LinkedIn is a growing force in digital marketing. More than 600 million users frequent the platform, making it the largest professional network in the world. Its educated audience loves staying on topics, using the platform to network with others in the industry, find jobs, and build their professional presence. That’s why, for both B2B and B2C marketers, it’s an important opportunity to grow your awareness.
You can use LinkedIn as both a business professional and on behalf of your company. Whether you’re building your personal brand or that of your organization, a number of strategies can help you increase your follower engagement and discover new leads to follow up with.
To get to that point, though, you have to build your follower count. Without anyone paying attention to your presence, you might as well shout into the void. These 10 strategies help you increase your LinkedIn followers, regardless of the exact industry in which you operate.
1. Complete Your Profile
Sometimes, the easy step is also the most important. The foundation of your follower-building strategy should be a complete LinkedIn profile or company page. From summary to headline, fill out all relevant information before you begin to promote the page.
The results can be significant. For instance, companies with profile pictures receive six times more visitors than those without that visual. Meanwhile, companies with complete information receive 30% more visits than those where even one piece is missing.
2. Optimize Your Profile for Search Engines
Complete information, of course, is only the beginning. You also have to make sure that each of the written content is optimized for search engines. When someone searches for a relevant industry topic, will they find your content? From your info section to the posts you publish, leveraging the same keywords you do on your website SEO strategy can be immensely helpful.
3. Build a Content Calendar
No LinkedIn page designed to get followers should be static. This is a social media network, after all. Instead, build a content calendar that allows you to ensure you can post regular updates while staying fresh and interesting.
The time you publish a post matters. According to HubSpot, posts published between 3pm and 5pm on Wednesdays tend to receive the most engagement. Meanwhile, research suggests that posting between once a week and once per day tends to reach optimum frequency.
4. Engage Within Your Content
Of course, simply publishing updates is not enough. You also have to make sure that you engage with any comments, questions, and concerns within your content. That way, potential followers can see the benefit of following and engaging with your content, increasing their interest in joining your community.
5. Join and Participate in Relevant Industry Groups
Did you know that more than half of all LinkedIn users participate in at least one industry group? Typically relevant for networking, these groups are great opportunities to raise your name recognition by showcasing your expertise. Find relevant groups, and participate in discussions. You will find users who see your comments as relevant join your follower count to learn more over time.
6. Publish Long-Form Articles on Relevant Topics
Long-Form articles published directly on LinkedIn achieve a similar goal as groups, on a more comprehensive level. Here, you can increase your credibility by showcasing your thought leadership on relevant industry topics.
High-performing posts will be shown on newsfeeds of industry members who might have never heard about you. More than 60% of LinkedIn users engage with content that’s relevant or informative, making this channel particularly relevant.
7. Follow the 80/20 Rule
As you publish updates, long-form articles, and group discussion posts, it’s tempting to start talking about yourself. The problem is that most followers don’t want to hear about that. Instead, focus the majority of your posts on industry-related news, updates, and analysis.
General best practices suggest that 80% of your content should be educational and relevant to your audience while only 20% should be self-promotion about yourself or your brand. It’s impossible to hit that ratio exactly, but is a great guide to follow. Through your content, you can build a value proposition for potential followers that just want another relevant resource as it relates to your industry.
8. Focus on Visual Content – Sometimes
As in other social media networks, visual content is key for a successful LinkedIn presence. Infographics, videos, and images can get the attention of followers who would otherwise simply scroll past your content.
However, that’s not the only path to success. In fact, one study actually found that text-only posts receive more likes, shares and comments than any visual. Could the reason be oversaturation of visuals or the more professional nature of the network? Either way, a healthy mix of visuals and text-only posts tends to be a good strategy.
9. Reach Out Directly to Key Influencers
Not all of your follower-growth strategies on LinkedIn should be limited to global initiatives for your entire audience. Instead, it pays to build a second layer onto that strategy: find and engage with key influencers within your industry who can help you spread the word.
It’s the LinkedIn twist on influencer marketing: sometimes, a single well-placed InMail to a major force within the industry that points to your most recent long-term article is enough to get them to share it on their own feed. If you’re lucky, you might even get a follow. This direct outreach allows for personalization that increases your chances of getting the influencer’s attention.
10. Promote LinkedIn on Other Channels
Don’t limit yourself to promotion within the network itself. You can also draw attention by adding a link or button to your LinkedIn page in a variety of other channels:
- Your website
- Your email signature
- Your business card
- Printed materials
- Other social media networks
- In author bios of guest posts
Adding a link here raises general awareness. If the page is engaging enough, these visitors will turn into followers that stay connected with you for the long haul.
The Time Investment of Building Your LinkedIn Follower Count
You won’t build an audience of 1,000+ followers overnight. Getting into five and six digits takes even longer. None of the above strategies are shortcuts; instead, they’re efforts designed to keep growing your audience and making a major brand awareness impact over time.
The quality of the time you invest matters as much, if not more, than the quantity. Often, spending 5 hours per week to strategically increase your followers will be more effective than pumping out ineffective posts for 20 hours that same week. Still, at least a few hours every week are necessary to implement all of the above and build your follower base over time.
Do it right, and success will come. LinkedIn, perhaps more than any other social media network, is built on quality and substance. Building that type of content requires time. But once you invest that time, you can increase your followers for better awareness, engagement, and results.
With over 10+ years of experience in marketing and design, Jiun help businesses manage and execute marketing campaigns, track goal metrics, develop SEO-friendly content, optimize the buyer lifecycle, and collaborate with multiple partners, vendors, and press to maximize a brand’s lead acquisition strategy. Her background in marketing, graphic design, and front-end web development allows her to easily plan, communicate, and develop projects to meet your organizational goals.