How Thought Leaders Can Utilize LinkedIn During COVID-19 and Beyond
August 25, 2020
There is arguably no other time where leadership direction, advice and insights are sought out than in times of crisis. The past five months have brought much uncertainty as COVID-19 forced businesses to adapt to a new work-from-home norm, raised critical diversity and inclusion discussions within organizations and required a major pivot to business strategies globally. Business professionals across all industries around the world are actively looking for perspectives from leaders and experts that can help inform their decisions and direction for the future. This is where thought leaders have an opportunity to lend their expertise and perspective to help shape the future, and there is, perhaps, no better place to share those ideas and perspectives than on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn has not only experienced a surge in engagement amid this time of crisis, but has seen a 60 percent increase in content creation since last year. One of their biggest areas of content growth right now is in technology and what has become our ‘new norm’ of work. Specific areas where article engagement has seen a spike include business continuity, cloud services, video streaming, cybersecurity and remote working.
This not only presents an opportunity for C-suite and senior executives to provide insight into industry trends and big picture thinking, but enables them to demonstrate their expertise and credentials to a larger audience. It is through this thought leadership that many companies can break through competitive challenges and showcase their understanding of their ecosystems, and most importantly their value in the industry. As a senior executive, you should be using LinkedIn as a way to highlight your value to the industries you work in or are a part of. For example, if there is a discussion around cybersecurity standards underway and you are aware of the challenges regarding adoption of such standards, this presents an opportunity to share your knowledge and experience with other senior leaders and potential prospects– furthering your personal brand. This can be done by commenting on a post on the topic, publishing your own article or video that can help shed light on the issues that may not be obvious to most.
According to LinkedIn’s Content Marketing Guide, 94 percent of marketers are using LinkedIn as a content distribution vehicle. Additionally, more than 50 percent of all social traffic on LinkedIn points to B2B websites and blogs– making this an important platform. In addition to publishing articles, videos and interviews, commenting on topical trends, offering insights and opinions in your space and ensuring that there is a content cadence is equally important to establish you as a thought leader. Providing simple tips or lessons learned from the front-lines goes a long way right now given the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and the direction that many businesses are seeking.
Another way to bring your leadership to the forefront on LinkedIn is updating your profile to offer yourself as an expert source, where other business leaders or senior executives might be actively seeking advice. Alternatively, you can potentially initiate dialogue with another senior executive by reaching out and connecting with them directly based on prior points of view or thoughts they share on subject matters you have in common.
By leveraging LinkedIn as not only a regular engagement and learning platform, but one where you are actively contributing to a given dialogue tied to your expertise and business, you have the opportunity to build your personal brand. Once this is established, you can then influence key conversations being had on a topic or subject, thereby shifting behaviors that ultimately lead to endless possibilities not just for you, but your business.