Corporate network LinkedIn has taken another step towards becoming the hub for all things white collar, opening its publishing platform to all members.
Previously, only LinkedIn Influencers (high-profile corporate celebrities such as Bill Gates) could post long-form content on LinkedIn, which took the form of essays on business strategy and other insights.
Now, this has been opened to all LinkedIn members. For HR, this could mean a powerful new tool for employer branding.
In the same way HR professionals can utilize their own personal (or company blogs), partake in interviews or submit content to websites and magazines, they are now able to combine this with the leverage and reach LinkedIn provides: the average post from an influencer currently garners over 31,000 views, over 250 likes and over 80 comments.
As such, HR pros can use this tool to becoming thought leaders in their area – conveying powerful messages that attract high-calibre candidates. The top influencer post, 11 Simple Concepts to Become a Better Leader
by Likeable Local CEO Dave Kerpen, has reached 2.5m views.
However, it won’t be an easy road. HR pros should think carefully about their content:
- Understand your audience. While cute statements and day-to-day musings can be affective on casual social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, LinkedIn is essentially a place of business. Your audience is looking for informative reads, so tailor your posts as such.
- Back it up. Statements without back-up are meaningless when discussing strategy. While you won’t need to become a hard-nosed journalist, keep in mind that referring back to studies, experiences or even essays by other thought-leaders can help add weight to your comments.
- Have a theme. Really, not all posts need to be dissertations. Many of Kerpen’s take on the form of lists that offer either info or a bit of humour. Understand what you can best write about that and pursue it.
- Understand the competition. In reality, this new move by LinkedIn is a big turn for the company. Having previously hand-picked those who could be thought leaders through the Influencer profiles, the quality of content is current of quite a high standard. LinkedIn Influencers comprise of 34 industries, with 263 CEOs, Chairmen and founders in the Influencer group with a total of 12,915 years’ experience. You may wish to knuckle-down and read some of the current essays to understand what you are up against.
"When a member publishes a post on LinkedIn their original content becomes part of their professional profile, is shared with their trusted network and has the ability to reach the largest group of professionals ever assembled. We have seen that a strong people brand has a huge impact on building an employer brand. Employers can use this as a channel to promote content about their business through their people," Tara Commerford, head of communications, LinkedIn ANZ and Southeast Asia, told HC.