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I get a variation on this question every couple weeks, so I thought today I would explore this a little bit, and go through the general progression on how posting on LinkedIn “works”. For those of you that do post, you can get a feel for what stage you are in and what’s next.

For our purposes here, “posting” can consist of just about any content on LinkedIn – posts, articles, newsletters, videos, events, you name it.

First of all there is one thing you absolutely have to have in your posts: they must revolve around educating and helping your reader. Your reader should come away from reading your post a little bit smarter about your topic than they were a few minutes ago, or have new ideas on how they might approach a problem. This is the biggest problem with content on LinkedIn. It is not there to help the reader, it is there to generate business for the writer. If you have a look at most posts on LinkedIn, they revolve around one theme: how great the author or their company is. This is better illustrated by having a look at the progression your content writing makes over time on LinkedIn

When you start posting on LinkedIn, the first thing that happens is you start to expand your Reach, that is new people become aware of you and what you. Say you are a Widget manufacturer, and you started posting on LinkedIn. People would start becoming aware that you are a Widget manufacturer. But that’s it, all you have is some increased awareness. You have a new group of people and their thoughts are basically “that person makes Widgets.”

Over time, and if you continue to regularly post insightful content, you will start to build a following. You will get people that regularly want to read your content and they will follow you or subscribe to see more. At this point you are building your brand – or credibility, or thought leadership or whatever you want to call it. In the case of your Widget manufacturing, you are at the point where while you are continuing to be found by more people, you are building a core of followers who trust you and your expertise. This group of people has evolved from just knowing that you build Widgets to now thinking that maybe the next time they need Widgets you are someone they should be considering.

What most people who ask me for help gloss over are the first two words in that last paragraph, “over time”. It takes a while to build trust. You need a variety of content that showcases what you know and how it can help people with their problems. You want them coming back for more. And your regular posting also serves as a reminder to them that you are an option they should be considering.

The third and final thing that happens is you get sales leads. This can come in the form of individuals asking questions or making leading comments on your posts, or especially contacting you out of the blue to ask questions. Every week I get someone contacting me out of the blue (I have a Premium subscription on LinkedIn and am Open Profile, which means anyone can send me a free message) and asking me questions, or wanting to know more about my services. Invariably, they will say that they have been reading a ton of my content, or that they have been following me for two years!

Here’s the bad news: it took me over two years to start receiving a steady stream of inquiries which led to business. The good news is that I learned a lot, and I now know that while one or two months is unrealistic to expect lots of results, it sure doesn’t have to take two years.

In summary, posting does work as a lead building strategy on LinkedIn. But your content needs to genuinely help your readers, you need to post regularly, and it will likely take longer than you thought it would.


At Practical SMM, we pride ourselves on delivering highly effective LinkedIn strategies.