Leveraging LinkedIn for Publishers

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Publishers are pursuing any number of digital avenues for supplementary revenue or increased exposure. Social media is by far proving to be one of the most useful and lucrative of those opportunities to leverage. In particular, LinkedIn is one of the strongest social media choices to use when it comes to business use for publications.

LinkedIn is one of the four largest social media channels used, but when it comes to using social media for business, it is often overlooked. That likely spawns from LinkedIn being less of a social arena and more of a networking space. It is for that reason that it is actually a great option for publishers, and why 91% of executives rate LinkedIn first when it comes to consuming social media content.

When it comes to leveraging LinkedIn, the first thing to know is that publishers should not be using it for “social selling.” Social selling is the equivalent of targeting a distinct segment of social media users, establishing rapport with them, and then nurturing those individuals as leads for your sales funnel. While it is a common practice for businesses leveraging social media, it is not the best direction for publishers. Instead, publishers should be using LinkedIn as an outlet and establishing a digital presence through what they do best, publishing content.

Leveraging LinkedIn for publishers is not as easy as flipping a light switch, but there are some tried and true steps to help publishers pursue the opportunity.

  1. Build the profile to focus on “how you can help” and not “what you do.” LinkedIn started out as an employment and network space, and it still leans heavily that way. People can figure out what a publisher does from their website and publication. The profile should instead focus on what kind of content the publisher provides, and how that content is of benefit to the viewer.
  2. Balance content to be mostly informational with a hint of promotional. People can handle a little bit of self-promotion and pushing towards “loyal readership.” That said, like any content outlet, readers want value out of what they read. For every one piece focused on promotion or “selling,” do 10 pieces of value.
  3. Be frequent and be unique. A paper or magazine with inconsistent publishing does not normally have traction with readers. It does not matter what medium of delivery; that rings true for digital content publishing as well. In the same vein, putting the same content everywhere may give each story more reach, but it does not provide nearly as much value for each outlet. Keep content coming on a schedule, and make sure at least half the LinkedIn content is unique to the channel.
  4. If publishing on LinkedIn, keep the reader on LinkedIn. Like any 3rd party outlet, LinkedIn’s primary goal is to keep users on their channel. That means anything that would push a reader to leave LinkedIn is going to get less results. Also, every social channel has an algorithm that also determines what content gets more or less emphasis. Play to the algorithm’s settings and keep the reader on LinkedIn, and good results are sure to follow.

There are plenty of other useful tips and tools to master LinkedIn for business, but when it comes to a publisher’s starting to leverage it, these four steps should set a strong foundation.

Further Information

To learn more about LinkedIn for publishers, click here. For more information about LinkedIn tips for stronger digital presence, click here.

If you would like more great content from Publication Printers and the Publication Printers Marketing Group, click here.

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Are Your Subscribers Loyal to Your Brand?

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The concept of a “loyal reader” has always been an important metric for magazines and newspapers. However, what actually constitutes a loyal reader, and how many loyal readers are really normal for a publication?

There are several different definitions for a loyal reader, most of which focus around the idea of a reader that comes back for more content, and is presumably consuming content due to the consistent exposure. The issue with these types of definitions is that it relegates a publication’s readership to a statistic; the loyalty of the audience is based solely on web traffic events or purchase consistency.

In more recent years, a particular metric has become easier to track, and it is much more telling of loyalty: engagement. Engagement is still a complicated thing to measure, as it involves tracking a lot of different outlets and types of connection with content, but it is a more accurate measure of a reader’s loyalty.

With this new, more realistic definition of a loyal reader in mind, it brings up an important question for publishers: are your subscribers loyal to your brand? In order to measure that, it is important to understand more about engagement and what it means in regards to subscription.

First, exposure to content does not mean that content is being consumed, so a subscriber is not inherently a loyal reader. However, subscribers do have more exposure to content due to their higher grade of access, and they have opted in. That is why measuring who engages, whether they are a subscriber or not, is important.

Second, habitual engagement, where a reader engages with new content as it is released, shows consistent connection to the publisher, and actually confirms that their frequent exposure results in something. If that reader is a subscriber, then they would qualify as loyal. If they are not yet subscribed, then they are a representation of who that publisher should be targeting.

Tracking engagement is a process that takes time and effort, and sometimes additional support or costs to do properly. With that kind of spend, what does a publisher get in return for being able to measure the percentage of loyal readers amongst their subscriber base?

Content Insights, a professional organization specializing in data collection and analysis, recently aggregated data on readership loyalty based on engagement as part of a study, which was a first in the content analytics industry. Their research covered data from 10 different publications over the course of a month, and the data was quite surprising.

  • Only 3.8% of readers qualified as “loyal” based on the habitual engagement definition.
  • In comparison to “ordinary” readers, “loyal” readers consumed an average of 5x more content.
  • “Loyal” readers averaged 4x the web visits of “ordinary” readers, and in each visit consumed 29% more content in general, and read an average of 14% more text on singular articles.

The Content Insights study also elaborates on this data with some real-world scenarios that show the major impact that loyal readers have in comparison to ordinary readers. For example, the ratio of articles read per visit (loyal: ordinary readers) is approximately 5.5:1 and the ratio of visits per month is 3.5:1.

When you take all of this data into account, loyal readers are shown to consume and engage with up to 19 articles for every 1 article by an ordinary reader.

Take this back to a publisher’s subscriber base. If a publisher can find out what drives higher loyalty from their subscribers, that will translate into knowing what content has better engagement, what topics generate more interest, and what outlets garner the highest amount of engagement. In general, knowing what drives loyalty greatly impacts the ability to drive revenue.

Also, as a last note, literal revenue generation can come from better understanding loyalty. If a publisher can find unsubscribed readers who have the potential to become loyal, based on their engagement, there is a great opportunity to increase subscriptions and also increase the percentage of loyal readers amongst the subscriber base.

Further Information:

To learn more about the study on reader engagement by Content Insights, click here. For more information about Content Insights in general, click here.

If you would like more great content from Publication Printers and the Publication Printers Marketing Group, click here.

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