When most of the social media platforms are dominated by Gen Z or millennials, LinkedIn has over 740 million active users from all age groups. LinkedIn users are primarily looking to build their business connections, hence the platform is perceived as a “professional social network”.
LinkedIn has a serious undertone to it, which makes it ideal for subject matter experts to establish themselves as thought leaders, especially with many brands investing in LinkedIn influencer marketing. But we wouldn’t claim it is easy to achieve. However, with consistent inputs, the results are worth the effort.
This article will help you to develop yourself as a thought leader and join the ranks of Richard Branson and Gary Vaynerchuk in your own right.
But Why Be A Thought Leader On LinkedIn?
In today’s world, being an expert in your field is not enough. You also have to portray your skills online as well. Building your presence digitally as a thought leader is vital if you want to grow in the business environment. Compared to Facebook and Twitter, LinkedIn is 277% more effective in generating leads, according to a study by HubSpot.
Since LinkedIn drives 46% of social traffic to B2B sites, branding is becoming a necessity for entrepreneurs and executives alike. When you are online talking about what you know best, your potential customers, employees, and future connections are taking notice. This helps in finding the right kind of people that will further your goals.
Being a thought leader gives you the platform to introduce your story to the world. An exemplary opportunity to build your brand & reputation in the online social world without spending a dime. You also get an opportunity to lean into your audience personally with unique perspectives behind what you do.
Also, thought leaders attract the best talent on LinkedIn. They would be more willing to work for leaders they look up to. You can steer them in your direction with the content you share on your LinkedIn profiles.
Hence, a thought leader is someone, who takes an idea and inspires people to make a move towards change. Get the ball rolling to grow as a thought leader on LinkedIn.
How To Grow Your Network As Thought Leader On LinkedIn?
Growing your following on your LinkedIn page is the first step you need to take in building your thought leadership. Increasing your audience count leads to better organic conversations and insights. LinkedIn thrives on sharing ideas and building connections, which is the best strategy to start.
Below are some tips, whether you are starting or already in the thick of things, looking to become thought leaders.
1. Optimize your page for SEO
By optimizing the SEO impact of your LinkedIn page, you can increase the search footprint of your name. A strong SEO of your LinkedIn page enhances your chances of being found by LinkedIn members and organic web searchers. Use industry or expertise-related keywords in the about section, tag line, etc. When you write LinkedIn page content around keywords and terms that are relevant to your messaging, readers find it easier to relate those to you.
2. Engage your colleagues & employees
Your team members are your strongest suit when it comes to building your page’s loyal following. Encourage them to tell their friends and coworkers who are interested in similar things like you. This is a vital step for new pages to get off the ground. Employees tagging your page in updates and promoting your content with their networks may give it a major boost.
Also, make sure your employees are properly mapped to your page (by correctly identifying it in their work experience). Every new connection your employee creates on LinkedIn will be asked to follow your page. Also, ask for recommendations from mentors and ex-bosses to tap into their goodwill as well.
3. Post content regularly
Most people have a hard time following this advice. You could be busy but growing on LinkedIn will not happen without investing time and consistent effort. Whether you can post daily, weekly, or once in a fortnight, stick to the expectations of your audience. When you maintain a consistent stream of new content, it increases its visibility on member feeds. Pages that update at least weekly enjoy a 2x increase in engagement, which leads to increased organic reach.
4. Join conversations with hashtags
According to LinkedIn, hashtags should be used to:
- Establish your expertise and credibility.
- Find people who are interested in what you have to say.
- Begin meaningful discussions about common interests.
To reach new, relevant communities with your content, include three to five trending hashtags in your posts.
You can enter a feed and react/comment on conversations with relevant hashtags, further exposing yourself to untapped audiences. Place them at the end of your posts with two broad-themed hashtags and one specific to your industry. This way, you can create content themes that link back to you.
5. Adjust your content based on analytics
Your page has access to analytics that includes demographic data on your followers and visitors, as well as engagement data for your updates. Use these insights to determine what is resonating and what is not. Tailor your content accordingly to meet the needs of your visitors. As a result, you’ll get greater engagement and maintain a solid record of your content stats.
6. Mention other LinkedIn thought leaders
Are there any influential leaders or non-competing companies in your field that you admire and want to be connected with? You’ll have a better chance of getting in front of their network if you @mention them in your updates. They will also be able to reshare your post with their followers. Just be careful not to go overboard, as this strategy may rapidly become spammy if used too frequently.
7. Share visual content
Don’t underestimate the power of visuals on LinkedIn. If you want to update your status, consider including a photo alongside the text. If you have interesting research insights, consider presenting them via videos. Collage-style images see a lot of engagement on the platform, so share some of your own too.
8. Encourage engagement
When people respond through likes or comments on your posts, it helps to spread the word to a larger audience (often outside your circle). Consider what you can do to encourage meaningful responses to your content, and respond with something similarly worthwhile. Threads with a lot of comments have a higher chance of going viral.
Every once in a while, show your face on your page, drop into DMs and establish a personal connection. This will lead to an increase in engagement on public posts.
9. Analyze competitors
In all facets of digital marketing, competitor analysis is crucial, and LinkedIn is no exception. To keep ahead of the competition, you must know where your rivals are and how they got there.
You should look at what others are doing, not to copy their methods, but to identify the gaps in the market and offer something that members won’t find anywhere else. Even if you take inspiration from a famous influencer, customize it to fit your personality and unique voice to stand out.
10. Respond to comments
Although not every comment is worthy of a response, it is a good idea to respond to every query or meaningful comment on your page’s content. When you leave a remark on an article, not only is the original author notified, but LinkedIn also inserts your comment into your network’s feed.
LinkedIn will also distribute your comment and their post in your network’s feed even if you are commenting on someone unrelated to your other contacts. This means you can put yourself, your thoughts, and your observations in front of a far larger audience that goes beyond the borders of your community.
While Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have made us habituated to casual conversations, LinkedIn requires more thought and strategy. The focus is on building your business network, designed to expand your voice, your presence, and your brand. These bonus tips will help you participate in a wide range of topics and conversations on your way to setting yourself up as a LinkedIn thought leader.
Tip 1: Optimize your profile
You’ve most likely created a LinkedIn profile by now. But that’s not enough if you want to be a thought leader. You’ll need to refine and optimize your LinkedIn page to guarantee that you appear in search results relevant to your skill sets or network feeds. Customize all the sections provided by LinkedIn to make it look like a ‘lived in’ page with pictures and information about yourself.
Tip 2: Use LinkedIn’s Publishing Platform
Because your suggestions, thoughts, and big ideas won’t always fit into a short post or update, make sure to include long-form content on your profile regarding industry-related issues. You can use LinkedIn’s Publishing platform to publish a blog post, or you can share external links to your own site or Medium. LinkedIn’s publishing tool allows you to publish long-form content directly on the site. It’s a terrific method to promote yourself, your ideas, and your profile.
Tip 3: Get featured
But it’s not enough to write a brilliant thought and publish it. Your work should also feature on LinkedIn’s Pulse content platform to boost your reach and resonance.
Pulse is a collection of the finest content published on LinkedIn, organized by category, and hand-picked by LinkedIn’s editorial team. ‘Productivity’, ‘Big Ideas & Innovation’, ‘Leadership & Management’, ‘Technology’, and ‘Entrepreneurship’ are the most popular topics, but there’s a lot more that members are interested in.
Tip 4: Write from your heart
People relate to human emotions much more than statistics or data. That stands true even for LinkedIn. Writing posts from your heart and sharing the pains and joys of your professional journey is bound to strike chords with people. Give people a reason to relate to you. And most importantly, stand for what you believe in and you will eventually find a community that stands with you.
While there is no rule book for success on LinkedIn, following some of the tried and tested methods is the way to go about your goal to become a LinkedIn thought leader. No matter which industry you represent, these tips & tricks can help you position yourself as a thought leader. You must remain consistent and patient. That’s the secret to success.
Once you achieve that, keep your time and energy focussed on creating engaging content that delivers a compelling message to your followers. And for collaborations with brands, trust Atisfyre. It’s AI-driven platform connects you with leading brands worldwide to explore collaboration opportunities. So, leverage your reach to earn and help brands around the world!
Sign up with Atisfyre today, it’s free!