4 key metrics every B2B marketer needs to know to track their LinkedIn success
How do you know if your LinkedIn profile is doing the business? Social media expert Luan Wise highlights four important measures that'll tell you what's working and what isn't
As the world’s largest professional network, with more than 560 million users in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide, there’s no doubt you need to have a presence on this platform. LinkedIn is the place to showcase your experience, skills, career achievements and knowledge. It’s the place to connect with others who can grow your knowledge. It’s the place to find new business opportunities, to gain referrals and recommendations. If you’re in business, LinkedIn is the place to get found.
Whatever your objectives for using LinkedIn in your business role, there are a number of key metrics available within LinkedIn that will guide you to know what’s working, and what isn’t.
1. Who’s viewed your profile
A primary purpose for using LinkedIn is to get seen by both existing contacts and a wider network of potential prospects. Proactively, this can be achieved by posting content, and also by searching and sending personalised invitation requests to connect.
A premium LinkedIn account will allow you to see everyone who has viewed your profile (unless they are in private viewing mode). It’s one of the main benefits of a premium account and I believe worthwhile if you’re an active LinkedIn user. With a free account you will only see the last five or six people to have looked at your profile.
I check who’s viewed my profile regularly, responding to signals like this is one of the best ways to start a conversation, and be social on social media. If an existing connection has viewed, it’s likely that I will drop them a message to see how they’re doing. If it’s someone I’m not yet connected to, but fits the criteria of my target audience, I’ll send a note asking if I can help. On all messages I let them know that I spotted they had recently taken a look at my LinkedIn profile.
Since the who’s viewed your profile information provides such an opportunity, this data is a useful metric for measuring success. The more profile views, the better. Of course, quantity of views needs to be balanced with quality and it’s important that views come from your target audience if you want LinkedIn to be successful for you.
2. Search appearances
According to LinkedIn, only 51% of user profiles are complete. Filling in the key sections of a profile is an easy fix and a quick way to get ahead. Not only will it help you appear in more search results, but when your profile gets read, the viewer will have more information about you to know how you might be able to work together.
Whatever you might think about the skills section and LinkedIn endorsements, the skills you list are an important part of getting your profile found. People search for skills, so make sure you list the things you do (and want to do). These skills should also appear (as keywords) in the other sections of your profile – such as the headline, summary and experience descriptions. You can list up to 50 skills.
Once you’re set up to appear in more search results you want to get the searchers to click through to your profile. LinkedIn statistics show that members with a photo receive 21 times more profile views. Aside from the photo, your headline is the elevator pitch opportunity not to be missed. Do not accept the default job title and company name setting here. Use the 120 characters available to explain what your company does and how you can help. Your LinkedIn headline accompanies every piece of activity that people see on LinkedIn, so make it clear who you are and what you do. Aim to stand out in the search results listing so your target audience will want to click through to read your profile and leave a signal about their visit you can respond to.
Weekly search stats can be viewed on your private dashboard. Further details about where your searchers work, what your searchers do (job titles) and keywords your searchers used to provide useful insight to ensure your profile is getting found by the right people (your target audience).
3. Activity metrics
LinkedIn is a powerful platform for content distribution, from a status update to a longer form article. Sharing expertise, news and perspectives with your network will ensure you stay front-of-mind among your connections. Engagement from your connections, in the form of likes, comments and shares will extend the reach of your content to a wider network.
Data for post views is supported by information about where your viewers work, what they do and where they are located – useful insight for ensuring you are reaching the right people. Engagement (likes, comments, and shares) provides the opportunity to start a conversation… saying thank you, responding to feedback and so on. By using your analytics to see what’s resonating, you can keep on posting content that gets results for you and your business.
4. Your LinkedIn profile is a living document
LinkedIn is often mistaken for being a place to cut and paste your CV, only to be updated when looking for a new job role. Your LinkedIn profile is, in fact, a living document that supports your day-to-day business activities, telling your professional story to people who are searching for people like you. People who are looking for trusted educators, advisors and product or service providers.
For whatever purpose you are using LinkedIn, ensure your profile is always ready to do business and that it answers the search queries of your target audience. I recommend a quarterly diary reminder to ensure that everything is up-to-date, and to include updating your LinkedIn profile on a checklist when launching a new product or service, or other milestone business project. Some examples are to adapt your LinkedIn headline to highlight a specific area of expertise ahead of a new business pitch and/or to use the rich media and additional section areas of the profile to highlight specific web pages, provide links to videos and/or documents and to demonstrate relevant experiences gained throughout your career.
Once you have defined your purpose for using LinkedIn and completed your profile, you don’t need to allocate huge amounts of time on this social media platform to be successful.
Scroll through your timeline daily for news and insights, check your notifications for updates and share content consistently, perhaps once a week, and engage in conversations with your network. Allow a small amount of time also for making new connections and managing your invitations. Respond to messages as soon as you are able.
Know what success looks like for you and your business and look at your data to keep you on track.