Welcome to the latest issue of LinkedLetter, where we bring you the newest developments from the forefront of professional networking on LinkedIn. In this edition, we’re excited to unveil groundbreaking advancements that promise to elevate your LinkedIn experience and enhance your personal brand. From further insights on LinkedIn’s Newsletter game to the first Premium Ad Campaign, we’re here to unveil the future of professional engagement on the world’s leading business platform. So sit back, relax, and let’s explore the exciting features awaiting you in this issue.

LinkedIn is increasing its focus on journalism and news, unlike its tech rivals who are pulling back from the industry. With a surge in traffic referrals to news publishers over the past three years, the platform offers an ecosystem for outlets and journalists to expand their audiences amidst a broader crackdown on news content by tech companies. LinkedIn collaborates with over 400 news publishers globally, providing them with support to optimize their content across various formats such as text posts, newsletters, podcasts, and videos.

LinkedIn’s team focus ensures that professional-grade content is prioritized, with editors actively engaging with publishing partners to inform them about trending topics for better content optimization. LinkedIn’s efforts extend beyond engagement, with a 150% increase in newsletters published on the platform and initiatives to help publishers monetize their content through advertising partnerships and sponsorship pilots.

Data: Similarweb; Chart: Axios Visuals

This proactive approach by LinkedIn stands in contrast to the retreat from news by other social media firms like Meta, signaling a unique opportunity for newsrooms to grow their followings on LinkedIn amidst the changing landscape of digital news dissemination.

LinkedIn has launched its first brand campaign for its Premium subscription tier, which it introduced in 2005. The campaign features new Premium tools that help applicants find jobs they’re qualified for and teach workers how to improve their skills.

It was launched with three different ads each highlighting some of the advantages Premium offers. One promotes LinkedLearning, the social media’s platform with video courses meant to improve one’s professional skills. The other two are focused more on job seekers and how LinkedIn’s AI capabilities can help them in their quest. The Top Applicant Jobs feature promises to pair them with positions they are best suited for, taking into account their experience. At the same time, AI-powered takeaways can give them advice about relevant job opportunities. 

Source: LinkedIn

Minjae Ormes, LinkedIn’s VP of Marketing said that the latest AI advancements the platform has implemented can truly help professionals and job seekers, and that prompted them to actively promote Premium and its AI tools. While so far the campaign has been mainly rolling out on LinkedIn according to plans it should start being visible across other platforms this March. 

“LinkedIn will continue to highlight the AI-powered Premium tools they currently have, as well as any innovations expected to roll out”, shares Ormes. She also underlined the unique professional focus LinkedIn has compared to other social media and stated this will be at the forefront of any future campaigns they launch.

LinkedIn and Edeman came out with their 2024 B2B Thought Leadership Impact Report. They are long-time collaborators when it comes to producing audience-centered research on the topic, as proven by their 2022 and 2021 reports.

This year’s key takeaway is the power thought leadership has over influencing the largest segment of your audience: those currently out-of-market. As many know at any given time only 5% of your target audience is ready to purchase while 95% are not. To reach that 95% content such as thought leadership is crucial. According to the data thought leadership is:

  • Highly sought after – 52% of decision-makers and 54% of C-suite executives spend an hour or more each week reading thought leadership content.
  • Opens new doors – 75% of decision-makers and C-suite executives report thought leadership content has them considering products that weren’t on their radar.
  • Primes your prospects – 9 out of 10 decision-makers and C-suite executives are moderately or very likely to be more receptive to sales or marketing outreach from a company consistently producing high-quality thought leadership.

Source: LinkedIn and Edelman’s 2024 Thought Leadership Impact Report

Moreover, the report shows that Thought Leadership Content can even steer people away from your products and your competitors may use it to bring your authority into question. If you want to utilize this powerful content type then these are some of the main strategies you should be employing: 

  • Have strong references to research and data
  • Help customers better understand their pain points and how you can help them
  • Offer concrete guidance and showcase case study examples

Source: LinkedIn and Edelman’s 2024 Thought Leadership Impact Report

Citing reliable sources can help you with about 55% of decision-makers. They value high-quality thought leadership, which should be grounded in verifiable facts. Even if they cannot afford to do their own research, organizations should curate, synthesize, and comment on credible industry sources, highlighting eye-opening data, to provide reliable information.

Decision-makers seek novel insight into thought leadership, which requires understanding buyers’ business challenges and opportunities. “Effective thought leadership should focus on identifying problems and bringing unique solutions to focus”, according to Daniel Van Otterdijk, Group Chief Communications Officer for DP World. This fresh, practical perspective sparks commercial conversations.

Last but not least, decision-makers seek clear, compelling takeaways from thought leadership content to address challenges. And they want them now. Research shows most executives stop reading after the first minute unless something catches their eye. Similarly, 56% of them never opened again the content they filed for later reading. It’s crucial to catch their attention from the get-go and offer clear, actionable steps to solving their issues. Having valuable ideas and solutions, substantiated with proof points and case studies, can build trust and confidence that differentiates a brand

If you want to overcome the competition and offer your customers valuable, thought-provoking, and most of all – buyer-intent-awakening content – make sure to go through the full report. 

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