By Alan Young

As a hotel or travel brand, if you’re not focusing your attention on LinkedIn Pulse, you’re missing out on a potentially huge opportunity and audience. In April 2017, LinkedIn reached an impressive milestone, as it confirmed over 500 million people use its professional social network. Yet the platform often doesn’t enjoy the same level of affection nor respect as other, seemingly more trendy networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Today’s consumers and executives, regardless of industry, are looking for transparency, not self-serving promotion. LinkedIn Pulse offers an incredible vehicle to meet this demand by publishing content, which highlights the authentic side of a business with advice and insights from leaders and executives.

LinkedIn’s Place in the Social Media Landscape

Research shows that 89% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to distribute content, more than any other social media platform and second only to email.

However, there’s a more valuable statistic – its effectiveness.

According to LinkedIn, 80% of B2B social media leads come from the platform, with 43% of companies directly sourcing a new customer via this route. A report by the Content Marketing Institute states that 94% of B2B marketers regularly use LinkedIn to distribute content. It is also the most potent lead generator and boasts of a visitor-to-lead ratio that is three times higher than its competitors.

If you want to tap into the power of LinkedIn, one of the best places to focus your attention is where blogging deftly combines with social networking: LinkedIn Pulse. The feature is not available on company pages, however, if your personal account is linked to your business account through your bio, your posts will raise the profile of your company, too.

Pulse is an investment; it will take time and should not be viewed as a quick solution. Experts agree that while your audience for Pulse articles may start small, consistent posting and engagement with relevant groups will inevitably grow your audience and influence.

The Influence of LinkedIn Pulse

Pulse has come a long way since its introduction as an app for Apple’s iPad in 2010. It’s now an easy-to-use interface directly integrated into your LinkedIn newsfeed, which is ideal for publishing long-form content.

Posts appear in the newsfeed of your primary connections and are ranked in Google. However, there’s great potential for increasing your reach beyond your established audience.

Here are six fundamental benefits to engaging the power of LinkedIn Pulse in hotel and travel B2B marketing.

1. You Have a Built-In Audience

It can be difficult to build an audience simply by posting content on your company blog and distributing it across social media channels. Pulse gives you a head start, as your connections and followers automatically receive a notification when you publish, and your article appears directly in their newsfeed. According to LinkedIn, 6 out of every 10 LinkedIn users are interested in industry insights—the most-demanded type of content among LinkedIn members.

However, don’t replace your company blog with Pulse, but use them as complementary platforms, each reaching a different audience.

2. Drives New Visitors to Your Website and Generates Quality Leads

LinkedIn Pulse is the most effective social media platform for driving new visitors to your website. Include a link to your company blog, landing page, or products and services pages in your post, as an easy route to your site. LinkedIn’s a business-focused network, so readers are actively looking for information and are naturally more likely to engage. Include a clear CTA in your content to nudge them in the right direction.

3. It’s Excellent for SEO

The fact that each article you publish on LinkedIn Pulse is automatically ranked by Google, combined with its impressive ability at sending new visitors to your website, means Pulse is a highly effective part of your SEO strategy. Plus, because the platform experiences such high volumes of traffic, your Pulse posts are highly likely to have a natural boost in the SERPs.

4. Showcases Your Professional Expertise & Thought Leaderships

The more authority your business demonstrates, the more sought after your services will be. In fact, thought leadership led to 41% of C-Suite executives including a company in an RFP opportunity and more than half of C-Suite decision makers have lost respect and admiration for an organization because of its poor thought leadership content.

By regularly publishing rich, long-form content discussing industry news and educational articles, you’re positioning yourself as a thought leader in your field and building credibility for your brand.

Focus your attention on topics you specialize in, and always write with your target audience in mind. But don’t just hit publish and walk away. Hang around to reply to comments, answer questions and comment on other relevant posts, and participate in LinkedIn Groups. It’s all helps to cement your reputation.

5. Increases Brand Awareness, Credibility & Trust

Different social media networks attract slightly different audiences, and many companies will focus their attention on one or two networks. By publishing to LinkedIn Pulse, you have yet another opportunity to distribute your content and increase your brand visibility and builds credibility. You’ll reach a much wider audience, build influence, and have an advantage over your competitors that don’t use the platform effectively.

Maximize impact by promoting your LinkedIn content to your email list, join relevant LinkedIn groups to share your posts with, cross-post to other networks, and ask your readers to share/like/comment on your content for an extra boost.

6. Provides Useful Analytics

LinkedIn provides us with lots of useful analytics, such as who visits our profiles and reads our Pulse posts. You get some nifty metrics, including a demographic breakdown of your audience and details of those who read, liked, shared and commented on your posts. Depending on the type of LinkedIn account you have, you can add these people to your contact list. If they’ve interacted with your content a handful of times, reach out to them. You could gain a new customer.

77% of B2B marketers plan to increase their use of LinkedIn in the future. Strategic use of LinkedIn Pulse can elevate your company’s marketing plan to the next level, with dramatic results for your business. With 50% of LinkedIn members reporting they’re more likely to buy from a company they engage with on the platform, it could be a game changer for your social media marketing strategy.

Are you using LinkedIn as part of your marketing strategy? If so, please share what’s working and what isn’t @AlanEYoung.