LinkedIn announced on Feb. 19 that its publishing platform will open up to all users. Until this point, it reserved the platform for a hand-picked group of 150 influencers, which eventually grew to 500.
Influencers ranged from Bill Gates to Mark Cuban, whose blog posts averaged over 20,000 views and became a currency for acquiring LinkedIn thought leadership.
For now, the plan is to roll its publishing platform out slowly over the next few months before opening the feature worldwide. LinkedIn will match up blog posts to users who share similar interests to its topics.
Interestingly, this move comes shortly after Facebook’s announcement of “Paper,” an app for the iPhone that curates articles with an aesthetic interface.
Between these two approaches, it appears that Mark Zuckerberg’s dream of social media transforming into a personalized newspaper is now a reality. Little did he know that LinkedIn is joining the publishing party as well.
The publishing platform offers everyone the opportunity to be an influencer within their own network. This is invaluable for executives who want to show thought leadership amongst their peers, especially when they’re potential clients.
Here are five ways B2B companies can benefit from the new LinkedIn publishing platform:
- Targeted audience – The new platform promises to match the blog’s topic with users who share an interest in that particular vertical. This gives an opportunity to create a two-way dialogue where everyone is sharing their expertise and leading to deeper relationships.
- Powerful analytics – LinkedIn has outstanding insights for personal profiles that are only going to improve. Forbes says authors will have the option of breaking their audience down by seniority and industry. These insights should help authors learn who is most receptive to what their company has to offer and improve the overall marketing strategy.
- Brand awareness – For companies that aren’t regularly getting placements in media outlets messaging can get lost in the shuffle, making it difficult to build a reputation. LinkedIn now gives smaller companies an opportunity to build their reputation on a medium that will increase exposure.
- Content marketing – Sharing quality content is crucial whether it’s a matter of increasing influence or SEO purposes. The cliché stating “content is king,” still holds true and there’s no better place to store that content than the world’s largest professional network.
- Tell your story – LinkedIn profiles – when optimized – can be used to help companies tell their story. Employees can be the best advocate of a company and a good profile summary or a description the work experience can go a long way, but it has its limits. Telling your story requires context beyond a slogan or a marketing campaign; it’s what differentiates companies and stirs customers to become advocates. It stimulates readers on a meaningful level that leads to a holistic and sustainable interest. All of the above can happen when there’s content that tells that story.
What are your thoughts on the new platform? Tell us in the comments below.