We sure love when our own customers send us their success stories! 🧡 So we were delighted when Visnja Zeljeznjak wrote to us and told us her story about how she grew her consulting business by posting her thought leadership content on LinkedIn every single day.Visnja is a website consultant and copywriter with 20 years of experience in planning business websites and writing copy for them. At www.logit.net, a small consultancy she co-founded, she helps IT company owners transform their websites into an effective marketing and sales tool. Connect with Visnja on Linkedin where she writes about business life, the digital marketing universe, and everything.
See the exact strategy Visnja used to grow her business with Postfity below!
LinkedIn is my main social network for business. Although I spend more time on Facebook for personal use, LinkedIn is where I purposefully choose to build my professional network and my personal brand.
To explain how I grow my consulting business on LinkedIn with original content, let me first get one thing out of the way:
LinkedIn Is Great for Generating Leads. It Really Is.
As a website consultant, I help business owners plan their business websites so that they become an efficient marketing and sales tool that converts visitors to customers.
For my kind of consulting business, LinkedIn is a godsend.
2020 hasn’t been great so far; not for me, and not for my clients. Despite everything, since early 2020, these are the results I got from my time investment in Linkedin:
- I have attracted several new clients for my consulting services.
- My existing clients have hired me for new services.
- My business partners have recommended me to their contacts and customers for my website consulting services.
- People called me to offer partnerships on various projects.
- People accepted my offer to become partners on a project.
- People who I haven’t spoken to for years have contacted me and told me they have recommended me to their customers.
- Prospects who are currently in my sales pipeline react to my posts, which keeps them in the pipeline until they’re ready to buy.
- I have used my network to introduce my clients and business partners to my new LinkedIn contacts, which puts me in a unique position to help connect people who should know each other.
- I can tap into my network for immediate feedback on products and services I’m experimenting with.
I’m not writing this to brag. I’m writing this so that you could understand why LinkedIn is crucial for my consulting business, and so that you could understand why I would bother to post there every day.
How I Use LinkedIn
Currently, I don’t use LinkedIn for direct sales. I don’t have a sophisticated system where I contact X people every day, of which Y people will respond to my first offer, of which I will tag Z people as ‘hot lead’ so that I could pitch them my digital products and consulting services.
That’s too much hustling for my taste at the moment.
Instead, I do something that is much more fun.
(If I don’t make a platform fun for me, I quickly lose interest in it. With lost interest I lose visibility, and with lost visibility I lose networking and lead generation opportunities.)
What I do is use LinkedIn as a digital networking tool.
LinkedIn is how I choose to meet new people and chat with the people I already know, without pitching anything to them. LinkedIn is like being in a one big room for business networking where it’s me who decides what I want to talk about and who I want to associate with.
This kind of digital networking, however, does need a little bit of structure and consistency to work. For my personal style of digital networking, I have come up with two concepts that bring me just the right mix of structure, flexibility and fun. Those two concepts are My LinkedIn Hour and my 365-day Linkedin Posting Trial.
Concept #1: My LinkedIn Hour
I have a morning routine which I call My LinkedIn Hour. It’s a carved out time slot in my day when I grab a cup of coffee and just scroll down the LinkedIn feed, in search of something that would catch my eye. When I see a content piece that I like or I stumble upon someone who sounds like a smart person I would like to know, I do the networking thingy. Networking means that I comment on their threads, share their best posts, like their comments, and invite them to connect with me. I’m basically being social on social media, duh! As a result, I catch people’s attention, they connect with me or I connect with them, and we’re all ready to start a beautiful business relationship.
So, My LinkedIn Hour is how I meet other people. But I also want others to meet me and get to know me as a (business) person.
That’s what another concept of mine is for: publishing my own original content, directly on LinkedIn, every day, no exceptions.
This is where automation with Postfity saves my day. Let me explain.
Concept #2: My 365-Day Linkedin Posting Trial
As of today, I’m on day 65 in my 365-day LinkedIn posting trial. The self-imposed rules for this experiment are simple:
- Post at least one piece of meaningful content on LinkedIn every day.
- Yes, Saturdays and Sundays too.
- Keep it up for 365 days in a row.
- Don’t ever break the chain!
Now, why on Earth would I run such a long experiment?
I already said that LinkedIn was a godsend for my consulting business. The way I made LinkedIn a godsend for me is by posting original, thoughtful, meaningful content made specifically for LinkedIn, every single day, and by being social.
Publishing Content Every Day? Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That!
This is where I tell you that I also write website content for a living, and have been doing so for the past 20 years.
Because I write content, and because of my strong opinions (weakly held) on various business and digital marketing topics, I often have this strong urge to write something short but meaningful and get it out the door as quickly as possible. This feels like an urge to clear your mind cache from old cookies so that new cookies could take their place. And as much as I want to see my old cookies gone, I also want them to materialize in the real world so that others could taste them as well.
The trouble is, If I don’t write my ideas down and immediately hit ‘Publish’, chances are these ideas will never see the light of day. They’ll keep spinning in my head until I forget about them, lose interest in them, or completely forget about ever having those ideas.
Sure, I could just sit down, write a blog post, and publish my idea. I wish writing and publishing was this easy for me.
Completing a full blog post for my website takes hours. I cannot afford to just drop everything I’m doing at any given moment and write a blog post. Sometimes I have more important tasks than writing blog posts. And knowing how long it takes to write a full blog post paralyzes me and makes me decide against even starting it. For a long time, this used to bother me a lot.
And then, a breakthrough. In early 2020 b.C. (before Corona), I discovered a perfect solution for my personal content writing crisis: social posting on LinkedIn. At that time, when the inspiration hit, I used to post something on LinkedIn. It was mostly longer social posts, regularly reaching the 1300-character limit per post on LinkedIn.
People responded. They reacted to my posts by commenting, requesting connects, etc. I responded in kind by joining their discussions and inviting them to mine.
Wow, I spend no more than 20 minutes writing one LinkedIn post, and people like it! People share it! People want to talk about my ideas with me!
I started posting something (almost) every day and engaging with people on their threads. People noticed. I attracted several new clients. People started calling me for my services.
If I’m smart, I will not stop now; I will keep doing what works.
And that’s how my 365-day trial to post something on LinkedIn every day was born.
Enter Postfity: How to Publish *Every* Day
Now that you know the upside of my strong urge to publish my ideas in the form of short social posts, let me reveal the downside:
On certain days, I think as many as six good thoughts before breakfast.
And on other days, I think none.
During a pandemic, it turns out, I think as many as zero good thoughts a day, for several weeks.
By April 2020, my LinkedIn presence was going well, but my inspiration did not.
It was then when I decided to use a social post scheduling app to not ruin a good thing I had going. I signed up for Postfity to write as many posts as possible on days when motivation was high. I did not want to publish everything in one day, so I scheduled the extra posts in advance, for those days when I just couldn’t bring myself to write anything.
This is what my posting schedule for the month of July 2020 looks like:
What you see is a snapshot from my calendar inside the Postfity app. The cell marked yellow is today. Every entry you see is one post I wrote and scheduled in advance. For the days where you see nothing scheduled, it only means that I posted to LinkedIn directly, without using the Postify scheduler app.
You can see that I don’t just post to LinkedIn. I also use Twitter and Facebook to cross-post to my other business accounts, but LinkedIn is where the most action happens for me.
Whenever Inspiration Strikes, I Just Open Postfity, Write, and Schedule
Postfity works great for me for several reasons:
- I know writing won’t take too much time. It’s always a 18-25 minute time investment. This helps me with the paralysis I used to get from the mere thought that a blog post would take me several hours to write, edit, and publish.
- The Schedule-to-Publish procedure is outsourced to the app. I can’t be bothered to get back to my post to publish it manually, the app takes care of that automatically. It’s like having an assistant who makes sure that my content gets out the door, every day.
- It’s a fire-and-forget process that works well. Once I’m done writing the post in Postfity and I hit ‘Schedule’, I don’t have to think about that post anymore. My mind-cache is cleared, and I can go back to other work.
- If inspiration hits again during the day, I spend another 18-25 minutes on a new post, schedule it for some day in the future, and forget about it again.
Here’s what a scheduled LinkedIn post looks like when I’m finished writing it, but before Postfity publishes it:
What makes social posts easy to write is the fact that they’re just plain text plus a little bit of emojis, to spruce up the formatting:
- It’s easy to just type out the content without worrying about formatting.
- It’s easy to copy and paste the emojis directly into the Postify editor (I use the JoyPixels Chrome extension to find emojis and insert them into Postfity).
- By using Unsplash.com to find photos and Canva.com to turn them into nice social images, it takes me no more than 2-5 minutes to create and upload a good image to go with my content.
(Postfity does have a Canva-like feature that enables you to create an image from within the app, but it’s not as good as Canva, and this feature still needs work to become a viable alternative to Canva.)
When I have an idea for a blog post, a blank textarea and an automated publishing process is all I need. Postfity delivers on that requirement well.
Parting Words: Why Content Works on LinkedIn
LinkedIn can get boring very easily. Truth be told, almost nobody cares about the certificates people post, the constant bragging, and direct promotion. This overly polished version of our professional selves is tiring.
That’s why it’s SO easy to stand out from everyone else by publishing useful, entertaining, educational and thoughtful content. It doesn’t have to be 100% business all the time. I follow the chatty folk who post thoughtful content I can contribute to.These people make my LinkedIn experience fun, and I hope I make their experience fun as well.
I believe content should always include personal touch. We don’t do business with companies, we do business with people who we trust and like and perceive as experts. I try not to make my content too ‘professional’ on LinkedIn because if you’re not careful, you can easily cross that very thin line between professional and boring. Nobody wants to be boring!
So, make reading and creating original content on LinkedIn fun for you. I’m glad that I did.
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