People often ask me how they can go viral on LinkedIn, especially after one of my recent LinkedIn posts gathered 12K likes and over one million views (it surpassed my wildest expectations)!
I want to help you go viral on LinkedIn too. It won’t happen often but it can happen.
The best way to go viral on LinkedIn is to be yourself, be helpful to others, and be active on the platform. Find the sweet spot of mixing in real, authentic and personal story or experience with a business or life lesson.
People on the world's largest platform for professionals are not expecting (and often are pleasantly surprised by!) personal content — and LinkedIn is looking for content that gets its members engaged, and that does so quickly.
Getting Personal = Going Viral
Velocity + Engagement = Going Viral
Your content must be interesting and helpful but going viral really has to do with how fast and how much the people who do see your post engage with it via likes, comments, shares, etc.
A lot of it is due to luck, but here is how you can use what I learned to create posts that resonate with your network.
- Embrace storytelling. It makes your content personal and unique, and makes you more memorable. You can share business content through a personal lens – find a storytelling hook – maybe it’s why you got into your field, a challenge you faced, how you accomplished something. What did you learn from it? These kinds of posts stand out in the sea of sameness on LinkedIn,
- Be authentic, relatable and humble.
- Post relevant and useful content consistently. Think about serving and helping others in each of your posts – not about promoting yourself. The focus of your content should always be on your audience and how you can help and educate them.
- Define your content pillars – pick three to five areas on which you will focus and stick to those. Finding your niche helps to build your subject matter authority.
- Hook in the reader in the critical first three lines of your post before it says “see more.” LinkedIn posts are truncated in news feeds after the first three lines so it is critical to capture their attention in order to stop the scroll and encourage them to read your entire post.
- Use hashtags strategically.
- Post at the right time of day. This usually in the mornings on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
- End your post with a question to encourage comments and a call to action.
- Learn the tricks of the LinkedIn algorithm. This includes not adding links in the post (LinkedIn penalizes posts that takes readers off its platform – if you must add an external link, place it in the comments of the post).
- The first 30 to 60 minutes are critical for your post to gain as much visibility as it can. Your content will be shown to some connections in the first 30 to 60 minutes. Based on how much they engage with it, it will either been seen by just a small group or by a wider LinkedIn audience.
- Did I mention: the first 30 to 60 minutes are critical. If you reach thousands of people who are liking and commenting on your post their editors will analyze your post and start pushing the content to even more people.
- Be confident in what you post but open to changing your strategy based on your engagement.
- Use white space in posts and short paragraphs that make it easy to grab your reader’s attention when they’re scrolling.
- Respond to all post comments – especially within the critical first 30 to 60 minutes after posting.
- Be YOU. You can add value by simply being you! (And don’t forget to add a little bit of that secret ingredient that makes you unique).
If I can go viral on LinkedIn, you can too!
Stefanie Marrone advises law firms of all sizes, professional service firms, B2B companies, recruiters and individuals on the full range of marketing and business development consulting services designed to enhance revenue, retain current clients and achieve greater brand recognition. She also serves as outsourced chief marketing officer/marketing department for small and mid-size law firms. Over her nearly 20-year legal marketing career, she has worked at and with a broad range of big law, mid-size and small firms, which has given her a valuable perspective of the legal industry. Connect with her on LinkedIn, sign up for her email list and follow her latest writing on JD Supra.