This morning a client was asking me about her Linked In profile. She has been sharing articles with me that relate to her field. And I said, “instead of sending your comments to me, why don’t you “Like” the article or add your comment to the discussion.”
But in the 45+ age group, there is still a lot of fear about “publishing” ideas quickly, and without long periods of thought. (And it doesn’t help that in attempting to improve the look and function of social media sites that the designers keep moving the layout around like we’ve seen Facebook do frequently). This in itself is a barrier to people who do not yet feel “tech savvy”. That’s the first barrier of using social media for this psycho graphic). The second barrier is about publishing your thoughts, seemingly, without much thought.
It’s quite a different mindset than our Gen Y and Web 2.0 citizens, who feel very comfortable seeing an online conversation and contributing to it. To these frequent-publishers of online content, there isn’t an obvious risk (even though the words are saved and published with a level of permanence missing in the transient nature of auditory communication).
Of course, I never encourage businesses to jump in and get involved without a Content Strategy for how they will use the tool. But having a content strategy will definitely give you more courage for posting your comments.
And even better news, creating your social media content strategy (for sharing content, or engaging with someone else’s content whether in Groups, other people’s profile posts, recommendations, etc.) doesn’t have to be lengthy document you put together. It can be done in a few minutes time.
Here are two more tips on sharing content on LinkedIn to build your website traffic and your influence online:
Share content on target with the key issues you solve, so you become known for those topics.For instance, it’s appropriate for “my profile” to share information relevant to sales, website words, content marketing best practices, and Google’s latest search laws. However, it would be harmful to the strengths I want to communicate if I were to start mixing in sharing or contributing to topics that are outside this realm, as in the “bite-sized” style of social media and online skim reading, people tend to only see a few of my comments, so they all need to be in line with my overall message. Otherwise, I wind up confusing my audience about what I do – and a key LI principle is to stay connected with your network based on what you do.
Share other people’s content. It’s a great strategy (and cuts down on your workload) to share and link to content that you recognise as “on par” with your “hot topics” but you may not necessarily have created. Those people will appreciate that you’re listening and be glad you engaged with what they are trying to build. (It’s essential in the small business social media world, as lots of social media people out there feel like they’d doing it but no one is listening.) So don’t be afraid to share content that you didn’t create yourself (as long as you give the link to the creator’s, of course).
I would even share potential competitor’s content if it’s really good stuff – and why not, I want people in my network to trust that I follow best practices.