Investing in LinkedIn- is it worth your time and money?
For the longest time, LinkedIn has always been viewed as a B2B network and employment platform. Most end users use it primarily as a "professional," online networking tool, one wherein one's career accomplishments and job history are put on full display instead of the usual personal inanities that people often post on more traditional social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
As such, LinkedIn always had a different "feel" compared to other social networks. There's relatively less activity on it, and less ads. However, the tides are changing. More and more marketers are finally seeing how LinkedIn can be used for their business. There are just some things that you can do on LinkedIn, that you really couldn't successfully pull off on any other site. With that said however, one's approach to marketing on LinkedIn should be different with that used on other "traditional" networking sites.
Is it worth investing in LinkedIn? It's an absolute YES. Here are some of the things that you might not know about how marketers use and utilize the site:
LinkedIn is Best For Long-Form Content
Graphical and video content works best on a lot of social media sites in general. Short articles and blog posts (around 250-400 words) are also good, since they can be read fast. But LinkedIn is another matter altogether.
As a matter of fact, research has shown that long-form textual content (around 1000 words or more) perform excellently on LinkedIn and might just be the best content on that particular platform. There are a number of reasons why this is so, but the most obvious is probably because of the fact that LinkedIn is viewed as a professional site. Two hundred fifty words is just not enough for someone to extrapolate intelligently on a particular topic. If you're setting yourself up as a thought leader, you're going to have to write more words.
Some of the best performing articles and blog posts on LinkedIn follow the 5Ps principle: they're Professional, Practical, Personal, Portraying and Points to past experiences. These articles aren't all business and executive jargon (such as one would find in a business white paper), but they're not that highly personal too like those personal rants and jokey posts on Facebook. It's a good mix of both.
LinkedIn Puts a High Premium on Talent Solutions
Let's face it. The primary reason why a person ends up on LinkedIn in the first place is jobs- or rather the finding of jobs, to be more exact. People upload their resumes on the site, and highlight parts of their job history that they want to put a spotlight on. Recruiters consider the site as a treasure trove of potential candidates.
This is the bread-and-butter of LinkedIn. The talent solutions part of their business makes up two thirds of the site's total revenue. It's what keeps the site going.
If you want to try a little experiment, just search for these terms on the site: "human resources" "business development" "consulting" "marketing" "product management." You'll be amazed at just how many people use these terms on their profiles, with the bulk of the accounts falling using the term "human resources." If you want to increase your chances of getting hired, uploading your resume on LinkedIn is imperative.
So, what does it all mean for marketers? This intense focus on talent solutions means that LinkedIn is less likely to develop the marketing and advertising part of their business. It's the reason why you don't see that much ads and other product marketing activities on the site.
More and More Marketers are Flocking to LinkedIn
A survey has shown that almost sixty percent of social media marketers use LinkedIn in their marketing and advertising campaigns. This is very unexpected, since Facebook is a very huge and very popular competitor. The number even rises among B2B businesses.
Among the responses stated that these marketers plan to do more activity on the site, and are planning to increase their postings by about four posts in a day. Almost two-thirds of those surveyed wanted to learn more about the platform.
It seems that it's only a matter of time before LinkedIn becomes a marketing powerhouse. It's best to be an early adapter in this trend, so that you'll be able to take advantage of the platform ahead of your competitors.