LinkedInformed Podcast. The LinkedIn Show

Welcome to episode 198, this week I have a real treat for you!
As I have mentioned previously, I wanted to revisit the controversial subject of LinkedIn automation.
LinkedIn make it very clear they do not approve of the use of any type of automation bot as you can see in the image above which was received by someone after visiting just 100 profiles in a day…..but does that mean we should avoid them?
Could they be a useful tool that help us become more productive and successful?

I have thought about this a lot and my conclusion is that automation tools are a bad thing for all of us and the more they are used, the less effective LinkedIn will become.

Darrel Griffin agrees

But not everyone sees it that way…..enter John Nemo!

John is a LinkedIn trainer and a big fan of automation on LinkedIn so I thought it would be fun to get him on the show and have a good old debate!

We get into all sorts of areas during our discussion and I’m not going to even attempt to cover everything here, you will have to listen to the episode but in short;

John believes
In Permission Based Marketing. Contact people via direct message and ask them if they are interested. If they say “No thanks” then that is fine, move on.
Most people are not active on LinkedIn so direct messaging has to be a numbers game.
Automated of connecting and messaging saves you time and acts as a filter - eliminating those that are not active or not interested.
In not wasting time with ‘Tyre (tire) kicking people, it’s better to focus on those that are likely to buy.
If LinkedIn is ruined by automation then so be it, people will move to another platform and we can follow them there. Quote “Marketers ruin everything” - Gary Vaynerchuck
Whilst LinkedIn are not supportive of 3rd party tools, they are mainly against scraping tools, not automation.

I believe
Visibility, reputation and relationships are the key to winning business.
By putting your time an effort into engagement on LinkedIn via Posts, Articles and comments (not direct messaging) you also filter out those that are not active on LinkedIn
When you play the numbers game you are likely to put many more people off than you attract, this is damaging to you in the long term although may be more rewarding in the short term.
I will help anyone, including so called ‘tyre kicker’s because I believe that ‘giving’ in this way will gain me more visibility and build better relationships - this strategy means that 95% of my business comes to me and I do very little traditional ‘business development’.
Automation is a numbers game, for every 5 positive responses there are 95 negative, not all of these will be annoyed and very few will actually complain but a decent percentage of these become tired of being ‘hit on’ - no matter how politely it is done.
LinkedIn has become an amazing business resource but automation will ruin it because these tools will be extensively used by people who misuse hem and this will result in the people we wish to do business with, switching off or even closing their accounts. We can’t afford to let LinkedIn deteriorate in this way.
Using automation tools is highly risky, the chances of getting your account suspended are increasing all the time. LinkedIn are very keen to stop the use of automation tools, not just scraping tools.


John referred to an article he wrote about his method which you can read here;

https://www.inc.com/john-nemo/1-simple-strategy-that-will-skyrocket-your-engagement-on-linkedin.html

I personally wouldn’t recommend that strategy……but that is entirely up to you!

So what do you think?

Please get in touch and let me have your views. Send me a voicemail or drop me an email to mark@linkedinformed.com

Direct download: LinkedInformed_198.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC

Welcome to episode 197, I’m back and it’s just me this week.

Someone alerted me to a shocking issue regarding invitations to connect this week and it got me thinking about the ineffective way that LinkedIn introduce new features. It seems that introduce features on a slow roll-out and rely on their users to report issues…..but what if we don’t or aren’t able to spot a problem…….based on the evidence of this week, it appears that such issues just remain until someone does report it.
…..and that is simply not good enough!

More of that later but as usual I scanned the internet to find any interesting articles about Linkedin, I found a few but it has been noticeable this year that LinkedIn’s own blog seems to be focussed mainly on job seekers - very few LinkedIn users are looking for jobs so why are Linkedin writing virtually all their blog articles for jobseekers?
So far this year on LinkedIn’s main blog 9/10 (and the last 9) have been jobseeker focused!


Interesting Stuff I Saw This Week

People Still Spend an Insane Amount of Time on Facebook, But Trust it Much Less than LinkedIn
Results from a report released by Business Insider
I’m not sure how people it interpret ‘Safe to participate or post’ but LinkedIn was by far the most trusted with 48% of the votes (Facebook was 2nd with 24%).
LinkedIn is clearly seen as more reliable for ‘real’ content and a place where you will get less abuse
This is good news for LinkedIn ads
Six Ways Millennials Can Take LinkedIn To The Next Level
Interesting article, not just relevant to millennials
Number 1 is ‘Make it fun’ - this is such good advice.
Yuck! to CV style profiles!
Activity (inc post searching) is great advice
Number 6 (stop being cheap) is unrealistic and unnecessary for most
Remember LinkedIn? A year on from the $27bn Microsoft takeover - was it worth it?
Very little has changed on LinkedIn - as they said would be the case at the time of the takeover!
LinkedIns revenue is growing ($1.3bn in the quarter)
Microsoft say that LinkedIn is “performing better than we expected, and I think today we would even say it's a more strategic asset than we even maybe thought a year ago.”

#LinkedInLocal

I will be attending three Linkedin local events in the next month or so;
Aberdeen 22nd February
Manchester 14th March
Warrington 15th March (this has changed from the 8th as stated in the show)

The #LinkedInLocal concept is really taking off with an amazing 48 events happening in February and March across the world including Bristol, Leeds, San Francisco, Paris, Las Vegas, Edinburgh and Lahore to name a few

To find an event in your area go to https://linkedlocally.com/explore/

 

Post of the Week

A great video post from José Chávez-Ruz that hits the mark for being relevant, interesting and highly shareable.

 

New Feature

LinkedIn are improving the skills endorsements feature (mobile only at the moment).

Now when you endorse a skill you are asked to grade the level

And then give it some context

In addition you can now see the actual number of endorsements on mobile, rather than the previous 99+

Will this make skill endorsements relevant?
I very much doubt it - too little too late, endorsements are not taken seriously because previously they were too easy to give. Adding the extra steps to endorse does make them more credible but you can’t separate the new ones from the old ones!
I personally think this is a tactic to stop those ridiculous ‘Auto-endorse’ bots that are becoming popular…….more of that subject next week when I will be debating LinkedIn automation with John Nemo.
If you have any thoughts or questions about automation, please get in touch as soon as possible.


Your Personalised mobile invitations have not been sent!

I was truly shocked to find this out this week - thanks to an eagle eyed connection who spotted it.
For years I have been encouraging people to personalise their invitations to connect on mobile by using the 3 dot ‘More’ menu rather than the blue Connect button.
It would appear that this invitation (the actual invitation, not just the message) have not been sent!!
I have no idea how long this has been the case……quite possibly since it was added as a new feature (years ago).
The problem seems to be mainly on the iOS app although a few Android users are experiencing the same issue.
You wouldn’t know there is a problem as it states the invitation has been sent but when you check your sent invitations, it does not show and I have confirmed on 4 occasions now that the recipient does not receive anything!!
Outrageous!

This is, I believe a direct result of LinkedIns ridiculous feature launch policy that appears to involve zero testing or quality control and relies 100% on the user reporting a problem……but what is the user is unable or highly unlikely to spot the fault?

It’s time that LinkedIn stopped letting their members down and implemented a proper, thorough quality control testing procedure.

Do you agree?

“How do I stop those irritating badge posts from LinkedIn appearing on the left of my screen while I'm working? The ones which talk about how it bases choices it offers me on my interests or posts or some such nonsense. I've only really noticed them this week”

ANSWER
This would appear to be an early release of a new notification. It is not possible to stop these types of pop-ups but you can give feedback to LinkedIn that you find them irritating and perhaps they will think twice about rolling it out further.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_197.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC

Welcome to episode 196, this week I chat with personal branding expert Jennifer Holloway about the article that LinkedIn bring out every year highlighting the most used words in LinkedIn profiles.

Click on the image above to view the full article

Takeaways from our chat

Some words (such as passionate) are overused in profiles without much thought going into whether they are true or not
A better way to interpret this list is not to avoid the words as such but to demonstrate that you are ‘passionate’ or ‘motivated’ by the way you describe what you do. Let the reader make the conclusion themselves.
Storytelling can be a great way to demonstrate qualities without having to directly tell someone you are an ‘expert, ’strategic’ or ‘creative’
Are you using a buzzword because it is one you commonly use or are you just falling into the trap of using it for the sake of it?
Jennifers advice on writing a LinkedIn summary;
Show credibility with hard facts
Explain your personal brand by explaining what drives you and explaining your values
Give the reader a ‘relationship hook’ - something about you that reveals your personality and allows for a more personal connection.
LinkedIn profile headlines are still the most keyword sensitive part of your profile but only jobseekers need to be highly focused on profile optimisation.
Never make personal statements without answering Janet Morans questions ‘So What and Says who?!’
A good technique to use if you are struggling to write your profile summary is to get a friend to write if you - this won’t be what you will use but it can really help to get you started.

 

Thanks again to Jennifer for her time and ideas. You can find out more about her from her LinkedIn profile (link in image above) or by going to her website https://www.jennifer-holloway.co.uk/

This weeks question comes from Mahan Tavakoli

“Hi Mark,
I am a newer listener to your podcast and really enjoying the content and your style.  So much so that I have downloaded all available past episodes from ITunes and going through them one at a time.
Anyway, I have a question and not sure if you have addressed this before or not.  If it fits what you are looking to cover on the Podcast, I would love to hear your thoughts about it.
 I am writing a series of articles (on leadership and organizational development).  Should I first publish them on LinkedIn and then on Medium and put on my blog… or should I publish them elsewhere and post links in LinkedIn or is an all of the above strategy viable? 
 Most of my target audience is on LinkedIn but want to know your thoughts about best approach to a blog posting strategy.”
 
My advice is that you are probably best posting your content as an article and on your blog at the same time.
Your latest Article becomes a part of your profile and has a longer shelf life than a post.
You will need to promote your article via engaging and interesting posts - not just ‘have a read of my article’ - try to introduce the subject matter and ask questions to start a conversation. You can refer to the article with a link but the post needs to resonate with people in its own right.
Never try to promote your external blog via LinkedIn, it simply won’t work as the algorithm will suppress the distribution of any post containing an external link.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_196.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC

Welcome to episode 195, I had planned to cover a different subject (The dangers of automation - let me know your thoughts on that!) this week but then I got an excellent voicemail question from Giles about the differences between following and connecting and decided to cover that subject in more detail.

But before that……


Interesting Stuff I Saw This Week

Find the Right Words to Land the Right Job
More on this in next weeks episode!
The Most Popular Jobs and Companies for College Graduates
The top job is also the highest pay! ($95k)
Insight Global - a fast growing IT recruitment business
Why I changed my LinkedIn profile from Andrea to Andrew
She was taken more seriously and less patronised when a man!
The algorithm started suggesting connections to higher level men at well-recognised companies.
Fascinating experiment …..could be worth a try!


LinkedIn Updates


Have you noticed the new font? Summaries and headlines may need to be adjusted.
New changes to groups may be having some positive impact on groups
One manager reports a 10x increase in engagement
Unfortunately the changes seemed to have messed up all other notifications!
You can now see your own activity in one click, rather than having to go to your profile

LinkedIn are clearing ‘moving the furniture’ on desktop at the moment, so many things are not working - especially @mentions and notifications. I also found that only half the comments on one of my posts were showing when I checked on mobile. Suggest you keep an eye on mobile at the moment until things settle down.


Connecting and Following

As I mentioned, this subject was instigated by a question I received from Giles;

 

Definition: Following someone means that you could see their content and activity in your feed (articles, posts, shares, likes and comments). You can follow anyone on LinkedIn provided their setting allow this.

You can follow up to 5000 people who are not your connections. To follow someone simply click on the 3 dot ‘More’ menu at the top of their profile or look for the Follow button on the Activity section of their profile.

Connecting

A connection is a follower and someone you follow by default. You can unfollow a connection at anytime from the ‘More’ menu. You are allowed up to 30,000 connections.

The difference with a connection is that, as well as their activity you are able to see and filter their connections (dependant on their setting), send messages and see their full contact info including their primary email address.

Now to Giles question

Firstly let me address the question of blocking.

This is the only way you can prevent him from following you
He will not be alerted to being blocked
He will then not be able to find you on LinkedIn, or vice versa


The bigger question is whether a competitor following you is a problem or not?

What harm can come from him seeing your activity - assuming you are not giving away commercially sensitive information?
Following you may make him realise he is way behind and may, in some way intimidate him.
A greater threat would come if he started commenting and engaging with your posts

This brings up a wider point;

The ethics of competition on LinkedIn;

Is it ethical to provide advice and demonstrate your knowledge on a competitors post?
Should you ever ask for a competitors view via an @mention?

When to follow and NOT connect

A complete stranger whose content you find interesting
A competitor
A prospect or intermediary who you wish to engage with

Obviously 1 and 3 may be pre-cursors to connecting.

Following has been around on LinkedIn for years but still most people just connect, it’s beginning to be understood better but we still have a way to go. When I talk with people who are more familiar with other social networks, I explain the mechanics of LinkedIn as being like a blend of Twitter, where you follow and Facebook where you connect (friend). On LinkedIn you can do either!

 This weeks question is also about following and comes from Nigel Willis

 

Nigels first question refers to following Influencers such as Bill gates. Influencers have become known for posting some decent content but never engaging with comments, this somewhat flies in the face of the point of content in my opinion! I’m not surprised you want to unfollow Bill and as far as I know it will not cause you any issues with the algorithm.
In terms of the second question. You can’t specify that you wish to see a certain type of content from someone that you are following but you can select to follow topics. Unfortunately LinkedIn do not allow us to see a list of Topics, we have to wait for them to suggest them although searching for content can often trigger the algorithm to suggest a Topic relevant to that search.
You can also unfollow people to clean up your feed
You can also search for content and follow people who write about subjects that interest you.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_195.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC

Welcome to episode 194, this week I have a chat with my friend and fellow LinkedIn trainer/consultant Sandra Long about personal branding.

 

Interesting Stuff I Saw This Week


LinkedIn Announce some changes to groups

I have mentioned previously that I’m aware that LinkedIn are currently working on a project to improve groups and this week they sent out a communication advising of several changes that will happen soon.
I think most people have been sent it but in case you didn’t see it;

My thoughts;
Accessing groups from the homepage is a welcome move but lets be clear, this is just a roll back to how it used to be!
Including group conversations in the feed is also nothing new. This one concerns me in that most activity in groups is useless broadcasting as well as spam so this could actually be a negative thing for members homepage feeds!
Posting videos is great news. No surprise either as it has been a success on the home page and the ability to @mention (assuming it works!) is a positive step.
Retirement of the iOS Groups app. I’m not sure how this will improve the use of groups….taking away an app is not exactly moving forward! You have always been able to access groups from the main app anyway (Android users have always had to do it that way)
Maybe LinkedIn felt it was necessary to release this information now in light of the recent Facebook summit where groups were mentioned but I have to say, these changes are somewhat underwhelming!
I’m sure this is really just the start of the groups design. I’m disappointed because I felt they needed to scrap groups altogether and start again from scratch. Getting members back engaging in groups is going to be very hard because most members have just written them off.
LinkedIn quote: “Additional notifications, groups posts in feed, video posts, @mentions and replies to comments have been announced because those are the items for which we have a decent sense of the timeline. But it is definitely not an exhaustive list of the work we're doing to improve Groups”
Let’s hope that the next announcements are more exciting!


Personal Branding

This week I had a chat with LinkedIn expert Sandra Long. Personal branding was one of my predictions for 2018 covered in episode 192 and a subject I believe to be very important to all of us. I even covered it briefly in the first ever episode of LinkedInformed when I introduced ‘Personal Branding for Brits’ author Jennifer Holloway

Key takeaways

Tom Peters article The Brand Called You which is still just as relevant today as when it was written in 1997!
Social media really allows us to craft an image that we want to portray. This has many advantages but also creates an authenticity challenge.
Social media has blended our social and professional lives. This creates a question as to how ‘open’ we want to be with business contacts about our personal lives.
40% of people don’t know how to describe what they do…and those are just the hard facts, never mind describing your character!
The best way to describe what you do is to be very specific - broad, ‘jack of all trades’ profiles rarely work for you.
In terms of character - what makes you unique? You can display this information in a variety of different sections of your LinkedIn profile.
It can help to define a ‘persona’ when writing your LinkedIn summary - Sandra’s book gives plenty of persona examples and has a list of questions that can help define your persona.
This also impacts corporate brands as many organisations are now realising that they are in reality, a collective of many personal brands and this can be a very powerful. It is however really important to be authentic to your own brand and this needs to align, for the most part with the corporate brand you are representing.
Your activity on LinkedIn should also be in line with your brand. If your brand is genuine then this should not be difficult! It’s often a good test on whether your brand image is right.
Posting should never be self-promotional. Thought leadership, being helpful and contributing to the LinkedIn community by developing conversations is the best way to ‘stay on brand’ - your profile should clearly explain what you do.
Final word from Sandra: Take the time to really think through who you are and your ‘brand elements’ before you start to write your profile

 

Direct download: LinkedInformed_194.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC

Welcome to episode 193 and a very happy and prosperous new year to you all. I trust everyone had a fantastic break over Christmas.

Towards the end of last year I conducted a survey of LinkedIn users to see how behaviour had changed on LinkedIn. I had a sense that the results would be interesting……and I wasn’t disappointed!

In this episode I will go through the results with you but before that….


Interesting Stuff I Saw This Week


LinkedOut: The 7 Stages of Grieving a Breakup
LinkedOut Update: what to do if your account is restricted?

New LinkedIn Feature

Invitation Sorting
You can now sort your received invitations. This is probably only going to be useful for people that get a lot of invites or get behind with dealing with them but it’s good to see an improvement anyway.

I think an additional catergory of “customized with a message” would also be helpful as, when I do have a lot to go through, I always prefer to read those with messages first.


Magnet Posts

It would appear that the ‘magnet’ post feature has been improved in that you no no longer need to have any of the skills you specify in your post - as previously covered in episode 189, this makes much more sense!
Thanks to Jillian for the heads up on this

I still don’t have the feature but if you do and have been using it, I would love to hear how well it has worked for you.


Interesting Post

Thanks to Carl for sending this one in.

This is actually pretty easy to do yourself, but only if you have access to a Sales Navigator or Recruiter account. For some reason the url’s on those interfaces ignore the customised version and show the original source url with your number in it

The 2017 LinkedIn User Survey Results

We had 780 responses in total, thank you to everyone who took the time to complete the questions.
One of the questions asked for the date you signed up to LinkedIn…one person apparently signed up in the year 1800! This individual apparently signs into their account on a weekly basis but has only managed to amass 8 connections in all that time - in addition they have 0 followers so presumably all 8 connections have chosen to unfollow them!!
Fortunately this was the only spoof entry we received.

The average number of connections was 2178
The average number of followers was 2748

We had five people who had reached the maximum 30,000 connections.

The highest number of followers was 205,000 (11,658 were connections) and equally impressive was someone who had 165,231 followers including only 1903 connections!

As for the rest of the questions, the full results can be seen below;

Direct download: LinkedInformed_193.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC

Welcome to episode 192 and a very merry Christmas to all of you.

There has been very little news about LinkedIn this week but I did native the following two related articles;


Interesting Stuff I Saw This Week

What we got right — and terribly wrong — in our 2017 predictions
The 50 big ideas for 2018

LinkedIn are, as always, keeping very tight lipped about their plans for 2018 so I thought it would be fun to take a stab at what I think the likely trends for LinkedIn in 2018 will be.

LinkedIn in 2018

Increased use of #Hashtags. Hashtags re-emerged in 2017 but next year they will become mainstream and ‘trending hashtags’ will become an important feature that we will all be using extensively by the end of the year.
Livestream Video. This one has been on LinkedIn’s roadmap for a while and I predict 2018 will be the year it is finally implemented. Native video will be fully rolled out by the end of the first quarter and I believe Livestream video will start to become a feature (mobile only) by the middle of 2018. As with Native video it will take a while for users to figure out the best way to use Live streaming so I don’t expect it to have a big impact in 2018…but it will start to roll out.
More spam. As the number of users increase and spammers (not just cowboys but also the uneducated) start to realise that they risk big fines due to the GDPR legislation (effective from May 2018). LinkedIn messaging and InMail will become a more widely used tool for spammers.
LinkedIn Hangouts. #LinkedInLocal will continue to grow and people will start to see the benefits of meeting their connections face to face…but not every business operates locally so LinkedIn will respond to this need by introducing a live video hangout feature - this will use the same platform as Livestreaming and be closely linked to the New groups feature.
New Groups. I know that LinkedIn are working on a complete re-design of groups and this will be implemented during 2018. Expect to see something completely different - possibly even renamed and rebranded that will include the hangouts feature mentioned above.
Increased Engagement. This was the big surprise of 2017 and LinkedIn users will continue to learn that broadcasting content without attracting comments is a waste of time. Expect more and more comments on posts and articles as content producers get to grips with better quality (engaging) content.
Engagement Analytics. Following on from the increase in engagement I predict that 3rd party tools will appear that allow you to find and assess people based on their comments and Likes as well as their content.
Voice commands. 2018 will be the year of Alexa type voice controls everywhere and it will become so mainstream that LinkedIn won’t be able to resit getting involved. We could see voice commands on the mobile app such as “search for marketing managers in Birmingham, united kingdom” or “accept my new invitations”.
Personal Branding. This will become more important next year and more and more people move away from corporate employment and become self-employed experts in their field. Another possible trend is that corporates may move away from ‘enterprise/corporate brands and encourage employees to develop their personal brands on behalf of the company.
LinkedIn Stories. Stories are big on Snapchat and Instagram and are now becoming more popular on Facebook. LinkedIn have a long tradition of adopting popular features from other social media platforms and I see stories as being no different. Native video, text and image posts can be combined and collated into stories. Expect to see this as a new feature in the second half of 2018.

Please note that ALL the above predictions are total guesswork on my behalf. I have no inside knowledge on what might actually happen!
What do you think of the above predictions? Can you think of others?

Thanks to everyone for contributing to the 2017 LinkedIn User survey.

I will compiling the results in January and expect to announce the results on either the first or second episode of 2018.

If you didn’t get time before, way not help out now by taking a few minutes to answer the questions below;

That’s it for this week and for this year!

We will be back with the first episode of 2018 on January 13th

Happy Christmas

Happy Christmas to you all, enjoy the break, open time with your families and switch LinkedIn off for a week or so!

See you next year.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_192.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC

Welcome to episode 191, this week I’m going to cover a topic I tackle almost on a daily basis at the moment…..How to know what subjects to post about on LinkedIn.

But before I get onto that……


Interesting Stuff I Saw This Week

The Crappy Handbook of LinkedIn Profile Pics
LinkedIn Top Voices 2017: The must-know people inspiring today’s professional conversations
Stay on Top of In-Demand Skills with New Notifications


#LinkedInLocal

I originally covered the LinkedIn Local phenomenon in episode 166 when I interview Erik Eklund who was a founding member of this movement along with Alex Galviz, Anna McAfee and Manu Goswani.
Since then the founders have been joined by Ryan Troll and Brian Almeida to form an organisation that co-ordinates LinkedIn Local meet ups throughout the world.
They have now set up a new website

Click on the image above to visit the website

If you are thinking of running a LinkedIn Local event in your area then take a look at the website to understand how you go about it.

Please Do The Survey! And if you have done it….please share it widely!

I was aiming to get to 1000 responses by Christmas but at the time of writing, I’m still below 500!
It has been much harder than I expected to get people to complete this short (5 mins) survey but I really feel we need to get at least 500 to make the results viable.

So please share the link http://bit.ly/Linkedin2017 with your LinkedIn network, Twitter and Instagram followers and Facebook friends

If you haven’t yet done the survey, here it is

This weeks question also forms the main topic for this week;

I hear you talk a lot about techniques for posting which is very useful but my problem is ‘what’ to post about. Any tips?

I get asked this question so much and I also regularly have to tackle the subject when I am working with customers that are currently posting promotional content.

Here are my guidelines;
The McFly Syndrome - It’s all about you…STOP SELF PROMOTING! This includes talking about events you have organised, new members of staff or awards you have won. You might not see it as such but others only see this as self promotion. These posts are OK occasionally but need to dominated by less selfish content.
Understand your relevant followers. You don’t need to ‘speak’ to all your followers but you must focus on gaining a deeper understanding of what interests your followers;
> What motivates them
> What frustrates them
> What worries them
> What excites them
> What content do they read?
> What sort of posts are they Liking, Sharing or Commenting on
Experiment with different subjects. What works and what falls flat. Try not to make too many assumptions and judge by results.
People on LinkedIn are much less ‘stuffy’ than you think! Try people orientated content and use stories where possible. Think about light, fun subjects as well as subjects that people are likely to have strong opinions about.
The ‘gold standard’ measurement is comments.

These guidelines refer to content rather then technique. You can learn more about technique, plus some other content tips in episode 178

Direct download: LinkedInformed_191.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC

Welcome to episode 190, it seems that many people are talking about the mysterious LinkedIn algorithm, myself included! I can’t believe how many of these people are still blaming the algorithm for the poor performance of their content, it’s not the algorithm folks, it’s your content!……

But before I get stuck into that, here are a few things I came across this week

Interesting Stuff I Saw This Week

People Are Flooding LinkedIn With Strange Stories. We’re Calling Them Broetry.
7 Next-Level Sourcing Tips From the Master, Glen Cathey
Can Linkedin Save Slideshare?
LinkedIn Plans Improvements, Including Changes To SlideShare
New LinkedIn A.I. Is Now Judging Your Content. Sorry, What Content?

Native video problems

A number of people have been seeing error messages on native LinkedIn videos this week

It would appear that simply refreshing your page often sorts this out, if not then try clearing your cache.


Blaming The Algorithm

I enjoy the challenge of ‘outsmarting’ the algorithm as much as anyone, more than most probably but I really think that people are getting a bit carried away with it’s importance.

Let’s be clear - Content will always be king!

I recently came across this post from someone complaining that the algorithm favoured posts over Articles - the argument seems to be that he spends longer crafting an Article so the algorithm should reflect that…..what?!!

I checked back and he hadn’t created any posts linking to this article so how did he expect people to find it?
It’s also worth noting that Article ‘views’ are not the same as post ‘views in the feed.

All the algorithm does is reflect what it sees as being interesting and engaging amongst LinkedIn users. Yes it initially decides how many people see a post and that is important but that alone won’t ensure many people see your content - the most critical factor is how people react to it and for that to happen you need to write interesting content.
Interesting does not equate to ‘interesting to you’ or ‘appropriate for LinkedIn’ it means it need to resonate with your followers.
Do you know what resonates with your followers?
Maybe you do but you don’t ‘approve’ - well thats up to you but don’t blame the algorithm, blame your followers….or dare I say it….take the blame yourself!

My observations are as follows;
People prefer short form content on LinkedIn
People don’t always want to talk about business, lighter subject matter is surprisingly popular
Posts are seen on our home page and with one click that does not require opening a new page we can read more…that is just more user friendly
Posts should gain the attention of a reader within the first 3 lines - the spacing argument is not proven and makes no sense to me. It just needs to be long enough to trigger the ‘see more’ and good enough to motivate someone to click on it.

So rather than blaming the algorithm, perhaps it’s time to start taking notice of what your followers really want and providing them with that?

Competition Winner

In episode 181 I interviewed PR expert Janet Murray and she kindly offered a free 60 minute PR strategy call with a lucky winner of a free prize draw.

This was some weeks ago but the responses have been dripping in ever since so I haven’t made the draw until now.

And the lucky winner is……..(drum roll)

Mark Barlow from Dirty Marks Cleaning services. Mark runs a window cleaning service as well as being an online marketing strategist!

Direct download: LinkedInformed_190.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:59pm UTC

Welcome to episode 189, not much news this week but I do have a couple of new features to share with you and a cool thing plus I feel the need for a rant!…..more later.


Interesting Stuff I Saw This Week

‘LinkedIn degrees’ from global providers ‘could leave UK behind’
Russian accused of hacking LinkedIn, Dropbox to be extradited to US
Oops: LinkedIn country subdomains SSL cert just expired

 

New Features

Double tap to Like

This new mobile feature is copied straight from Instagram and is definitely aimed at millennial who tend to move through their streams much more quickly and ‘thumb tap’ rather than finger tap as us ‘oldies’ tend to

New Magnet Posts

This feature is in the early stages of roll out so you may not see it yet but it’s a good one!

When you create a post on a mobile app you now get the option to specify to send it to the homepage of (and potentially notify) followers who have specific skills - via a magnet icon.
By tapping on the magnet below you are given the option to pick up to three skills.

This means that the distribution of your post will initially only be to targeted followers - it may of course reach further as they like or comment on it.

When you receive such a post in your feed you will see which skills you have that match the specified ones and you are encouraged to ‘Add your thoughts’

The only problem is that the skills you pick have to be skills that you also have on your profile. This seems like an unnecessary criteria to me and will result in people adding false skills to their profile just so they can target people they are interested in.

You can tell these posts said because the skills specified and those you match are clearly identified

All that said, it’s a great new feature and hopefully we will all have the opportunity to use it soon.


Are You Stuck In The ‘Content Marketing’ Past?

Whilst conducting some research this week I was stunned by the amount of people that are still wasting time and resources in posting external links.

Its a waste of time….virtually no-one see’s it!

I’m somewhat puzzled by this. Do these people not care that there is zero engagement and views?

Maybe I’m wrong and they are getting huge numbers to their website….I doubt it!

It seems to me that it is taking people a long time to shift their habits from the ‘share relevant content to build trust’ into ‘build trust through engagement.

I suspect much of this is just people who have set up automatic sharing via aggregate and scheduling tools so they don’t really notice - the problem is that it messes up their ‘ranking’ with LinkedIn algorithm making it harder to reach many people, even if their posts are better.

Maybe it’s just extremely hard for people to break long established habits? The ‘post interesting content and bring people to your website’ mantra has been around for a long time but does it really work?

I personally found that it didn’t

What do you think?

Are you still posting links?

If you want to post a link you need to do it manually as I showed recently in this video

Evernote Business Card Connecting

This isn’t actually a new, just something I had forgotten existed!
I was reminded by someone about it this week, I honestly thought the feature had disappeared when LinkedIn severely restricted access to third parties but I was wrong.

This is a great tool to use when at a physical networking event.

This video shows you exactly what to do

Before you can use this you need to make a few adjustments to your Evernote app and account.

This feature is only available to Premium Evernote users

Go to Account > Settings

Now tap on Camera

Now tap into ‘Business cards’

And now you will see the option to connect the app with your LinkedIn account

You can’t customise the invitations so I would only use this whilst you are actually with the person but it can be a great way to ensure that you always quickly and efficiently remember to connect!

How can I see who is following me?

This feature is exactly the same on desktop and mobile but it’s not where you would expect it!

Go to your profile and scroll down to your activity and you will see a blue link ‘Manage Followers’ next to the number of followers

The following list will always start with your followers (as opposed to connections who are followers). If you see the option to follow them back then you know they are not a connection, scroll down until the option ceases and it states that you are already ‘following’ these will (mostly) be your connections.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_189.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am UTC