Anybody who’s in business and is on LinkedIn knows that it’s a very powerful platform. It is an immensely useful tool for building an online brand and getting your message heard. However, I see many entrepreneurs wanting to build their own brands, but not really knowing how to make the most of it.
Daniel Disney (no relation to Walt!), author, keynote speaker, and founder of The Daily Sales, certainly does know how to use LinkedIn to its highest potential. So much so, he wrote the books on it! His Amazon Bestsellers The Million-Pound LinkedIn Message and The Ultimate LinkedIn Sales Guide teach you how to harness the potential of social selling.
Daniel has shared with me his top tips on generating content that genuinely engages with clients and highlighted some common traps and pitfalls you might run into.
You can hear our full conversation on the Interviews With Experts podcast.
Give value, not a self-focused template
Building a personal brand on social media can be a challenge. It is very difficult to build one on Facebook or Instagram without spending a lot of money on ads for example.
On LinkedIn, however, you can still achieve amazing results without spending a penny according to Daniel. For this reason, he believes that LinkedIn is where you want to start.
Daniel: “The biggest key tip for building a personal brand I can give is to give value. The more you give, the more you’ll get back and the quicker you will build a brand.”
He also believes that it’s important not to operate on autopilot or use generic mass-messaging.
Daniel: “A lot of sales methods are based on really old methods that are done in a really aggressive and mass-scale way. It becomes less about sending a personal message, and more about expanding a template message out to 100s, if not 1000s, of people and see what comes back.
If you really want to grow a brand and audience that buys from you, you need to give first. So, give them value: share and create content that’s going to be beneficial for them. Not directly about what you sell, but whatever they do in their role as your ideal customer.
Then you’ll start to build a brand of giving. Then, when you do talk about something like ‘here’s my new book’ they’re going to want to buy it. Because you’ve given them all this stuff you’ve built that trust and earned that credibility.”
Should my content go on my company page or my personal profile?
A common question is whether to build a brand around a company page, or your personal profile. While both are really important and valuable, I strongly believe that focusing on more personal content is more beneficial. Daniel agrees.
Daniel: “I would say the bigger opportunity sits within a personal profile. Personal brands are huge: the whole ‘people buy from people´ thing is really big at the moment.
I see companies where their staff have more followers than their entire marketing team have been able to generate for the company page.”
That said, Daniel believes that company pages with an industry top-level perspective can complement the stories and experiences in a personal profile. However, the focus must be on providing value.
Daniel: “Many company pages are just churning out their own news and updates – it’s all about them. No one cares about this. Pages like this need to give valuable content.
Gong.io is an American-based company providing a revenue intelligence tool, and they’ve nailed it on the head in both camps.
They have loads of their staff building personal brands, some getting 15,000/20,000 followers on LinkedIn, by creating amazing story content. This is helping them generate tons of leads and sales.
Then their company page, which redefined the way a company page should do LinkedIn, shares amazing blogs and articles every month. What helps them stand out is that all their articles are data-backed. They can share sales tips, backed by the data that their software is able to find.
They get anywhere between 300 and 500 likes, minimum. That’s not easy on LinkedIn for anyone, and they’ve been doing that consistently now for three or four years.”
4 tips for creating an effective and engaging article
Writing articles helps you to put far more value into your content compared to text posts or short videos. You can offer a call to action and have an ‘About the Author’ section in which you can write about yourself for instance.
Again, Daniel stresses, “the focus needs to be on the value”. He gave me four top tips that he considers vital for creating an effective LinkedIn article (or a great blog post as well, I think!).
Daniel: “Number one is the image. You want someone to click on it, so there needs to be an image that pulls them in. I use Canva; it’s free and easy to use and you can create high-quality article images.
Number two – You need to have a good title. If you want them to read it, you need a hook. That needs to be a strong, bold, engaging title that matches the imagery.
Number three – the article itself needs to flow nicely. People are scrolling on their laptop or phone screen – if they see a big solid block of text, they’re going to think ´I don’t want to read that!’
Break these chunky paragraphs into three or four smaller paragraphs, maybe with bullet points or single-line sentences, to make it engaging and help it flow.
This will drive people to keep reading until the end, which is what you want.
Fourth, and finally – You want your reader to engage. Even if 100,000 people read your article, you only see them if they click ‘like’, comment, or share the article. So, you want to drive them to do one or more of those things.
At the end, try to start a conversation or ask them to engage. The more people that engage, the more people you can see. That is how you generate the sales.”
Sometimes, keeping the momentum going to produce steady and consistent content that keeps your audience engaged is challenging. Have you ever sat staring at a blank page wondering what to write next? Many of our authors have a strong message and a lot of value to offer – they just need some support in finding the content that works best for them.
Why not book a clarity call if you’d like to learn more about how to build your personal brand using content and create a community that is excited to work with you.