The way you format your LinkedIn posts is just as important as what you say.
Given that reading online is 25% slower than in print and attention span becomes shorter and shorter every day, it’s important to be strategic when structuring your LinkedIn posts.
Here’s how to structure your LinkedIn posts for maximum impact.
For example, don’t write long, dense paragraphs. Today people skim content, especially online.
Instead, break up your information into short snippets like I’m doing here.
Use paragraph breaks, bullets, numbers or headers when you can to help the reader as they scan the post to what might interest them most.
The first three lines of your LinkedIn post are the most important in terms of capturing your reader’s attention. After that point the post is truncated and says “show more.”
For people to see more you need to give them a reason to, which you can do with an enticing first three lines. Think of it as your headline. Draw the reader in and let them know what they can expect in the rest of the post.
Write LinkedIn posts in the first person. “I” and “we” help you sound like a real person talking to real people. It builds a personal connection with the audience and makes your posts compelling.
Always write with your audience in mind. For lawyers and law firms that means no defined terms. No formal language. No jargon. Don’t refer to people by their surnames. No skipping two or three spaces between sentences. This isn’t a legal brief.
Don’t feel like you have to use up the entire 2000 character limit of a LinkedIn post (which was extended last year from the previous 1300 character limit). People tend to skim when perusing LinkedIn, so keep that in mind. That being said, I find that my longer posts do just as well as my shorter ones. I think people who don’t have a blog should also consider LinkedIn posts as a place where they can “blog” so the longer posts do come in handy then!
Put all hashtags at the end of your posts and don’t use more than five or LinkedIn can flag your post as spam. I find hashtags hard to read when they are interspersed in the body copy.
Don’t put links in your posts (put them in the comments) – LinkedIn doesn’t want you to take people off its platform and will penalize your post if you do.
Remember that while you have 2000 characters for your LinkedIn post, you don’t need to use all of them. You shouldn’t feel like you have to be brief either. Use the characters that make sense to convey your topic. You now have the leeway to explore a topic with the added character count.
Users don’t read but scan content when they scroll a newsfeed. Your job is to get them to stop the scroll.
I’ve found the way I structure my posts makes a huge difference in readership and even have posted the same content with different paragraph lengths and sometimes with or without bullets – to test out these theories – and each time the posts with the shorter paragraphs, more white space and bullets always do better – learn from my research and mistakes!
Remember client-centric, easy-to-follow, authentic, value-added content will bring you success on LinkedIn and as a thought leader on any platform.
What other tips would you add to this list?