LinkedIn, with over 700 million professionals worldwide, presents a unique opportunity for connecting with individuals across various industries and organizations. According to a recent survey by ATE Central, 62% of respondents from the ATE community prefer LinkedIn as a social media platform for outreach, and 56% consider it the most effective platform for sharing out resources and deliverables. To shed light on effective LinkedIn strategies, ATE Central interviewed Samantha Hooker, Senior Marketing Specialist for Evalu-ATE and the Evaluation Center, at Western Michigan University.
Here are some key takeaways:
1. Strategic Shift to LinkedIn:
Evalu-ATE made a deliberate move from Twitter to LinkedIn, driven by a desire for a more professional and aligned platform. Samantha emphasized LinkedIn's potential for reaching a professional audience in the field of evaluation. This shift reflects a strategic move towards a platform that better aligns with project goals and values. Samantha highlights this,
"LinkedIn can actually be a really, really great tool for building community... It's easy to connect with people and it's a really easy platform to use for sharing out information in a professional manner."
2. Content Strategy for Engagement:
Samantha highlighted a thoughtful content strategy for LinkedIn, emphasizing the importance of breaking down information into easily shareable and digestible chunks. By repurposing content from events, reports, and webinars, they maximize the use of resources and provide followers with valuable insights. The strategy includes experimenting with different post formats to gauge audience engagement and adapt accordingly (including using emojis!). Experimenting with content formats and adapting based on audience engagement is key. Check out LinkedIn's tips for best practices to create engaging content.
3. Building Community and Adaptability:
LinkedIn is seen not only as a promotional tool but also as a means to build a community within the evaluation space. Samantha suggested that new projects or centers entering the ATE and NSF community can effectively leverage LinkedIn for community building. Moreover, she emphasized the importance of staying adaptable and responsive, acknowledging that the social media landscape evolves quickly. She encourages engaging with the platform by adhering to strategies that involve planning for the future, continuous learning, adapting to engagement patterns, and exploring new ways to grow your audience and community. Grow your LinkedIn community by checking out ATE Central’s social media directory, which lists project and centers’ LinkedIn pages.
4. Future of Social Media Outreach
In the ever-changing social media landscape, ATE Central asked about the future of social media outreach. Samantha emphasized the importance of staying responsive and adaptable. Testing strategies, learning from them, and being kind to oneself when things don't work out are key aspects of their approach.
"Stay responsive, be adaptable, and be kind to yourself. Not everything will work, but social media, including LinkedIn, is relatively low risk."
LinkedIn is a valuable tool to incorporate into your outreach strategy. By leveraging this platform, your project or center can build relationships, grow your network, and achieve outreach goals. Connect with ATE Central's LinkedIn page to get news and info about the ATE community!