Until very recently, only the so-called LinkedIn Influencers, a selected group of leaders around the globe, have been able to publish on LinkedIn. Now, LinkedIn has opened up its platform to all members and anyone can publish.
It’s very easy to get started. Just go to the LinkedIn homepage and make sure you are logged in. If you are allowed to publish on LinkedIn, you will see a pencil on the right side of the field where you can post updates. When you click on it, you get to the publishing platform where you can write and save your articles.
Now you may ask yourself, what you could possibly write about. Let me give you a few ideas.
1. Write About Your Expertise
There is a lot of stuff that you know, no matter where you are at in your career. Talk about what you know publicly and show the world your expertise. Don’t think you have nothing to say, everyone does have something to talk about.
What have you experienced at work today or this week that could help solve an issue, one of your peers has?
What is something you have learned recently? Share some lessons.
What are some things you are really good at and could write a how-to guide about?
Think about all the things that you know and have experienced at work.
2. Express Your Opinion
That may seem like a bigger step out of your comfort zone. However, expressing your opinion is a great way to start a conversation.
You do this already many times throughout the day, why not do it in a way that can be highly beneficial to you and your brand?
You want to talk about the things you believe in, the things you see that are wrong in the world, the changes you want to see in the world and what you predict for the future.
When you talk about what matters most to you and things you have strong emotions attached to, you come across as very authentic, which can reflect very positively on your personal brand.
Keep it Short and to the Point
You don’t need to write a 1000-word article. In fact, it may be a better idea to write shorter posts in the beginning. It’s easier for you to actually get the writing done and for the people who read it to digest it.
Keep your writing short and to the point, especially if you are new to it. If you are good at storytelling, this is a great way to add substance to your post. Use examples to make things easier to understand.
There are a few benefits that go along with publishing on LinkedIn. Let me give you four right here.
1. You Grow Your Network of Peers
The people who are most likely going to read your posts, if you have not specifically defined a target market, will be your peers. That’s great news because this is an important group of people you need in order to be successful in your career.
Your peers can introduce you to many people in their network who may be decision makers, potential business partners or hiring managers.
2. You Become Known as an Expert
Being an expert is something very relative. Some people say you need to spend at least 10’000 hours doing something to become an expert. Maybe that’s true for heart surgeons and rocket scientists.
However, I don’t believe you need to spend 10’000 hours to do something until you become an expert on social media, business development or leading teams. I believe what makes you an expert is being more knowledgable than the person you are talking to.
When you publish on your expertise on LinkedIn, people see you as an expert. In fact, merely standing up and taking the leap to publish something in public on what you know makes you an expert.
Obviously, it’s very beneficially to be seen as an expert by your peers, decision makers and potential partners. They will feel a lot more confident to engage with you.
3. You Get Better at Writing
I would argue that writing is one of the most important skills in today’s business world. Think about it, how many emails do you write each day? How many reports, sales messages, offers, presentations, etc. do you craft during a week?
If you are an exceptional writer, you can get what you want much easier. You can persuade your boss to launch that project, you can get that client on board easier, write a more effective LinkedIn summary and better communicate in your emails to colleagues, your boss and decision makers.
4. You Have Something to Show
If you talk to a potential employer, client or partner, how much of your work can you show them? Usually not much.
How handy, that you have published a few articles on LinkedIn that position you as an authority in your field. Now you get to show your expertise, your opinion on certain topics and no longer have to rely only on a resume or sales message.
By showing your work, not the tasks you handle every day, but your experience, knowledge, opinion and skills, you gain massive advantage over your competition, who can merely talk about what they have done.
How to Get Your Articles in Front of the Right People
If you are active on LinkedIn, I imagine you are part of some groups. Let’s say you are part of some sustainability, green technology, clean tech and eco groups because that is where your passion lies.
Most probably, one topic you will be writing about is sustainability and ecology. That gives you a powerful opportunity to get your message in front of the right audience, exactly in those groups. These people want to hear about those topics, that’s why they have joined those groups.
Take your article and share it in relevant groups with a headline that starts a discussion. Use a question, for instance. Something like “Where do you think will solar technology be in 20 years?” or “Will large corporations eventually embody sustainability?”.
Make sure people can jump into the discussion without having to read your whole article. The question should give enough food for people to engage with you in a discussion.
Pretty soon, you will become an authority in those groups. People will start to recognize you and your network will grow exponentially.
What If You Are Not Good at Writing?
You may ask yourself how you could possibly write an article if the last time you did something similar was during your master thesis.
First of all, you don’t need to be Stephen King to write effective articles on LinkedIn. It’s much more important that you focus on a topics that you deeply care about. When you talk about such a topic, the words start appearing on the paper and it naturally flows.
The more passionate you are about a certain topic, the better and more impactful your writing will be.
If you are not confident yet with publishing, write a few articles in Evernote or a Word document. You don’t have to publish them but you will get better at writing every time. Eventually, you will feel confident enough to hit the publish button and realize that nobody cut your head off, just because you published something.
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