Changes to Linkedin and why you should care

Some of you may just be coming to grips with Linkedin but it is becoming a network heavily relied on my headhunters and recruitment agencies so it makes sense to keep your profile up to date.

In early March Linked in announced that they have launched a news aggregation service called Linkedin Today. You can see a video about the new service which enables you to filter your news based on the industry sectors you are interested in. If I go to www.linkedin.com/today I can see that on March 23rd the most heavily read news relates to the news story about 3 million people paying for their coffee in Starbucks using their mobile phone application and is not about the death of Elizabeth Taylor.

It shows you the source of the article and how many have read the article and you can guess that there are no familiar newspapers represented but new media news sites such as Mashable, Techcrunch and Social Media Examiner are the major source of eyeballs online. It’s clear that this organisation of content is going to have a big impact on how we organise data on our own sites as we already know that Google will rank it higher if it’s been sorted based on popularity. I can see the whole world of the web moving to the typical WordPress templated model with content based on popularity.

Since some of the traditional news channels such as The Times have moved to a subscription model they have lost a lot of critical mass. The key difference in the way that you are consuming news is that you are specifying how you want it filtered and it is very much an opt in rather than a traditional broadcast model. This is definitely a glimpse into the future as we specify how we want to receive our information and perhaps we will see news polarise into the paid subscription model versus the filtered newsfeed based on what our network reads.

Linkedin feels as if it is changing to look more like a cross between Facebook and Amazon as it implements its “share” function and its clear that there are important lessons to learn in using this platform. It has encouraged many Linkedin groups to become open rather than closed which enables it to mine its database for richer content with a view to sharing it with its user base and adding value by filtering it based on your preferences.

Here are a few pointers in making the most of Linkedin:

  1. Make sure you integrate your tweets and blog on your Linkedin page so that your readers get a more rounded perspective. Try and ensure they will add value to your Linkedin network as the network can be used to share content.
  2. If you are going to publish some content, make sure that it offers genuine value that you know your network will be interested in
  3. Make regular updates and be active in Linkedin as this will ensure that your content gets picked up.
  4. Join the Linkedin groups to broaden your network – you can join up to 50 and if you don’t see one you like then set one up yourself and invite your network and their friends to join.
  5. Some developers have not yet sorted out their code to feature the Linkein Share buttons on your emails or blogs but at least you should make sure all your communications can be liked or tweeted.

The key learning is that we need to take a crash course in publishing versus advertising as this is the new world order and if we are struggling then we need to find the experts and influencers that can do this for us.

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