Informed Podcast by Mark Williams The podcast for LinkedIn™️ users

I was hoping that we, the LinkedIn™️ community, would have learnt by now but no, illegal (Linkedin law) automation products are still thriving and new ones seem to appear almost every month.

It's been a long time since I tackled this subject - remember the battle I had with John Nemo in episode 198? John has since changed his views but since those days (2018), the tools have become more sophisticated but still do the same damage to this platform so I thought I would return to this important topic.

Also in this episode I talk about;

  • A content generation tool called AuthoredUp

  • Two new features

  • A worrying security issue

  • Post of the week

Subscribe to my newsletter for full show notes https://www.linkedin.com/newsletters/6726487426274992128/

Direct download: LinkedInformed_440.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

I'm back from a wonderful two weeks in Greece...back to a windy and wet UK (summer lasted two days apparently!) So to warm myself up, I got stuck into the following topics in this weeks podcast;

Should a company be posting this?

Congratulations you are in the top ten experts list!

Four new features

LinkedSummit 2024

Post of the week

 

Direct download: LinkedInformed_439.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

We often come across people on LinkedIn™️ who look interesting and produce content we find valuable...so we follow or connect and over time we feel as though we get to know them better.

But do we REALLY know them?

interesting People interviews are designed to reveal more about the background, personal lives and characteristics of some of our favourite people on LinkedIn™️

This week I chat with my favourite Kiwi, New Zealand based LinkedIn expert Lynnaire Johnston.

Lynnaire has a fascinating career history in radio, publishing and copywriting before finding her passion for LinkedIn™️.

Lynnaire is one of the friendliest, most generous and knowledgable LinkedIn™️ experts out there and I'm sure you will enjoy hearing her describe her background.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_438.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

It's a common belief that the answer to poor (and getting worse) organic content reach from a company page is employee advocacy. So why are so many organisations getting it horribly wrong?

That plus;

  • The new video feed and how it impacts the videos we post.
  • Multiple image posts - new dimensions
  • Images on external links are shrinking and it really doesn't matter!
  • An outrageous post of the week

The New Video Feed

I was chatting recently with Lynnaire Johnston about this new feed (she doesn't yet have it) and she made the valuable point that this new style of delivery might necessitate a change in the way a video is produced.

Because the scroll has audio enabled (unlike in the normal feed) it puts more emphasis on the opening few seconds of the video and less emphasis on the words you type to accompany the post - these appear at the bottom of the video in this feed. This doesn't mean that you should worry less about the words because they still play an important role in the normal feed on both mobile and desktop (see image below).

In addition, the new video feed appears to zoom in somewhat which creates an issue with text on the video or even captions if you add them yourself.

How a video is displayed in 3 different feeds

As a reminder, this video feed is only enabled once you tap on some video posst you see on the main mobile feed, at the moment this is only for about 40% of the videos I see in my feed. Once you are in this feed you can the scroll to see more videos and those videos all autoplay with sound.

I suspect that LinkedIn will fix the zooming issue but that will probably take some time so it's worth ensuring your text does not go near the edges of your video for now.

Multiple Image Posts

The way images are displayed in a multi-image post is beginning to change as you can see here in these example of 2 and 3 image posts;

LinkedIn™️ have provided this helpful document which can be downloaded here.

I've had this change for a while but apparently more the majority of users are now seeing this in their feeds.

Images On External Links

LinkedIn™️ have announced that images on posts with external links are shrinking unless you sponsor (advertise) that post, in which case the image stays the same size as it has always been.

Lots of people are up in arms about this!

Why?

External link posts are seen by very few people anyway so not seeing a larger or small image results in the same...it's not seen!

OK I'm being a bit cynical there but honestly guys, have you not learnt yet?....don't post external links, unless you really have to.

Employee Advocacy

Earlier this year I was a panel member on stage at UpLift Live when a question about employee advocacy on LinkedIn was asked. My slightly cynical response was to state that asking employees to Repost or Like a company page post was not employee advocacy in any sense yet that is as far as most organisations go.

I stand by that answer but it did occur to me that it was worth trying to explain what a more productive method would be.

Firstly I am not a fan of the phrase 'employee advocacy'. To my understanding an 'advocate' is someone who promotes someone or something. This leads to a belief that employee advocacy is all about encouraging employees to promote the company that they work for.

And for the most part, that is what happens. Employees either repost company page content or directly promote the organisation that they work for either to other potential employees or customers.

This is highly ineffective.

Below is a classic example. Robert Half have published an article (ironically about employee advocacy) and then asked their employees to post it...so they do!

This is merely a distribution mechanism and, as you can see by the lack of engagement, not a very effective one!

Whilst this might be employee advocacy for some organisations, others 'ask' their employees to post about the amazing work environment or how they are so happy working for them or how impressed they are with the products or customer service etc etc.

It just comes across as forced and hollow...frankly nobody is buying it!

We all know that promotional content does not do well on LinkedIn, it is difficult to attract engagement and so typically achieves poor reach. So why do companies do it? It strikes me as being nothing more than a 'ticking the box' exercise.

"employee advocacy...done!" ✔️

All that said, we know that company page content has extremely limited reach and this reach seems to be getting worse so it does make sense for organisations to use their employees personal accounts for their benefit.

If however the objective is promotion, it simply won't work. The problem is that the objective is wrong, if the objective was greater visibility then employee advocacy could work, if done the right way.

When an employee of an organisation becomes influential on LinkedIn then the organisation will benefit from their greater visibility. To become influential on LinkedIn though, the employee shouldn't be posting about how amazing the company is, that's not great content.

The trick is to identify individuals within an organisation who have the motivation and ability to gain a following and influence on LinkedIn. This does not need to be many employees, just a few with the right mindset and desire.

The second part of this is about what employees are asked to do and many organisations will be deeply uncomfortable with what is the right approach - to encourage employees to develop their own personal brand by producing content that is helpful, interesting, entertaining and focussed on the audience.

This is usually seen as a threat in most organisations and that is the heart of the problem.

In the podcast I also get into the topic of recruitment and how this strategy will impact the sort of people that are recruited.

Tip: Start small by encouraging a few select employees to comment on company page content. Make sure the content is focussed on the audience and not the company and let the employees contribute to it by adding meaningful comments that add value to the piece.

These same employees should also be encouraged to comment of many other posts (not from the company) that are focussed on topics that will be interesting to your target audience.

Let them build their confidence and credibility this way first.

Then give them the tools and skills to start posting great content designed to encourage engagement.

Once they have gained a strong following and influence, they can occasionally post something about their employer or it's products/services but the main objective is to increase visibility and influence.

Ultimately, the power of employee advocacy lies in authenticity. By encouraging employees to share their unique perspectives, you can create a more compelling and genuine narrative for the organization.

Post Of The Week

This a belter from Lara Bywater and mainly because the topic is just....well, unbelievable really!

How on earth could anyone be so stupid as to think that this business card is OK? Maybe they would defend it by saying it's just harmless banter...if you believe that then just read the comment thread!

It's not clever, it's not funny and it shows a complete lack of empathy or understanding of how a woman would receive this.

The post is also well structured with a great hook line.

Well done to Lara for a great post and for having the courage to call out this sort of behaviour.


That's all for this week.

If you are in Odense in Denmark at Linkedsummit this week, come and say hello!

Until next time...

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People call me 'Mr LinkedIn™️' · LinkedIn™️ visibility · Informed Podcast host · One to one online coaching · Speaker · Social Selling · Online sessions
181 articles
So the organic reach for company pages has gone from poor to almost non-existent...so what do you do?
You turn to your employees (who have better reach) and you call this employee advocacy!
Sharing company page content is not employee advocacy, it doesn't really help either the company or the individual...but there is a better way.
More of that plus;
🔶 The new video feed and how it impacts the videos we post.
🔶 Multiple image posts - new dimensions
🔶 Images on external links are shrinking and it really doesn't matter!
🔶 An outrageous post of the week from Lara Bywater

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Direct download: LinkedInformed_437_revised.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

This week I had a thoroughly enjoyable and thought provoking chat with Copywriting expert and author of the modern classic 'A self-help guide for copywriters' Dan Nelken .

I've been a follower and admirer of Dans work for several years, so I was delighted to finally get him on the podcast to talk about copywriting techniques, LinkedIn™️ and Bunions!

Plus a post of the week about gender equality!

Here are the topics we covered;

Dan's Journey and Overcoming Self-Doubt.

Dan shared his early days working as a forklift driver, his later studies at copywriting school, and his subsequent work as a copywriter at various ad agencies, working with massive brands.

Authenticity in Professional Content

We chatted about how people find it challenging to really be themselves on LinkedIn™️ and how we need to become 'an expert in being ourselves' and why our inner critic is a 'ding dong' - I wrongly assumed this was a Canadian term!

He also shared his struggles with self-doubt and the importance of remaining true to oneself in communication

Balancing Personal and Professional Content

We discussed how sharing personal experiences can effectively engage the target audience by illustrating overcoming relevant challenges. Dan emphasized the importance of authenticity and using language to impress oneself rather than others

"Your audience is you"

We also discussed the trend of using complex vocabulary in professional settings and debated its effectiveness as a means of communication.

Content Creation Strategy and LinkedIn Success

Dan admits to being no expert in LinkedIn™️ content strategies but he has, through trial and error developed a style using images, quotes and carousel templates that resonate with his audience.

 

He also discussed his 'list and twist technique' as demonstrated in this 2 page carousel post...

 

AI & Creativity

Dan does use AI and is impressed with it's capabilities but he "prompts it to prompt him to be more creative"...not to answer questions or create for him.

Book Rankings, Deals, and Course Launches

Dan revealed his challenges with the competitive element of launching a book and bestseller rankings and how with that and marketing his course he stuck to his values and accepted that he is not going to appeal to everyone and that being helpful to others is more important than maximising sales.

Maximize image
Edit image
Delete image
Click on the image above to view Dans book

 

Embracing Self-Expression on LinkedIn

Everyone has to start somewhere and Dans advice is to start small and develop a habit for content, even if it's just 15 mins a week brainstorming ideas for posts. Figure out who you are and how you want to communicate and develop the habit of creating content ideas.

As mentioned earlier, above really is a very brief summary of a 55 minute conversation so I strongly recommend you listen to the full episode to gain the most from Dan's expertise.

Thanks again to Dan for taking the time to share so many golden nuggets.

Post of the week

Plenty of good nominations this week including this highly impressive video post from Farouk Bacha in support of Lara Acosta

This weeks winner had less impressions and engagement but I've picked it because I think we can learn more from it.

An attention grabbing and recognisable image of a film star couple with a brilliant hook 'My new man!!' followed by...

Well icon…. Well screen saver.. ok not even screen saver… look I took the image from Google!

and then the (now irresistible) 'See more' link

Great structure, a great use of image and even more critical to it's success, an important and potential controversial topic.

Congratulations to Jo (although you would be much easier to tag if you used your full name...just sayin!) and thanks to Katharine Robinson for nominating it.

 

 

 

That's all for this week, feel free to say hi to Dan and let him know what you thought of the episode.

Until next time.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_436.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

Organic content reach is on the decline...again!

"It's inevitable, this is what social media companies do" and "All they are interested in is posting more ads" I keep seeing people comment but it really isn't as simple as that. LinkedIn is not an advertising company like Meta, they are a business that primarily generates revenue from subscriptions so the reasons for the decline in reach is more complex...

Also in this episode;

  • Creator mode confusion

  • LinkedIn™️ Games

  • AI-generated content screening

  • The new immersive video feed mystery

  • Post of the week

Direct download: LinkedInformed_435.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

LinkedIn™️ Groups...Once heralded as a cornerstone of professional networking, their prominence has waned over time. However, amidst the shifting tides, could membership in these groups still hold untapped value? Tracy Bedwell certainly believes so. In this compelling episode, we delve into Tracy's firsthand experiences and unveil the strategic tactics she has wielded with remarkable success, shedding light on the enduring potential of leveraging LinkedIn Groups.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_434.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

We often come across people on LinkedIn™️ who look interesting and produce content we find valuable...so we follow or connect and over time we feel as though we get to know them better.

But do we REALLY know them?

interesting People interviews are designed to reveal more about the background, personal lives and characteristics of some of our favourite people on LinkedIn™️.

This week, it was my immense pleasure to sit down and chat with the UK accountants mentor and speaker MARK LEE FCA .

Direct download: LinkedInformed_433.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

Bruce Johnston has been helping people use LinkedIn™️ more effectively for the last 13 years and I've been a follower for 8 years. Bruce is a great wordsmith and one of the more original thinkers out there when it comes to LinkedIn™️ so I thought it was about time to bring him onto the show to share some of his insights.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_432.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

LinkedIn™️ seem to love it, more and more posts are created by it and comment threads are becoming infested with it...so I thought it was time to revisit the topic of AI and try to answer this important question...

Can AI be used in a credible, authentic and ethical way on LinkedIn™️?

That plus...

  • New - Company page premium inc' Who viewed your company page'

  • An improved 'Premium benefits' page plus a special offer

  • Why the new 'Recruiters verification badge' is a disgrace!

  • Post search results now favour Articles

  • A great new option for profile custom buttons

  • An interesting piece on Colla'boring'ative articles!

  • Post of the week

Direct download: LinkedInformed_431.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

This week I chat with Merrill Charette a long timer listener to the podcast (and a podcaster himself!) about his upbringing, experiences and how he ended up in the maritime industry.

I really enjoyed chatting with Merrill who is a fascinating character and a great raconteur. In this interview we cover;

  • How he grew up the '6th child' with his other siblings being 5 Old English Sheepdogs!

  • His very sports orientated childhood and his (and his fathers) obsession with Lacrosse

  • The benefits of focus and determination to achieve his potential in lacrosse

  • How he attended 4 high schools in 5 years experiencing bullying at every turn

  • Tough love from his father

  • Why he gave up lacrosse and rebuilt his identity

  • Dealing with authority (when you know they are wrong)

  • The 1000 Origami Crane Challenge and how it changed him

  • Completing a challenging 2,200-mile trek along the Appalachian Trail

  • Quitting law school

  • The difference between moving on and giving up

  • How a random comment from a stranger "You could always live on a boat" led him to the maritime industry.

  • How he negotiated for and bought his first boat

  • How he taught himself to sail his first voyage from New York to Boston

  • Finding a new community of boat owners

  • Becoming a boating entrepreneur as an outsider to the industry

  • Artificial intelligence and the maritime industry

Direct download: LinkedInformed_430.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

This week in the podcast I complete my review of Uplift Live with the speakers from the afternoon sessions

Gillian Whitney  

Kevin D. Turner 

Tiina Jarvet

Richard van der Blom 

Also in this edition;

  • New ‘Takeaways’ on Articles & posts
  • New video feed on mobile
  • An excellent example of brand partnership with influencer
  • Post of the week
Direct download: LinkedInformed_429.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

My thoughts and feedback on Uplift Live

UpLift Live is an in-person, LinkedIn-focused conference that took place for the first time on 21 March 2024 in Birmingham, UK.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_428.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

With the demise of Creator mode, or the opening of creator mode to everyone (however you wish to view it!) imminent, it probably opens up the possibility of all LinkedIn™️ users having the opportunity to create their own newsletters.

So it seems a good time to have a new look at this feature so that you can decide whether you will be be going down that track.

That plus;

  • A new mysterious 'Who viewed your profile' filter.

  • Your comment doesn't comply with our policies!

  • AI enhancements drive an increase in LinkedIn™️ Premium subscriptions.

  • A sneaky way to get 3 months premium free.

  • How AI features are being assessed

  • Native AI post generation. Is it any good?

  • Post of the week

Direct download: LinkedInformed_427.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

This month we will see Creator mode disappearing and with it, the obligation to have 'Follow' as the primary option on your profile so I thought it was worth revisiting the persistent question...Connect or Follow?

That plus;

  • New Recruiter & Learning tools that assist retention but might also have the the polar opposite impact!

  • New Privacy setting

  • New option for profile custom CTA button

  • Feedback from last week regarding the homepage feed

  • Post of the week.

Direct download: LinkedInformed_426.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

Has your feed changed recently? Are you seeing posts from people who are unfamiliar to you?

This may be due to LinkedIn™️ deciding that they know what 'quality' content looks like.

Not you...you are clearly not in a position to decide this for yourself!

This week I discuss what we can do to fix this.

That plus;

  • AI comments are getting very annoying!

  • The real reason customised invitations are being limited and a cool workaround.

  • A very sneaky change to your data privacy settings

  • Saved posts feature urgently needs updating

  • My take on Public groups

  • Profile verification favours men!

  • Post of the week

Direct download: LinkedInformed_425.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

Are you sure you want to be providing LinkedIn™️ with your hard earned knowledge for a badge?

Do the benefits of collaborative articles add up?

That plus;

  • An update on the revamped Services section

  • A voice message tip

  • Sales Navigator improvements

  • New profile photo feature

  • Another new 'Pay to spam' feature update

  • B2B Deep sales playbook. Useful or a Sales Navigator ad?

  • Are LinkedIn Corp' Sales professionals using LinkedIn™️?

Direct download: LinkedInformed_424.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

It's that time of the year when the legend that is Richard van der Blom publishes his LinkedIn™️ algorithm insights report so in this episode I discuss some of the highlights, what we can learn and why we need to treat the results with caution.

Also covered;

  • Services page gets a makeover

  • Creator mode is going

  • Is profile verification enough?

Direct download: LinkedInformed_423.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

This week I find out about the 'person behind the profile' with the LinkedIn content Queen herself Nanna Sondrup

Nanna was very open and honest in this chat where she describes a troubled childhood experiencing terrible bullying and parents distracted by her brother who had severe ADHD challenges.

She herself was later diagnosed with Dyslexia and ADHD yet has managed to become a very well known LinkedIn™️ expert in Denmark.

Join me in hearing why Nanna is such an INteresting person!

Direct download: LinkedInformed_Nanna422.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

LinkedIn™️ is primarily a B2B networking platform but that doesn't mean that a B2C (business to consumer) business can't succeed. This week I talk with Anna Williams about how she recently relaunched her coffee shop on LinkedIn™️.

That plus;

  • How I became a LinkedIn 'Top voice'

  • An update on profile verification with Persona

  • More on how to get a community top voice badge

  • New - Company sponsored articles

  • Are hashtags still relevant?

Direct download: LinkedInformed_421.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

Big news this week...The LinkedIn Corporation are attacking me and I need some creative ideas from you to be able to move forward.

More of that later, also included in this episode I talk about;

  • Uplift Live conference - I can offer you a discount.

  • Profile custom buttons are really good but are they too effective?

  • Verification issues and privacy concerns

  • New Events features

  • New features for collaborative articles

  • More skills (that most of us don't need)

  • New 'Daily' feature in LinkedIn™️ learning

  • Public profiles get a revamp and there are winners and losers!

  • Post of the week

Direct download: LinkedInformed_420.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

Welcome to the first edition of interesting People, a new type of show for the LinkedInformed podcast.

We often come across people on LinkedIn™️ who look interesting and produce content we find valuable...so we follow or connect and over time we feel as though we get to know them better.

But do we REALLY know them?

interesting People interviews are designed reveal more about the background, personal lives and characteristics of some of our favourite people on LinkedIn™️.

For this first episode, I sat down and had a good old heart to heart chat with Ashley Leeds.

Ashley always comes across as energetic and very positive...but is he always like this?

We discuss the traumatic events that influenced his childhood, why he quit his promising career as a Chef, how he met his wife Debbie, his kids, his many career and job moves and how he ended up being the 15-minute LinkedIn™️ guy!

I absolutely loved finding out more about Ashley and I'm sure you will too

Direct download: LinkedInformed_419.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

Every year I dust off my LinkedIn™️ crystal ball and look at what changes I think we will see on the platform over the coming year...every year I get it spectacularly wrong! I like to think I'm ahead of LinkedIn Corp' with my thinking because often my predictions eventually come to fruition a few years later! Either way, it's always fun to do and gets us thinking about what we want from LinkedIn™️ (in truth I produced a wishlist rather than a list of predictions, this year is a bit of a mix)

So here are my predictions and wishes for this year...

Direct download: LinkedInformed_418.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

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