Whether you’re seeking employment, looking to hire, trying to network, or searching for leads, LinkedIn is a potential goldmine.
And one of the best ways to make your presence known on the platform is by posting.
But with more than a million publishers, and over 150,000 posts published each week, making your posts stand out can be challenging, to say the least.
I’ve spent a ton of hours researching and playing around with LinkedIn, trying to figure out what works best, and I’ve found several strategies to optimize posts and get more views.
So, for those of you who want to send your view count soaring into the stratosphere, today I’m going to share some of what I’ve learned with you.
Right off the bat, the question many of you are probably asking is, “What’s the best content to post on LinkedIn?”
But before I answer this question, I should provide some background on how LinkedIn’s homepage feed works.
Just like the news feeds on other social networks, LinkedIn’s homepage feed allows you to see updates from your connections and people or organizations you follow.
But it’s more complicated than that.
Instead of showing you everything your network is posting, LinkedIn’s algorithm and human editors review content to show only what they believe is most relevant for you.
For those of you with short attention spans, Hootsuite has broken down the process into a neat little infographic, as you’ll see below.
For the rest of you, I’m going to do my best to summarize.
On LinkedIn, all content goes through a multi-stage spam filter, which determines whether it will show up in the feed, and if so, what level of reach that content will have.
In the first stage, the algorithm separates content into three groupings.
These categories include spam, “low-quality” content, and content that’s considered “clear”.
Next, content is temporarily unleashed on the feed to measure engagement.
Content that gets engagement, such as comments, likes and shares, is likely to have greater reach.
But if users flag content as spam, or choose to hide it from their feed, that content will be less likely to make it to the third stage of the spam filter.
In the third stage, the algorithm attempts to determine the quality of the person posting the content, the quality of their network, as well as the usefulness and relevancy of the content.
In the fourth and final stage, human editors decide whether content provides enough value to continue circulating in the feed.
If the content’s not getting much engagement, it won’t continue to show up.
Now that you know a bit about how LinkedIn’s algorithm works, let’s talk about the best content to post on LinkedIn.
First of all, if you want to deter people from flagging your content as spam or hiding it from their feed, there are several things you need to avoid.
You should avoid posting content that’s extremely offensive or bound to piss people off.
And don’t bombard people by posting constantly (we’ll talk more about this later).
Also, take a step back, put your bias aside, and consider whether the post is relevant and valuable to the professionals in your network or the audience you’re trying to target.
Because if it’s not, you’re not likely to get much engagement.
If you want to post an article about how much you love your cat, save it for Facebook.
LinkedIn is the social network for the professional world, so no one’s going to give a crap about Fluffy.
If your content checks these boxes and enough people interact with it, hopefully it’ll make it through the third and fourth stages of the spam filter, allowing it to continue circulating in the news feed.
Posts that are likely to recirculate will be of great value to people’s professional lives.
This includes content that will help people to grow their business, advance in their career, learn something about their industry, or inspire them.
Here’s a great example of content that helps people advance in their career:
And here’s an awesome example of inspirational content:
A survey from LinkedIn asked users which kinds of content they’d be most likely to engage with, and some of the top answers included content that’s relevant, educational and inspiring.
Want more of this kind of content? Subscribe to our newsletter by filling out the form in the top right-hand corner of the blog.
Now that you know what kinds of posts will get the most interactions on LinkedIn, you need to understand how to optimize them for engagement.
Here are some strategies to help you out:
Keep Descriptions & Titles Concise
According to LinkedIn, the most effective descriptions for posts are less than 70 characters and should be written in the form of a call to action, briefly explaining what value the content provides.
In addition, a study from OkDork found titles that are between 40-49 characters long tend to get the most views.
If headlines are too long, LinkedIn will truncate them, meaning only part of the title will be seen, so keep them as short as possible.
Write Long-form Articles
While shorter descriptions and headlines seem to perform better, when it comes to articles, the longer the better.
According to the OkDork study I referenced above, posts between 1,900 and 2,000 words perform best.
The study found that content of this length vastly outperforms shorter posts in terms of comments, likes, shares and views.
Make People Laugh
No matter where you’re posting content, people love to laugh.
A study from Computan found that funny content gets the most engagement, and humorous posts are the most likely to be commented on, liked and shared.
But remember, it’s LinkedIn, so keep it relevant to professionals. Poking fun at your industry is more appropriate than random vines.
Here’s a good example of industry-specific humour:
Posts that evoke emotion spark conversation and inspire people to share your content.
And if your post incites a flame war in the comments section, the ongoing engagement will let LinkedIn’s algorithm and editors know that this content is valuable enough to continue circulating.
In the Computan study I mentioned above, content that elicits a strong emotional reaction was ranked number two on their list of posts that get the most engagement.
Below, you’ll see a perfect example of content that evokes emotion:
Use Evocative Imagery
An eye-catching image could be the deciding factor that persuades people to click on your content.
Avoid boring imagery like headshots, logos, or your typical stock photos, and try to come up with something that’s going to catch people’s attention.
Here’s a great example I pulled from my feed:
Using hashtags on LinkedIn makes it easier for people to discover your content, allowing you to connect with users that might be interested in what you do, but would otherwise have no idea who you are.
But make sure to keep your hashtags relevant to the professional world, steering clear of stuff that’s not safe for work.
Humber College provides a good example of how to properly hashtag:
And try not to overdo it. Posts with a shit load of hashtags look spammy to users and using too many hashtags could also cause posts to be marked as spam by LinkedIn’s algorithm.
Here’s an example of taking hashtags too far:
With so many variables to consider, it’s tough to make a blanket statement about how frequently you should post, or when you should post.
Every business is unique, every industry is different, and there are no two networks alike.
So, try out various methods, do as much testing as you can, and stick with what works for you.
But if you really need a benchmark, let’s look at what an industry heavyweight has to say.
According to HubSpot, the best days for a LinkedIn post are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and the best times to post are right before business hours, around lunch hour, and right after people get off work.
When it comes to frequency, it’s a little more complicated.
The first rule of thumb is to avoid posting constantly because it just annoys people and gives them a reason to hide your posts from their feed.
As I said above, when people hide your posts, it can have a negative effect on the visibility of your content, so don’t post incessantly.
Any more than once a day is total overkill.
And remember, LinkedIn’s algorithm puts a lot of emphasis on relevancy and focuses on the content it considers most valuable.
If a post gets continuous engagement, it can keep showing up in people’s feeds for weeks.
So, if you’re not getting the results you want, try to focus on improving the quality of your content rather than trying to find the perfect time to post it.
Consider what’s going to be most relevant and valuable to people in your industry, users in your network, or whatever audience you’re targeting.
Bottom line: If your content isn’t valuable, it doesn’t matter when or how often you post.
If any of these tips helped you to maximize your view count, leave a comment and let us know!
Visit TheBestMedia.com and book your Free Strategy Session with a Digital Marketing Expert today.