Cultivating your professional brand and amplifying your digital presence on LinkedIn is one of the most rewarding things you can do for your career in 2020.
As a sales professional, the idea of building a trusted network in your industry isn’t new. The only difference is that today we’ve largely replaced in-person networking events with social networks like Facebook, Instagram, and, most importantly, LinkedIn.
I’ve seen countless benefits from tapping into my LinkedIn network, and today I want to share 4 of my biggest takeaways with you. If you want to wake up your network and start building your digital presence, this is for you.
The Benefits of LinkedIn
Compared to other social media platforms, 91% of executives rate LinkedIn as their first choice for professionally relevant content. Linkedin is the go-to platform to connect with other industry professionals, learn industry best practices, and share your knowledge.
Over a year ago, I started investing in building my digital presence on LinkedIn. Like many of you, I was hesitant at first. I wondered what my peers would think…
Would they judge me?
Would they see me as a self-promoter or narcissist?
Sure, some did, but I cared more about using my expertise to help others and add value to my network than what a small percentage of naysayers thought.
I’ve seen firsthand the impact that publishing relevant content has had on my business. I went from 8,000 to 30,000 followers in under a year by building my digital presence on LinkedIn.
By the end of 2019, I achieved nearly 10 million post views by curating an effective Linkedin strategy to engage and expand my target audience.
How did I do it?
Let’s dive in.
Digital Presence Tip #1: Start Posting Content Daily
A question I’m often asked when it comes to building a digital presence on LinkedIn is, “Where do I begin?”
Start by posting content on a consistent basis. I recommend posting daily for optimal results.
You’re not going to generate enough interest by only posting once or twice a week (although that’s still better than nothing). 40% of LinkedIn users visit the site daily. Your network will naturally gravitate towards thought leaders who they see daily — people who are putting out content once a day, if not multiple times a day.
Each week, content on the LinkedIn feed is seen 9 billion times, but only 1% of Linkedin users share content even on a weekly basis. This means that there is a massive opportunity to stand out from the other 99% of users and have your content seen on a platform where potential buyers are eager for relevant content.
80% of B2B leads come from LinkedIn compared to other social platforms. I challenge you to post every day for the next 30 days and watch how it transforms your business.
Digital Presence Tip #2: Prioritize Audience Engagement
With an effective LinkedIn strategy, you can build a community of potential buyers, establish subject matter expertise, and drive organic leads. The key to this is social engagement.
When people think about engaging and growing their network on LinkedIn, their first thought is to increase their 1st connections. Although your follower count matters, what most people don’t realize is that the number of people in your network means nothing if you’re not engaging them.
You don’t have to be an influencer to cultivate an active network. There are plenty of people with modest followings that consistently get 100 or more likes and comments per post. The reason is simple.
They are putting out targeted content that makes people WANT to interact.
96% of B2B buyers want more content from industry thought leaders. Instead of resharing another sales article, post industry insights, or something new you learned from a recent sales call.
Your industry insights matter. What’s the point of having a LinkedIn profile if you’re not going to share your expertise with your network?
People only care about content that will have an impact on their day-to-day. If you need help figuring out what to post about, here are over 80 post ideas to draw inspiration from.
Digital Presence Tip #3: Keep Your Content Simple with Text Posts
In a digital landscape filled with filtered pictures, self-promotion, and click-bait, LinkedIn stands out because it gives everyday professionals the ability to post useful, industry-specific content in a straightforward way.
Unlike picture-centric platforms like Instagram, text posts reign supreme on LinkedIn.
For years we’ve been taught by marketing that graphics are necessary to get your content seen. That’s simply not the case for LinkedIn. Basic text posts generate more likes, comments, and views than any other content type.
I recently put together a list of my top performing LinkedIn posts. Do you know what they all had in common? They were all simple, non-promotional text posts.
They had no visuals and focused on sales, leadership, tactical tips, and lessons I’ve learned to become a better CEO and sales leader — all topics that my audience (salespeople, VPs, founders, and CEOs) care about.
That’s right. I didn’t include a single Skaled promotion or call to action.
Here’s my top performing 2019 post:
Linkedin not being a visual platform makes it even easier to amplify your digital presence and build your professional brand.
Because all you need to dominate Linkedin is bullet points, a few attention-grabbing emojis, and quality text-based content.
Digital Presence Tip #4: Drive Engagement with Comments
Posting on a regular basis is only half the battle. You also have to interact with your network. This requires more than just clicking the “like” button.
Pay attention to the people who take the time to leave a comment on your posts. Reply in order to further the discussion and engage with them. Take a few minutes each day to:
- Scan your LinkedIn feed
- Look for ways to engage with your network
- Respond to comments on your content
- Leave quality comments on someone else’s content
When people in your network post new content or share an update, they are inviting you to talk to them. You can boost your impressions by simply interacting with your network and leaving engaging comments.
Leaving thoughtful comments shows that you are truly interested in what your network is talking about. It shows them that you’re not just looking for a quick sale. Keep your comments relevant, positive, and non-promotional.
There is a lot of comment-worthy activity on Linkedin: job anniversaries, internal promotions, new job titles, professional milestones, articles, etc. Taking two minutes to let Lisa know how helpful you found her post is a great way to develop a professional relationship that may be useful down the road.
The secret to waking up your Linkedin network is social engagement. It’s a long-term strategy. Building a community of engaged followers takes time, but it’s worth the investment. To get started, remember to:
- Post relevant content daily
- Prioritize audience engagement
- Keep you content simple with text posts
- Drive social engagement by leaving comments
If you follow these tips, within a year you’ll have a strong digital presence, with a powerful network that can generate organic leads and help you close more deals.
For better or worse, you already have a professional brand. Now is the time to start thinking about how to leverage it.