Hala Taha: Your Secret Weapon, How Leveraging LinkedIn Can Grow Your Brand and Generate Leads | The Goal Digger
Hala Taha: Your Secret Weapon, How Leveraging LinkedIn Can Grow Your Brand and Generate Leads | The Goal Digger
Jenna Kutcher is an expert on online marketing, the host of the successful podcast The Goal Digger, and the author of the recent book, How Are You, Really? Jenna believes that we crave lives of fulfillment, not just advancement, and we can achieve that by investing in ourselves and in our dreams.
In this episode, Hala and Jenna will discuss:
– How Hala landed big guests on YAP as a new podcaster
– Step 1 of building a strong LinkedIn following
– The best types of content to post on LinkedIn
– How to create skimmable content
– The formula for engaging and educational posts
– What keywords should you use in your posts?
– Ways to be more likable and approachable in the DMs
– Building a personal brand on LinkedIn
– And other topics…
Jenna Kutcher is a small-town Minnesota girl obsessed with all things marketing who turned a $300 Craigslist camera into a seven-figure empire. At 23, she took a chance and left her corporate job to pursue full-time entrepreneurship, starting with a wedding photography business and branching out into online marketing advice. Jenna now works with creative entrepreneurs on how to build profitable, sustainable, and authentic businesses, and is a successful social media influencer. She is best known as the presenter of the podcast The Goal Digger for aspiring entrepreneurs and is the bestselling author of How Are You, Really? (2022).
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[00:00:00] Hala Taha: What's going on, young improfiters? I am super excited for today's episode because we're replaying my appearance on the Gold Digger podcast with Jenna Kutcher.
[00:00:21] Hala Taha: I was so excited to go on this podcast. It is such a big show.
[00:00:24] Hala Taha: And the host of the show, Jenna, is the ultimate entrepreneur slash mom.
[00:00:28] Hala Taha: She runs a seven figure business and her podcast. The Gold Digger podcast has over a hundred million downloads. It was such an honor to go on her show.
[00:00:37] Hala Taha: And I actually just recently interviewed Jenna on YAP. So if you haven't heard that episode, it was awesome.
[00:00:42] Hala Taha: It's number 242 And I highly recommend you check it out
[00:00:45] Hala Taha: after today's episode.
[00:00:47] Hala Taha: And by the way, Jenna Kutcher just joined my podcast network, the Yap Media Podcast Network, which is the number one business and self improvement podcast network.
[00:00:56] Hala Taha: So
[00:00:56] Hala Taha: I'm so happy to have Jenna joining our family.
[00:00:59] Hala Taha: Today, Jenna and I are talking about all things LinkedIn from using keywords to copywriting, to building a content strategy.
[00:01:05] Hala Taha: We'll also talk about how to sell in the DMs and build your personal brand on LinkedIn to generate more leads for your business.
[00:01:11] Hala Taha: And if you want to dive in further with LinkedIn
[00:01:14] Hala Taha: sign up for my LinkedIn secrets masterclass.
[00:01:16] Hala Taha: Our next session is December 13th and 14th,
[00:01:19] Hala Taha: and you can go to yapmedia. io slash course
[00:01:22] Hala Taha: Again, that's yapmedia. io slash course, and you can use code podcast for 30 percent off
[00:01:27] Hala Taha: Without further ado, enjoy my conversation with the lovely Jenna Kutcher on the Gold Digger podcast.
[00:01:36] Jenna Kutcher: Well, this feels like an absolute delight. I am so excited to finally connect with you. One thing that I love is when I see other women at the top of the charts. I have been cheering you on. And so welcome to the show.
[00:01:50] Hala Taha: Oh, thank you so much, Jenna. I'm so excited for this conversation.
[00:01:53] Jenna Kutcher: So I know a little bit about your story, but for those who might not know, can you tell me a little bit about your career journey that's led you to where you are today and where you are today?
[00:02:03] Jenna Kutcher: Because all of this is so fascinating.
[00:02:06] Hala Taha: Sure.
[00:02:06] Hala Taha:
[00:02:07] Hala Taha: I started my career in radio about 10 years ago when I was a junior in college, I interned for the Angie Martinez show on Hot 97, which was the number one hip hop and R and B station. And I basically interned for three years at the radio station to understand how production works, radio works. At the same time, I had online radio shows, which was the precursor of podcasts.
[00:02:30] Hala Taha: Podcasts were technically available, but they're really complicated. And a lot of people were doing online radio shows. So I'd host like music based entertainment shows with the up and coming DJs at Hot 97 on the side. And I used to make my money selling like hip hop showcases and hosting like parties that night with all the DJs.
[00:02:48] Hala Taha: And so I did that for three years. actually ended up dropping out of school because, you know, they wanted me to keep working more and more at the station and I started doing commercials at the station and working on the weekends for them and learning the Dilette boards and running the whole music program and everything like that.
[00:03:03] Hala Taha: And so I eventually wanted to get paid. And you know, that rubbed Hot 97 a bit the wrong way.
[00:03:10] Hala Taha: Long story short, I got fired. And I felt like my whole identity was taken away from me. I felt like, you know, I was hanging out with celebrities. I was dating Chris Brown at one point. Like, I was, you know, it was like my whole identity was crushed. And everybody basically blackballed me from Hot 97.
[00:03:26] Hala Taha: Because once you're sort of out, you're out. And some people were like, Lay low. Maybe Angie will forgive you. I didn't. I thought of a new idea. And I was like, sort of wanted to get revenge. So I got fired on a Thursday. by Sunday, I had a new idea and I was going to start this thing called the Sorority of Hip Hop.
[00:03:43] Hala Taha: And it was going to be a blog. Blogs were super hot at the time. And so I went on Twitter. I had a big following on Twitter at the time. I went on Craigslist and I started recruiting girls. And I was like, if you're in the entertainment industry, if you've been burned, if you want to learn how to blog, if you're pretty, if you're smart, send in your pictures, send in your resume, and I want to recruit you for the Sorority of Hip Hop.
[00:04:04] Hala Taha: And so I started this group two weeks later. I had 14 girls. I went back to school to finish my senior year in college. And I remember I had my first board meeting in my college and I like rented out a room and there was like 14 girls. So I was the president of this new thing called the sorority of hip hop.
[00:04:21] Hala Taha: And I started learning how to build websites. And three months later, we were one of the most popular entertainment and hip hop sites in the world. I basically figured out how to hack Twitter we kept recruiting more and more girls. So. In and out, over three years, I had like 150 girls, but usually there'd be like 50 girls at a time who were under me learning how to blog.
[00:04:40] Hala Taha: And I basically would connect everybody's handles to Twitter, so when we'd put out a blog post and it was a music based, like, makeup, hip hop, fashion website, we would, like, tweet out, like, Wiz Khalifa and his new song, and there'd be, like, 50 pretty girls tweeting him, and they'd retweet it. And I was the first one that figured that out.
[00:04:57] Hala Taha: Now everybody does that, right? But I was the first blog to do that. And so we got popular really fast. And so MTV reached out to us. And they wanted to shoot a reality pilot. This was just three months into it. We didn't get the show, but I figured what else could happen, right? Who cares?
[00:05:15] Hala Taha: And then all of a sudden, because I was making so much noise, everybody from hot 97 started reaching back out to me. And then I just started hosting all the coolest parties in the city. And instead of being somebody's intern, I basically was peers with. DJ Camillo and Funkmaster Flex, and even Angie was trying to get me on Love Hip Hop and helping me out.
[00:05:34] Hala Taha: And everybody had more respect for me because I built something on my own and they realized I wasn't just gonna go away. So, I started hosting all these parties, my business turned into a blog slash like event company, I would host concerts, throw concerts, then MTV came back to us, two years later or so, we had like built it up, pretty popular in the tri state area, would get shouted out on the radio like every day for all the parties we would be hosting, and they were like, this is it, it was right after Jersey Shore had ended, they were like, you're gonna get your own show, You're going to be the star.
[00:06:05] Hala Taha: They picked like five out of 50 girls to be in the cast with me. They got us a studio on Broadway. They filmed us the entire summer. We threw a concert, like we did all these cool things and I thought it was going to be famous. So at this point it was like six years of basically working for free. I was scrounging money here and there, but I was like, kept working like marketing jobs and doing like social media for festival companies and we were making money, but there were so many mouths to feed and it was expensive to run a blog site with all the servers and how popular our site was.
[00:06:34] Hala Taha: And I hadn't figured out advertising like, you know, I was like just bootstrapping and like didn't even know what I was doing. I was so young anyway, we shot this whole pilot and two weeks before it's supposed to air. It's not just a pilot. Like we shot like a whole series over the summer.
[00:06:48] Hala Taha: Two weeks before it's airing, the producer from MTV calls me up and she's like, Holla, I'm so sorry. We went into another direction and we're not gonna air the show. And I started bawling and I was like, no way. Like, what do you mean? This is the second time you guys did this to me. We signed all the papers.
[00:07:05] Hala Taha: Like, what do you mean? It's not going to air. And she's like, I'm sorry, we're going in another direction.
[00:07:08] Hala Taha: And at this point I was really beaten down and I felt like. I can't make it and try to bring up 50 girls with me at the same time if I'm not even successful myself. I felt really, like, ashamed with my parents because all my siblings were, like, in med school and residency, all these things.
[00:07:24] Hala Taha: And I was, like, still trying to make it and, like, even just make, like, 30, 000 a year or whatever. Like, you know what I mean? I just wasn't making any money even though I was, like, almost famous in the tri state area. I wasn't really making any money. So then I just shut everything down. I actually pretended that it was a fake shutdown.
[00:07:42] Hala Taha: I said I needed a break. I was like, let's pretend we're shutting down and just get a lot of attention. I just need a break. And then our break was supposed to be like two weeks. And then I was like, guys, I don't want to do this anymore. And all the girls were really upset with me to this day. Some of the girls like really hate me for doing that.
[00:07:57] Hala Taha: But I had to do it. And so I went, I had a terrible undergraduate GPA because all I was doing was working at Hot 97 in my undergrad. So I wanted to get my MBA. And I couldn't get into any schools, and then I ended up begging my director of my alma mater of the alumni program, and she let me in, I told her my story, and she was like, okay, like, you know, if you get a 4.
[00:08:19] Hala Taha: 0, I'll keep you in the program, and I was like, okay, I'm gonna do it, and so I got my MBA, I got a 4. 0, I graduated number one in my class, and I started my corporate track, and I just literally thought I'd never get back on a mic, I thought it was done, and then I started my corporate track, I worked at HP, Worked there for four years.
[00:08:35] Hala Taha: I became the face of the young employees there. So I essentially was an entrepreneur at the company and really stood out and I was way more tech savvy than everybody else. And so in the marketing department, I just kept rising up in the ranks and I was sort of like the C suites pet and I would go to all the conferences and interview the CEO and the CMO.
[00:08:51] Hala Taha: And I was like that type of character at the company. And then four years into it. I got the itch and I saw podcasting was really out there. I saw that there was apps like pod bean and things that seemed accessible that I could figure out. And so I just decided one day, I remember it was new year's. 2018 right before the new year.
[00:09:10] Hala Taha: And I was just like, all right, I'm going to start this podcast. And instead of being like an influencer within this corporate company, I want to take what I've learned over the years and interview smart people and be of service. And I started this podcast, Young and Profiting. So I'll pause there. There's so much more.
[00:09:25] Hala Taha: There's.
[00:09:26] Jenna Kutcher: There's Stitch Fix, there's Disney, you have been all over the place. What was it about podcasting that drew you in? Was it that radio background? I mean, because if you think about radio and blogging, podcasting is kind of this interesting combination of both of those skill
[00:09:41] Hala Taha: sets. Yeah, I felt like I knew how to do everything, right?
[00:09:45] Hala Taha: So I had like, hacked Twitter, there's the social media element for sure with podcasting. I knew how to do audio editing. I knew how to do video editing. I knew how to do graphic design. I knew how to host. I also knew that I had a story and that I could probably get some really big guests just from my story.
[00:10:02] Hala Taha: And so I just, you know, figured I had all the skills. And I had the time, you know, I was doing really well in my job and I felt like I had all this kind of free time. I would volunteer internally within HP and I decided to stop doing that and then all of a sudden, I felt like I had like four hours a day to figure some stuff out.
[00:10:19] Hala Taha: Yeah. And the cool thing about Young and Profiting is that I had a team of volunteers that actually helped me for two years. I had 20 people for two years that helped me. And it's because I had so many skills that like there'd be one guy from Atlanta and I teach him how to do videos one guy from Estonia, I taught him how to do my website, you know, interns from my past college.
[00:10:40] Hala Taha: I would teach how to do production research for me. And so I just like had this like T army of interns that would help me so that I could have a day job. And then I just kept growing the podcast that way. So I
[00:10:52] Jenna Kutcher: know that you made the leap into full time entrepreneurship in 2020, which was a crazy year for everyone, but especially for you.
[00:11:01] Jenna Kutcher: What finally gave you the confidence to go all in? What did that look
[00:11:05] Hala Taha: like? Yeah, it was actually, you know, when I started the podcast, I never thought that I was going to make any money. I was just being of service, growing my, I became a really big influencer on LinkedIn, growing my, like, personal brand.
[00:11:18] Hala Taha: And I literally didn't even think it was possible to make money off a podcast. And I remember, like, being in Clubhouse, like, before I really blew up, being like, Guys, there's no way you're going to make money from podcasting. It's about networking. And then, like, little did I know, there's so much money in podcasting if you know what you're doing, right?
[00:11:34] Hala Taha: And so the first way that I started monetizing my show is that these guests would come on and I, from the start, I had really big guests because like I said, I was punching above my weight. I understood how to get big guests from the start and I never sort of settled for anyone. I always shot up and it was like a volume game.
[00:11:51] Hala Taha: I just knew the more I sent out, somebody would eventually say yes. And then when the person says yes, it was easier to get more people to say yes. Right. So basically these big guests. that were very successful already would come on my show. They'd be authors, speakers, celebrities. And after the end of the show, they would literally, like clockwork, be like, Hala, how did you grow your LinkedIn?
[00:12:10] Hala Taha: Can you do it for me? Hala, how did you grow this podcast? Can you do this for me? And I used to always be like, I'm sorry, I have a really great corporate career. At the time, I was working at Disney. You know, I've got a volunteer team, but they're really busy with my stuff. Like, we don't have the bandwidth to help you.
[00:12:25] Hala Taha: I'm sorry. And I would just always say that. And then one day I met this lady, Heather Monahan. Are you familiar with her?
[00:12:32] Jenna Kutcher: Yes, yes. And I know this part
[00:12:33] Hala Taha: of your story. I love it. So she came on my show and I gave her the whole spiel. She was like, Holly, I need you to do my LinkedIn. And I was like, I'm sorry, I can't.
[00:12:43] Hala Taha: And then she just wouldn't leave me alone. She was on every single one of my videos on LinkedIn. She's like, Holly, you have to do this. And she kept commenting, you have to do this for me. Yeah. So then I was. You know, she was somebody who I looked up to. And so I was like, you know what? I would love Heather to be my mentor.
[00:12:58] Hala Taha: So I was like, listen, I can't do it for you, but I can teach you how. And so I started setting up these meetings with her on Saturdays and she thought it was so cute that I would like send a calendar invite for Saturday. And like, I was like trying to teach her how to use like Headliner and Canva and Premiere Pro.
[00:13:14] Hala Taha: And I was showing her like our Slack and our drive and our templates. And she just like, was like, Holla. I literally am talking to VaynerMedia for them to do my social media. Your stuff is more impressive. She's like, you have a company. You do understand you have a company. I want to be your first client.
[00:13:32] Hala Taha: And I was just like, it was COVID. and I was working from home. And really, I was in a space where, like, I wanted a distraction, you know, quite frankly, because I had a lot more free time. I was sort of coasting in my job. It was a hard job, but I felt like I had time.
[00:13:50] Hala Taha: I just figured, like, alright, we'll do it. And I was like, okay, I'll start with your videos. And then we did a great job, and we started taking over all her channels, and then eventually her podcast.
[00:13:59] Hala Taha: And then my second client... So Heather was paying me like nothing, like 700 a month. Like it was really nothing in the beginning, right? And so then my second client, Jason Waller. He was the CEO of like one of the fastest growing, Oh, you know him. He was the CEO of one of the fastest growing solar panel companies.
[00:14:17] Hala Taha: And it's like the fastest growing private company in the U. S. And he invited me on a show and afterwards he was like, Holla, can you do social media and production for me? And now I had like a business kind of and I was like, Yeah, definitely I can do it. Like, sure, I'll send you a proposal. And I remember meeting with my business partner, uh, Tim, who has been with me since episode two.
[00:14:37] Hala Taha: we put together this proposal and it was like 3, 000 for each service. It was three services. And then he's like, why don't we just make it 10, 000 a service? And let's just shoot for 30, 000. And I was like, okay. And it was a 30, 000 monthly retainer. I was like, let's do it. And so I hop on a call with Jason and I give this pitch.
[00:14:54] Hala Taha: And my second deal was 30, 000 a month. And then it was just like, boom. Then I got like Cara Gold and of Hint Water for another huge contract. Then I got the CEO of 1 800 GOT JUNK, his personal brand and his company. Then it just like skyrocketed and I just kept getting client after client.
[00:15:10] Hala Taha: So then six months after I started the side hustle, I had 38 paid employees. I started paying everybody right as soon as we started making money. Across the world, I had like You know, already full time U. S. employees. I was still working at Disney. Then I got on the cover of Podcast Magazine and interviewed Matthew McConaughey.
[00:15:28] Hala Taha: And then I was like, all right, I, I got to just take the leap. It's like, I'm like, I should have done this three months ago. And I quit my job and the rest is history.
[00:15:44] Jenna Kutcher: It's so insane. I love your story. And there's so many parts you didn't even include, which is why everyone needs to go listen to your show so they can hear the full story.
[00:15:54] Jenna Kutcher: So one of the things that you hinted at is LinkedIn. Now, we have had hundreds of episodes on this podcast, and we've only talked about LinkedIn a handful of times. Why do you love LinkedIn? Sell it to me for anyone who is like, wait, people still use that?
[00:16:08] Hala Taha: Yeah. So LinkedIn is a really popular platform.
[00:16:11] Hala Taha: There's 135 million active daily users on LinkedIn. And my favorite part about LinkedIn is that people are primed for sales conversations. So people are doing research and they're buying journey on LinkedIn. People are used to being approached in the DMs. People want to be approached for relevant things related to their career and their job.
[00:16:31] Hala Taha: They want to be helped and they want people to help them solve their problems. And so they're receptive to basically selling in the DMs, which is where a lot of the selling happens on LinkedIn. Whereas on Instagram, when you try to do the same thing, people get turned off because they're there for entertainment.
[00:16:47] Hala Taha: They're there to check up on their family and not there for sales and business. So, that's one reason. The other reason is because that algorithm is completely hackable still, right? It is completely possible to grow without the use of boosting and automation or bots or whatever. And Instagram is really hard to grow right now.
[00:17:06] Hala Taha: There's a couple ways that you can still grow on Instagram. But LinkedIn, it's like once you understand the tactics, once you understand what works, what doesn't, and you understand the algorithm, no matter what your topic is, no matter how well you write or whatever, you can figure out how to grow a following on that platform.
[00:17:20] Hala Taha: So... Happy to dig into any of that.
[00:17:22] Jenna Kutcher: Okay, so let's talk about first the following. So does your following matter? We know we've seen like popularity and people are so fixated on growing that number under their name on all the platforms.
[00:17:35] Jenna Kutcher: Walk me through why you want to grow your audience on LinkedIn.
[00:17:40] Hala Taha: Yeah, so I think that getting a following is really important, but really it's engagement that matters. It's the amount of views that you get on your content and how much people engage, like, comment, share. That's what really matters because I've got a lot of clients that have come to me in the past.
[00:17:55] Hala Taha: They might have a million followers. Maybe they had like a big press push or they were LinkedIn's top voice. Or they started on LinkedIn 10 years ago when it was no matter what you did, you went viral. And they have little engagement and they get no sales, they get no business from LinkedIn because nobody's actually seeing their stuff anymore.
[00:18:11] Hala Taha: So it's really important to focus on engagement and understanding how to go viral on the feed rather than just getting connections, right? So in terms of why it's important to have a following, especially first connections on LinkedIn, because those are the only people that you can DM. And on LinkedIn, there's first connections and there's second and third connections.
[00:18:29] Hala Taha: And second and third connections can see your feed content if people share your stuff or engage on your stuff. But you actually want to be able to DM people so that you can generate sales. Cause all the action and, and, um, connection and people actually clicking on links really happens in the DMs. So what would you
[00:18:47] Jenna Kutcher: say would be the first step if somebody is listening to this and they're like, I have a very old profile on LinkedIn.
[00:18:52] Jenna Kutcher: It probably hasn't been updated. I'm an entrepreneur now. I haven't thought that I needed this. What would be the first step of getting re acclimated on LinkedIn?
[00:19:01] Hala Taha: one of the things that I ask people to do is look up their lookalike profiles. So when I say lookalike profiles, what I really mean is people who have a following that you want.
[00:19:12] Hala Taha: It's not necessarily your competitors. It's not necessarily anybody who's actually in your niche. It's people who have a following that you think would resonate with your product or offering. Okay, because those are the people that you want to study and emulate and figure out how you're going to differentiate between their profiles, take what's working for them, and then improve on what you think could be better.
[00:19:32] Hala Taha: The other thing that you can do with those lookalike profiles, as you can see, who recently liked and commented on their stuff. And this is really important because people go on LinkedIn. They go look for a job, they get a job, and then a lot of them never log back on. And the last thing that you want is dead profiles.
[00:19:48] Hala Taha: So a lot of people make the mistake of just like typing in titles or doing searches on LinkedIn and then finding people that they think would be their target audience and inviting them. But those people never accept their connection requests because they don't log onto LinkedIn. So you want people who log onto LinkedIn and take viral action.
[00:20:05] Hala Taha: on posts, which means you want to find people who have a big engaged following, not just a big following. Again, people who get, you know, 200 likes, 300 likes plus on their posts and are getting engagement. And then you want to see who liked and commented on those posts and who shared those posts, which you can actually see.
[00:20:22] Hala Taha: And you're going to want to invite those people into your network. And so I did this when I first started. Everybody was calling me the young Gary V. I, you know, knew he had a podcast, knew he talked marketing, knew he was motivational. And I was like, okay, anybody who's going to like his stuff is going to like mine too.
[00:20:35] Hala Taha: And I'd say like, Hey, what's up? I noticed you engage with Gary V. If you like his content and podcasts, you're going to like mine too. I'd love to provide value on your feed. Let's connect. Nine out of 10 people would accept. Then I all of a sudden had like 10, 000 of Gary V's fans. And little did I know that I was also triggering the algorithm.
[00:20:54] Hala Taha: Because when you recently connect with someone, they see your content at the top of their feed for two weeks. If you DM with someone and they respond back, they see your content at the top of their feed for two weeks. Then if they like or comment or share, they're like 85 percent more likely to see your content.
[00:21:09] Hala Taha: And if they comment, they're 70 percent more likely to see your content. And so. You just start this flywheel effect of bringing people in, DMing them, then they see your stuff, then you go viral on the feed, then people are connected with people who are similar to them. So if you are targeting someone, let's say, who's in real estate, chances are they've got a lot of people in real estate who's In their following themselves and when they engage on your content, those people see that engagement in their feed.
[00:21:35] Hala Taha: And so then you get like a referral to all their following. And so that's really how you crush it on LinkedIn. You have to be strategic and invite people who take viral action and start this flywheel effect. And it's both content on the feed and this DM strategy. And so you can do this in a million ways.
[00:21:51] Hala Taha: Another great way to sort of target active people on LinkedIn is that there's thousands of events that are going on every day. And people are registering for these events. So if you, like, for example, let's say you have social media services, so if you look up social media events on LinkedIn, you can see all the events that are coming up, everybody who registered, who basically are raising their hand, I'm interested in this topic, you can register for that event, and then, then you get access to message everybody who's in that event.
[00:22:19] Hala Taha: And they're active, they're interested in what you want, and it's relevant, and people will have that conversation with you because you're bringing up something relevant to them. Wow.
[00:22:28] Jenna Kutcher: Okay. So I'm obsessed with this. I love hacking the system, which you have absolutely done. So you brought up content in the feed.
[00:22:36] Jenna Kutcher: So a lot of people just visualize like the old school Facebook, right? When you could only see your own profile. And when we all freaked out that the newsfeed happened, the similar rollout happened with LinkedIn, where now you are supposed to be sharing content and value. Walk me through different types of posts that you publish that can show up in the feed so that people can start imagining what type of value can I add on that platform and what does it look like compared to other platforms that I might already be on?
[00:23:04] Hala Taha: Yeah, this is a really great question. So whenever we're talking about feed content on LinkedIn, we want to promote shareability. And there's two main types of posts that are shareable. There's motivational and inspirational, and then there's educational. And both of them work really well on LinkedIn. In fact, LinkedIn is now prioritizing educational content.
[00:23:23] Hala Taha: So one of the things that you want to think about when you're thinking about motivational content is telling stories. So things that work well is like transformational stories. I was Poor, now I'm rich. I was fat, now I'm skinny, right? Showing that like transformation and what your learnings are and giving a story.
[00:23:40] Hala Taha: And it's really important on LinkedIn to remember what features work the best on that platform. So while Instagram is really video heavy, they want to compete with TikTok. LinkedIn is not the same. Actually, Like vertical style videos that work really well on Instagram do very poorly on LinkedIn. And actually you want to stick with a four by five size graphic.
[00:24:02] Hala Taha: So a very large, I call it poster size that you have media graphic on LinkedIn. If you guys are curious what that looks like, you can go to my profile on LinkedIn and you'll see that almost every single post is like a four by five photograph on LinkedIn. And so typically these motivational posts is either a story.
[00:24:18] Hala Taha: or a quote or a lesson that you're giving that is going to be relevant to everyone. And the reason why it's shareable is that everybody wants positivity. Everybody can relate to it. It's relevant to everyone. So if you're looking for a broad audience and you might have a lower ticket offer that doesn't need to have a very specific audience, you probably want to lean into motivational content that's going to go massively viral.
[00:24:40] Hala Taha: That's the most viral type of content. And it doesn't matter if it's a long caption, a short caption. But when you're thinking about social media on any platform, prioritize being skimmable. Okay, so on LinkedIn specifically, they'll actually deprioritize you if you use chunky paragraphs.
[00:24:55] Hala Taha: Because LinkedIn knows that people are skimming through about nine posts. They're only going to stop and read if it's easy. It should be fun. You don't want to make people work, right? So you want to make it as easy as possible. So even if you're telling a story, it's line by line. And you're opening it up with a hook to get people hooked in to actually spend time on your post, increase dwell time, click the learn more button or keep reading button and keep spending time on your posts.
[00:25:19] Hala Taha: That's really important. And then eventually hopefully engage. So again, line by line style copy that's, they call it broetry on LinkedIn. That's actually the algorithm is prioritizing that kind of content. That's why you see all the influencers do that.
[00:25:41] Jenna Kutcher: So that's a motivational content, which I love. What about your other kind of things that you're doing inside of your business or your work?
[00:25:48] Hala Taha: Yes. So this is really important, especially for an entrepreneur. It's educational content, right? And so when you're thinking about educational content on LinkedIn, really what you want to make sure is that you're not lecturing. So this is the biggest mistake that I see entrepreneurs do. They want to give everything away, the kitchen sink away.
[00:26:06] Hala Taha: They want to give like a blog post on their LinkedIn. But you have to realize that this is a digestible platform and you can break apart, like let's say a blog post over five days instead. And when you're posting, you want to give one lesson. And you want to give room for people to add their opinion. So, if somebody's saying like, I'm going to give you the top 5 ways that you can crush your LinkedIn, and they list every top 5 way, then people are going to be like, Alright, Hala's got it figured out, like what's there for me to add, or okay, I'm just going to keep moving, like she's a know it all.
[00:26:37] Hala Taha: You want to give one thing. kind of meaningful nugget that is actually going to help people whose problem that you solve, but then allow them to participate by not giving away the whole kitchen sink. Then people can be like, yeah, that point is okay, but what about XYZ, right? And so you don't want to give too much away in your post.
[00:26:56] Hala Taha: I think that is a big problem that people have. So once you come out with content and you're continually educating people, people are going to start engaging on your content. And then you've got to close the loop. You've got to retarget those people in the DMs. So you put out educational content about your offer.
[00:27:15] Hala Taha: And you don't want to be salesy on LinkedIn. You actually get deprioritized if you're salesy. So you can't like link out to your website in the caption. LinkedIn's goal is to keep users active and engaged on their site for as long as possible. So that means you can't link out to another site. You can put a link in the comments.
[00:27:30] Hala Taha: But even if you use salesy language, LinkedIn is basically going to deprioritize your posts because they have their own editorial agenda and it's not to make you sales. So you have to be completely of service. And you want to use keywords. This is another point.
[00:27:44] Hala Taha: So let's say again, let's use a real estate example. If you're in real estate, you want to use real estate keywords in your posts. The same keywords that would be found in your target clients profiles, because LinkedIn will start to match. Profiles and start to feed content to people who they think would be interested in your content based on their keywords.
[00:28:04] Hala Taha: So it's important to infuse your post with keywords so that it gets fed to the right people. Okay. Now, hopefully people are engaging on your content and once they do that, you can then DM them. So you can say, Hey, I noticed that you recently liked my post about real estate. I would love to give you another tool.
[00:28:20] Hala Taha: I've got this, you know, mortgage calculator. I'd love for you to check it out. And so then you can give them some sort of free resource. Once they respond back, Oh, thank you so much. This was awesome. Oh yeah, let me know if you have any questions. The goal is to just keep the conversation going until you've built up enough social currency with the person that you can make an ask.
[00:28:38] Hala Taha: Let's hop on a call. Here's a form if you want to learn more information and book a call, right? So then you want to bring them off platform and close them. So really, that's the goal. It's getting them from the feed, starting a conversation in the DMs, and then bringing them off platform so that you can close the deal.
[00:28:53] Jenna Kutcher: So I love this. I think that most people are terrified to try to sell to people via DMs, probably because we've all experienced like that one girl from high school who started a skincare business and is now reaching out. Do you have any tips of gaining comfortability in terms of like reaching out and having that type of language around?
[00:29:16] Jenna Kutcher: How we can close a deal.
[00:29:18] Hala Taha: Yeah, so I think first things first, when you're reaching out to somebody, you always want to think of the law of likability, and you want to think of common ground. So let's talk about the law of likability. People like people who are like them, and that means that you need to find your similarities.
[00:29:34] Hala Taha: What is it about you that's similar? So are you both powerful women? Did you both go to the same school? Are you both from the same city? Do you both like the same influencers? Are you both, you know, MBA grads? What is it that you have in common and you want to give people compliment people like people who compliment them?
[00:29:53] Hala Taha: Right. People also like people who ask them for advice, who ask them questions. And so you want to think about all the ways that you can become more likable. And so one of the ways that you can use the law of likability is, let's say you're an executive coach for females, for female executives. So you would go on somebody's profile.
[00:30:10] Hala Taha: Let's say you're targeting anybody who's in chief. Because, you know, all those people are qualified and you can go to them and say, Hey, so nice to meet you. I saw your profile and you look like somebody who's a blazing, powerful female in the space. I'd love to connect with you. And so you're giving them a compliment.
[00:30:28] Hala Taha: You can also say something like, it looks like we both have a lot in common. We're both really crushing it in the female entrepreneurship space. I'd love to connect with you. Right? So you're giving them a compliment. You're showing that, Hey, I'm like you too. Let's connect. That person is likely going to accept because you've given them a compliment.
[00:30:46] Hala Taha: You've shown that you have some sort of common ground. And again, you can use any sort of attribute that they have in their profile. To set that common ground, LinkedIn is really unique from other platforms because there are all these different search filters where you can basically look, say like, okay, I want all the titles of VP in California and you can find everybody with that criteria and then come up with some language that is relevant for all those people that you can just sort of customize as you go along and invite those people to your network.
[00:31:14] Hala Taha: So that's one way. And then let's say it's like, you don't have a lot of accolades and you're just coming up. Instead, you can ask people for advice. Hey, you look like a really strong, powerful female. I'd love to connect with you and, you know, get your feedback and get your advice on XYZ or I'd love your thoughts around XYZ.
[00:31:33] Hala Taha: Now, if the person's really famous, this is not going to work because they're getting bombarded with messages like this. But if it's just somebody who's like in corporate, they're going to be happy to have a conversation with you because probably not many people are reaching out asking for advice and people love giving their advice and showcasing their value and expertise.
[00:31:50] Jenna Kutcher: I love this. I am smiling so big. I was recently on a girl's trip and one of my friends has this beautiful British accent and she looks to this guy and we needed an extra golf cart for something and she was like, you look like a man who could get things done. And like the guy like gets like all excited and he's like, I can, yes I can.
[00:32:09] Jenna Kutcher: And I was like, I need to take that line with me everywhere because all of a sudden he was like proud to help us after two people had already told us no. It was just so funny so I love this because I totally agree with
[00:32:21] Hala Taha: it. The other thing that and you just alluded to it, the other thing that you want to make sure so that you don't turn people off in the DMs.
[00:32:27] Hala Taha: I'm sending thousands of DMs a day and 99 percent of people say thank you and are appreciative. That is not normal and it's because I'm doing little things to make sure that it doesn't come across spammy or insulting. So, your friend said you look like someone. She didn't say you are. let's say somebody engages on my post about my LinkedIn Masterclass, we might approach them, you look like somebody who may be interested in our LinkedIn Masterclass.
[00:32:53] Hala Taha: Then they'll be like, yeah, you know, I'm kind of am interested, blah, blah, blah. If I said, hey, you're interested in my LinkedIn masterclass, I'd love to XYZ, they'd be like, I'm not interested in your class. Who are you to tell me what I like, what I don't like, get out of here, you know? So you seem like, you may be like, you seem like the type of person who would XYZ, right?
[00:33:12] Hala Taha: So you just want to make sure that you soften it a little bit so that it's not so direct because people like to prove you wrong, right? So you want to make sure there's no way that they can prove
[00:33:20] Jenna Kutcher: you wrong. Yes, I love this. One of your gifts, one of your like secret sauce things that you are so good at is branding.
[00:33:29] Jenna Kutcher: Talk to me about how branding plays well with LinkedIn. What does that look like and how do they kind of coexist and complement each other?
[00:33:36] Hala Taha: Yeah, so when you're thinking about building a personal brand, you want to be so consistent. That people think of you like an old friend. This is what I always say.
[00:33:45] Hala Taha: Like, you want people to think of you like they know you without you even knowing them. So for me on LinkedIn, I've done a good job of this. To the point where if somebody trolls me, I'll have like all my fans being like, You don't tell her this, blah, blah, blah.
[00:33:57] Hala Taha: it's just because I've been consistent in all my actions. And so, essentially, branding is consistency. And if you are consistent in every single action that you take on LinkedIn, that means your profile, your bio, every single caption, every single comment, every single video content, every single DM, they all have to be consistent.
[00:34:16] Hala Taha: And that means you need to step back and understand what you want to be perceived of. What do you want to represent as yourself? So one of the exercises that we do in our LinkedIn masterclass is we come up with voice guidelines and essentially it's like a breakdown of your personality. So first of all, What are your values?
[00:34:34] Hala Taha: Your values are your decision making compass, right? So, when things go bad, how do you know what you stand for? Because that's when you can't think logical. And that's why it's important to understand what your values are as a person. And so, you come up with your values. The next thing is personality. So your personality actually reflects your audience, not yourself.
[00:34:55] Hala Taha: You want your audience to feel magnetic towards you and people like people who are like them. So you need to reflect them, not yourself necessarily. Maybe there's one element that showcases your personal. personality, but really you want to mirror the way that your audience acts. And so you want to think about your audience demographics.
[00:35:12] Hala Taha: What's their age? What's their gender? What's their interests? What do they sound like? You know, what other influencers are resonating with them? What do they sound like? And you kind of want to mirror that when you're thinking about your personality and your tone and the way that you come across. The other thing that you want to think about.
[00:35:27] Hala Taha: is your transformation, the impact that you want to make with your audience. This is extremely important. So essentially it's like your four or five key messages that you're going to tell over and over and over again in a hundred different ways. So for me, you're never too old to learn something new. You know, sky's the limit.
[00:35:44] Hala Taha: There's life is limitless. You can do anything. You're always able to grow and learn. Continuous learning is extremely important. So there's a few messages that I just say over and over and over again in a million different ways. And this is what I stand for now. This is why when I share a picture of myself on LinkedIn, I don't represent Halataha anymore and I'm extremely shareable.
[00:36:04] Hala Taha: People share my picture automatically because I represent hope for them. I represent learning for them. I represent motivation for them. And so they're happy to share my story. face, which takes time once you're consistent and you feel like an old friend and you represent more than just your face. You're now your brand, right?
[00:36:21] Hala Taha: And so you've got to be consistent in those messages. And then the last part is your delivery method. How are you going to make that impact? What are you going to do? For me, I've got a podcast. I'm going to share micro content, I'm going to share motivational posts, educational posts, and so on. And so you've got to think about what is your delivery method.
[00:36:37] Hala Taha: To make good on that impact. So that's sort of what I take people through my masterclass. And then you're really set up for success. If you pair that messaging and branding with viral strategies and engagement strategies, there's all these different hacks on LinkedIn. There's no way that you're not going to be successful.
[00:36:54] Jenna Kutcher: Amazing. I am so impressed with you. I am obsessed with your story.
[00:36:58] Jenna Kutcher: I love seeing you on the chart.
[00:36:59] Hala Taha: Thank you
[00:37:00] Jenna Kutcher: so much for coming on the gold digger podcast. This was an absolute dream.
[00:37:04] Hala Taha: Thank you so much.
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