Don't read this unless you either
1. Post LinkedIn status updates with some frequency OR
2. You're sick and tired of the folks who think you want to see the same silly brain teaser game over and over in your status update feed or hear about their big year-end sale on the hour every hour for two straight days OR
3. You don't really know how to maximize one of LinkedIn's best marketing features--status updates.
So, what's the #1 LinkedIn rule of thumb I wish everyone followed?
I call it the 6/3/1 Rule.
Simply put, for every ten status updates you post on LinkedIn (no matter over what time frame those posts take place), follow this rule:
Six should be great educational information for your intended audience that you didn't write. This is the stuff you have read from others that resonated with you in your area of expertise.
Three should be great educational information for your intended audience that you or your company authored or created. It could be blog posts, articles, video, checklists, white papers, customer testimonials, "how to" information, product comparisons, or other research that you believe will help your audience.
One can be flat-out promotional, attempting to sell your goods or services.
If you follow this rule, you will be sharing great customer-focused information 90% of the time and directly promoting only 10% of the time.
I work really hard to adhere to this rule out of respect for my network. (And, by the way, if you're not part of my network, you should be!) Then when my network sees a post about the new edition of my book, my upcoming classes, or my LinkedIn consulting, they will probably say, This post doesn't bother me since most of the time Wayne shares great educational information about LinkedIn, and, after all, a guy's gotta make a living.
Using status updates correctly, no matter what social media site you're on, is one of the foundational principles we all need to understand in order to be successful in the new digital marketing world. And the 6/3/1 Rule is particularly important on LinkedIn because it's meant to be a purely professional site.
If you want more concrete examples, I highly recommend Gary Vaynerchuk's new book "Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World." He provides lots of specific examples of how to share social media updates correctly. Although he doesn't specifically mention LinkedIn, many of the concepts are applicable.