B2B Growth: Your Daily B2B Marketing Podcast
B2B Growth: Your Daily B2B Marketing Podcast

Episode 2110 · 9 months ago

What's Working Now On LinkedIn (& What Isn't)

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode, Dan Sanchez talks to Sweet Fish Media's in-house writer, Emily Dibrito, about the trends she's seeing on LinkedIn. Emily is the main source for many of the posts seen on LinkedIn from the Sweet Fish team and the person behind the LinkedIn Evangelist Program.

Yeah, welcome back to be, to be growth. I'm dan Sanchez with Sweet fish Media. And today I'm joined by an internal team member here at Sweet Fish Media and I'm stoked to have her on because she's kind of like the wizard behind the curtain, you know, it's like she's the mystery behind a lot of what's going on with our linkedin content for Sweet fish Media. And I will say a lot of people, a lot of people are finding us to Lincoln that's kind of become our primary channel. Of course me to be growth here. This podcast is a primary channel, but you always need a like a Short form channel in order to get a podcast discovered. And for us it's linked in, we've been writing lots of content there, a few of us on the leadership team. Um, and now we just kicked it off with 13 employees, including a few of us that have been on there for a while are now active evangelists on linkedin and Emily de Brito here is the one writing a lot of that content. About half the content for our evangelists. Probably like a 3rd 3rd of my content Emily is writing. So you think it's me and it's probably my idea maybe, but it's actually from Emily, and a lot of my most viral posts have actually come through Emily because she's a better writer and has way funnier content. So I wanted to have her on the BdB growth show because I'm like, man, people need to hear from Emily, she's really great at coming up with content for linkedin, but social media in general. So today I wanted to cover five things people do or don't do that often lead to their linkedin content. Getting zero engagement after having meeting after meeting with customers, I inevitably go to their host profile, see that they're not doing a lot of different things and conclude like, oh, this is why your podcasts and growing, because you're not actually doing linkedin, You say you're doing it, but you're not doing it. But Emily is in it every day, working with multiple people. Writing content for lots of people. So, Emily, I'd love to hear from you. Like what are the biggest things that you're often seeing people? Like, what mistakes are they're making in order to get ignored? Essentially, they're not getting any engagement on their posts. What are you seeing? Yeah, okay, so johnson right into it. I think we'll start with the first thing is that the content that they're posting has no value or it's not informative enough. Um I see this a lot where people sort of treat lengthen like a journal and they kind of just fill out what they're thinking without thinking about the audience that they're writing for. And so I should kind of combine two in there. It's not relevant to your audience and it's not valuable, but I think it's something that you do really well dan, is that you want your content to be helpful, that's something that's important to you and part of your brand. Um and I think that that's important because if your audience can't take something away from it, then they don't have a reason to care about it and they certainly don't have a reason to engage with it. Um and it's not going to help them get better at their job, so it's, it's kind of useless. Kind of makes sense though. I mean if a lot of people don't have a background in content marketing, which many don't, and they've been used to posting to facebook instagram, you know, it's kind of personal mediums, you're just kind of like, hey, this is what happened, hey, the funniest thing happened, but it's, it's only interesting to people who know you, but if you want to start building an audience on linkedin, it's kind of like, well, they don't know you, so why would they care? And that's the tricky part is figuring out what do you have to offer that would make someone care, which is usually through being helpful. What are some ways people can be helpful if they have not explored that before? Yeah, So I think an important thing is to go through sort of a, you know, a P O. V discovery for the evangelists, for the people writing on linkedin, because a lot of people that I talk to you and like our kickoff calls, like I just don't know what to write about, but they have so much experience and expertise that you start to take it for granted because you're so close to it, right? Like you're like, this is just what I do every day, like why wouldn't even care about this? But there are tips and tricks that you use...

...in your job that someone might not know about. So I think you can't underestimate really any, any part of your expertise because you don't know who needs to hear it. And I think I heard in a podcast that you did, I don't remember who it was with, but it's about telling story and he was saying like speak to who you were months ago, four years ago and like what did you need to hear in that process? So speaking to where you've been or speaking to other people who are just a step behind you I think is an important thing to keep in the front of your minds. And then I think it's important to have a strong opinion or strong perspectives to stand on and be a little provocative, even like get some good discussions going, get people to disagree with you and you know, put that kind of content out there. It's fun to be provocative and just throw out these like broad brushstrokes statements, especially if they're kind of like short and just kind of opinionated, right? Just be willing to be wrong. You just realize that sometimes you're gonna be wrong and you get back down from it and it's okay. Um you'll learn and then you'll be like, oh, okay, my bad, I was wrong, You guys are right or actually the more I talk about this with everybody, the more I feel like I'm right and that is often times the best, the best comments you get that you can then use for more content. Yeah. And sometimes you don't know which ones are going to actually strike a nerve or not. Some of my biggest pillars that I talked to most of the time where things that I didn't know where things until I posted about it and people started getting angry and then I realized I agreed, I only became more convinced that my opinion was right and now I post about that became one of my defining pillars, like one of mine is like volume over posting more over less, you know, like a volume versus quality. I'm in the volume camp. Yes, I know a lot of people disagree with, you know, because you've probably written some of those you bragging about volume, right? Post more quality will follow. So that's one thing just posting things that are generally helpful not posting, like it's your diary. What's another thing that people often get in people's way of getting engagement? Yeah. So this one I kind of touched on already is that it's not relative or relevant, it's not relevant to your audience, so they don't have a reason to care about it. And so I think you have to realize, I mean to stand strong on who you are and what you want to talk about, but also to know like what your niche is and what your industry is, and to know who exactly you want to be talking to, right? Because if it's not relevant to the audience that you're trying to reach, you're really not going to have much of a reach, right? So how do you identify what the relevant audiences? It's a really great question. And I think a lot of it is just like testing testing with your content and seeing who responds to it and seeing what they're saying to it, because obviously you're going to have some sort of an idea, like you're going to know that you're not writing for deep sea divers or whatever, like so not writing for them, you know that you know that already, and you know that you're going to be writing for people in the marketing industry, and so you just have to narrow it down after that. And I think a lot of that comes from the conversations that you have with the people that you work with off of, you know, outside of lengthen, get off the platform and then bring that back to the platform. Yeah, So it's about identifying who you want to attract and then figuring out what does that person care about, because it might not be about what you care about. Shoot, It might not be about your product that's built for them. It might be other topics. So that's the second thing. First thing was don't write like it's your diary be content that's actually helpful or interesting. The person you're writing for make sure you're writing relevant content for them. That was too. So what's number three? Number three is that it's that it's not extensive enough that it's just boring. I see it as a lot. It's sort of like, uh, I don't know, like a copy and paste syndrome, like the same idea is going around and around and around or even basic things that people say. It's like,...

...that's marketing 101 already know that. Um You see a ton of that on linkedin and so then you just kind of have to filter through it and scroll through it and get exhausting. But I think if you really want to stand out, then you have to find a way to maybe break, break the information down more or think about it in a different way. And even a lot of people on linkedin, if it's substantial enough, they'll take time to read a longer post. It doesn't have to be like a quick and snappy status if you're actually talking about something that's going to be helpful to somebody. So I think make it more extensive and then, you know, or the mistake is that it's boring, the curious to make it more extensive, but also to make it more engaging and infuse your own personal brand into it. Yeah, you might have a unique take on something, but often I just find that information is incomplete, right? So like, let's take two examples is, uh in the blogging world, I use this example all the time. If you're going to write a blog about how to run a marathon and your first tip, your secret pro tip is drink water. It's kind of like, okay, like of course I'm gonna drink water while I'm running a 26.2 miles. Like anything else, do you want to tell me? Like how much water is there something I should be mixing in the water? Like tell me something a little bit more. Should I carry water or should I just depend on the cups on the side of the road? Should I take a break? Should I walk while I drink or should I just continue to figure out how to drink while running, which is a pain in the butt, right? These are things I was looking for. So if I was creating a content for a few first time marathon runners like more, I need something more than just drink water because that was kind of obvious. But that kind of happens in Lincoln content all the time, right? Someone's offering some generic advice. Like don't be the smartest person in the room. I'm like, what does that even mean? Does that mean the dumbest person in the company is the Ceo and on the bottom are all the smartest people in the world? Like what? How does that work? So giving more specifics and breaking down things that people might understand and everybody has something unique, Emily, you have something unique as someone who's writing more Lincoln content than anybody. I know you're literally, that's like your, most of your days are just spent coming up with unique angles for this, which is why you've gotten good at identifying these. Can you think of any other ways? Like, you've taken something that is like the normal thing people say and then, like, changes. So it's interesting a lot of that honestly does just come from the people that I'm writing for. I just take, I find a way to take what they think or what they're saying and say it in a more exciting way, I suppose, because they've got the experience, my experience is writing and creating content and that's what I'm good at. But there's so many times where someone will say, like, I really want to write about this and I'm like, I don't even know what that is. So then I have to then go and do research, but also they will provide me with maybe a podcast episode that they've done. So I'm taking what they've already said and just formatting it for length in. Um so I find that to be really helpful. I also just, I consume a ton of content every day. Like I put out a ton of content, but I consume a ton of content, so I'm subscribed to like a million different marketing emails, like I love twitter, I consume a ton of twitter because it's nice and stackable um and then obviously like I'm on linkedin all the time, so when you're doing that, you have so much input that allows you to have unique output, if that makes sense? That's funny. I hear people argue sometimes that like if your content creator you shouldn't consume, you should just create. I'm like, I don't know, sometimes I get my best ideas from consuming other people's content and then respond and then posting it or something. Just create as nice in theory and it's nice if I'm just creating for one thing, but I'm creating for 13 different people and so I can't just come up with all of that from within myself dry. Yeah, exactly. So what's 1/4 way that people are failing to get engagement? Yeah. So the...

...fourth one is that they are simply not providing a reason to engage. So there's no call to action, there's no question. And I think if you have content that is extensive enough, that is relevant that people want to engage, but sometimes they're just looking for, they need a question to guide them in how to engage. Um, and so I see a lot of people make posts that are just like, all right, this is what I think that's it and they don't ask you a question at the end. And so it's easy to keep scrolling through those ones and um, I see a lot of people say like agree or disagree question mark or stops and I don't think that that's a bad way to do it, I think that that's inviting people in at least. Um But I also think that if you can come up with specific questions, that's a compelling reason for people to leave a comment on your post. Um and that way you get more reach, but you also get more feedback to then continue to refine your content. Absolutely, and it's tricky. I've literally gone to post with the intention of engaging with the comment and then got to the end and I have no idea what to say, you're like actually I wanted to leave the comment right now and I'm drawing a blank, I have no idea how to add to this. Usually I'm pretty good at doing is I do it a lot. If you add a question that's relevant, I don't have to think about it so hard and then I can go and leave the comment. Of course I'm a comment machine. I'm trying to do a lot of comments cause that's part of how the Lincoln game works. The more you engage in other people's posts, the more your post gets seen. So the more value you add, the more linkedin gives you value to your post. Right? Exactly. Do you find that some questions are better than others and why? Yeah, I think the more specific the question and the more clear the question that that's an obvious when we're clear the question. But a lot of people are like, instead of saying, do you agree, they're like, do you not agree to disagree? Like making it more complicated than it has to be? Because sometimes I do, I read questions, I'm like, I don't even know what this is asking me so to make it, and I think those are generally the ones where people are like, oh I have to add a question to this, what should I add? But to make it just to make it clear, but also to make it specific you're looking for, you don't just want comments. You want people to actually have an answer to what you're asking and to have something substantial that you can engage with. So the more specific you make the question, the more you'll get that back. Sometimes a post, even if you ask a question, the post is engaging enough that they'll start commenting, that's not even engaging the question, I've seen that happen a lot. And the one thing that I've found with the question that this is kind of the trick is asking a question that's really relative to what you just wrote. That's really easy to respond to. Because if you ask a deep question being like, what's the deepest thought you ever had? People are like, uh they move on their scrolling down, you have to stop and think for like more than two seconds about what their answer is going to be. They're probably not going to comment. Yeah. That's actually a trap that I fall into. Because I'll see a question like that. I'm like, what is my answer to this? And then I'm like, yeah, I'm spending way too. Let's move on. All right. What's the last thing you would say keeps people from getting engagement? Yeah. So this one I would say it's just formatted poorly. So you're we might not know what your point is because of everything else that's in your post, whether it's just a long story or you're a very worthy person or it's like blocked off in paragraphs. Nobody reads just paragraphs of you know, like a content. They just they prefer bullet points, We prefer something that's easier to consume. Which is why, you know, people like the tweets that people are posting on linkedin, but I would say just to make your point clear, but also to make it readable, right? So to break it up in the short sentences, I really love linkedin post because it's somewhere between a tweet and blog post, right? You can actually have...

...instead of actually having like sections of a blog post, you're really just putting the heading. So it's the ultimate little scannable snack because it's not just a thought, it's multiple thoughts. It's a whole idea package. But it kind of creates an interesting medium between Lincoln and blood posts that is a little bit longer and you can actually learn something from it instead of just a provocative idea. But it's not quite blog posts, like you can consume it in 30 seconds or or something like that. Um So what are some formatting things that you're doing to like, differentiate our post from, like everybody else to post? Yeah. So it's really important to grab attention in the first three lines, right? It's like above the fold. That's what people are going to read and that's going to determine if they want to click read more. So I think that that has to be generally I format that break it up into three sentences, but also something that's really exciting and then you get into your main point. Um so I have been doing that. I also I love emojis. I think this is like uh this is a 50 50 thing. Some people don't, but I actually think emojis are really great at calling out a specific point or a sentence to draw attention to that, so I'll do that too. Um or all caps, you know, just shout at somebody and it's not for a whole paragraph, but maybe a word or two. I think that those really help you draw attention to what you want people to pay attention to. Gosh, that's so much more emotion to it are funnier. You know, if you know how to do it right? Not just replace the word with an emoji that's kind of obvious, but if you like know how to add a little spin to it with emojis than it goes so far are gifts or memes or stuff like that. Yes, I know we do it because we're trying to attract marketers and marketers generally like emojis, but if I were doing it to like financial executives then I probably wouldn't use emojis unless unless that's your differentiator is like you're the fun finance person to talk to. So it kind of depends on what you're going for. Generally I'd say emojis over no emojis, but I don't understand why you wouldn't, since you're in it so much. I wanted to ask you about some of the trends that you're seeing, what you're consuming, A ton of content. You're writing lots of content. What are some of the things that you're seeing out there that you're thinking about our experimenting with yourself? So lately I've been seeing a ton of polls um and I think people are just using those because you get a ton of engagement because it's easy, right? Like the easier like you're saying with questions easier, you can make it to engage the better and so people can just click on something and then keep scrolling through. Um, So I'm seeing a lot of that and I do think that probably sometimes they're just going for easy engagement because someone will say like, you prefer pizza hot or cold and that's really not useful to anyone make pizza, right? Yeah, you're a pizza maker. But other than that, like if you are actually asking something as, I don't know, as a survey or for deeper research, I think the polls are great. They're great for that and can actually really help you with learning or creating more content. But I'm seeing a lot of those and I'm curious to see how those continue to play out or if people will get tired of those and then people are tired of them because they went about it on there all the time. Another pool. I really, you know, whatever. Like somebody I like him personally because I, I'm always like suckered into like, I wonder what people voted for this. I know what I'm going to pick, but I want to see what other people picked. So it's kind of like, it's a little nugget in and of itself just to see what the results are to ripple what I don't want to vote because I want to see what people are saying. So sometimes I don't even want to I don't want people to know what I voted on on some polls, so I'll vote and then quickly on vote just because I wanted to see what the results were. But because your name is attached to it every time you vote, like the creator can actually go and pull the list of everybody who voted on what it's available. Voting on the pizza pull stand like that. I mean I probably am, but I wouldn't make those, they're so...

...easy. I just touch it, you're like why not? Okay, so I'm also seeing a lot of people treating linkedin like twitter or even like facebook, you're seeing more well and there are a few facets to that, you're seeing more personal things, which I think that there's a good mix of personal content and um you know, educational content, there's, there's a place for both, but I've seen more personal posts and I am seeing more um I think just as far as like treating it like twitter, I'm seeing more short posts that are not super relevant that are just like, oh this thing happened to me the other day and that's it. Maybe that's like facebook as well because people say all kinds of random stuff on facebook or they'll be like, oh this is what I had for breakfast, how do you feel about eggs? So I think that there's, I do not appreciate when people use linkedin as facebook or twitter. So it brings up an interesting topic, like a lot of people have started talking about like Lincoln becoming too personal. Where do you draw the line? And do you, do you one, do you feel like personal stuff can be on linkedin at all? And if so where do you draw the line on? How much is too much? It's a really good question. I think that brings us into a whole other topic of personal branding, right? And how do you build a personal brand? And because people do want to see that, But what does that entail? I think that there I've seen, okay, like big life events, I feel like you can go ahead and post that only because people want to celebrate with you right, when I got married. Yeah. I started a new job, of course is relevant, but like anything that was huge in your life. Yeah, I've seen a lot of those. I think those are exciting. I feel like I probably saw more of those over this last year because people were like, we need to be more human, need to connect in this time. And so that's understandable. But then I think there are other things that are just like, this is how I'm feeling about this and it's more of a journal, right? Like we talked about before and it's sort of like a, like an outlet for someone to process something. And so I don't think that that is the place for Lincoln like I think that that's more of a facebook or a personal blog or something like that. But I do like to see the humanity in people, obviously everyone does. Um and so I think that I really appreciate people who are able to infuse that in their professional life, who are able to make a post and its educational, but they also have their own flair to it. And I think that's a tricky thing to figure out is how personal is too personal. So that's a great question. And I don't really have different people take different stances, right? Like Gary v's like, oh, post everything, it's all about. You kind of like, yeah, but you don't, I'm like, you don't post about your family. I mean you talk about parenting sometimes, but your kids and your wife aren't on there. There's a whole side of you that you never post. So people do pick and choose what they share. I think the smart people actually like say like, okay, I'm going to talk about this, this, this and this, but nothing else just to show some parts of it. But you don't have to share the whole thing. Right? Well you're protecting your personal life that way too. Which I think is important. So absolutely anything else you see going on? I don't know, I mean something you brought up the other day how people are screen shotting tweets and putting tweets on in how I feel about that. And uh I have said before like I don't want lengthen to become twitter right? But it does, it does grab your attention. You do scroll past and you see a screenshot and it's just you know a sentence or something like interesting and engage with it. But I'm seeing a lot more of that. And then also like if I can rabbit trail for a second, we're testing a lot of like gifts or gifts and means. Um and those are those have been fun to and I think those work really well because it's a good way to mix up what you're doing. Like you just had one a couple weeks ago, that was that Star wars meme with...

Anakin padme ng, like it's all over the place and so people like, like the different take on it. So I've enjoyed like thinking of brainstorming names and stuff like that. You're good on it. I want anakin one you did of mind like went viral. I can't remember how many people saw it, but it was like 70, people or something crazy like that, which I had not seen since like a pole. Like only polls usually get that far right now. So it's fun to see other content other than polls get drastic reach man. So this has been a fun conversation. I can't wait to like send this to people if they ask me like what's working on linkedin, I'm just gonna send them this interview over and over again. I think we covered a ton of different materials around what's, what's working, what's not working, things that are trending right now Emily's or anything else that you think our audience would need to know in order to succeed on linkedin before we end this episode. Yeah, so I just want to end with a lot of the conversations that I've had with the people that I'm writing for, initially when we jump on a kickoff call is like there's no, there's either a lack of capacity or a lack of confidence. And so capacity is one that just takes discipline of like just sit down and time block for an hour on friday and just write a bunch of content that you can post throughout the week. And I think that that's a really great way to take it on. But I also think the lack of confidence side, um if you have, if you have buying from your company and they want to help their evangelists or their ambassadors or whatever create more content, then I think another important part of that is not only equipping them and enabling them and empowering them to create content. Like we've done by your training videos and bringing me on board. Like I think they also just need to feel like they can do that like there, they might not be writers, but they need to feel that they can't right, they do have something to say. And so I think that if you want a successful evangelist program, you have to be able to create resources and training for them too. I feel like they can do that. That makes sense, totally. Makes sense. So Emily, this has been fantastic. If people want to learn more and connect with the the again, the wizard behind the curtain who's doing a lot of Arlington work, where can they find you? Yeah, they can find me on Lincoln. My name is Emily de Brito, D I B R I T O and that would be my main one. So find me there. Let's connect. You heard that everybody go and find Emily de Brito on linkedin and connect with her. She's doing her own content on top of writing, everybody's else because she's part of her own program. So again, hopefully this has been helpful to you. If it has been one, go and follow Emily, but certainly go and drop a five star or whatever start you feel like it's worth um on apple podcasts or Spotify or wherever you're listening to this episode. It blesses us a ton. If you just go and give us a rating, you don't even have to leave a review. If you do, I will read it. It's fantastic. But thank you so much for joining us on this episode of GDP Growth. Mhm Gary V says it all the time and we agree every company should think of themselves as a media company first, then whatever it is they actually do if you know this is true, but your team is already maxed out and you can't produce any more content in house. We can help, we produce podcasts for some of the most innovative baby brands in the world and we also help them turn the content from the podcast into blog posts, micro videos and slide decks that work really well on linkedin. If you want to learn more, go to Sweet Fish Media dot com slash launch or email Logan at sweet Fish Media dot com.

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