SUMMARY OF THE COURSE
Welcome to the last module for this course! As a refresher, the purpose of this course is to help you master the necessary skills and knowledge needed to create your LinkedIn account and establish your online digital presence within this platform. The material covered in this course is best suited for users with little to no knowledge of or past experience with LinkedIn. Last week’s session discussed how to engage with your network on LinkedIn.
This week’s session will focus on creating your own original content to post on LinkedIn. Learning Objectives are as follows:
-Why post content?
-What type of content can I post?
-Guidelines for posting content
-How to post content
-Implement What You’ve Learned
WHY POST CONTENT?
As we mentioned in last week’s module, posting content is a great way to provide value to your network. Only 1% of LinkedIn users are actually sharing content, but there are 9 billion content impressions in LinkedIn feeds each week. This means that the few individuals who are actually posting and sharing content on LinkedIn have a good chance of that content being seen by a lot of users. This contrasts other social media platforms which are saturated with content, making it difficult to get lots of impressions without building a large following first. Additionally, LinkedIn users are active content consumers, meaning that they are energetically searching for useful articles or life-changing videos that will help them improve themselves and reach their goals.
Posting valuable content will allow you to strengthen your relationships and it will make you an attractive character that other LinkedIn users respect and want to connect with. Posting content natively to LinkedIn will also make you more searchable on the platform and as a result, more users will be exposed to your profile. You don’t need to become the next big social media influencer, but it is important that you establish your own voice and demonstrate that you are an expert in your industry.
WHAT TYPE OF CONTENT CAN I POST?
LinkedIn breaks down the content you can post into four categories: articles, photos, videos, or ideas. In addition to these four categories, you can also share someone else’s article, photo, video, or idea and add your own comments to it. Articles are great for long-form content and tend to be more informative. Photos are an exciting way to capture your network’s attention by using a visual element. Video uploads are currently seeing tons of success on LinkedIn. With about two-thirds of U.S. consumers watching mobile videos daily, uploading videos to LinkedIn will be an effective way to reach your network. Ideas encompass everything else, such as status updates, thoughts, Kudos Awards, and more.
Because everyone has their own preferences for the type of content that they like to consume, I encourage you to upload a variety of posts to LinkedIn. This strategy will allow you to cater to the different needs of your network. Over time you may notice that one type of content performs better than others. Consider this increased engagement as your audience’s feedback and start creating more of that specific content.
GUIDELINES FOR POSTING CONTENT
As you plan the topics you want to discuss through your content, it’s important that you understand the digital environment that LinkedIn users live in. Here are four guidelines to help your posts thrive on LinkedIn and be as successful as possible
1: Keep It Professional
As we’ve mentioned before, LinkedIn is a social network, but a professional one. Consider how you would act at a work dinner party: it is a social event, however, you would still be on your best behavior, right? The same mindset should apply while you navigate through and post content on LinkedIn. It is a professional environment and its users strive to keep it that way.
2: Make It Helpful
Again, because the environment on the LinkedIn platform is professional, these users are very active in their careers and their time is valuable. Keep this audience in mind while creating content. Whenever you upload an article, video, post or idea, it should be focused on helping meet the needs of the individuals in your network. By providing valuable career advice, life hacks, self -improvement tips, or other bits of professional advice, your network will really appreciate your help and engage with you more.
3: Stay Relevant
Your posts will perform better on LinkedIn if they are relevant to what is going on in your industry. If you work in advertising and the Super Bowl is coming up, write an article about which company ads you are most excited to see during the commercial breaks. If you’re in the tech industry, post an unboxing video and review of the latest tech gadgets and gear. Being part of the current conversations in your industry will give your content a natural boost.
4: Check Your Grammar
Before you click that “Post” button, read over your content 2-3 more times to make sure you haven’t made any spelling or grammatical errors. It only takes a few extra minutes to proofread your post but it will make all the difference. Spelling and grammatical errors can distract your audience from the conversation you are trying to have and ruin their perception of your professional abilities.
HOW TO POST CONTENT
Now that you know what content you want to create, here’s a breakdown of how to post it natively on LinkedIn. When you first log in to your LinkedIn account, at the top of your newsfeed you will see your status bar. If you click on this bar, you will be directed to a post text box.
Below this text box, you will see several icons. These icons are Post Settings, Tagging, Video, Images, And Kudos. Here’s what each icon means and how to use them:
The Post Settings button allows you to set the privacy of your post (public or connections only) and enable or disable other users’ ability to comment on your post.
The Tagging/Mention button allows you to tag/mention other LinkedIn users in your post. If you tag another user, their name will appear in blue as a hyperlink to their profile and they will be notified that you tagged them in a post. Tagging/mentioning is a great way to get more eyes on your content because not only will your connections see your post but the connections of the individual you mention will also see your post.
The Video button enables you to record a video or upload one from your library (you cannot record a new video while using LinkedIn on desktop. You can only record while on mobile). Personally, I recommend creating a video outside of the LinkedIn platform and then uploading it to the site. While the LinkedIn camera does allow you to make some edits (such as adding stickers or text) using a video editing program outside of LinkedIn will allow you to make more edits and changes to your video to create a better product.
That being said, you don’t need to be a filming expert to create quality videos. You can find an app for all of your needs and do everything right on your smartphone. One app in particular that I recommend is Clips by Apple (Most iPhones already have this app installed). Along with other fun editing techniques, Clips allows you to add captions to your video. Because the majority of mobile videos are watched with the sound muted, it’s important that you put in the extra effort to add subtitles to your video. This will cause users who stumble across your video to be more likely to watch it because they won’t have to open it or turn on the sound to know what’s happening in the video.
The Images button is very similar to the Video button. This button allows you to take a photo or upload a photo (you cannot take a new photo while using LinkedIn on desktop. You can only access the camera while on mobile).
Once either the Images or Video button is open you can switch back and forth between video and images. However, LinkedIn’s camera does not currently allow you to make any edits to your photos, so again I recommend taking photos outside of the LinkedIn platform. One of my favorite photo editing apps is Afterlight. It has several filter options or lets you edit a photo’s brightness, contrast, exposure and more on your own.
The Kudos button is unique to LinkedIn. It is a fun way to create positive posts about individuals in your network. Here’s how you post a Kudos Award:
- Once you click on the Kudos button it will ask you to select a recipient (you can select multiple recipients at one time, however, each recipient will receive the same award in the same post).
- Then you will be able to select from different Kudos Awards to send to your recipient.
- After selecting an award, you will be redirected to the original text box but now it will have an automated message and the Kudos Award you chose. You can edit the message any way you want and post when you’re finished.
If you would like to share an idea or status, simply begin typing in the original text box and hit “Post” when finished. Also, articles can only be uploaded while using desktop. Be sure to click the “Write an article” button on your status bar to be redirected to a draft for articles.
IMPLEMENT WHAT YOU’VE LEARNED
Now that you understand what types of content you can post on LinkedIn and some guidelines for that content, your assignment is to post two different types of content this week. Find ways to use your posts as a way to provide value for your network. Remember, you don’t need to worry about becoming the next big social media influencer, just focus on establishing your voice and helping your connections.
You have completed all four course modules! Over these past four weeks, you have set up your LinkedIn account, built your network, engaged with your connections, and created original content. You can now leverage your LinkedIn profile to better promote your A Good Cause campaign.