For most people that are new on LinkedIn, not only might it seem like a tough nut to crack, but it could also appear too serious because I bet that you can’t scroll for about ten minutes without coming across at least three to five profiles that are owned by professional businessmen and women.
It’s kind of a little intimidating I must say. But then over time, you’d realize that signing up for it was the best decision you’ve made.
Newbies might find it a little challenging in terms of what step they need to take to build and engage their target audience. First, I’m here to tell you it’s not rocket science, but it will require some effort and dedication to accomplish. Secondly, we’ve assembled those steps in this article to help you connect, build and engage your target audience like magic.
Before we dive into those steps, it’s crucial to let you know that regardless of whatever products or services your brand offers, you can find your target audience and build a reputable brand that will be highly sorted on LinkedIn.
So, what are the steps to build and engage your followers on LinkedIn?
1. BE SPECIFIC WITH A TOPIC
When you’re new to LinkedIn, you may be tempted to want to try everything to find out where your strength lies. This may not be the wrong approach to follow, but over time I’ve discovered that you can build an audience quickly by comprehensively talking about one topic that every professional in your field can relate to. But before you head on with this, ensure that the topic is something that people will also find interesting. You can start by carrying out a few studies on the topic to see if other people will be interested in it.
Another thing we strongly recommend is that whatever topic you may choose to deliberate on must be one that you have a vast knowledge of. It won’t be nice to start a project (topic) that you can’t sustain over time. Again, when picking a topic, it should be one that you can treat from several angles so that you can always have something new to present to your audience.
As a suggestion, you could talk about a topic that relates to finance. Not only is the topic a good option for beginners to find a foothold and build their audience, but it’s also one that will peak a lot of people’s interest as every businessman or woman will ever be curious to find out ways to either make a profit or try something new to generate leads.
I also think it’s crucial to mention that there may come a time when you might feel you have exhausted all that there is to a topic or you may simple feel the need to switch to something else. If you decide to follow through with this change, ensure that what you will be switching to is equally an area that you have a handful of knowledge and experience. You should also expect to lose some momentum when you commence with the change but if you’re consistent and serve new and informative posts, then, you can be sure to bounce back in no time.
2. SEARCH FOR CONTENT THAT HAS ENDLESS IDEAS
Contrary to how it was between 2018-2020 when you make only a couple of posts in a month and still get lots of views, comments, and engagements, afterward, things have taken a different turn.
Today, a lot of dedication and work is needed now to sustain huge engagements on LinkedIn. So if you’re building a brand from the scratch on LinkedIn you have to be as consistent as possible.
For starters, aim to post or update your audience at least five times each week. The least you should do in a week is three, and this is part of the reasons we tried to drive home the message earlier on that you should only go into an area of expertise. Not posting for as much a week could make you lose momentum fast, and this will be significant in the number of views and engagements when next you post. It could take about a week of consistent posting to bounce back, so try not to slack.
We equally understand that it could be a challenge to come up with over 20 ideas to the same topic in a month, but that’s why we emphasized the need to choose an area that is wide and captivating but also relatable. As a suggestion, you could get a subtopic and break it down into different parts. You will be surprised that one part could help you generate more angles and ideas as you proceed.
You could also listen to podcasts or read books from veterans that have talked or written on the topic you’re handling. YouTube videos and articles from various experts could also come in handy.
While you refer to these experts or veterans for more ideas, be mindful not to plagiarize their content as this could lead to serious legal sanctions.
Again, remember that you’re not the only one that knows these veterans, as some of your audience that is ever-eager to learn may have come across their works. And if it dawns on them that you plagiarized the work of these experts, it could spell doom for the effort you’ve put in so far as they could question the authenticity of your subsequent posts.
Rather than steal other people’s content and make them yours, you could instead pay close attention to the details revealed as a source of inspiration for yours. Their ideas could give you an insight that will pave the way for you to share your own experiences and concepts.
Remember that no hard and fast rule says you cannot revisit old topics and shed light new light on them along the way. So if in the course of research you feel to need to add more details to an old post, you’re free to carry on with it.
Something else you should bear in mind is that it’s not all of your posts that will be a home run. As some of them will perform better than others and this may be because of the style of writing, or the manner of the approach used to discuss certain ideas to which your audience will relate better to than others.
In such scenarios, know that don’t feel discouraged as its normal! But don’t hesitate to give each of them your absolute best while assembling it.
Having a great opener is one of the tricks in the magician’s hat that will help you maintain a high level of engagement on each post. Pay close attention to the introductory part of each post, as it could be the key to capturing the attention and interest of your readers.
3. K.I.S.S (Keep it simple and short)
The simpler you keep your posts the better. There may be times when you will barely resist the urge to throw in a couple of ambiguous words. But if your audience will need to look up every word in the dictionary to understand the message you’re trying to convey in each sentence, then you can be sure to lose the interest of that reader fast. You may have acquired more college degrees than your average reader or target audience but try as much as you can to make your choice of words easy to digest because they are not ready to work that hard to relate to you.
The next tip you need to take note of while keeping things simple is to make your post visually appealing to your readers. Bare it in mind that your readers only want to grab information quickly and move on to applying them and not spend the entire day reading a novel or book.
4. What does it take to make a post viral?
This is what a lot of users have often wondered, but the fact remains that it isn’t solely up to you to make a post viral. You have a major role to play in it for sure, but no matter how good your content is, you can’t force it to go viral. Notwithstanding, there are a couple of things that you can do to increase the chances of making it spread like wildfire.
Some of which include;
Most people tend to undermine the power of a poll. They might not have a strong significance in growing your audience but they can help you get massive views on a few posts.
Some users have the impression that views on a post do not matter, but if you’re among those that think this way, you better have a rethink because they do. The reason views are essential is that your business will not grow if your posts aren’t regularly viewed by your audience.
Think of it this way, the more views a post has, the more the chance of getting a good number of likes and comments. And the more comments you have, the larger your audience. The bigger your audience, the higher the chances of meeting your prospective customer, and more doors of opportunities are opened to you.
It will take a lot of effort and dedication to hit the jackpot (make your posts go viral).
And this may not happen with the first, second, or third post that you make it could take a lot more until the desired result is achieved. But then what is certain is that the more posts you’re able to generate, the higher the chances of making one or more go viral.
Another benefit of being consistent and dedicated with what you do is that it will encourage more people to want to follow you and keep up with your updates.
Another suggestion is that you can take a critical look at your schedule and choose a time when you are free the most to post and be consistent with it.
If you’re usually free at night, then try to stick with posting at a certain time each night, but if you’re free during the mornings then be regular with it as you will be attracting other users that are also morning people with your post.
It’s up to you to find out what works for you and your brand and stick with it.
5. Strive to increase your followership
Unlike other social media platforms where you don’t have the power to decide who follows you, LinkedIn gives you the authority to personally handpick your followers and build your audience.
There will be a stage where you will know your target audience and what they like, and this will make it easier to send them a connection request directly.
For whatever service you may render, LinkedIn will allow you to connect with them by simply going to the search bar to do research.
Regular LinkedIn users have a limited number of connection requests that they can send each month, but if you intend to build your audience faster, then you should consider upgrading your account to premium. That way you will have more opportunities to reach a bigger audience.
While conducting your research, try to look at users whose audience and pages are similar to yours and try to connect with people who are active there.
Another thing you can do to give your followership a boost is by being active on other people’s posts too.
Like and drop genuine comments on other people’s posts the same you expect them to drop their sincere opinions on yours.
Your profile serves as a landing page for your brand, so one of the best things that you can do for your profile is to ensure that it’s fully optimized.
Take a good look at your headline and ask yourself this question, is it catchy enough to attract a prospect at first glance? If it’s not, then work to get as visually appealing as you can.
Use the “About” section to communicate the value of your brand to your target audience.
Your featured section is also the right place to include vital details of your brand such as your website link, or other CTAs (call to action -buttons)
6. Connect with a community
This is another quick method that can give the audience a major boost.
Let’s say you’re an SEO expert, one of the ways to scale your numbers up while building your audience is to search for other SEO professionals in a group or network and connect with them.
Not only will they share ideas and concepts that you’re familiar with, but you will also always be on top of your game because they will always share what’s trending in your niche.
You can always count on the discussion forum with these professionals to always keep you updated. Plus, some of the challenges you may be encountering can also be made open in such communities without fear, and you can be assured of suggestions that will help you overcome them speedily.
Again, you can also listen to some of the challenges that others are experiencing and take note of how it was resolved, who knows, you might encounter something similar later on. And when you do, it will be easily dealt with.
If you have gained vast knowledge in your niche through the years, you could offer meaningful suggestions which could be of help to others.
Over time, people will learn to look up to you and may also be eager to connect with you.
Another benefit to being active in such communities is that in times when you could want to change jobs, those whom you have built a rapport with can recommend some openings that they may know.
7. Be Unique
We’ve already discussed the essence of channeling one’s focus to the type of content that one creates. But we still feel to emphasize the uniqueness.
It can be quite a tough nut to crack when you think of the numerous hours that you have to spend each day brainstorming ideas that will make your brand stand out and attract prospects. But in the end, it will surely be rewarded as your brand will stand out and be recognized for its authenticity.
Two good heads they say are better than one.
Getting your team to often join the brainstorming sessions will go a long way than trying to do all the thinking by yourself alone.
It’s not compulsory that all your articles or posts on LinkedIn must be lengthy to convey your messages.
Sometimes you could switch things but posting short and powerful articles that nail each point by the head.
An example of such a short and powerful post/article could be you sharing what you think about a recent development in your industry.
You could briefly explain it from an angle that will give your audience a broader sense of the picture.
Another example could be a case where you dish out motivational quotes that will serve as a means to encourage newbies that might be experiencing a challenge that you had overcome in the past.
Being a source of motivation to others can go a long way to help you build a brand of loyal prospects.
Your uniqueness will not only stand out but also speak highly of your brand which will set you apart from the competition and impress your LinkedIn audience.
8. Recommendations play a big role
As the chief executive officer of your brand, it’s essential to note that your recommendations play a big role. So it’s entirely up to you to actively shape your reputation into one that will be appealing to both old and new target audiences.
Also, as a business tycoon, you need to recognize that LinkedIn is the most powerful tool that you have when it boils down to the modern-day competitive workplace.
With that in mind, do what you can to get and make those recommendations from the bosses, colleagues, employees, or business associates count because they are what will also help you build that reputable brand you have dreamed of.
You could even take this a step further by personally asking those who you’ve done one or two business transactions with to write you a professional recommendation.
You can count on some of your colleagues to get some of the best reviews. But remember to also leave a positive and professional recommendation on their profiles.
9. Draft a compelling summary
Not including a profile summary is one mistake that most LinkedIn users make. The reason it’s often overlooked is what I can’t explain but as a word of advice, I recommend that you take this section seriously.
The reason is that your profile summary serves as a place to connect and make your message resonate better with your prospects.
Another mistake that most users do is that rather than using their profile summary as the perfect place to speak with their ideal prospects and communicate the value of the brand, they see it as a platform to sell their services.
In the preparatory stages of writing your summary, one question that should be at the back of your mind is this “How can I be of assistance to solving the problems of the ideal client?”
Without being able to clearly illustrate how your brand will be of any assistance to your prospects, you won’t be of much use to them.
In this section, LinkedIn has given you 2,000 characters to effectively communicate to your target audience how your brand could make it to their list of top go-to brands.
That’s a good amount of space for you to come up with a compelling rundown of what you offer.
And while doing so, don’t forget to include keywords that will make your services easy to locate.
We hope that reading up to this point in this article has helped broaden your horizon on ways that you can build and engage with your target audience on LinkedIn without stress.
With a positive attitude and a resilient mindset, you are on the path to being unstoppable in achieving a brand that will stand the test of time.
Lastly, remember that consistency is the key to success.
Thanks for reading.