Why Branding on LinkedIn is Powerful For B2B Marketers with Steve Watt, Ep #88

Why Branding on LinkedIn is Powerful For B2B Marketers with Steve Watt, Ep #88

Mark Raffan

Authentic personal connection is THE future of sales and marketing. It allows anyone to become a magnet for business-building opportunities of all kinds. Yet most people and companies are missing out on branding on LinkedIn. But if you enable and empower your team to show up and speak up on LinkedIn, you can do a world of good for your organization.

Steve Watt shares why allowing your organization to become thought leaders is vital in this episode of The Content Callout.

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:15] Steve’s Rapid-fire tips
  • [6:19] Why your brand lives at the edge
  • [11:26] 3 things that hold companies back
  • [16:07] Why LinkedIn has changed substantially
  • [18:57] The importance of entertainment on LinkedIn
  • [29:20] How to connect with Steve Watt

Why brands try and control their employees

Your brand is your people and your promise. It’s how you show up online, the content you produce, and much more. Yet many brands don’t allow their people to build thought leadership platforms because they’re afraid of what they might say or do. They’re worried that it could reflect poorly on the brand.

Steve points out that if that’s their biggest concern, they better take away their team’s phones and not let them go to meetings or conferences. Anyone can say something stupid in an email, on the phone, and at cocktail hour. Or, we can treat people like adults, set social media policies, and provide basic training. The risk of someone saying something that reflects poorly on the brand is minuscule for the otherwise massive gain of branding on LinkedIn.

Why your brand lives at the edge

We’ve been taught that a brand is a color scheme, a tagline, a logo, and a message that’s centrally controlled. But edge computing has exploded. Computing power used to live at the head office, and field instruments were “dumb.” Edge computing pushes the brains of any operation to the field. Distributed computing power is far more powerful than the old model. So why can’t brands follow the same model?

Instead of all the brain and brand living at a head office and coming from a centralized advertising voice, the brand is the cumulative impact of tens of thousands of people at the edge of your organization. If you keep them quiet, you’ll lose to a company that embraces this mindset and has thousands of people building relationships, having conversations, and building their brand.

Steve’s philosophy that “Brand lives at the edge” is the fundamental belief that power is shifting, and the organizations that figure it out will have a tremendous advantage over those that don’t.

Why companies can’t wrap their head around branding on LinkedIn

Steve notes that almost everything comes back to mindset. Mindsets are the foundation upon which skillsets, toolsets, metrics, behaviors, rewards, punishment, etc., flow from. Old school mindsets about LinkedIn are what’s holding companies back. It’s not just a place to park your resume anymore. It’s a place to start an ongoing business conversation. Customers, prospects, partners, and competitors are taking part in that conversation. That’s why allowing your employees to build a personal brand on LinkedIn is imperative.

Sales leaders treat it like a hunting ground and the world’s largest Rolodex. They try to connect and pitch. But no one goes on LinkedIn to get hunted. If you talk to someone in a senior role at a big company, they get dozens if not hundreds of connection requests a day. Do you want to be part of the noise? Or do you want to stand out?

Lastly, people view LinkedIn as an advertising channel. They think they can just blast paid and organic ads and get their people to do it too. They share self-serving ads. The common thread is that none of them are focused on their audience. They’re all selfish and self-serving. That’s how most companies approach it. When it doesn’t work, they lose interest and call it off.

What is the right way to leverage LinkedIn? In this episode, Steve shares some valuable insight into the world of LinkedIn (HINT: It’s all about living on the edge). Do not miss it!

Resources & People Mentioned

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Mark Raffan

Mark Raffan

Mark is a serial entrepreneur and lover of marketing and influence. Mark built the #1 negotiation podcast in the world and is an expert negotiation, influence, and persuasion coach that has coached executives and their teams in some of the largest companies in the world.