If you’re active on LinkedIn, the chances are good by now that you’re seeing more posts from people in your network. LinkedIn started rolling out long-form publishing capabilities to its members in February, 2014. Some bloggers started using the LinkedIn publishing platform right away, while others have been watching and holding out for a bolt of inspiration to hit them. Others are even still waiting for their publishing capabilities to kick in. I personally wanted to see how the LinkedIn publishing platform worked, so I jumped in as quickly as I could. I can honestly say that I’m pleased with my results so far.
The LinkedIn publishing platform is user-friendly for writers; if you’re familiar with WordPress, then using the LinkedIn publisher is a breeze. For those who are interested in the analytics side, they are able to see the number of real-time views, likes, and shares for each of their posts. The hardest part for some may be deciding what and when to publish. LinkedIn, itself, recommends you publish what you know best: your own areas of expertise and professional interests. Writing and publishing your first post is probably going to be the hardest one for you – at least it was for me.
These are a few suggestions to keep in mind as you start on your journey to master the art of the LinkedIn publishing platform.
1) The LinkedIn publishing platform allows you to write as much as you desire.
This doesn’t necessarily mean you should write extra long articles though. LinkedIn is home to a predominately professional crowd. People who read articles on LinkedIn typically have a limited amount of time to browse and scan the titles, and even less time to read those which capture their attention. Many of the other LinkedIn publishers I communicate with agree that the most popular posts they publish through the LinkedIn publishing platform fall into the “snackable content” category. According to Media is Power,
“Content is snackable when it is designed for simple and flexible audience consumption.
Sounds perfect for the busy LinkedIn crowd, don’t you think? Give them the content they want and crave, but know you only have a few minutes to grab their interest. The LinkedIn publishing platform probably isn’t the best place to publish your college thesis or eBook if you’re looking for a receptive audience.
2) The LinkedIn publishing platform also allows you to write as often as you desire
Once again, depending on your audience and your content, you may want to spread out the time between your posts on LinkedIn. Post too often and you run the risk of being perceived as a spammer…and LinkedIn doesn’t take kindly to spammers. If you have your own blog for business purposes, you may want to consider using the same, or similar, frequency when posting on LinkedIn.
Once you do start posting on the LinkedIn publishing platform, you’ll find maintaining consistency is a good idea when it comes to how often you post. I find publishing once a week or so is sufficient for my own purposes, but others choose to post more or less often. Either way, you’ll find a schedule that works best for you. In regards to the day and time of day you post, there is no right or wrong for either. However, it’s usually better to post when you know your audience is online.
3) Many of your posts probably won’t be picked up by LinkedIn’s Pulse app – but always be prepared for when it does happen
Being picked up by the Pulse app has apparently become one of the “holy grails” for LinkedIn publishers. When Pulse picks up your post, it’s seen by potentially thousands of additional members – whether they follow you or not. It’s unclear to me how Pulse chooses the posts it features. Most of the articles I see through Pulse seem to be related to current events, career and job hunting, and/or topics which encourage lively debates.
I’ve seen other LinkedIn writers ask, “how will I know if my article has been picked up by Pulse”? Okay, honestly, I was the one who posed that question to my LinkedIn group, Writing on LinkedIn. The answers I received were all like, “oh, you’ll know it when it happens, trust me.” And that certainly turned out to be the truth. The first three posts I published through the LinkedIn publishing platform did pretty well, in my opinion. I picked up a few hundred views and several likes for each. However, my fourth post took off like a shot, and that’s how I knew I’d been noticed by the Pulse “powers-that-be.” I must have hit a nerve, because people started commenting and liking the post within minutes of my hitting the publish button. I must admit, it was quite exciting!
Are you wondering why you should be prepared when one of your posts is finally picked up by Pulse? I recommend being ready because when it happens, you’re probably going to receive a lot of comments, likes, shares, and new followers. It’s simply good etiquette to acknowledge your followers and reply to their comments, regardless of whether you’re posting through the LinkedIn publishing platform or another blog site. And people do seem to like leaving comments on LinkedIn posts…some less nicely than others. Since comments are not moderated, you need to be ready for anything.
Have you started using the LinkedIn publishing platform yet? If so, how do you feel about your results so far? I’d love to hear what you think about it.