By Rachel Foster published January 7, 2015

How to Get 200+ New Subscribers From 1 LinkedIn Article

14629125863_126e3f4004_oLinkedIn’s publishing platform used to be reserved for select influencers; however, now anyone can publish articles there. But is the platform worth your time?

According to an Oktopost study, LinkedIn is the best social network for generating B2B leads. Over 80% of B2B social leads come from LinkedIn, compared with 12.73% on Twitter, and 6.73% on Facebook.

I recently decided to give LinkedIn Publisher a try to see if it would help me get more leads. After two months of building readership and tweaking my strategy, my post on How to Plan Your 2015 Content Calendar took off and appeared on LinkedIn Pulse. It has received about 3,900 views and more than 200 subscribers to my website, which is amazing considering I had only about 1,000 people in my LinkedIn network when I published the piece. These results show how well LinkedIn Publisher can get your content in front of a much wider audience.

While my post shows how I used this strategy to support my consultancy, the approach can be used for any content marketer who is trying to drive subscriptions to their personal brand or support their organization’s content marketing efforts.

Here are five tips that helped me achieve these results:

1. Obsess over LinkedIn Publisher titles

A few months ago, Paul Shapiro of Search Wilderness published the results of a survey in which he analyzed the 3,000 most successful LinkedIn Pulse posts. He found that titles with between 40 and 49 characters received the greatest number of views. I find that keeping your entire title visible below the post’s teaser image is essential even if the number of characters doesn’t neatly fit between 40 and 49. In the following image, you can see how posts with visible full titles earned more views than the post with the truncated title:

LinkedInTitle

Note: After publication, I tweaked the middle post’s truncated title. While readership increased, it was nowhere near the two posts with the original shorter titles.

Since you only have a tiny space for an optimized title, cut the fluff. That means no meaningless adjectives or jargon. Plain language works the best. However, try to include a benefit or reason why people should read your post.

One great motivator is urgency. I published my high-converting post in November when my target readers were thinking about next year’s content. I used “2015” to convey a sense of urgency.

I also tend to write how-to or list posts, as they are popular with blog readers. Shapiro’s study confirmed that how-to titles perform the best on LinkedIn while titles containing questions perform poorly.

2. Provide in-depth, valuable content

I think the content stakes are higher on LinkedIn, as it’s a professionally oriented platform. Professionals use the site to network, update their profiles, and learn things that will help them excel in their careers. The last thing they want is bad content cluttering their streams. To engage this audience, publish content that is relevant to their needs and will make them look like superstars at work.

It’s hard to provide value in a short blog post. A few years ago, many people could get away with 300 words that just touched on a topic. However, the trend now is longer thought-leadership pieces – think feature articles. My high-converting post was around 900 words.

At the same time, don’t get hung up on word count. You don’t want to fill your article with fluff just to hit a word target. Use as many words as you need to tell a valuable story – no more and no less.

It’s also important not to repost old content from your blog. I did this once, but then learned that Google indexes all LinkedIn posts, which could create issues if duplicate content exists. If you want to reuse something from your blog, give it an overhaul – making it better and more relevant for today’s LinkedIn readers.

3. Create custom opt-in offers

I drove opt-ins through LinkedIn by creating a custom offer to accompany my post. Since the article was about planning your 2015 content calendar, I modified my own editorial calendar into a downloadable template for readers.

This offer worked well because it related directly to the LinkedIn post – readers were interested in planning their content calendar and many of them wanted the template.

4. Use LeadPages to drive opt-ins

I didn’t want to direct readers to a complicated landing page for the offer because some might be lost along the way. So I used a LeadPages tool called LeadBox. When readers clicked the link for the editorial calendar template, they saw this:

SubscriptionBox

The form’s image is the same as the image featured in the post, creating visual consistency between the article and the offer.

After entering their information, they could instantly download the resource. The LeadBox had a 60% conversion rate and brought me 206 (and counting) new subscribers.

5. Insert next steps at the end of the post

My CMO, Jaime Almond, came up with a great way to boost engagement on my blog and LinkedIn. We include “3 Ways to Apply This Information Now” boxes at the end of all blog and LinkedIn Publisher posts.

In this case, readers could apply the information by downloading the editorial calendar template, sharing the post on LinkedIn, or joining the conversation in the comment section. I like Almond’s suggestion for “Share this article on LinkedIn” as a call-to-action. It taps into the motivation behind why people share content – to increase their own visibility so they can enhance their reputations and connect with business prospects.

3WaystoApplyThisInfo

One way to get more comments is to ask for them. This post received 18 comments and led to some interesting conversations and a follow-up piece on How to Create Your 2015 Content Promotional Calendar.

As you can see, LinkedIn Publisher can be an excellent tool for getting your content in front of a wider audience, starting conversations, and even attracting more subscribers. However, as more people jump on the publishing platform, competition for your audience’s attention will increase. That’s why it’s important to publish thoughtful content and refer to your analytics to see what resonates with your LinkedIn audience.

What do you think of LinkedIn Publisher? Let’s start a conversation in the comments.

Want to make 2015 the year to expand your content marketing skills? Sign up for the Content Marketing Institute Online Training and Certification program. Access over 35 courses, taught by experts from Google, Mashable, SAP, and more.

Cover image by Ian L, Publicdomainpictures.net, via pixabay

Author: Rachel Foster

Rachel Foster is a B2B copywriter and CEO of Fresh Perspective Copywriting. She helps her clients improve their response rates, clearly communicate complex messages and generate high-quality leads. Rachel has taught white paper, sell sheet and case study writing for MarketingProfs. She is also one of the Online Marketing Institute’s Top 40+ Digital Strategists in Marketing for 2014. You can connect with Rachel on LinkedIn, follow her on Twitter or check out her B2B marketing blog

Other posts by Rachel Foster

Join Over 170,000 of your Peers!

Get daily articles and news delivered to your email inbox and get CMI’s exclusive e-book Get Inspired: 75 (More) Content Marketing Examples FREE!

  • http://nateriggs.com/ nateriggs

    Nice post, Rachel and great tips!

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Nate,

      Thanks! I’m glad you enjoyed the post.

      Rachel

  • http://www.chaosmap.com Jon Rognerud

    Great insights, thanks! Really liked the 3 steps at the end too – already applied it and testing :-) Cheers, J

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Jon,

      Thanks! I’d love to hear how your testing turns out. Let me know.

      Rachel

  • Dara Schulenberg

    Thanks for sharing your lessons learned Rachel. Have you encountered any issues with the LinkedIn Publishing platform?

    I’ve experienced multiple issues with publishing, links not working and visibility differing by OS and browser. LinkedIn, while escalating the ticket for internal research for 2+ weeks, has been unable to resolve the issues. I’ve experimented with images, browsers, publishing environments etc without repeatable success.

    Even with paid accounts, the support has be disappointing and I am trying to understand how widespread the issues may be. The platform instability makes this less desirable to recommend for clients. I’d love to hear your – and others’ experiences.

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Dara,

      Thanks for your comments. I haven’t had to contact LinkedIn support for any issues. I have a paid account. I only check my posts in two browsers, and they seem OK.

      One thing that bothers me is the removal of the social share counters. When I first started on LinkedIn Publisher, I could see how many people tweeted and liked my posts. Now, LinkedIn doesn’t show you this data. I wish they would bring this feature back.

      Does anyone else have anything to add about this?

      Rachel

    • http://www.blog.marketo.com/ Jason Miller

      Hi Dara,
      Sorry to hear that you are having issues with the platform. Feel free to send me an email directly and I will see if I can help out.
      Thanks!
      Jason

      • http://www.brandlovellc.wordpress.com/ Lisa Dougherty

        Thanks so much, Jason! Appreciate the assistance.

      • Dara Schulenberg

        Thanks for jumping in Jason. I just sent you a LinkedIn InMail with my most recent support ticket numbers. Very much appreciate your help and love how you’re being the face the brand with transparency — good stuff!

    • http://www.LinkedMediaGroup.com Linked Media Group, Inc.

      Thanks Dara: you are not alone. As I just commented, my experiences for years map to what you have conveyed.

      • Dara Schulenberg

        Thanks for sharing your experiences. It’s both reassuring and a little concerning that I’m not the only one, but hopefully Jason share some insights we can all benefit from.

        • http://www.LinkedMediaGroup.com Linked Media Group, Inc.

          Some of these issues are not all LinkedIn’s “fault” – accessing a server with multiple browsers, OS, dealing with timeout errors, etc. But, these issues are tangible and I’ve reched out to LinkdeIn Help via Twitter multiple times. They respond but it’s water into the desert at some point. Every point of refuge has a price, even social media platforms. :-)

  • http://www.edwindearborn.com/ Edwin Dearborn

    Very helpful information. Thanks for sharing some detailed and important insights.

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Edwin,

      Thanks for your comments!

      Rachel

  • http://www.integraphix.com/ Advertising Agency

    Great article, Rachel. I’ve already shared this with my team at my Phoenix SEO company . Obsessing over headlines and quality content is a total must!

    • rachelfoster

      Thanks! I’m glad you enjoyed the post.

  • Shai Geoola

    Rachel, Fantastic article. I loved it and will be sharing it with my peers! Cheers

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Shai,

      Thanks for the comment and for sharing the post!

      Rachel

  • http://www.LinkedMediaGroup.com Linked Media Group, Inc.

    Wonderful job on this post. I must say I am in agreement with Dara’s earlier comments: I find LinkedIn to be very unstable, customer support is just “our team is working on this” over and over again with no real substance and I have a Premier Account BTW and 8 years experience on LinkedIn. The back end is very unstable in general (stuff disappears, stops working, etc.) and for publishing (two posts have disappeared in “thin air” in the last month and c/support had no idea why. And, “thought leaders’ seem to get the lion’s share of the traffic and many of their posts are just fluffy, with a pitch for their book or webinar and 50% of the content is about “what they are doing” (self promo). And, you can’t really export contacts from the platform: it’s fraught with peril. And yet, the drumbeat is endless about the wonders of LinkedIn and much of this is disingenuous at best. Is it a great platform and do I like it and recommend it to clients? Yes, but brands and individuals should be aware going in this is a public company focused on it’s shareholders (as they should be) and like most social platforms customer service is really an afterthought and “things” do not work as advertised.

    • http://wokenmind.com/ Larry G. Maguire

      I agree, their API is poorly built. Social account linking, auto posting plugins keep loosing the auth. It’s a pain in the rear end and one of the reasons I haven’t really bothered too much with it up to now.

    • rachelfoster

      Thanks for your comment! Yes, you don’t want to rely too heavily on a single social network. You never know what direction the network is going to take. I’ve seen people do this, and then the network stops being popular, and they are at a loss.

      • http://www.LinkedMediaGroup.com Linked Media Group, Inc.

        Yes, I counsel clients all the time to “grok” it’s rent (social) vs. own (blog and web site) and invest resources where you control the variables, or, more of them. #violentagreement

  • http://wokenmind.com/ Larry G. Maguire

    This is a great post. I’ve been considering posting on LinkedIn more and I reckon I’ll defo give it a lash now that you’ve shared a great strategy. Many thanks for sharing!

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Larry,

      Thanks for the comment! Best of luck getting started!

      Rachel

  • http://www.sheersocial.com Alice Fuller

    Step 5 is a game changer in getting engagement and leads. Overall this is a great post. Thanks for sharing!

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Alice,

      Thanks for your comment! I’m glad you enjoyed the post!

      Rachel

  • http://webincomejournal.com/ Chadrack

    Really insightful post here. Since receiving an invite last year to get published on LinkedIn I’ve been considering the possibilities. This post have given me some useful ideas. Thanks for sharing.

    • rachelfoster

      Thanks for the comment! Best of success publishing on LinkedIn!

  • http://elsafy.89m.com/ elnaser

    شركة الصفرات لتسليك المجارى بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الخزانات بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لعزل الخزانات بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لرش المبيدات بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لمكافحة الحشرات بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لكشف تسربات المياه بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات للتنظيف بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الشقق بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الفلل بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لنقل الاثاث بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لنقل العفش بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لتسليك المجارى بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الخزانات بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لعزل الاسطح بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لعزل الخزانات بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الفلل بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لتنظيف المنازل بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لرش المبيدات بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لمكافحة الحشرات بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لكشف تسربات المياه بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات للتنظيف بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لتنظيف الشقق بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لنقل عفش بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لنقل الاثاث بالرياض
    شركة الصفرات لخدمات

  • Johanna Hurmerinta

    Thanks for a great post. You asked also about LinkedIn Publisher. I like it a lot. Works very well.

    • rachelfoster

      Hi, Johanna. Thanks for the comment! I’m glad to hear that you’re doing well on LinkedIn Publisher.

  • Kevin Kowalke

    Very nice article Rachel! Point #5 is often overlooked and is so powerful. Keep up the great work!

    • rachelfoster

      Hi, Kevin. Thanks for the comment! Yes, I’m going to focus a lot on next steps and content upgrades this year.

  • robbiemateria

    Love it. Thanks.

    • rachelfoster

      Thanks for the comment!

  • http://www.torontosmallbusiness.com bernie schmidt

    Excellent post Rachel, thank you

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Bernie,

      I just saw your comment and wanted to thank you. Better late than never!

      Rachel

  • Sherman Mohr

    Great post Rachel. I’m at 50 posts on LinkedIn and find it is leading to significant growth in the audience’s awareness of my subject matter expertise. Looking forward to implementing your tips.

    • rachelfoster

      Hi Sherman,

      Thank you for your comment. It’s great to hear that you’re having a lot of success with LinkedIn publishing.

      Rachel