What Top Brands Teach Us About Content Marketing on LinkedIn

Social media has created a lot of new opportunities for marketers, but it has also created more challenges. The Internet has become flooded with content and social platforms are more crowded than ever, creating more obstacles for brands trying to capture the attention of consumers online. But many marketers have been able to counteract these growing pains thanks to strategic content marketing.

Earlier this year, LinkedIn launched the Content Marketing Score in an effort to help marketers better understand and strengthen their content marketing efforts. Nearly three months later, the company has published its first report, highlighting the top 10 most influential global brands on the social network. Publishers like The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and Inc. Magazine make up half of the list, with technology companies like Microsoft and IBM making up the second half.

Let’s focus on some of the key takeaways from the report that you can combine with the Twitter, Facebook and Google Analytics reports from Sprout Social to apply to your own content strategy.

Continually Update Industry News

linkedin-industry-news

One of the things that the top 10 have in common is that they continually update members on industry news. Did you know that professionals spend one entire workday (or eight hours each week) consuming professionally relevant content? Out of those eight hours, 41 percent of that time is spent consuming professionally relevant content, while 30 and 29 percent is dedicated to news and entertainment, respectively.

Enhancing your knowledge of specific industries is one of the top benefits of consuming content on LinkedIn. While it’s important to keep followers updated on what’s happening at your own company, it’s just as important to educate them on news and trends from within your industry. LinkedIn is becoming a go-to source for professional content, with 91 percent of professionals using it weekly.

Tailor Content to Specific Audiences

linkedin-tailor-content

Another strategy that the world’s top content marketers have in common is that they release new and engaging content with specific audiences in mind. Business professionals, and people in general, are much more likely to consume and share content that is designed to meet their specific needs.

Two of the most popular reasons for consuming content on LinkedIn are gaining knowledge and acquiring career advice. How is your content benefiting your readers? Do you have a clear understanding of the reach, frequency, and engagement your content is returning? In doing so, you’ll be able to better tailor your content for maximum relevance and return.

By utilizing LinkedIn’s Trending Content tool, you can get better insight into LinkedIn’s audience and what types of content are resonating with particular segments. Once you have a better understanding of what your followers want, you can structure your content strategy accordingly.

Spark and Participate in Conversations

linkedin-spark-conversations

Another important benefit of LinkedIn is that it helps strengthen networks through building relationships with colleagues and clients. In addition to ensuring that the content you’re sharing is relevant to your audience, ask yourself this: will it spark conversation?

Conversations are fueled by sharing, and marketers need to create content that will spark those discussions. However, the days of simply copying and pasting a link to an article are gone. To ensure your content stands out, share articles with added commentary. Don’t expect followers to click through without understanding how doing so will benefit them.

How Scores Were Calculated

The Content Marketing Score is calculated by measuring unique engagement, which is gauged through social actions, divided by your total target audience. It measures engagement with your Sponsored Updates, Company Pages, LinkedIn Groups, employee updates, and Influencer posts. A single score is then calculated and ranked against your company’s competitive set.

Interested in seeing your own Content Marketing Score? Existing customers of LinkedIn Marketing Solutions can request their score through their LinkedIn account executive. We should note that this tool is only available to companies, not individuals — and be sure and combine your results with the results from Sprout Social’s own reporting tools for your other social networks.

[Image credit: huangjiahui, Victor1558, Highways Agency]