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Richard Moore

Richard Moore is a conversion coach who specializes in helping clients convert on LinkedIn from their content.

Video Content

Convert Content To Customers, Part 1

Are you a creative business owner looking to leverage LinkedIn to its fullest potential? In this episode, we’re bringing a conversation that Chris had with Richard Moore on LinkedIn, earlier this year, to the podcast. Richard is a LinkedIn guru, who’s goal is to help users find and develop clients on one of the most active social sites on the web. In Richard’s words “Everyone you’ll do work with is here… Basically, anyone in B to B, who might buy your services, they’re here”. Chris and Richard will explore the importance of understanding user needs and discuss strategies for creating content that positions you as an expert in the eyes of your customers. They’ll also discuss how to attract and engage your target audience, and learn valuable insights on how to stand out from the crowd with compelling copy and unique approaches. This is the first part of a two part conversation, so make sure you join us for the rest of the conversation in the next episode.

Convert Content To Customers, Part 1

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Nov 15

Convert Content To Customers, Part 1

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Create Curiosity, Then Convert

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Are you a creative business owner looking to leverage LinkedIn to its fullest potential? In this episode, we’re bringing a conversation that Chris had with Richard Moore on LinkedIn, earlier this year, to the podcast. Richard is a LinkedIn guru, who’s goal is to help users find and develop clients on one of the most active social sites on the web. In Richard’s words “Everyone you’ll do work with is here… Basically, anyone in B to B, who might buy your services, they’re here”. Chris and Richard will explore the importance of understanding user needs and discuss strategies for creating content that positions you as an expert in the eyes of your customers. They’ll also discuss how to attract and engage your target audience, and learn valuable insights on how to stand out from the crowd with compelling copy and unique approaches. This is the first part of a two part conversation, so make sure you join us for the rest of the conversation in the next episode.

Stewart Schuster

Stewart Schuster is a Writer, Director, Camera Operator, and Editor. He is a graduate of Watkins College of Art & Design in Nashville, TN. He loves making and watching films.

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Create Curiosity, Then Convert

Episode Transcript

Richard Moore:

Just a bunch of likes or profile views doesn't convert to money. You have to at some point, come down from your throne and engage with the individual and what better person to engage with than someone who's on their own terms, consciously engaging with what you have to say and do online.

Chris Do:

So we're talking about how to use LinkedIn if you run a creative business, we love to make content. It makes us feel good and it's about learning how to use our voice and to articulate our ideas, but we also have to run a business and pay some bills. So how do we get from content to clients? So Richard, how do you want to structure today's conversation?

Richard Moore:

I think really there's so many angles we can go at this, but I think it'd be really good to give a bit of a primer, maybe both of us, we could do that, give a bit of a primer and a sense of the way we see this and then we can pick that apart and start getting into some tactical, actual, practical things that people can be doing because there is a narrative that many follow, which is, "Well, if I just post more and perhaps I get more followers and views, then maybe everything will just sort out, sort itself out." But then we can go deeper and then perhaps we can go to a third phase of questions from the audience as well. If that sounds good?

Chris Do:

That sounds great. So I'm going to give a brief introduction to who I am in case you don't know me. My name is Chris Do and I'm a loud introvert, recovering graphic designer, and I create lots and lots of content. In my previous life I made commercials and music videos for a living. Somewhere in 2014, I began this adventure of creating content, finding my voice and my purpose in the process and somehow have been able to amass a decent size following on multiple social platforms.

Now, my take on all this Richard, is probably going to be a little different than everyone else. My theory on the content game is this. If I could design a solution for you that was so elegant and sleek and hand you this magic silver bullet, you would shoot once and you get all the clients that you would want and you would get none of the fans or any other stuff. But I don't want to do that.

So all I do is I create content, I try to give value, and my strategy, my approach is create so much value that eventually I'm going to reach my target audience and they're going to sell themselves for me. I won't have to ask because they will just show up and they will be happy to give me opportunities that I didn't even know existed. Now maybe that's not super strategic, but that's how I approach it. What about you, Richard?

Richard Moore:

It's so interesting this because I really hope people see the value of us coming at this originally from different angles. So my story is that I did 10 years corporate in sales. So I don't have a background in marketing, or design, or brand and certainly not content. I was the guy knocking on doors, cold calling and 20 years ago selling internet marketing just after burst. So it was really interesting time and my background's very much what actions convert. But what's interesting is that first decade was all about cold outreach and what I love is what you've described there, which is the pure warm inbound approach, which is actually a wonderful place to be as a creative because if you get it right, people essentially sell themselves. And we'll go into detail in this tonight and there's always that sales director in me this thinking, what actions would elegantly take that audience member to decide that actually now's the right time to jump rather than holding out for them to eventually sell themselves with no direct input from us? So hopefully between the two of us that can really help.

Chris Do:

Yes, I think so. We have a very different approach and I love that you bring this experience this background with cold outreach and then figuring out the most efficient way and reward you for the actions that you take that actually convert. I'm a big believer in don't think transactionally, think transformational. And so we'll go back and forth, but really people didn't tune in today to hear me talk about how to create content and get no business. They're really here, they want to learn from you. I'll pause there and throw it back over to you.

Richard Moore:

Thanks so much. Yeah, I think that's really important if everyone wants the background in the nutshell was that I dyed a thousand deaths through pitching, and pitching, and pitching and over the phone, in person through email, all these things, and it's all about the words that work and make the difference. And I think what's really exciting about LinkedIn, if you look at where it's grown, and this is a big opportunity we should perhaps start with for everyone to get clear on this today, in the year 2022, the usage of this platform raised by over 20%. So that's people spending time on here. There's some gorgeous stats it's getting on for a billion users now, everyone you'll do work with is here. Something like 41% of all millionaires are on LinkedIn and basically anyone certainly in B2B that you're going to do business with who might buy your services. For those of you listening, they're here.

So if we've got this opportunity where they're here, the question is what does selling through content actually look like? Because my kind manifesto is that I want to be able to enter a week knowing that I might want leads or conversions and know which actions I can take to actually craft that outcome. As opposed to if I just do content, perhaps something will work out because what that latter approach may well require is for me to have a massive buzz from my content and loads of people showing up for me so I can effectively win just through sheer volume. And in my opinion, that can be a dangerous approach. And I'm speaking now specifically to those of you listening who are maybe starting out, or solopreneurs, or maybe a freelancer working on your own. It's kind of scary to think, to follow the narrative of, well, do you know what, maybe if I have 100,000 followers, everyone will buy... I'll get some people buying from me.

Far better I think is to think to ourselves, "What do I do with the six likes? What do I do with the 17 people that looked at my profile, and what do I do to get more of that in the first place?" But then also what cues to look out for. So Chris, if I may, what I'm going to do is give a sense of what my process actually is, super quick, the kind of content I do, how I then look out for the people who might be interested and then what I do from there, if that helps?

Chris Do:

That sounds great. I'm taking notes.

Richard Moore:

Cool. So I'm going to nerd out a bit later on everyone about, I was on the phone to LinkedIn literally this week about all of the things you should be doing and things you shouldn't be doing, the tactical and technical ways of using the platform. But let's start with what does the journey of the user need to look like? And we need to have this awareness of, right, if you've got these people cold-ish and passively scrolling and thumbing through their newsfeed, what do we need to do to stop them? And this is why now is the gorgeous time for creatives because we have all the tools on LinkedIn that we didn't have many years ago, so it's no longer just a status update and a document. You have the ability to bring visuals, so video, animated gifs, carousels, things like that. And little me with my team doing the graphics and so on, I'm able to create millions of views organically each year because a very generous algorithm for the kind of content that just stimulates.

So I'll go into detail in terms of the kind of content that really works in a minute, but basically, what I'm always saying to myself is if I have an audience who is potentially able to buy, what I need first is for them to see me in the right light. So position in their minds as the right kind of person for them I want to be seen as, and the way I call it is their expert. So to do that, I need to be thinking the kind of content that will make them see me in the right light is partly about me and partly about my values and my journey, but really leaning into displaying and projecting that I'm their expert. I'm the guy that knows my stuff well. Now, as we all know, there's plenty of people doing similar things to all of us. So how do you stand out for the crowd?

Well, the good news is you've got humans involved in this game and humans, people like them, it's about their tribe and so on. And so what you find is that you have people who dig you despite someone else maybe being superior, better looking, more experienced. They might like you just because of your vibe. Some people don't like you, that's cool. There's someone for them as well. So you can really kind of be yourself. But what we do need to recognize, and this is kind of your first note to take down, is that content's been a thing now in social selling for several years, right? It is 2023 now. And so you really should try and bring your A game. And what I mean by that is, and I'm speaking to a bunch of creatives who are probably far more capable than me, but if I'm going to put an asset, a visual, a carousel on my post, it needs to pop, it needs to look good, and I need to recognize that there are creatives out there who could probably do a better job than me if that's not my sweet spot.

So get help, look at what great content looks like and borrow from that, because if you come across as entry level, the perception will be is that you are entry level. So here's your first kind of crucial part. The first pillar is content sure. How are we going to attract people and stop their scroll? Well, of course we need to have that kind of hook either visual or in the text, ideally both. So as creatives and as designers, or as people who really understand that world, what is it that stops the scroll? And that's something we really need to get our heads into and certainly the supporting text, the copy, needs to make people think, "Now this thing's different." And what I'm looking for when I'm writing my content, again, this is the big takeaway, the thing that's working for me best is asking myself, "How do I get this audience to look at me and think, this guy just came up with a really interesting way of looking at the problem I have."

So I've started with what their frustrations might be and what their issues may be, and I'm showing awareness that I get it. But what I also might be doing is saying, "You know how you all think this? Right here is the problem and how you fix it. And everyone's saying these are the solutions, but you know how it's not probably working? Perhaps you need to do this as well." And so I'm trying to show them that I'm thinking higher and have a new, or a different, or more interesting way of approaching things. And that approach has worked really well here because it's made people think to themselves, "Do you know what? I didn't look at it that way." So let's look at an example of how I do that. So I help people convert from their content, so I give them the tactics that help them achieve that end goal.

So a lot of the message that I put across in my content will beat the drum of you know how you are told to just pump out content and more followers, and more likes, and more reach, and more profile views will help. Well, it doesn't work like that. You also need to consider conversion. And what I'm doing is I'm saying all the people you are hearing are telling you to go just make content and get more reach. But I'm over here saying, actually it's conversion to focus on. And what's happening is people are saying to themselves, "You know what? I'm fed up now. I'm frustrated with just being told to do more content or doing another course because it helps me get more followers. What I want instead is to actually learn how to convert."

And so I'm trying to be distinct and I want all of you to think what's the thing for me that everyone seems to be saying they should be doing, but actually that missing that one thing and that's the sweet spot. That's the thing I help them with. And you need to talk about that. And it's been five years pretty much every day that I beat the drum in different angles about how I help with this and it's anecdotes, or it's new tactics, or it's a different view of things or it's a reframe on someone's perspective and every day just bringing that consistent content really, really helps.

So once I've got these people in orbit and showing intrigue, now I need to be really open with myself and thinking, "Who are the people I want to target?" So I should have already got that, who are the kind of job titles or the kind of people I'm targeting? And what's essential is I start looking for where these people are. Now here's the good news. A lot of people think, "Well, I don't get any leads, Richard, because I'm there looking at my inbox and no one's sending me any messages saying, Hi, can I buy your product please?"

But the good news is, is there's actually more subtle occurrences of leads elsewhere and I think you really should be aware of this. So, the first place I'm looking every day is my profile views. And this is crucial because in terms of buyer behavior, a human who is cold who sees your content isn't ready to hop on a call straight away, but if you are able to create some curiosity, if they're going to say to themselves, "Hey, that's a cool post that's different. This person came up with something interesting and stimulating." You can all imagine. The next act is, "Who is this guy?" And they click on the button. "Richard Moore, who's this Richard guy?" The human animal at that moment is thinking to themselves, "Is this guy an idiot? Is he just like everyone else? Or hang on, might he have something?" So in terms of the buyer journey, I've taken them from content to profile and LinkedIn logs that you don't get that on Instagram, you get that right here. You have the person, when they looked at your profile, their job title and so on.

So now I've got this moment where someone's actually taken a small step in my direction. Now some people get really excited here because the next step they might think is, Well, I can send them a templated message with a Calendly link, right? Because they looked at me." So that's wrong. What we need to do is nurture this person. So with content, if we're getting enough interest, enough traffic from that original attention to our profile, we can do one of two things. One is we can engage with the people who looked at our profile, and we can send them a message and I can go through some wording in a second, but what we can also do is receive them in the right way with a well optimized profile. So it's some tiny percentage of LinkedIn users who have switched their profile to the new style called a creator mode.

So if anyone is not using that, you should be switching your profile to creator mode and it basically sets you up a lot more for business on LinkedIn as opposed to, I would say probably for job search. And what we've got now is the opportunity to put things like featured links on, a URL to a landing page and to take that journey even further. So simply by putting on, for instance, one of my products underneath my name on my profile in a URL, I'm getting this traffic from this content and people are clicking through and that's how they are serving themselves, and going onto my landing pages, and buying maybe the smaller products and things like that. But simultaneously, I am looking and I'm thinking, "Now there's an interesting person today who just looked at my profile." And I'll be able to send them a message.

So pen's out, here's the message I actually send people I write, I'm going to pretend it's Chris. "Hey Chris, I just wanted to say thanks so much for checking out my profile today." So see how human I'm being? And I'm acknowledging the thing that just happened, so I'm not trying to find some contrived commonality. "Hey Chris, I see that you are in Europe soon. That's cool. Or I see that you are in creative design. That's interesting." It's not really that exciting. I'm looking at what I call present commonality, the thing he just did and I'm calling that, I'm calling that out and he'll be like, "Yes, that's what I did." The message is, "Hey Chris, I saw you just looked at my profile. I just want to say thanks so much for checking it out. Out of interest, is there anything that caught your eye? Richard."

You see that I'm being human, I'm acknowledging what he did. I'm not approaching him. He approached me first and then crucially, I'm asking him a question because more important than anything is that I stimulate a response here. And the way you all need to do this is you simply go to that person's profile if they feel right, you hit connect, do this on the website, not on the app. If you do it on the website, it then says, "Do you want to send a note?" And you can literally send what I've just described. You have up to 300 characters, nice and concise and always these people are like, yeah, accept the connection note. "Hey Richard, yeah, it was interesting to check you out earlier." Now if I did that five times a day or eight times a day, I'm telling you because I've done it, that has been the single most successful way to make hundreds of thousands of dollars of course sales and consulting, and coaching deals, over the last five years, specifically through LinkedIn.

But the good news is that you can call one buckets of leads, the profile views, but you can also do the same with for instance, the people who liked your post. "Hey Chris, thanks so much for liking my post. I really appreciate it. Just out of interest, why did you decide to do that?" Or with a connection request, if someone sends me a connection request, "Hey Chris, just wanted to say thanks so much for sending a connection request. What made you decide to do that?" I'm starting the conversation in a way that they'll be happy to or it'll feel reasonable for them to continue.

Or a really awesome one is I run a poll and a poll is gorgeous on LinkedIn because basically every time someone votes LinkedIn classes that as a comment and a comment algorithmically gives the post a bit of a kick. So I did a poll the other day and it got something like 600 votes because this whole thing hit this flywheel and it was going crazy. But the beautiful thing about that is when I see the people who voted, because it will list all the people who voted, I can go to their profiles. "Hey Chris, I saw you voted in my poll this morning. Thanks so much. Out of interest, what made you decide to vote for, I'm struggling with leads on LinkedIn?"

And what we're doing here all the time is we're starting conversation in a way that's not cringe. And you can use your own wording, you can evolve that as you wish, but you can see my point of view. I'm approaching these people and talking about the thing that they did.

Now imagine the difference between that and doing a list through search of people who might be good targets or, okay, here's a bunch of CEOs, I could target them or here's some creative directors. I could target them and then sending them completely cold, a message of your own saying, "Hi, sorry to disturb. I know you're busy or I know we don't know each other, but here's the thing I could help you with." The positioning is far better when they came in your direction.

So the content is the gravity that's your top of funnel that brings people in. Then what we want to do is the DM moment, and we take them through a process which I can go to detail in a bit if we wish, and then we want to pop out the other side and organize our call. We want to move it to like, "Okay, well why don't we get on a call and discuss a bit further." But we are looking out for cues in terms of them saying, "Yeah, I'd like to learn a bit more."

The thing you've got to remember, and this is me knowing sales very well, is that not everyone will bite. Not everyone's on LinkedIn all the time. I think it's only something like 16% of users are active every day. But what you've got here is an opportunity to maybe do that five to eight times a day and everyone has time for five to eight times a day if that potentially is a four or five figure a month client, or a retainer, or something like that.

So what we want to do is say if I do it four to five times a day, not 50, four to five, and perhaps if three of them bite, and show an interest and open up, well now we can take it to the next stage. So this is very manual. What I'm trying to accommodate here is with great content, you draw a crowd who naturally look at your profile and if you know user experience well enough, you'll know that it's wise to signpost where they should go next. So maybe your website or maybe they should get in touch, or maybe there's a landing page you could put in the featured links on the profile.

But when you see someone, and this is just good salesmanship, when you see someone who stepped in your direction, you've just earned the right to reach out and get in touch. And I'm speaking to all of those people. This includes myself, who class themselves as the introverts, maybe the ones who get a bit of anxiety about being around other people. I certainly have that and I always have. But when I see that someone has looked at me first or has done something in my direction, I don't feel so nervous about reaching out and connecting with them. If you love the thrill of the cold outreach, good for you. But I know so many people want to avoid that style of selling, and so it's essential to have this in mind instead.

Stewart Schuster:

Time for a quick break, but we'll be right back.

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Stewart Schuster:

Welcome back to our conversation.

Chris Do:

Is it time for us to talk about the kinds of content that are more likely to get hits, Richard?

Richard Moore:

Yeah, why don't we do that? And you'll like this next comment. When I employed a designer to take the lead and tell me to close down and log out of Canva, and build from using Photoshop and Premier for the videos and just bring real talent, the step change and I'm talking step change was unbelievable. Even now, whenever I post a carousel, I get people sending me a message every day, without question. I get messages saying things like, "Your creative side, so your carousels, your gifts, your videos, they're unreal, they're blowing my mind. They're crazy good." And when you and Chris really nailed that point, when you appear premium, and by the way, you should be good at your job ideally, that should always be something you work on. But when you appear premium through the lens through which these people are looking at you, well then they think you are.

And that's really powerful. And if you appear amateur with weak graphics, you get treated in that way as well. And again, it's 2023 now. Everyone's stepping up and everyone is aware that you can even get cheap half good-looking graphics. So you need to bring that real creativity. It was insane. The step-up was crazy and people I'm talking about now, the people in the past who wouldn't really do much, they're stepping forward. The people who have the bigger budgets, the people who want to work with premium talent, who recognize that probably there may be going to cost a bit more, they are the leads that start coming through instead. And really the visual and the way I position in people's minds has made such a difference there. I know I'm probably preaching to a lot of converted people on that point.

So let's get really tactical now and I'm just going to give direct advice in terms of types of posts. So pens out, this is important. You can do loads of types of posts and with anything, if you do them really well, you tend to do well, you tend to do fine. So when I'm giving this in order in terms of posts that really convert and do well or formats that pump up an audience and make them love it, it doesn't mean the others are no good, it just means they tend to not do as well.

Let's start at the top. The type of content on LinkedIn that tends to get the best distribution, so it goes to the most people compared to other posts, is a carousel that is uploaded as a document. So when I go to post, I do text as copy. So I write my copy to support the post and I upload a PDF document and it is called a document file. And this one gets the most views, it's the most engaging, and it capitalizes on one of the crucial elements that the algorithm looks for, which is dwell time. Because if you can imagine if I've got seven to eight slides, people are spending more time with that piece of content. So it gives that piece of content a bit more of a pump.

The carousel itself is an option too. So just to be really clear, you can post a PDF carousel. It is called a document post that was originally for white papers and company documents. You can also do a carousel, which is much more Instagram like, which would be uploaded individual graphic files and videos to make up a carousel that way. That latter one does not perform nearly as well. It's essentially classed as a video. I'll cover that in a sec.

So top of the tree is carousels. Next in line, and here's where it's really exciting. This is changed in the last six months, Chris. So if we had this session six months ago, I would've been saying, "Next up is text only, which has been an absolute rocket." However, what's overtaking it now is image and text. So obviously you need a good image, the selfies or a good quality image of yourself, not some kind of stock photo that doesn't feel authentic, but a really well produced image file. So a photo and image uploaded as a PNG or a JPEG, that is crazy good, right now, it's really performing well. And you can add in that bracket in that particular type of post, an animated GIF file. And when I do those, they really raw, they really do well. So if anyone wants to check out my content, you can scroll through the posts and you can see examples of what's worked well.

So the document style carousels at the top, you've got the image and text coming second, then I would put text only third because a lot of people on LinkedIn aren't there for all these visuals. It is still that classically business led platform and that's perhaps why text only does so well.

Coming next after that, you probably find that polls are really worth doing. You may not find that polls get crazy reach all the time, but what you will find is that you get a load of people voting for different options and you can imagine how you can use that to segment the audience into people who might need help with something or how are struggling with a thing based on what other options you give them.

Other things in play here are video and sorry for those who focus on video, video is fine, but you will tend to get poorer reach. Also, distribution views or impressions is far lower compared to the other posts, but engagement tends to be okay. If I was to do an article or a newsletter so longer form beyond 3,000 characters, they really don't do great. So you need a lot of momentum, everyone loving you for those to be posted and personally, I don't really bother. I would say that's not really worth it.

There's also live-streaming as well. And really for me that language is quite far down. Some people do great in it and let's always remember it's not the volume of people always, it's who is watching and are you stimulating them enough to then drive them to maybe take an action. So that's really essential to get that clear. And I would be saying to people, "If you are going to say do five posts in a week, I would be doing one carousel. So well-designed carousel post. You can see one of mine this week for instance, I'd be doing one to two text posts. I'd be doing an image post or maybe switching that, maybe two images and one text and I'd do a poll."

And between that I'd be gathering a good audience, I'd be stimulating conversation and I'd be able to get people putting their hands up, for instance, through the poll saying, "Yeah, I need more help with this or I want my help with that." And that together is this really good cluster of variety. And I think there's a mistake in doing literally the same thing every time. So if I do only carousels every day or only video every day, it's surprising how your audience can start feeling like it's kind of wallpaper and you start fading away. So just remember that you need keep switching it up because not everyone who's going to buy in your audience will want to consume a particular type of content.

One thing to be aware of is the conventional rules apply for just like we need a strong title in a YouTube video or we need a great first line in an Instagram post, or something visually that hooks people. It's no different here. It's the same human animals here and so we need a great hook.

But crucially, the second line of a post is then cut off where it says, "See more." Is technically the third line. So this is just a bit of detail for you. The first line of your post, first line of text should hook them. Simple eye-grabbing thing to say that makes them stop that scroll and pattern interrupt them.

But when you've grabbed them, your next line, I would do a line break for readability. And then the third line needs to be a really strong tease to make them click on, see more because now, see more when they click on that to open up the post, that also contributes algorithmically to that post being viewed more. So if you are doing a two liner post, you are missing out on that opportunity there. So I want people clicking on see more.

Then of course you've got your body, you need to give your anecdote, you get people roused by your idea. And then what you want you to always think about at the end is a call to action or a call to feel. So a call to action is what's your opinion? Have you experienced this? Or it might be a little bit more lead magnet led. So if you want to learn more, comment this and I'll share my lead magnet. You don't call it that. You say what it is or you might do a call to feel. Now, a call to feel is something that's really working well on LinkedIn, I'm presuming elsewhere as well, is when someone reads a post of yours and they think to themselves, "Oh wow, that's really touched me. I feel like that person is speaking to me. They just get me."

And when you have that, they tend to want, they kind of feel compelled to write something. And you know when you get that right, because in the comments you get paragraphs written, people stop their day to write stuff, and the best form of call to feel to end your post is something of a mic drop. So imagine if you're going to do a mic drop, so some profound thing that draws it all together and leaves it just there. That's your call to feel. And that works incredibly well to get people to think, "Wow, that really has touched me."

So they're your types of content. There's other things here and there you can try, but that's really crucial. And I want to give a bit of inside knowledge that's come out of LinkedIn as well, Chris, give people here the real bleeding edge stuff. Things are changing slightly in terms of the kind of content that's going to be pushed more. What I mean by that, it's some types of content that maybe are going to be given a greater waiting, which means more of a boost and shared with more people, is the kind of content that's much more focused on ideas, insights, and inspiration, and trends and skills, and advice. And LinkedIn has used language, I've been sent an email about this. They've been using language like things that can tangibly help others. So that kind of content, they're subtly pushing a bit more now, and my theory, I haven't got this confirmed, but my theory is it's a response to a large group of content that's being produced that is not providing tangible help, or skills, or tips in business to other professionals. It's more sentimental only or just a thought about someone's life, which is noble and valuable in and of itself.

But LinkedIn I think is trying to maintain this essence of our platform needs to be one where we are helping professionals, starting conversations with them about tactics and advice and being that much more practically led rather than perhaps post I'm trying to be diplomatic, but perhaps post that a bit more wistful and emotionally led. If people know what I'm talking about, that may be more pushback on that because other platforms kind of do that and they want to stay in lane with being this kind of useful platform that tangibly helps people that's their language. So bear that in mind in terms of the messages you're going to put in the crossing the content. So this should hopefully give you something of a framework of the type of post to be putting out there.

And I just want to speak before we take things next bit, I want to speak momentarily about calls to action because this is where I'm getting people stepping forward and saying, "Hey, yes, I love this stuff. I'd like to learn a bit more. Please." The science of a call to action has to be understood. And what you need to do to understand that is understand the state of that person when they're consuming your content. The state is not typically, "Take my money, I'm here with my credit card. It's I'm browsing through content, I'm indifferent to most of it. And oh, Richard seems to have posted something that catches my eye." Okay, so that's their state. So a call to action that says something like, "Hey, why don't you get in touch with me and we can grab a call." Tends to light up parts of the brain in that audience member that fills them with social anxiety. "Oh, wouldn't that be cringe if we got on a call?" They might think, or "Is he going to try and sell to me?" Or "I don't want to do that."

And of course then they take the easy route of, I'll just ignore that. So your call to action has to be far subtler. And I test this all the time and I find that the best calls to action really to get people to step forward are really low pressure, both in wording but also in what you are giving them. So if you say, "Write me this comment and I will share, or I will send you three more tips that can help." Not, "I'll send you a link where you can opt in and give me your email address." Because of course that scares them off. "Hey, I might end up being on an email list now." And not everyone's ready for that. And there's another place where you might do that. But what we want to do instead is say "It's cool, it's low pressure, I'm going to give you a little bit of a taste or something extra and you just get to have it and that's it."

And I remember so many times doing this and I would say words to that effect, and within an hour you get 30 people sending you a message or writing in the comments, "Yes, please, I'd like that too." And so then you send them this thing. But now look, what you've got is very similar to when someone stepped in your direction and looked at your profile, like I said earlier. Instead, we've got someone who's requested just a bit more information in the form of some extra value. Maybe it's a carousel you've produced, or maybe it's a cheat sheet in a one-page PDF, or whatever it might be. But that's worked so well because now I can get in touch and say, "Hey Chris, here's the information you asked for. I'd love to know what part really stands out for you?" Because what I want is that person to not just look at it but also have in mind that it would be great to respond back with, "Oh, this bit in particular was really useful."

And then I can jump in and say, "Well, thanks for sharing. Why did that bit stand out?" And now we are isolating the bit that stands out, which tends to represent something to do with what their needs are. And now we've got a really fun conversation that can take us towards exploring working together.

So what's really interesting about calls to action is sometimes we want to write it in the post at the end, right? However, I know a lot of people listening will be thinking, "But if I write this great post that has great emotional reaction or stimulates this audience, then I put a call to action at the end of it, doesn't that feel a little bit like I've suddenly slapped this sales sign at the bottom of it?" Well, if you are elegant enough, that doesn't tend to happen. But if you feel that is the case and you don't want to, for want of a better phrase, you don't want to spoil your mic drop moment at the end of a post with the text you've written.

So instead, write a comment. So you post and then you put your call to action in a comment. And here's what I wanted to share. My number one tip for calls to action, which is if you are going to put a call to action in a comment so people who loved your posts then indulge and go into the comments after and see what you've written. I've found the best ones are when I've actually written a long form comment. So I'll write something like, "Let's add some more detail. Let me go into more depth for you on what I've talked about today, and I'll give you even more of a sermon." And you can write up to 1,250 characters there.

So I can really go crazy. And embedded in that big comment and that big extra commentary for the people who are really wanting to geek out on it. I'll also have in there, and that's why I run my LinkedIn client accelerator, and if you want to learn more, you can get in touch. Now, you might think, "Now no one's going to read that, Richard." But in fact, they do. Some of them do, and they're the ones who love the post and want to stick around for more and are warming themselves up. So I'm just trying to make you all aware that these are the people we want to nurture and keep them sticking around. And again, you can see that the ones that read the post, then read that comment, then maybe get in touch or even just like it, they're people we should be reaching out to.

So every day, what we are creating to draw this together, we're creating this ball of great energy, this gravity that draws people to us in orbit around our content. And we are looking for these moments where someone lights up and says, "Hey, I'm going to look at you. I'm going to look at your profile. I'm going to engage in the content. I'm going to do something." And they are the people for that morning or that afternoon that we can engage with rather than, "Who shall I reach out today?" Or even worse, "Maybe someone will reach out to me." Instead, it's, "There's six people in the last hour who have done something in my direction. So let's capitalize on that intent to check us out more. Let's leverage that curiosity and move it to a conversation." Because just a bunch of likes or profile views doesn't convert to money. You have to at some point come down from your throne and engage with the individual. If you ever expect someone to give you a five figure sum for your design services for a project this month or something like that, well you need to have some kind of dialogue with that person and what better person to engage with than someone who's on their own terms, consciously engaging with what you have to say and do online.

Stewart Schuster:

Thanks for joining us. If you haven't already, subscribe to our show on your favorite podcasting app and get a new insightful episode from us every week. The Future Podcast is hosted by Krista and produced by me, Stewart Schuster. Thank you to Anthony Barrow for editing and mixing this episode. And thank you to Adam Sanborn for our intro music.

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