LinkedIn continues to be all the rage when it comes to publishing your content. Near the start of this year, LinkedIn finally opened up its platform to all users, allowing them to promote content and improve their credibility. While this was something of a bonanza to those who are already professed LinkedIn gurus, many still find it difficult to get their content promoted via LinkedIn and help their content get the views that it needs to thrive. At the end of the day, you need a strategy that helps you realize your goals. You need to discover what types of content work best on LinkedIn.
How to write articles that help you succeed on LinkedIn
Of all the social networking sites on the Web today, Instagram is growing at the fastest rate having increased its active user base by 23% during the last six months of 2013, according to research published by GlobalWebIndex. Now Instagram still falls behind Facebook, YouTube, Google+, but interestingly enough, LinkedIn ranks third in the top 20 platforms used. LinkedIn remains tops when it comes to directing traffic to your website.
I’ve put together these tips to help you generate greater amounts of Web traffic via carefully targeted LinkedIn posts.
1. Consistency is what wins races. Publish regularly and on schedule.
If you want to create and build an audience, the best way to do so is begin by posting at a frequency you’re capable of. If you’re a follower of this blog, you’ll note that I don’t publish frequently, nor do I publish regularly. In this case, do as I write, not as I do.
The general rule of thumb is to post once per week.
2. Select topics that you’re LinkedIn audience will care about
Keep in mind that LinkedIn is filled with professionals. These are people who are using this platform primarily for networking, finding new jobs, and also keeping up to date with latest “water cooler” talk.
If you’re going to post about the passing of Robin Williams, you’ll want to try and see how you can tie it in with what your audience cares to read about. Since Robin’s passing was covered by just about every publication under the sun, you better have something novel to say other than RIP.
3. Limit the word count of your posts to 900 words or less
Posts that are short and too the point usually win the race when it comes to online publishing. That doesn’t mean you couldn’t post a story that easily surpasses 1,000 words. But who is reading your posts? Are they working professionals? Or are they folks “in transition” and currently unemployed? The latter will certainly be willing to spend more time on a post that’s 1,000 words or more IF there is something of concrete value in it. The former, however, won’t afford you that luxury. Hence, if it’s working people you are targeting, keep it short and punchy.
4. Don’t ignore your post. Respond to comments.
When I consult with clients about their social media presence, including the effectiveness of their blog, I always remind them that its important to readers that they know they are interacting with someone human on the other end. This is particular true on LinkedIn.
The more you interact with your readers in your posts, in addition to responding or submitting comments on other people’s LinkedIn posts, the more authority and influence you will gain on the site. LinkedIn admitted in a blog post as much. Over time, you will find yourself building a reputation, and in turn, more people will begin to follow your and your posts. Don’t forget to like and comment on other people’s posts.
5.Review LinkedIn analytics
From time to time, LinkedIn will email you a snapshot of your analytics. It’s an opportunity for you to review which of your articles and posts are getting the most views, comments, shares, etc…Take advantage of it and review it!
Super extra tip!
Aside from posting your article within LinkedIn, you should be promoting it outside the platform as well. By building traffic to your LinkedIn posts with external links you will gain further visibility on social media channels. Content marketing success is all about where you’re featured and what links can help you send traffic.
Helping community managers and social media marketers curate, share and create content
Let’s face it. Scaling social media is hard for both B2B and B2C players. Driving greater levels of engagement (and ultimately sales) remains an uphill battle for many, in particular, those in eCommerce. A number of major brands over the past two years have opened and then shuddered their Facebook shops, including J.C. Penney, Nordstrom, Gap, and GameStop. For marketers trying to gauge what a like, a share, or a comment ultimately signifies, the first stop is collecting this data. The next stop is generating the content that will speak to their audience. A few enterprise SaaS players want to help brands better leverage their social media muscle and one of them is Rallyverse.
Rallyverse is the brainchild of a few ex-Microsoft employees, all of whom worked in the ad/tech industry but shared an itch to make improvements in the way social media can influence advertising. I got the opportunity to try out Rallyverse and according to Gabe Bevilacqua, co-founder and VP, Biz Dev, “we let the brand define where they want to play and expand the reach of what they are doing with just a few clicks.” For community managers and social media marketers, Rallyverse (a Twitter-certified partner) aims to keep track of all of your owned and paid social media by helping you curate, respond, and post more relevant, engaging content to your target audience. It seeks to provide users with a dashboard of real-time recommendations so you’re never again stuck with the question, “What do I say today?”
Rallyverse takes a page from Pinterest’s groundbreaking tile platform
When you first login to your account, you’re immediately struck by the platform’s similarity to Pinterest, with tiles stacking up on top of each other. Images are vital components for triggering your levels of engagement and Gabe acknowledges Pinterest’s lead in promoting the tile format. Rallyverse examines your sources of content (such as LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter) in order to assign it a certain score. Using its own proprietary algorithm, it will serve up a baseline of recommended content based on your criteria. Under SETTINGS, in the left-hand column, you provide select keywords, categories, influencers, including those topics you don’t want Rallyverse to search for.
In my case, I focused on keywords such as content marketing, social media marketing, and social media technology. Rallyverse will curate content from any of the sites and services where you post content. In this case, that would include YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, and your own personal feed from your blog. You can also enter the RSS, Atom, or XML feeds for any site and Rallyverse will add relevant content from those sites to your profile.
Users can set publishing frequencies (for example, one post every 60 minutes), and then can schedule individual messages for what Rallyverse calls “Optimized Publishing.” Within each time window, the platform will evaluate each eligible message and publish the one that is most relevant at that time.
Once you’ve entered all of your essential criteria for the content you want tracked, you click on the Rallyverse blue button and let the fun begin.
Capturing trending content
Rallyverse will populate your content within seconds. In reviewing each tile, you have an opportunity to thumb it up or down (thumbing it down will cause the tile to disappear from view), and Rallyverse provides its own “star-rating” for each tile of content. According to Gabe, its unique algorithm interprets each piece of content for you, the user, creating the star rating. The more stars highlighted, the more relevant the content is for you.
Inside a tile is a camera icon, which when you click on it, opens up, allowing you to repost it, make revisions to the content itself (including image), schedule a new delivery time for the content, or even turn it into a paid ad. You can also save it as a draft and revisit it at a later date. Rallyverse will also automatically shorten URLs for you (when tweeting, for example). It will also add hashtags automatically for you.
Rallyverse features a separate Conversations topic, which when you click on it will show you what social media you’ve posted has been retweeted or shared by one of your Twitter followers, including responses to your Tweets. It will document any Facebook interactions you’re having, including likes, comments, and shares.
One feature that I particularly liked was the ICYMI topic. ICYMI stands for “in case you missed it.” When a tile is tagged ICYMI, it means Rallyverse has determined it met a minimum click threshold (again, based on its own proprietary algorithm), and will bring it back to your attention. This certainly can help community managers and marketers understand what forms of content are more effective than others in generating engagement. Gabe told me that his company’s clients very much appreciate ICYMI as it constantly acts as reminder of just how much you need to nurture your social media content in order to help it grow and spread.
A feature I couldn’t take full advantage (being only a single user) was the parent/child relationships that Ralleyverse created to facilitate better social media scaling. The platform allows organizations to scale their social media efforts by sharing content for publishing between different users and Profiles. Child profiles can publish content that is shared by parent profiles as well as their own recommendations.
Reports – how can you track social media engagement without analytics?
What would a social media platform be without any analytics reporting? Once you’ve connected your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts, you get the opportunity to review just what types of action were recorded once you’ve begun posting and sharing content.
Rallyverse currently goes back no more than two months when reviewing your owned content. It provides you with a graph, summarizing all of your channel’s engagement. Rallyverse details your click percentage by hour. This means the percentage of total clicks that were recorded for a post that took place in a particular hour. Establishing a percentage based on the volume of clicks seems a bit off to me and Gabe said Rallyverse’s platform is currently displaying clicks an hour early so you’re not getting an up to the minute exact summary of your actual clicks. This is something Rallyverse is looking to fix. However, you easily get to see a good overview of each one of your posts and their levels of engagement. You can select a 30-day report, which easily exports into a CRV file.
Is there room for improvement?
Rallyverse is far from perfect. There were a few minor annoyances for me, including the listing of messages underneath my profile that are published by the platform, which confused me. It continues to finely tune both its algorithm and the way it delivers metrics reporting. It also is currently missing additional social media channels for integration into its platform, like StumbleUpon or Reddit, for example. Gabe told me that there are plans to bring on additional social channels but that decision is heavily influenced by client demand. Its platform will undoubtedly continue to evolve as users require more sophisticated metrics that incorporate a greater degree of sentiment analysis. Overall, all of the features I could use worked. I truly got a kick out of watching what content got tweeted or shared and for a spell, I completely forgot about Tweetdeck.
Social media engagement: the never-ending quest for results
Rallyverse is not the only enterprise-level social media engagement platform on the market. Competitors like Percolate and HereSaySocial offer similar features though the technologies may differ. For Gabe, the elusive quest for the ROI of social media marketing makes creating Rallyverse a meaningful step forward. In his words, “I’m constantly surprised by how much our platform seems to understand the pulse of social conversations as they are happening. We’re making sense of the social media noise and doing it in a way that makes it easier for users to consume it. I get a thrill and surprise by our product each and every day.”
Overall, I very much enjoyed Rallyverse’s ease of use and look forward to keeping track of its development. Pricing begins at $500 a month. Request a demo of Rallyverse and let me know what you think.