While all social media platforms are essential tools for marketing, each platform has its own benefits for different niches and industries.
And when it comes to B2B, LinkedIn is the place to be.
However, maximizing your results from LinkedIn B2B content marketing involves much more than creating a professional profile and hoping opportunities slide into your DMs. The platform has so much more to offer in terms of tools, features, and networking opportunities. If used right, it can very quickly become your best B2B marketing asset.
Ready to learn how to turn that dream into a reality? Let’s jump in!
Does Using LinkedIn for B2B Content Marketing Work?
I can personally vouch for the fact that LinkedIn B2B content marketing works. I have attracted and converted countless leads from LinkedIn for my business and for my clients’ businesses. All it takes is regularly showing up on the platform and following a strategic, yet adaptable, LinkedIn content marketing strategy.
While creating strong LinkedIn profiles and networking with other professionals are essential for success on the platform, content marketing and regularly putting yourself out there are the most important elements.
Why content marketing?
Because creating and sharing content is the best way to increase your engagement levels on the platform. Higher engagement with your network means more leads, more opportunities, and more sales. Which is what you’re aiming for, right?
To emphasize the point that content works, let’s look at a few stats on content on LinkedIn.
Content creation on LinkedIn increased by over 60% in 2020. As colleagues were separated due to COVID-19 restrictions, LinkedIn members ramped up their LinkedIn content production efforts to stay in touch with professional contacts. Furthermore, LinkedIn Live streams also increased by 437% in 2020 as users looked to find more ways to connect.
To add even more stats into the mix, the platform has 15x more content impressions than job postings – that’s nine million impressions to be exact. This means that more people are looking at the content you’re sharing than the jobs ads you’re posting. And it’s why 93% of B2B marketers consider LinkedIn to be the most effective lead generation site.
The platform itself has genuinely transitioned from a recruitment platform to a professional network. It’s a place where professionals go to educate and inform themselves, as well as learn about other companies in their industry (that’s you!).
Basically, LinkedIn and B2B marketing have become best friends over the years and that relationship is only growing stronger.
Connections With the Right People, in the Right Mindset
By utilizing the networking and content opportunities on LinkedIn, B2B professionals can connect with the people that matter. When you share content on LinkedIn, you are putting yourself in front of decision-makers, business partners, and potential customers.
The main reason why LinkedIn is such a powerful tool for B2B businesses is because, when people are on LinkedIn, they are in a professional mindset. They’re actively looking for ways to improve professionally, unlike Facebook and Instagram, where they are looking for more personal connections.
Your LinkedIn connections seek ways to improve their business processes, gain insights on their industry, read relatable stories from like-minded professionals, and connect with other businesses that they could possibly work with – businesses like yours.
To make the value abundantly clear, consider this scenario of in person networking: You go to a networking event for one day and speak to 30 other people at the event, some of which may become potential clients, but a lot of which aren’t.
Now consider networking on LinkedIn: you can create content that your target audience wants to read, regularly connect with them so they have an even bigger chance of reading, engage with their comments to keep them reading, and so the cycle continues. Do this consistently and with the right strategy – and you can absolutely bet you’ll generate a consistent stream of leads who convert.
To add another benefit, not only is LinkedIn content marketing a tremendous B2B lead generation tool, but it also helps with attracting talent to join your company as employees. For your business to continue growing, you need to hire the right people, and those people are on LinkedIn, looking at your content.
The trick to doing LinkedIn B2B content marketing right starts with creating a LinkedIn content strategy that speaks directly to your target audience. You need to share the right content, with the right people, in the right way. While this does take some critical thinking, it’s highly possible when you use the right tactics.
How to do B2B Marketing on LinkedIn – Creating a Content Strategy That Works
B2B content marketing on LinkedIn requires a well-designed strategy for it to work effectively. Like all B2B content marketing, it involves having a clear understanding of the platform you’re working on and the audience you’re trying to reach.
It is essential to be deliberate, coordinated, and comprehensive when developing your B2B LinkedIn content marketing strategy.
Below are a few key tips on making sure that your B2B LinkedIn content marketing efforts bring you the success you’re searching for.
Personal Profiles > Company Profiles
LinkedIn only started seeing noticeable success in 2006 after launching their public profiles and allowing users to connect with other professionals in their network.
Humans connect better with other humans rather than with businesses.
Which is why, when looking to increase your LinkedIn marketing efforts, you need to focus more on your personal profiles over your company profiles.
Yes, you should still create a company page. Your company page is your base on LinkedIn. It’s where potential customers go to learn more about your company, your products, and your services. But the real action happens on your and your employees’ personal profiles.
In order to gain traction on the platform, you need to work on growing your personal brand on LinkedIn. This is how you become a thought leader in your industry and build trust with your potential customers. B2B customers are unique because they want to know the people behind the businesses they’re working with. Personal profile connections are so much stronger than those with faceless, mundane brands.
If you’re not yet convinced on the power of personal branding for B2B lead generation, head on over to Shay Rowbottom’s profile and you’ll see what I mean.
As an additional note, developing a personal brand should extend to all employees within the business. As a B2B business owner, give your employees the freedom to build their own personal brands on LinkedIn (emphasis on freedom, don’t force them or tell them what they need to write). By doing so, the company brand will holistically benefit. Research has shown that employees are 14x more likely to share content from their employers rather than other types of content on LinkedIn. It’s important, however, that this comes from an authentic place.
One of the best examples of companies who give employees full freedom to develop their personal brands on LinkedIn is Gong. Here is a recent post from Sarah Brazier, an Account Executive at Gong:
Define Your Target Audience
When it comes to creating your content strategy, knowing your audience is the basis for everything you do in your business. Your LinkedIn audience might be a segment of your ideal overall audience, or it might be the majority of it (if you’re in B2B, then you can estimate a good chunk of your audience is here).
The more holistic and detailed your audience research is, the better you’ll be able to align your content. This includes determining what your LinkedIn audience needs from you and tackling more specific pain points and goals. Consider things like who they are, what they need, their aspirations, and what makes them tick (or engage, in this instance).
Create Native Content That Works Best on LinkedIn
Native articles, meaning those published directly on LinkedIn, generally receive more engagement than when sharing links to blog articles on your website.
Quick tip: you can use posts to promote links but please please please put them in the comments. LinkedIn wants to keep you on it’s platform, so it actively “demotes” posts with direct links in them.
Overall, you want to concentrate on creating value for your audience while demonstrating thought leadership. By explaining difficult concepts, sharing unique points of view, and really showing how you’ve mastered your niche, you become the most trusted ‘go to’ person in your industry.
When planning your LinkedIn content strategy and the types of content to share, include a mix of different media types that work well on the platform. For example, rich media content that works well on LinkedIn includes videos and documents (e.g. PDFs, worksheets, and slideshows). Surprisingly however, LinkedIn is also a platform where long-form, text-only posts still work quite well.
LinkedIn Post Ideas for B2B Companies
It’s good to post a mix of content, including your own content and other sources. By giving your audience a variety of mediums to consume, you can engage them on a wider spectrum. The image below should give you a great jumping off point for post ideas:
When first starting with B2B LinkedIn content marketing, I suggest trying a few of the above types of posts and see what works best. Then keep mixing up your posts so that you aren’t sharing too much of the same thing.
Build Relationships And Engage With Your Audience
LinkedIn is all about creating connections and building professional relationships. You do that by engaging with your audience. Don’t just share your own content. Make your feed a curation of relevant industry content by also sharing posts from people in your network.
Set time aside to send thoughtful replies to comments on your posts, while also commenting on other posts. Tag people and other businesses in your updates if you feel that they may have an interest or opinion on what you’re sharing. Make sure to do this responsibly and not in a spammy way.
As you can see in the above post from Sam Moss, he has taken the time to respond to everyone’s comments on his point. The more comments a post has, the more comments it’s likely to receive. After all, that’s just the basics of how social media works.
If you continually engage in a meaningful way with other people on LinkedIn, they will keep engaging with you. And that’s how your network grows and becomes even stronger.
Experiment And Optimize
Marketing is all about testing, analyzing, and optimizing. After sharing a few posts, look at your click-through ratios and engagement stats to track your success. If something is clearly not working, then it’s time to change it up.
Experiment with short- and long-form content to see what resonates with your audience. You can even try images, memes, and emojis to spice up your content. Just because it’s a professional network, it doesn’t mean your audience is not up for some humor. We’re all humans, after all.
Quick tip: you can and should be reviewing your LinkedIn profile analytics on a regular basis. While LinkedIn itself offers a small portion of this data, there is a really comprehensive tool for this that gives you way more data called Shield. It’s a tool that’s seriously worth every penny.
Using LinkedIn for B2B Marketing to Go Beyond Content Marketing
The power of B2B marketing via LinkedIn goes beyond content marketing. If you want to optimize your LinkedIn presence and make the most of the platform, make sure to follow the below tips:
Structure Your LinkedIn Company Page as You Would a Lead Generation Landing Page
Your LinkedIn personal profile and company page represent a huge opportunity to establish your brand as an industry thought leader and attract top talent. To optimize it for conversions you need to use direct-response copywriting, just as you would on any lead generation landing page.
Direct response copywriting is a form of marketing that aims to evoke specific and immediate action from the reader.
A few direct response copywriting best practices include:
- Have a clear and measurable goal.
- Focus on your audience.
- Refer to the reader as “you”.
- Capture their attention with a great headline.
- Make a compelling case.
- Focus on empathy and clarity.
- Make it easy for them to take action.
- Test, iterate and grow with your audience.
To give you a clear idea, here’s an example of a well-optimized personal profile for lead generation. Jason Vana is one of the most successful B2B marketers known for generating inbound leads through LinkedIn.
A few things you’ll know that he does well:
- A professional profile image
- A professional banner with direct-response copy and CTA
- An optimized headline for the job titles he wants to show up for in search results
- An about section with direct-response copy and CTA
- A featured section with links to conversion-focused landing pages
Why this works so well is that Jason consistently creates super valuable content so that people become curious to check out his profile based on his expertise. Once they’re satisfied that he’s a trustworthy information source, they write a message to discuss working with him.
That, my friends, is LinkedIn inbound lead generation at it’s finest.
Start, Join, and Engage With Groups
Just like Facebook, there are many industry-specific groups on LinkedIn that present additional opportunities for lead generation, as well as are a fantastic way to engage and connect with like-minded people.
The easiest way to find groups is by searching using keywords related to your industry, interests or desired customer job titles, filtering for ‘Groups’ in your search. Here’s one example in the image below:
Once you’ve joined a few relevant groups, make sure that you’re active in those groups. Ask questions, offer advice where you can, and listen to what the other members are talking about. While you can only join groups as an individual (and not as a business), you gain insights from your audience to inform your content marketing strategy.
Quick tip: Whatever you do, don’t be spammy or promote your brand too much. Only promote your business where it’s relevant and organic to do so. Just like with your LinkedIn B2B content marketing, you’re there to build up your authority as a thought leader in your industry, not for direct sales.
Take Advantage of LinkedIn Targeting and Ads
Many businesses default to Facebook when it comes to creating targeted ads, but it’s not always the best choice for B2B. When it comes to this type of audience, LinkedIn offers many opportunities for attracting users who are most likely to engage with your business.
Taking advantage of LinkedIn targeting and ads has many benefits, including:
- Advanced search function.
- Reaching a more professional audience at their home base.
- Narrowing your targeting through industry specific variables, like job title, job function, seniority, company name, company size, industry, skill, and degree type.
- Unique advertising types, including Sponsored InMail and lead ads.
- Many lead-nurturing possibilities with their Lead Accelerator tool.
- Increased conversion rates. A study by HubSpot found that on average, LinkedIn ads convert users to leads at a 6.1% conversion rate.
Despite this, LinkedIn targeting and ads are quite complex. To make sure that you do it right, you need to define your promotion strategy and know exactly what you want to get out of the ads. This includes elements like your budget, audience, and a specific, measurable goal.
Just a quick FYI: LinkedIn Automation campaigns, supported with LinkedIn lead form ads is how we managed to decrease Cosmo Consults CPL by 225%.
Activate Your Employees to Amplify Your Reach
Employees are your greatest assets and the best spokespeople for your company. If they’re happy in your company, they will tell other people, and that’s the absolute best type of marketing.
I mentioned this earlier: humans relate better to other humans than to businesses. Humanize your brand by showcasing your team on your company page. Putting a face (or faces) to your business will make you more relatable and trustworthy.
One of the assets of a good leader is leading by example. Creating and sharing strong content on your profile will encourage them to do the same. Take it further and help them optimize their profiles.
Encourage your employees to share and engage with your content. And do the same with theirs by sharing their personal posts on your company page when they mention your brand. All of this amplifies your company’s organic reach and contributes to lead generation.
LinkedIn B2B Marketing Examples
I’ve mentioned a few ways to use LinkedIn for B2B content marketing. The B2B brands that see the most success on LinkedIn are creating high-quality content designed specifically for their audience and have promoted it to well-defined audiences.
Here are two strong LinkedIn B2B content marketing examples to inspire you:
Company 1: Gravy
Gravy is a payment recovery platform. Their LinkedIn company page is the epitome of a brand doing all they can to humanize their brand. I mean, their company hashtag is literally #HumanAF.
From their description title to their about page and their posts, all of their copy is simple, straightforward, and easy to understand. They’re taking something like payment recovery, that can be tricky to explain, and putting it in simple terms. They are making it seem easy, effortless, and, most importantly, human.
Their posts include a mix of text-based posts that include corporate stories, tips, and reasons why companies need to invest in a service like theirs (without explicitly saying so). They’ve also leveraged user stories by sharing feedback they receive from happy clients. They regularly share updates on their business as well as updates and posts from other related businesses.
The below example shows how they’re using a lead magnet, an online course, to generate more leads. Notice the direct-response copy that addresses their audiences’ pain points, how this course will help them, and a simple call-to-action.
Another aspect that Gravy does well at is including their employees in their LinkedIn content marketing. Employees and the CEO regularly contribute posts, which the page then tags them in.
If you’re not sure where to begin with LinkedIn content marketing to generate B2B leads, take them as a primary example.
Company 2: Refine Labs
The second example is Refine Labs, a demand accelerator for B2B SaaS companies. Their LinkedIn company page is all about sharing insights and giving tips. The posts on their page are a mix of text-based posts, videos, images, and audio.
They also use their LinkedIn page to promote their ‘Demand Gen Live’ sessions where Refine Labs’ CEO Chris Walker collaborates with Dave Gerhardt, CEO at Privy. The live sessions are held on Zoom but promoted on LinkedIn.
Refine Labs also hosts a Podcast called State of Demand Gen and often shares videos and insights from recent podcast episodes.
Both of the above examples show how the company uses their LinkedIn page to promote their other marketing efforts. This helps to expand their reach and influence beyond LinkedIn, portraying them as noticeable influencers in their niche.
Like Gravy, the Refine Labs LinkedIn page also incorporates their employees in their posts by quoting and tagging them. In fact, one might say that Chris Walker has wholeheartedly and permanently redefined inbound lead generation for B2B by using LinkedIn content marketing. If there’s anyone who is THE thought leader to watch, it’s him without a doubt.
Need help with LinkedIn marketing? We helped our clients decrease their CPL by 223%.GET IN TOUCH