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July 19, 2016 By Hendrik-Jan Francke

Don’t Break Your Social Post Promises on LinkedIn

Imagine this: You click on a social media post titled “Top Ten IT Concerns for Nonprofits”. What do you expect to find on the other end?

Probably a list of the top ten IT concerns, right?

Of course! Imagine how confusing it would be if you landed on a page about puppies instead.

A post is a promise. It’s your job to deliver on that promise.

As a B2B marketer, it is your responsibility to build credibility and gain trust with every interaction. With every subject line, every social media post, every piece of content, you are making a promise.

So if you share a post titled “Top Ten IT Concerns for NonProfits”, that better be what the page is about!

This is called message match - matching the message of your ad or social post to the message of the copy on your landing page.

The importance of user-trust in social media marketing became even more apparent when I encountered a LinkedIn post that did not match its page content.

Example: Failed Message Match Between LinkedIn Post & Page Content

While scrolling through LinkedIn, a headline caught my attention:

“All You Need to Know About SQL (but were afraid to ask). Why it’s the most
critical server.”


Expectation: Informational Post on SQL

Concise and appropriately dramatic, the LinkedIn headline made a promise. To me, the post promised an information page with facts on SQL and its importance compared to other servers. A blog post, perhaps.

However, that promise segued to deception.

My Discoveries: Squashed Expectations

Instead of learning more about the service, the link sent me to a page detailing this company's specific services.


The message of the LinkedIn post did not match the message of the page.

More importantly, it did not match my stage in the buyer’s journey.

Don’t Misinterpret the Buyer’s Stage in the Buyer’s Journey

The LinkedIn post and the Services are a mismatch of where the buyer is in the buyer’s journey, an important consideration in B2B Marketing.

As the user, I wanted to research the service further, but I was not ready to buy the service. I was in the awareness stage, expecting awareness state content - information!

But the landing page offered consideration or even decision stage content.

This left me feeling that Outer Edge did not understand my intentions or needs as a prospect. My unmet expectations left me confused, and unsure of how to find the information I really wanted.

Solving Message Match Problems

The lesson to take away from this online experience? Message Match is as important on social media marketing, as it is in advertising. In this instance, Outer Edge could improve Message Match by:

  1. Revising the headline to more accurately reflect the content of the page, OR
  2. Revising the content of the page to meet expectations set by the headline

To learn more about Message Match, read this post.

Example: Successful Message Match on LinkedIn

While knowing how to solve a potential problem can be helpful, what’s even better? Avoiding the problem in the first place! Here is a real example where the social post works in tandem with the page content.


Expectation: Importance of Pre-header Text in Email Marketing

The social post promises an informational blog post about the more prominent role of email preheaders. Will the page content carry out this promise?

The social post first hints user-trust because there is direct coherence between the written headline, “pre-header text has become essential in email marketing”, and the automatic image and link.

Let LinkedIn, or any preferred social media outlet, do the work for you! When you copy and paste a link, the generated headline and image will match your page perfectly--that’s called message match!

My Discoveries: Satisfied Expectations

As promised, the link produced a page with a comfortably similar headline: Is the Email Preheader the New Subject Line?

Because I’ve seen these identical words and image before, I feel confident that I will find the information I am looking for.

As I read down the article, I discover that the content seems to cover just what I wanted to learn about: preheaders.

By satisfying my expectations, this business has gained my trust.

If you break the promises set by each subject line, social media post, and piece of content, you risk losing that trust, which extends to your overall credibility in B2B Marketing.

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