Back in February, LinkedIn announced that they would be testing out Stories and 7 months later it has finally been rolled out worldwide!
What are LinkedIn Stories?
Following in the footsteps of Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook, LinkedIn Stories allows companies and members to publish photos and videos up to 20 seconds long via the platform’s mobile app. The updates last 24 hours before disappearing and provide a quick and engaging way to share professional updates on LinkedIn.
The addition of this Instagram-style feature shows how the platform is starting to capitalise on the popularity of video as part of a wider shift towards visual mediums and mobile (better late than never!)
At a time when many of us are physically distanced from one another, it’s more important than ever for brands to stay connected to their audiences. LinkedIn Stories offers an authentic and visual way for them to do so – and has already proven popular with members and brands alike in the countries that already have access, including the US, India and Brazil,”
- Tom Pepper, Senior Director – Head of Marketing Solutions at LinkedIn
It is by no means a revolutionary feature, but it has been much anticipated to see how the conversational format would work on a professional platform and how users and businesses would use it. Stories are typically a much more casual and immediate way to share content, something which is very new to the professional network. So it will be interesting to see how (or if) it is adopted to share news, insight and highlights about users' professional life or businesses!
How do I post a LinkedIn Story?
LinkedIn Stories can be posted on your personal profile, or on your business page if you are page admin. They can only be posted on the mobile app and you must have the most recent version of the app downloaded. The feature is currently unavailable to users located in China.
You can find LinkedIn Stories at the top of your newsfeed. You will be able to see your profile and any business profiles you manage, and when someone uploads a story it will appear in tappable bubbles. When they are tapped they will display in a full-screen 9:16 format.
To create a story, you simply tap on your profile or business bubble. You can either use the LinkedIn Stories camera to take photos or videos in real-time or upload saved content from your phone. Much like Instagram and Facebook Stories, you can add text overlays to your photo/video, mention users, and add a range of stickers. They have an additional sticker feature called “Question of the day” which you can use to answer questions related to your work. LinkedIn will more than likely add to their sticker collection as the feature is developed, just as Instagram added “DM Me” and “# Challenge” stickers recently.
Once posted viewers can easily share the story via direct message, making conversations easier on the platform.
More detailed instructions on how to upload a LinkedIn Story can be found here.
5 Ways to use LinkedIn Stories for your business
So, what does this mean for brands?
LinkedIn Stories will provide brands with a new, temporary way to connect with your audience and share relevant updates. And whilst having yet another channel to think about may feel overwhelming, there are many ways to get creative with stories to support your business goals.
But, before you jump straight into creating your stories, it is worth considering who you are talking to and what you want to achieve with sharing this content with them. This will help you shape your content strategy and ensure you are on track for success.
Here are some ways you can use LinkedIn Stories for your business:
#1 Share professional tips and insights
LinkedIn is the platform for professional thought leadership and stories provides a new, fun and engaging way to share your knowledge with your audience.
This could be the latest news in your industry, tips from your marketing team, insight on how you grew your business, or even graphic design pointers. It completely depends on your business and what you think your audience will find useful and interesting.
Sharing your knowledge is a great way to get your audience's attention and build trust!
#2 Post real-time insights
Stories only last 24 hours, so are a great way to share less polished, in-the-moment content.
Whether that is a sneak peek of a new product, behind-the-scenes of a shoot, or even just showing the day-to-day life in your office, Stories are a great way to share what is going on at your company and show a more human side to your brand.
Remember, they don't have to be slick or overproduced. The more authentic the better!
#3 Share latest news and announcements
Just like Instagram and Facebook, stories have prime real-estate on the newsfeed and early adopters won’t have much competition for that space. This makes it the perfect platform to share the latest news and announcements about your brand.
Whether it is a new product or service or your latest job opportunities, you should capitalise on this new feature to reach more of your audience, even if you already have a post on your about it.
However, don’t go full-on sales on this platform. If Instagram stories are anything to go by, stories that are purely focused on selling to the audience don’t perform well.
#4 Hold a Q&A
Whilst LinkedIn may not have a question sticker feature yet, stories are still a great way to engage directly with your audience and answer any questions your prospects may have about your brand, product or service.
To gather questions, just ask your audience to submit them in advance either through a standard feed post or through direct message. When you share your answers be sure to tag the person who asked the question in the story to ensure they don’t miss your answer.
Hosting a Q&A on your stories is another way to show the humans behind your brand and connect with your audience. This will help build brand loyalty!
#5 Share customer testimonials
Lastly, another way to capitalise on the new stories feature could be to share your latest customer success stories.
Word-of-mouth is still considered one of the most effective forms of marketing out there, with 73% of customers saying they trust a business more after seeing positive reviews. Sharing feedback and testimonials from your customers on your stories provides an unbiased opinion of your brand and will help build trust amongst your audience.
When a customer testimonial video is properly executed it can be an extremely effective sales and marketing tool. Find out how to make a customer testimonial video that drives business here.
LinkedIn Stories will more than likely become an integral part of businesses marketing strategies, as they are a great way for to reach more of your audience in a less competitive channel, build a personal connection with your networks, and also get ahead of your competitors.
They also provide a way to engage with video and get creative with it, without it being preserved on your feed.
Our advice: just give it a go!
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