LinkedIn has Opened its Network to Content Marketing

Finally, LinkedIn has come of age and given you the ability to publish directly on the social network.

B2B content marketers are drooling at the prospect that has only been available for a couple of weeks now. Here are three ways it will affect your B2B marketing program.

1. The floodgates will open

Every large B2B marketing program will eventually have to use LinkedIn or be swept out to sea. LinkedIn is already a rock-solid traffic source for many B2B marketers. If not, it is in the consideration set due to its combination of audience and targeting. Once B2B content marketers have the opportunity to publish on LinkedIn they will swim to it like a school of fish. As part of every company’s content marketing effort, thousands of executives will begin publishing on the network. There will be a large uptick in the amount of content in the LinkedIn stream. This will increase competition for all involved.

2. There will be a cost

Just like any other social platform, there will be a fee to market your content widely on LinkedIn. As the floodgates open, there will be heavy competition for the limited space in the stream. Visibility of your content will inevitably decrease as has recently been seen on Facebook. However, LinkedIn has a solution to the problem called “Sponsored Updates.” It is extremely targetable to specific B2B audiences and bid-based, so the greater your budget the more effective your campaign will be.

3. High risk of audience theft

Publishing is tied to an individual’s personal account on LinkedIn and if that individual leaves your organization, he/she takes your audiences with them. Here are the three different approaches you can implement to reduce this risk.

— Single spokesperson approach

A single, highly trusted and loyal executive can handle the content through their profile in large corporations but this approach is best suited to small single proprietorships. The owner or founder simply runs the campaign through his/her personal profile.

— Group approach

This is a good approach in both limiting the risk of audience theft and diversifying the type of content you provide. Different people will naturally have different interests and lean towards different topics. If one or two people leave, it will not have much of an impact on the campaign as a whole.

— Company approach

Although this flies in the face of the definition of a social network involving people, large companies will need to invest primarily in a company page to reduce risk. However, any new contributor will already have the benefit of the company audience. It is not the perfect solution for large businesses but variations of the approach will most likely evolve over time.


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