Why Aren’t My Articles Getting Read On LinkedIn?

There are somewhere between 140,000-180,000 new articles being published on LinkedIn each week across many different industries. In the alternative investments industry, managers post commentaries on how the market has been performing, others give advice on personal finance, and some even make bold market forecast predictions.

Managers – and everyone else who publishes articles on LinkedIn – do so because they hope to expand their reach (i.e. online visibility) and to build new relationships. To hopefully remind a prospective investor about their investment opportunity.

Much to some managers’ dismay, they don’t get the readership they desire, and don’t get half as many ‘thumbs-up’ on their articles as they were hoping for. It can be a mildly depressing experience. They then decide to ditch the idea of ever publishing on LinkedIn again, thinking of it as a waste of time.

But really, how much time does it take to re-purpose a piece of content you’ve shared elsewhere, on your LinkedIn account?

What you can do to make your writing stand out on LinkedIn

An ideal word count

In order to keep an your audience engaged – and this is with the assumption that you’re publishing something at least every 2-3 months – something shorter is better. In essence, shorter and frequent is better than long-winded and sporadic.

Approximately 2/3 of the top influencers (i.e. Bill Gates, Richard Branson, Mohd. El-Erian) post content every month or even twice a month. Some of these articles are re-purposed from other interviews, but are almost always brought down to a word count of 500-800 words.

Remember: 500-800 words.

Your headline carries more weight than you think

Too many managers publish articles with the headline (article title) with something like:

-          Q2 2017 Market Outlook

-          Fund XYZ’s Q1 2017 Report

Headlines like the above bore people. They become routine (which is fine to active investors but not so much for your prospects), and people slowly become numb to them. A great headline can deliver a powerful punch; especially to readers who might otherwise be skimming through their home page and notifications. Research shows that articles with more compelling headlines are more frequently opened and read.

Two rules of thumb: (1) Leave jokes and puns out, and (2) Your headline must reflect what’s in your article, lest you present yourself as just an ‘eyeball grabber’.

Ever thought about posting to groups?

The best way to break into a new network in LinkedIn is to join a group, such as Family Offices and Institutional Investors, Hedge Fund Group (HFG) Association, or the Emerging Manager Hedge Fund Group. These 3 groups contain approximately 150,000 members in total, and these are just 3 groups among many. A good number of these members aren’t ‘active’, but in a group of 150,000, you never know what who you might come across.

You give before you get. In this case, you ‘give’ your article, and ‘get’ conversations out of it.

Encourage readers to leave comments

Encourage readers to leave comments, especially if they disagree with you. When people come to your article and see comments, they assume the content is good and are more likely to read the article. They are also more likely to enter the conversation through the comments section of the article.

“But… what if they leave negative comments?!”

A big fear of many, especially because online comments live in the public domain forever, but this is your opportunity to demonstrate how you interact with comments that aren’t exactly pleasant. Surely you get push back in meeting rooms and over the phone? Showcase how you deal with this in the public sphere.

But of course, ensure your article’s almost bullet-proof before publishing it, to keep negative comments to a minimum.

By Alan Chu