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15 Ways to Build Your LinkedIn Content to Attract Candidates and Buyers

Key Takeaways:

1. Candidates and buyers expect a certain level of sophistication and proficiency from you on LinkedIn.

2. Content is a key strategy for SEO and PR.

3. Encouraging your employees to shape their personal brand may be daunting, however, it is necessary to further your message and create credibility.

Content can be a strategic tool or your downfall. 

You decide. 

It’s a strategic tool when you see the long-term value it creates for your business. When used wisely, it is a window into your company’s soul and how buyers, investors, and candidates can get to know you.

If you don’t see the value that content provides, it will be relegated to the back burner, neglected, rushed, and poorly crafted.

Everyone, I do mean everyone, is talking about hiring, talent acquisition, retention, and culture these days. For a good reason too.

I was recently on a panel discussing this topic, and we talked about the absolute need for content to attract talent—stories, insight, both informative and spontaneous, designed to attract talent across all areas of the organization. 

I’m not sure in-house recruiters and HR professionals see themselves as natural storytellers. Perhaps that’s a skill worth acquiring.

There is no single group of professionals working harder to create relevant content than marketers. However, I notice they too can fall into pitching products and services repeatedly rather than telling stories, creating emotion, and inspiring action.

Our approach for LinkedIn is straightforward and focuses on creating strategies for attracting talent, investors, buyers, donors, sponsors, and volunteers.

Regardless of the audience, the process requires the same elements: an engaging, credible presence, a strategic network, and relevant and value-added content. 

Without one of these elements, it falls apart. Without two, you’re barely on the radar, and without a presence, network, or content, there’s no chance of standing out and gaining sustainable traction. 

Traditionally, LinkedIn has been known as a place to go when you need a job. While that philosophy is quite dated, I hear it often enough to know that lots of job and career seekers, along with those looking to fill positions and gain new clients/customers, remain uninformed and uninspired by LinkedIn and the power and variety of ways it can be used throughout one’s career and current job, regardless of role and responsibility. 

If we know this, then why don’t we invest more in how we show up and engage? 

There are a few reasons. 

  • People aren’t sure what to write and how to showcase their expertise. 
  • People don’t consider themselves good writers or realize they don’t have the writing skills to communicate clearly and effectively.
  • They are afraid of making a mistake.
  • They don’t understand the importance of personal branding and digital strategy.
  • They don’t like social media and lump LinkedIn into the social media bucket. 

We suggest working with your teams to think differently about their approach and consider the importance of showing up professionally on LinkedIn. 

Hubspot, in their article LinkedIn 277% More Effective for Lead Generation Than Facebook & Twitter [New Data], references the importance of content and the trust factor associated with LinkedIn. 

Check out the stats related to hiring from FinancesOnline:

  • Three people are hired every minute on LinkedIn (LinkedIn, 2021).
  • Also, for each second, 55 job applications are made to LinkedIn (LinkedIn, 2021).
  • Likewise, each month, 100 million job applications are submitted on LinkedIn (Xiong, 2019).
  • Job search is also massive on LinkedIn, with 40 million job seekers searching for jobs every week (LinkedIn, 2021).
  • LinkedIn recently introduced the #OpenToWork photo frame, allowing recruiters to know that a member is open to new job offers. It became trending that more than six million members activated it in their profiles (LinkedIn, 2021).
  • In terms of gender difference, 42% of men and 41% of women first do some research about an organization on LinkedIn before applying for a job in that firm (LinkedIn, 2019).
  • A study found that 122 million people received an interview through LinkedIn, with 35.5 million having been hired by a person they connected with through the site (StatisticBrain, 2017).

When you consider all the stats, and the qualitative input from colleagues or peers, you can’t bury your head in the sand. You need LinkedIn, and you need to put a plan in place. 

15 ways to improve and leverage content to increase candidate and buyer flow.

Original Content

  1. Create a team of content ambassadors to collaborate and create content that speaks to the various audiences you need to reach, including candidates, prospects, customers/clients, donors, and members. 
  1. Discuss internally (including your leadership team) how content can make a difference in various areas of your organization, from awareness and lead generation to talent flow. 
  1. Get leadership buy-in and commitment. You need them to commit to participating and model the activity you want others to take.
  1. Name a LinkedIn Champion who serves as a guide and accountability partner. Break your audiences down and design specific content and posts for them. 

If you are hiring across generations, young professionals, or entry-level to executive level, you need content that speaks to these demographics. Why? They value different things and need to know what it will be like for them to work for your company. Opportunity looks different at various points in a career journey. 

  • Design content that speaks to these multiple audiences in a way that interests them.
  1. Ask candidates what they learned about you from LinkedIn and social channels. Did they “get you,” or were they confused, put off, less than enthused?
  1. Make sure every post has a compelling introduction that causes people to pay attention while scrolling through their Home Page feed. 
  • An image that stands out (an image generates a 98% higher comment rate than no image*).
  • A link to the right page on the website (including a link can drive TWICE the engagement*).
  • No more than four hashtags that make sense are not made up and have a following.
  • A call-to-action.
  • A quote or stat.
  • Consider using video (links to YouTube or Vimeo videos can play directly in your feed and generate a 75% higher share rate*).
  1. Keep your content and posts conversational. 
  1. Build your content for mobile since that is where many people will be surfing, scrolling, and consuming it.
  1. Take your Vision, Mission, and Values documents and build a fun corporate culture deck in Canva or my new favorite,
  1. Theme your content calendar for specific days of the week. If you’re the content champion for your company, here are some ideas for weekly posting that can help engage your audience and encourage them to look out for your posts each week: 
  • Monday: Hot job! with a great graphic and a job post link. 
  • Tuesday: Announcement via a press release 
  • Wednesday: Tips/Industry insight via a blog post
  • Thursday: Event with registration link
  • Friday: Professional development tip
  • Monday: Hot job! with a great graphic and a job post link. 
  • Tuesday: Culture post and example of how it comes to life in your company
  • Wednesday: Tips/Industry insight via a blog post
  • Thursday: Client or partner shoutout
  • Friday: Professional development, branding, or learning tip

If you’re an individual, posting every day isn’t necessary. However, depending on your business/career goals, you can choose one or two content themes weekly or bi-weekly to grab your network’s attention and establish yourself as a thought leader.

  1. Develop digital skills and a level of digital proficiency within your company. Explain the why behind using content to further the brand, expand the talent flow, and increase brand awareness. Explain how content works and why they must share the content on their respective LinkedIn networks. 
  1. Encourage or select employees to author blog posts to showcase their expertise. Blogs written by the marketing department or the company may come across as more salesy than content written by an individual. Remember, people, trust people more than they trust brands.
  1. Transcribe an interview, video, or podcast episode and turn it into written content. If you don’t have any of these assets, arrange to be interviewed. People are looking for experts to host on their podcasts. Or, interview one another!
  1. Work with your leadership team and help them gain confidence using your content to stand out and bring light to your company as a leader, advocate, and industry expert. 

A few months back, Eddie Resende, Co-CEO of the World Trade Center Insitute, and I spoke on the phone, discussing his desire to do more on LinkedIn and learn more best practices. We discussed the feedback he received on a recent post he created.

The post that attracted the attention and engagement spoke of Eddie’s challenge around remote work and returning to the office. It was real, authentic, and slightly vulnerable. 

Eddie is well respected within his organization and throughout Maryland. He shared what so many other CEOs were dealing with and didn’t discuss publically. 

Eddie is engaging and approachable. He is the kind of person people want to work alongside.

In my opinion, this is a post that speaks to culture, adaptability, empathy, and building a world-class work environment. 

It’s a post written thoughtfully by someone who cares. 

His message also demonstrated an interest in learning and understanding how this type of activity would serve his audience and organization. His posts continue to attract the desired comments, reactions, and shares.

Promote an environment where individuals feel comfortable building their own brand. Recognize while they are building their brand, they are also supporting your brand and creating greater visibility

Jim Ries, Director of Business Development for Offit Kurman, develops a variety of content from Java with Jim, BusinessBits, Cannabits, Business Development tips, movie quotes, and more. Something for everyone in his network.

Bryan Howe ran a weekly series, “Breakfast with Boomer,” his Golden Retriever. Who doesn’t want to see a photo of a Golden enjoying life on a Monday morning? Bryan’s content brought it all together. 

If you don’t have a culture of powering up your employees, start simply with one person. 

Curating Content

One of the goals of content is engagement. If you want engagement on your posts, engage with other people’s content. Be social. Be active. 

My good friend, Des McCabe focuses on sharing and promoting his client’s content. Des’ network is significant, with 13,000+ 1st level connections at the time this article is published, and creates strong amplification for Des’ connection/client. This is PR at its best. Very little, if any, of Des’ content is about him or what he does. 

An engaged network that understands the reciprocal nature of social engagement is critical.

Des beats the recommendation that for every four posts, only one should be promotional in nature. 

You’ll notice he doesn’t just comment or share the post, a few make it to his Featured section. Brilliant, Des.

Don’t miss my podcast with Des McCabe on Intero Advisory or your favorite podcast channel.

Not every post deserves a comment or share, but most deserve more than a Like. 

Comment on posts where you can add encouragement, value, and affirmation. 

Choose content posted by candidates, customers/clients, and companies and give it some love.

I like to give people, especially clients, referral partners, and COIs, shoutouts as a way to let them know I appreciate them. 

Marketers are confident in publishing content on their LinkedIn company Page, however, posts need to reach into the employee networks, and often, the marketing person/team hasn’t built a strong network of clients/prospects/strategic partners. They should. 

This is why you need your leadership, sales, and other client/customer/talent facing teams to step up, learn how to engage effectively, and use your company’s content to spark new conversations.

Recruiters, marketers, salespeople, and leadership need to get comfortable using content to attract others, increase credibility, and showcase their culture, services, and products. Less promotion, more insight. 

If you’re not designing and amplifying your content, you’re losing in the race to grow your business and attract talent. It’s just that simple.

If you haven’t read our other 2022 posts, check them out here. 

Showing Up is Just the Beginning— Mindset Sets the Tone

How Companies Can Increase Their Digital Voice

Why You Need Your Employee’s LinkedIn Network

The Key to Greater Employee Advocacy on LinkedIn? Invest.

We’re about providing you with content you can use to build your strategy, ways to go deeper, and the how to’s that make a difference. Our content is here for you to gain the insight you need to maximize LinkedIn for branding, business development, and recruiting.

*5 Steps to Boosting Your Talent Brand Through Content