The Ultimate Organic Linkedin Marketing Guide
About the author
John is the Founder of Espirian, and describes himself as a relentlessly-helpful technical copywriter for B2B websites. He's a self-confessed LinkedIn nerd, and really is the foremost expert on organic LinkedIn marketing. John is also the author of Content DNA.
The average number of connections on LinkedIn is 930 - but many users still find they’re not getting much engagement on the social platform.
Marketing expert, John Espirian, found himself in exactly this position. As someone in the B2B space, it is essential for him to have a strong presence on LinkedIn, as this is where many of his clients are. John is now getting x45 times the number of post views and consistent leads, with an excellent strong network of friends and colleagues - and is teaching others how to do the same.
1. Engagement pods
We’ve all seen the LinkedIn groups of people that like and share all of each other’s LinkedIn posts. It's easy to think that it’s gaining them more visibility, but LinkedIn is actually clamping down on this behavior. If LinkedIn picks up on the same people liking and interacting on the same person's content, it’s not classed as organic engagement.
The problem is, if a content syndicate group to share content is not in closely related fields of businesses, they're putting out irrelevant information to the feeds of their followers. You should be creating relevant content for your field to build a personal brand and give LinkedIn members a real idea of who you are.
2. You CAN have too many connections!
It’s great to have a big network on LinkedIn, but it should be a relevant social network where you can spend time getting to know people. It’s the same concept as shoving your business card in lots of hands! Aim to connect with five to ten people a day, so that people reach out to you, and you can read their profiles too.
Of course, you haven't got time to just sit around chatting online, but the human way to run your business is to try and get to know the LinkedIn users in your network so they'll see that you're not trying to sell to them. You’re more likely to be referred and get direct business just as a result of being chatty and reaching out to people in an authentic way!
3. Schedule your posts, but not too many
Posting ad-hoc all the time is just not doable, and social media scheduling tools (like ContentCal!) are great for getting your posts lined up and auto-published so you don’t have to think about it.
Try not to over-automate everything though! It’s important that content is the start of a conversation, so you need to be around to somewhat manage that conversation when a post goes out. It’s that sweet spot between giving off a good impression that’s bespoke to your audience, but not coming across as a vending machine. If you want success from LinkedIn, be part of as many conversations as possible.
The piece of text alongside your name and profile photo follows you everywhere on LinkedIn and is the first thing people see! Only the first 40 characters are visible on mobile (57% of users are using a mobile) and the first 70 characters on desktop. Overall, however, you’re allowed 120 characters, so it’s worth splitting it up into 3 parts.
- 40: The first 40 characters are your content DNA statement, where you crush everything down into a nutshell, saying what value and service you’re providing
- 60: The next 60 characters will be used for keywords and context. Here you can dive deeper into anything that supports your content DNA statement
- 20: The final 20 characters are known as the bravery badge. It’s the intrigue section that would make someone want to start a conversation with you. It’s the least important detail, but probably the most interesting to someone reading.
If you view your LinkedIn profile on a desktop, you’ll also get a list of people on the right-hand side. These people have mutual profile viewers (AKA, they’re your competitors) so have a look at their profiles to see where you can draw inspiration.
- Create your own consistent layout: You want people to recognize you by the style of your posts. Maybe you start each post with an emoji, maybe you post a mini headline. Choose your style and own it!
- Keep things brief: You only have 1300 characters to get your point across. Use white space to help you spread this out, or add bullet points to help you get your point across clearly
- Don’t link: LinkedIn doesn’t like it when you try to take its users to external sites and your reach will suffer! A way to get around this is to write your post without any links, publish it, and then wait just a few seconds before hitting the edit button and add any links into the body of the post.
- Don’t tag unless necessary: If you’re tagging more than 10+ people in a post, it not only looks messy but looks super spammy too. To other users, it looks like a ploy to try and increase engagement and it doesn't make them feel valued. You always want to try and encourage comments because they’re what’s going to help your content travel through the LinkedIn network. Try and end with a question spark interaction, and try to leave your hashtags for the end. LinkedIn themselves say that you shouldn't use more than three hashtags in a post.
Try to post two or three times a week at most, but comment at least 10 times a week on other people’s content! If you’re frequently interacting with others, there’ll be a natural need to reciprocate on your posts, in turn, boosting your engagement.
LinkedIn has over 675 million users, so form relationships with those who can help boost your visibility and become allies to your line of work.
To dive deeper into this topic, buy John’s book, Content DNA, here.
To build your own organic LinkedIn social strategy, make sure you’ve downloaded our free social media strategy template - it’s super easy to fill in and will help streamline your content creation.