Check this LinkedIn engagement post:
This post on my LinkedIn feed has generated 109,806 views and 951 comments, and it is getting more as we speak.
Or this one:
With 1,300 comments this post was so insane, they had to close the comments.
I’ve been getting results like these consistently for the last 3 months:
32,302 views | 600 comments
13,097 views | 361 comments
These results may be typical for someone with a strong presence on social media, but that’s not me.
This is how my LinkedIn profile looked like a year ago when I was publishing 5-10 links a day to articles on the web and promoting my stuff:
0 comments | 0 likes
Now, let’s be clear – I’m not Grant Cardone or Neil Patel. I couldn’t care less about my social media presence and the number of likes I get.
OK, I lied… I’m not wholly indifferent to my personal brand, but above all, I’m a software entrepreneur.
I create products. These products make businesses successful. Likes don’t make businesses successful.
For me, social media is just another growth channel to generate leads for Encharge. UPDATE: Encharge.io is live now! Register below.
Because I don’t want to rely on a single channel (like LinkedIn), I needed a way to get these people outside the social network to a more independent channel.
Read this case study to find out how:
We used LinkedIn and Facebook to grow our email list from 0 to 3,000 subscribers. Spending $0 and starting with 0 social presence.
And how we nurture these leads to get 40-70% open rates.
But first of all, let me explain what engagement posts are.
What Is An Engagement Post?
In a nutshell, these are posts that create engagement – likes, shares, comments.
You’ve probably seen them making the rounds on LinkedIn and Facebook in the last 6-12 months.
The formula is pretty simple:
You ask your friends/connections to answer a question or leave a comment. That way, spiking engagement, so the LinkedIn/Facebook algorithms pick up your post and more people outside your network see and comment. In a nutshell, a simple viral engine.
There are two types of engagement posts. (Yes, I came up with them, but they’re pretty self-explanatory)
These are posts that don’t have any other goals apart from creating some noise and getting you more friends and connections.
For example, you could ask a question like “What is your favorite business book?” or “How many times a week do you post on LinkedIn?” (side-note: posts about LinkedIn usually do very well on LinkedIn 🙂
Lead Magnet LinkedIn Engagement Posts
These posts work very similarly to a lead magnet squeeze page, except you don’t ask people to go to a page.
You ask them to leave a comment under your post that way indicating interest in your offer/swipe file/book, etc.
Then, you can private message them and ask for their email, send them the lead magnet directly, or even get them to signup with your lead-gen chatbot.
Why these posts work so well on social media?
- People are on LinkedIn (or Facebook) because they want to be on LinkedIn.
- They don’t want to “check out” your stinky page.
You allow them to signup for your content by providing the path of least resistance.
Even though the friction of leaving a comment, getting a PM from you, and then sending their email address is waaaay bigger than visiting a squeeze page and signing-up directly – people are much more likely to do the former.
- It’s more personal. They’re getting the content from you, not from a squeeze page. Having the opportunity to interact with the creator is exciting for people.
- It creates a viral loop As explained, getting people to comment on your posts creates a viral loop that can reach tens of thousands of people.
In this guide, I’m going to focus on the lead-magnet engagement posts only because they’re the ones that will grow your list like fire in the short term.
Are Engagement Posts Ethical?
Engagement posts are famous for stirring up controversy online. And I could see why some people hate them.
Engagement posts look like you have a hidden agenda (like spamming people with viagra emails…nah, I’m joking) and if executed badly will turn you into a scammer.
I hated engagement posts before I started doing them.
I’ve seen people labeling them “twatty marketing”, “scam” and what not.
Brace yourself. For every few hundred leads you will get a couple of people that try to boycott your posts with comments like “I’m not letting my email get harvested.” or “Why don’t you share the link in the post?”
Now whether Engagement posts are ethical or not I’ll leave you be the judge, but here’s my take on this:
Ask yourself how much it would cost your connections/friends if they DON’T get your eBook, guide, resource? If your lead magnet delivers on the value that you promise, how much is going to cost people if they don’t get access to it?
More than 1,000 people have downloaded my list of free tools. It’s literary the most comprehensive, up-to-date list of over 500+ free tools on the Internet. I like to think that I have saved people hundreds if not thousands of dollars with this list. Not counting the benefits for the tools in there that get free exposure.
I’ve been testing this and let me tell you if it weren’t for these engagement posts, I wouldn’t have reached even 1/3 of that audience.
I’m not telling you to abuse your connections. Whatever you share has to have a tremendous value and impact. Keep engagement posts only for your content masterpieces.
Later in the guide, I’ll share how I nurture these leads and get 30-40% open rates on any follow-up emails I send to them.
Prepare Your LinkedIn Account and Build an Audience BEFORE Posting LinkedIn Engagement Posts
Did I mention that getting 110k views on a post doesn’t happen overnight?
If you’ve been living without the Internet for the last few years and you register for LinkedIn today, do not wonder if you hear crickets when you publish your first engagement post.
Engagement posts are a great way to build an email list, but they’re not a silver bullet. You still have to ramp up your presence beforehand.
Here are a few things I did to grow from 2,000 to now over 8,000 followers on LinkedIn.
1. Post 2-3 Times a Week
I used Buffer to schedule 2-3 posts per week. If you can do more than that’s amazing, but I wouldn’t post more than once a day.
This is not Twitter, LinkedIn posts have a longer lifespan of 7 to 14 days.
There’s also a limit of 1,300 characters in the post, which means you have little room to convey value.
The posts that did well for me on LinkedIn are:
2. Personal Stories.
Motivation, inspiration, or showing vulnerability through an intimate story.
3. Business Stories.
Sharing business advice, case studies, or revelations through real-life stories.
4. Short Technical Guides.
Depending on your industry, you could write nuggets of technical/business advice.
5. Reports and Statistics.
Short 2-5 minute videos are getting a lot of attention on LinkedIn right now.
2. Add People from Relevant Facebook Groups
Check out the most relevant Facebook groups and search for “LinkedIn”.
Watch out for LinkedIn follow train topics.
Let people know why you’re adding them on LinkedIn:
Kalo from BAMF. Looking forward to connecting with fellow marketers like you.
With a message like this, you can expect an acceptance rate of around 50-60%.
You can use a scraping tool or get a developer to write a few lines of Console code to scrape all of the comments with the profile links Then, use LinkedIn Helper to automate people invites.
3. Connect Your Gmail Accounts With LinkedIn and Import Your Current Email List
On a desktop, go to this link:
You’d be able to import a list of emails or connect to your email accounts.
Once you do that LinkedIn will return a list of LinkedIn profiles connected to these emails and the option to invite all of them at once.
This official LinkedIn feature is a legit way to expand your LinkedIn network with relevant contacts overnight.
Alex from our group has written a comprehensive post on using this feature.
Bonus tip: Email to LinkedIn profile enrichment.
Use this URL to enrich any email with their LinkedIn profile – https://www.linkedin.com/sales/gmail/profile/proxy/[email protected]
If the email is associated with a LinkedIn profile LinkedIn will redirect to their profile URL; otherwise, it will show a 400 error.
4. Connect With Other Relevant People
Use the search feature on LinkedIn to find and create a list of relevant people.
As a former co-founder of HeadReach, a lead generation tool, I had a competitive advantage of having access to big lists of LinkedIn profiles.
I used LinkedIn Helper and my co-founder’s computer as a proxy to automate the invitation sending process with personalized messages.
This process is beyond the scope of this guide, but you could expect a 10-20% acceptance rate with completely cold contacts.
5. Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile Using Resume Worded
Resume Worded is a neat app that analyzes your LinkedIn profile and suggests improvements.
It helps you optimize your profile for the right keywords and increase your chances of appearing in the search.
I had to delete a lot of the irrelevant job positions on my profile and re-word my “Co-founder” titles as “Growth marketer and co-founder” to appear in more relevant searches.
Right now my profile is heavily optimized for the “growth marketer” keyword.
As you can see, preparing your LinkedIn profile for your first engagement post is not an easy task. But the essence is simple – you have to create valuable content, add more people manually, and optimize your profile.
I spend 6 months before my very first engagement post. It’s not that long considering I’ve never posted meaningful content on LinkedIn before.
It doesn’t have to take that long for you but make sure to spend some time warming up your audience and giving away before asking.
Once you have at least a few hundred active connections and some engagement on your posts, you’re ready to create your first Engagement post and grow your email list!
The Anatomy of an Engagement Post
2 types of engagement posts have worked well for me: pure text posts.
I tend to avoid image posts.
The structure of the post looks something like this:
1. First 2-3 lines: Quick overview of what I’m offering with a clear CTA (Call-to-action)
I finished a 60-page free Guide on Marketing Automation.
1. Comment Guide in the comments below to get the PDF of the guide + 4 extra bonuses and worksheets.
2. Add me as a connection here – I’ll message you.
The CTA will attract the people scanning their feed.
If you’re using a video post, it’s a good idea to include the CTA in your video from the very first start or in the first 10-15 seconds.
Note: Be careful where you position your CTAs in your video. If you’re using portrait mode and position your CTA at the higher or lower parts of your video your CTA may get cut in the feed.
I made this mistake once.
Video preview in the feed:
The same video full-screen:
2. Middle of the post: Detailed description of what I’m offering
The middle is a great place to include some bullet points.
The biggest list of free tools for marketers and startups.
I’ve personally checked 80%+ of them. You won’t find rubbish tools or free trials here.
All of these apps are 100% free or have a freemium model.
📦 110 free SEO tools
📦 37 free Social Media tools
📦 29 free Email Marketing tools
📦 16 free Content Marketing tools
📦 63 free Sales tools
📦 83 free Productivity tools
📦 180 free Design, Video and Creative tools
📦 Dozens of Analytics, Lead Gen, Research tools, and more
3. End of the post: CTA
Repeat the CTA. Considering the top and the bottom of the posts are the passages that get the most attention, you want to leverage them for your CTA.
4. P.s.: Social Proof
(If you have any.)
P.s. thousands of people already got access to this 🙂
5. End of post: Tags
Frankly, I don’t know if these make any difference. I haven’t seen a lot of people browsing with tags but certainly won’t hurt using them.
To start the discussion going it’s worth posting the first comment, too, repeating the CTA. Something like “Write Guide in the comments section here, and I’ll be in touch.”
How to Grow Your Email List Using Engagement Posts – The Process
Here’s the step-by-step process I’ve been using to grow my email list from 0 to 3,000 subscribers in a few months. (the same process applies for LinkedIn and Facebook with some minor differences).
1) Publish the LinkedIn engagement post and describe your offer/lead magnet.
I usually post around 10 AM PDT. But it depends on your network on LinkedIn.
The first hour of the post’s life is crucial. Make sure you have your friends awake and ready. I’ll share more on that later.
2) Get people to show interest in your lead magnet by asking them to comment on the post:
“Write Guide if you’d like to receive the guide, and I’ll be in touch ASAP.”
“Comment below if you’re interested.”, etc.
3) Like and reply to comment as soon as someone leaves a comment.
Let them know you have sent them a DM or an invite (if they’re not in your network).
4) Send them a DM asking for their email:
“What’s the best email to send you the guide?”
If they ask you why you need their email, be honest with them:
A lot of people have asked for the guide. I’m going to send the guide to everybody in badges. I also plan on sending you valuable content on
[topic of interest]in the future. But don’t worry if you don’t want to receive any more emails from me, you can unsubscribe very easily 🙂
Very, very rarely, you’ll get people that refuse to give you their email. It’s up to you to decide if you’d like to ignore them or send them the lead magnet as a direct link. I have found that doing the second helps for your karma. They may not be your best audience, but why not help them anyway.
5) Once they send you their email thank them and collect their emails in a spreadsheet.
6) Wait a couple of days and send them an email with a link to the lead magnet:
Later in the guide, I’ll show you how I’m using Encharge to drastically increase the open rates of these emails and make sure as many people as possible get the lead magnet.
7) Make sure everybody gets their lead magnet
Make sure to be active on LinkedIn in the following days. You might have missed a person, or your email might have ended up in Spam. Watch out your inbox for people complaining.
The Mechanics of Going Viral on LinkedIn
This is a very insightful post I found on how LinkedIn engagement algorithms work:
After you post on LinkedIn, your content goes through four stages:
- The algorithm sorts through your text, image, and video updates, then chucks them onto one of three piles: SPAM, LOW QUALITY, or CLEAR.
- If the LinkedIn bot clears your post, it’s going to send it to a small, random segment of your audience to predict how well it will score.
- Likes, comments, and shares from your focus group will determine your post’s popularity. A like gets you one point, a comment gets you two points, and a share gets you three points. The lower your total score, the less eyeballs you get, and vice versa.
- As your post gets more people talking, it’s sent for review at LinkedIn HQ. If it does really well, the LinkedIn editors will surface your post in third-degree feeds, at which point you’ll be officially “trending”.
Original post by Steve O’Dell.
Now nobody can prove this is how LinkedIn works, but based on my experience with engagement posts, this process is pretty accurate.
Your LinkedIn Engagement Post Will Make it or Break It in the First Hour
Based on how well your post performs in the first hour, the LinkedIn algorithm will decide if you’re going to get more exposure.
I don’t have scientific proof, but I’m pretty confident it estimates the ratio between views and engagement (likes, shares, comments):
Let’s say your post gets 100 views and just 1 reaction in the first hour – you probably won’t get too much of an additional eyeball.
On the other hand, if your post gets 100 views, 20 comments, 30 likes, and 1 share expect the post to go viral (or semi-viral).
At first, your post is visible only to your 1st-degree connections. If you get good engagement (especially in the first hour), LinkedIn will surface that post to people outside your network.
OK, we know how important is the first hour, so how we promote our engagement posts?
How to Promote Your LinkedIn Engagement Post
2 tactics work like magic.
The first one is old school and not sexy. The other one is quite “hacky” – it’s a top-secret engagement tool.
1. Get Your Friends to Like and Comment
Prepare 5 , ideally 10, of your friends in advance and get them ready to like and comment your post on LinkedIn.
The sooner they engage, the better. Getting your close circle to participate in the first 5 minutes would do wonders for your post’s virality long term.
2. Top secret tool: Lempod
Lempod is a Chrome extension and an automated bot that will magically boost your LinkedIn posts and help you go viral.
Does it work? Yes, absolutely.
Is it bulletproof? Yes.
I’m getting dozens of likes and comments in the first hour every time I engage my posts with Lempod.
What is Lempod?
Lempod is a Chrome extension that allows you to join “pods”. Pods are communities of real LinkedIn users that have agreed to “engage posts” automatically.
You can create your own pod and invite people or discover and join other public pods.
The tool costs $5 per pod per user. I’m currently a member of 6 pods, so I’m paying $30/mo.
You can promote your post in the pods that you’ve joined.
As soon as you Engage in the pods, LinkedIn users from the pods will start liking and commenting on your post. This is actually the bot/extension working on their computers and automatically engaging for them.
By joining pods, you also agree to like and comment on other people’s posts automatically. Do not be surprised if you don’t recognize some activity on your LinkedIn profile – this was Lempod commenting or liking for you.
How to use Lempod? Step by step.
1. Install the extension.
2. Join a specific pod if you have an invite (4 digits code) or use the discovery tab to find relevant pods:
3. Go to a LinkedIn post. Click on the 3 dots in the top right and select “Copy link to post” then enter that URL in your browser to open the post.
4. While you’re on the LinkedIn post, open Lempod from the extensions bar and Select the Pods that you want to promote your post in (you can only promote in Pods that you’re a member of):
5. Click Post
On the next step, you get the option to pre-write the comments for your post and choose the time between the engagements:
6. Click “Start to engage this pod”.
7. That’s it. People (or should I say Lempod) has started engaging with your pod. You will see which people are going to engage, which ones have already engaged and also stats about the engagement.
A word of caution: You should know that using Lempod is against LinkedIn’s ToS. Unfortunately, LinkedIn forbids any automated tools (that includes other extensions such as LinkedIn Helper). It’s up to you to make a calculated decision about using Lempod. I haven’t heard of people getting their accounts blocked or deleted, but I’ve heard about LinkedIn showing warning messages and asking people to remove specific Chrome extensions.
3. Bonus Tip: Join Engagement Pods
This tactic is usually less effective than the first 2 but still could help you get some extra likes and comments.
Engagement Pods – Facebook groups, Slack teams, and private chats – are communities of people sharing the same interests.
Just publish your post and ask for engagement. Your partners in crime will help you go viral by commenting and liking your post as soon as they see your request.
Make sure to return the favor. Karma is a mirror.
Going Viral With Engagement Posts on Facebook
Facebook works similarly to LinkedIn when it comes to engagement posts with the exception that I post in Facebook Groups instead of my profile.
I’ve seen people publishing engagement posts on their profiles, and even in stories. I don’t have experience with this, but it’s definitely worth the try.
Engagement in Facebook groups is through the roof, at the moment.
Good engagement and a targeted audience are a recipe for a viral post and substantial interest.
- Search for relevant Facebook groups in your niche.
- Join and be active in the group before you post.
- Ask the group admins if it’s OK to publish such type of post. Most groups forbid engagement posts. I don’t allow them in my group, either. Don’t be a jerk and follow the group rules.
- Post in the group and collect emails.
It’s the formula I used to create the most commented post in a 40k members group.
Republishing Your Engagement Post
OK, this is a big one.
I thought re-posting the same post on LinkedIn is a big No-no for the social network. My co-founder Slav made me do it and re-post one of my old engagement posts.
I was skeptical and boy… I was wrong.
My most successful post on LinkedIn was that re-post.
In other words, it’s free emails with a click of a share button.
However, make sure to wait at least a few weeks before you re-post the same engagement post.
Collecting Your Email Leads
Did you execute everything in this guide so far?
Do you have a post gone viral with many email leads coming your way?
If the answer is yes, continue reading.
The hard part is over – you have a valuable piece of content, and your audience is willing to give their emails to get a hold of it.
Now, comes the tedious part. You have to collect the emails and send them your lead magnet.
Let me tell you something – collecting 500+ emails by hand is not for busy people.
Following up with leads, LinkedIn and Facebook blocking you every 50-100 DMs you send, having to wait to get your block lifted, writing comments, double checking email addresses, and so on and so on.
Do not make the mistake of doing this yourself.
I wasted 5 days writing email addresses in a spreadsheet. Putting the boredom aside, this was a stupid spend of my time as a startup founder.
Hire a VA. A good VA will do that job efficiently and will cost you $5/h or less.
Below is the Airtable database/spreadsheet I use to collect the emails:
Apart from the usual stuff (name, email and LinkedIn/Facebook profile), there’s one additional field – Status.
We use it with my VA to track the state of the person, like a mini CRM.
- Invite sent – this means my VA has sent a friend invite to the person
- Followed up – my VA has followed up with the person.
- Email received – my VA has collected the email of the person
- Guide sent – I change the status to “Guide sent” when I send over an email with the lead magnet.
Thanks to the Views features in Airtable, I can see all of the people that I haven’t emailed, yet. (I just saw I still need to send that lead magnet to 52 people).
It’s a neat way to stay organized and make sure everybody gets their email.
Getting 72.48% of the Leads to Open Your Email
Below I will share the exact email and the marketing automation flow I used to get 72.48% open rate on my last lead magnet.
Watch the video below, or continue reading.
You have collected the emails in a spreadsheet. Great!
The last and most important job you have is to send the actual email with the lead magnet.
Your goal with this email is 5-fold:
- Get as many leads to open the email.
- Get as many leads to download/see the lead magnet.
- Get as few unsubscribers as possible.
- Introduce yourself.
- Let them know that you’re going to email them in the future.
I know, too many things to achieve with a single email but it’s possible.
These are the stats from my last email:
- 614 email leads generated from an Engagement post
- 545 emails delivered (some emails Bounce or simply people provide bad emails)
- 72.48% open rate
- 51% click-through rate
- 0.6% unsubscribe rate – or just 3 people have unsubscribed.
Subject: Your list of free tools
It’s Kaloyan (Kalo) Yankulov from LinkedIn. Thank you for your patience!
I have your List of free tools!
Click here to get the list.
There are currently 547 tools in there, covering everything under the sun for marketers and startups. It’s an Airtable document – you can filter the tools by categories.
I hope you find it useful!
A bit about me and why the heck I’m spending all this time to give away this for free?
I’m a marketer and a founder of a soon-to-launch marketing automation tool named Encharge.io
My growth strategy with Encharge is to provide as much value as I could.
I put this list of tools to help marketers and entrepreneurs like you be better at what they do. That way, I’m building a tribe of people who are focused on growth.
In the following weeks, I’m going to send you more emails with content and resources for growth marketers – free guides, case studies, eBooks, swipe files, and more.
If you don’t want to receive any more emails from me about marketing please use the Unsubscribe button below. It’s going to make me sad, but I only want to provide relevant information to the right audience, and not become another spam in your inbox 🙂
- I provided a link to the lead magnet in the top of the email.
- I introduced myself and the product I work on.
- I let them know that I do plan to send future emails, but they’re free to opt-out right now.
Some of you may be concerned with GDPR. You can push this one step further and ask people to opt-in for future email communication.
You can use something like:
Hit the Reply button now and let me know if you’d like to receive more FREE guides and resources on
So far so good… This email generated 62% open rate and 47% click-through rate, but I wanted more.
I created a flow in Encharge that sends the same email with a different subject line to all Unopens.
This is how the flow in Encharge looks:
Below is a step by step process I used to create this flow:
1) I imported all of my leads from the Airtable spreadsheet and tagged them with
2) I created a Segment “Free Tools List 2” with all people that have the tag
3) I created a new flow with a Trigger – Entered Segment “Free Tools List 2”.
This flow will start every time someone enters this segment.
Every time I import new leads and tag them with
free-tools-2-LI-leads, they will automatically be added to this segment and will enter the flow.
I don’t have to bother with creating separate lists or sending multiple emails. Everything is automated with this flow.
4) Next, I’ve connected the trigger with an Action step – “Send email”, and I’m sending the first email (the email I shared above).
5) Then, I’m waiting for 3 days.
6) I’m using a Filter step to filter ONLY people that have NOT opened the 1st email.
7) In the last step, I’m sending the same email but with a different subject line to all Unopens. The new subject line is “Reminder: Don’t forget to download the Free Tools List”
Using this flow, I increased the open rate from 62% to 72.48% and the open rate from 44% to 51% by merely duplicating the email and changing the subject line.
It was worth it because it took exactly 2 minutes to execute.
If you’d like to increase the open rates of your emails, make sure to signup for early access of Encharge. We’re launching in 17 days from today (13th of June 2019). EDIT: We’re live now!
Conclusion – Are LinkedIn Engagement Post an Evergreen Thing or a Growth Hack?
That’s it, folks! We’ve reached the end of the guide.
LinkedIn and Facebook engagement posts are a great way to grow your email list.
Are they going to work long term?
I don’t think so.
Engagement posts and the whole mechanics around them is one of those things that work until the big brother cracks them down. I reckon they have 6 to 12 more until LinkedIn and Facebook starts throttling engagement for them.
That’s why you need to jump on the bandwagon today and turn that social media engagement into emails!
Let me know what you think of that marketing tactic and LinkedIn engagement posts?