Recently, the way that your posts and articles land in the feed, have undergone some important changes. These changes are because LinkedIn had noticed a disproportionate amount of engagement from some of their top influential users, while inversely seeing a relatively small amount of engagement with the rest of users (remaining 99%), LinkedIn had this to say:
More and more people are using the feed and giving feedback to their network's posts: our members generate tens of millions of viral actions (likes, comments, and reshares), and the number is increasing more than 50% YoY. However, we found that these increases weren't equally distributed. In fact, at the beginning of 2018, we were in danger of creating an economy where all the gains in viral actions accrued to the top 1% power users, while the majority of creators who don't receive much feedback were receiving less than ever.
To decide what stays on the feed, LinkedIn now weighs engagement from the publisher and frequency of publishing as the key driving factor to staying in the feed. Active participation with users, who are interacting with the post, significantly extends the time that the post is "live" on the feed. This effective change has helped to redistribute the power of viral capable content to those that LinkedIn considers to be content creators. LinkedIn effectively leaned into what is well known about social media--That there are two distinct groups which users are categorized. One group publishes or creates content, while the other that is more voyeuristic, a content consumer. Content creators are users that make social media platforms more interesting, therefore awarded more incentive to continue publishing.
LinkedIn utilizes machine learning to accomplish their process of candidate selection. This process is used to evaluate tens of thousands of feed updates, in a matter of seconds, selecting a unique candidate pool. The goal? Rank the most relevant posts at the top of the feed, using a "two-pass architecture." The "first-pass ranker" (FPR) predicts the relevance to the feed viewer, typically network and job updates, as well as, sponsored content (of course) rank the highest. Next, the "second-pass ranker" (SPR) takes a composite score from the first pass, creating a personalized list for the users feed.
What are the main takeaways, to ensure you earn the feed time you need?
Respond in a Timely Manner
Your response time to a post is critical in your pursuit of future feed time. Respond a day or two later and your post is dead in the water. A response minutes after someone posts a comment, helps LinkedIn understand that you are actively participating and engaging the user. Your reward, a better ranking.
Focus on a Niche
As marketers, this makes sense. We are constantly, pushing thought leadership. Niche conversations are where thought leadership live. LinkedIn prioritizes niche conversations as one of the main factors, pushing your post up to the top of the feed. Keep this in mind as you plan out your content. Consider exploring deeper into a topic, rather than expanding on broader topics. Hashtags are a great way to drive and develop veins of content. However, LinkedIn recommends using up to only three hashtags per post. More than that, will be held against you.
Tag People in Your Network
Though, not a fresh concept, LinkedIn determines topic relevance in your network based on tags. Users engage after you tag them, signaling LinkedIn to give your post a big boost. As with hashtags, do not overdo it, or your content will be flagged. That being said, if you are able to accomplish this in a meaningful way, you will further your reach.
Directly and Frequently Engage with Your Audience
It is not enough to just post content anymore. You must be engaging with people to remain current in future feeds. Be social, start conversations, ask questions, and drive engagement. LinkedIn rewards you for how active you are, garnering a viral effect in the feed.
Pro tip: Although not openly admitted by LinkedIn, there seems to be heavily weighting towards text only posts, without links or photos. If you are interested in posting a link to your blog: Start by taking a decent snippet of your blog. Put that snippet in a post. Then, put the link to your company's blog post in the comments. Though this isn't the most elegant solution, it is incredibly effective, yielding more traffic, engagement, and longer feed times.
LinkedIn is an incredibly powerful tool in the professional sector. Proven to help users, by providing high-quality content. Implement some of the mentioned strategies and see a vast improvement in not only your reach, but also your engagement. Try a few different ways of posting content and keep an eye on what works for your company.
If you are looking to have someone manage your social media, contact Nesbit Marketing: www.nesbitmarketing.com/contact