The best social media channel for organic reach? Why every brand should be on active LinkedIn...
Last week I shared my most-read LinkedIn post of all time. Currently receiving 40,775 views, it was a timely post about Burger King tweeting probably one of the most annoying sexist insults - 'Women belong in the kitchen' - on International Women's Day to launch a new scholarship programme which helps 'female Burger King employees pursue their culinary dreams' as only 20% of chefs are female.
I saw it was stirring up a reaction so I thought I'd see what my LinkedIn connections had to say about it. My immediate thought about the campaign was that I didn't like it. I felt like the fast food giant's marketing team had obviously considered what one-liner would get them the most attention and obviously sexism would do the trick! And yes, I imagine the aim was to grab the Twittersphere's attention with the first tweet and then turn it on its head by instead promoting equality for women... But, to me, it didn't feel clever. It instead felt cheap and disrespectful to use sexism for clickbait, especially on International Women's Day. What happened with my LinkedIn post is why I love LinkedIn because in my experience, it's by far the best social media platform for organic reach. While years ago, Facebook changed its algorithm so that businesses had to invest in advertising if they wanted to grow their Facebook page and reach a significant audience, LinkedIn content can still perform exceptionally well organically. One of the reasons my post was seen by so many people is that LinkedIn included it in its 'Editor's pick' of posts in a news round-up about the trending Burger King story, which they found because I used relevant tags and hashtags. My phone kept pinging with reactions and comments. Many of the comments were insightful. There was one camp, like me, that thought Burger King had messed up. Here's an eloquent response by Benjamin Randall:
Then there was the side that thought the campaign was genius and I really appreciated hearing the opposing point of view shared with no malice (and some of it did make me think twice). André Shahrdar and Connie Prostko-Bell's comments are some good examples:
And finally, there were three or four people that I had to block because of the unnecessary hate that I was bombarded with for even daring to say that I found the campaign insulting. One man even said that having an International Women's Day is sexist...
Burger King eventually deleted the tweet and apologised, which I think was the right thing to do.
LinkedIn has always been such a great tool for me in terms of generating client leads for my own business managing social media channels for brands on a freelance basis. Every time I share a post, I usually get at least a few new client leads (I received six after sharing the Burger King post). LinkedIn has given me the ability to easily connect with business owners and marketing managers in a way that I wouldn't necessarily be able to do via email or in real life. One of my biggest paying, long-term clients to date was found via LinkedIn five years ago after the Managing Director was a suggested contact and I sent an invitation to connect without giving it a second thought. LinkedIn marketing is part of all my current client's social media strategies (and I always encourage this because I see such good results on the platform) and they have similar successes. Especially for small businesses with little to no advertising budget, there are many ways to reach a large audience organically on LinkedIn, including by sharing the right type of content at the right type in the right format and with simple tricks such as inviting contacts to follow business pages (which you can do through admin settings). Also, it's great to have a LinkedIn business page, but it's important that the individuals of a business have active profiles too, as I find that organic reach tends to be even better with individual pages. Do you want to step up your LinkedIn marketing? Please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.