? Every time a person is tagged in a post or comment, LinkedIn notifies that user, prompting them to join the conversation.
Plus, the post gets shown on the LinkedIn feed of every person tagged in the post, so imagine how many you can reach with just one question.
For example, I started a poll to ask my connections to tag other Filipinos that they follow on LinkedIn.
At that time, I wanted to write an article on the subject, and was seeking some feedback first. I explained this in the post so my network knew the purpose of the poll.
The great thing about this poll was that I was able to create further momentum by getting back to all of the people who commented when I had the article published. Although this post has a link (which the LinkedIn algorithms don't like), those who were tagged naturally engaged with the post, making it "defy" the algorithms.
Note: Use some caution when tagging other people's names. Not everyone on LinkedIn enjoys being mentioned in irrelevant posts.
5. Share your opinion on topics that your network cares about
Tackle a scenario that other LinkedIn members also experience, then give your view on that scenario. This type of post can further shape or build your personal brand, so don't be afraid to make a stand here based on your values, beliefs and knowledge about your topic.
6. Give something of value for Free
When done right and with the right network, offering something for free can get a lot of traction. The key here is giving something of VALUE for FREE. This means you should know what free items your network will find useful.
For example, I offered freelancers a chance to receive tips on how they could find freelance jobs on LinkedIn in less than 10 seconds.
This post garnered more than 50,000 views in a day:
Aside from getting the info for free, the fun part here is the phrase, "in less than 10 seconds."
This post led to a 574% increase in my profile views, many of the viewers being freelancers from Upwork.
7. Share a personal experience and relate it to professional themes
On LinkedIn, it's okay to loosen up a bit sometimes. Sharing a personal experience that you can relate with work-related or professional themes can go a long way.
There are many other ways to leverage all-text posts to magnify your reach, including posting an inspirational message, asking engaging questions or sharing insightful thoughts about your industry.
Here are more examples of all-text posts that have generated huge engagement:
At times, a straightforward, three-word post, or even an all-hashtag post with an image, can help boost your engagement.
Whichever writing style you choose to create all-text posts, remember that your reach numbers are just the first step - how you actually engage with those readers, particularly those who provide feedback through likes, comments or reshares, matters much more.
Try out some of these text-based post options yourself, and see how varying your writing style can help you gain more reach.