How to Conquer the Decline of the LinkedIn Post

By Nigel Cliffe

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Is producing content on LinkedIn likely to be a strategy in decline?

This is pretty much what SEO expert and founder of Sparktoro, Rand Fishkin, is saying in his very thoughtful post.

Acknowledging that data on whether blogs themselves are still widely read and subscribed to is hard to come by, Rand shares his gut feeling that blog readership has fallen across the internet, despite the growth in the number of people and organisations producing blogs. He cites Orbit Media Studio’s survey as evidence that blog publishing is still popular, although the frequency of blog publishing has declined.

Reasons why blog readership and subscriptions are falling:

Rand then goes onto outline what he regards as the main reasons for the decline in blog readership and subscribers, which include:

  • securing traffic to a blog becoming more challenging than ever before with SEO and social media becoming much more competitive, while other channels such as RSS feeds, roundups, some forms of linking have all but disappeared.
  • social media, such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter and content aggregators like Reddit, YouTube and Pinterest have replaced the need for the blogs of individual websites to drive trends due to their immense popularity.
  • blogs themselves are now everywhere with virtually all business websites having one and, as the quantity of blogs has arisen the quality of their content has dropped. Therefore, making use of search engines, aggregators and social amplification is a preferred move for most blog post readers.
  • Google search now shows a large proportion of blog content as instant answers within search results in the form of featured snippets and extended descriptions. This negates the need for consumers to click through to the blog post to find the information they are seeking.

Rand notes that the more popular the social media or aggregator platform, the harder it is to amplify content on that network (see graph below). He marks LinkedIn as being ‘high’ in terms of difficulty when it comes to amplifying content on the B2B platform.

In my opinion then, here are a few tips to thwart the decline:

    • Write better content – provide the answers to questions people are asking. I’ve written before about how there are multiple online platforms out there that allow you to discover what your audience is interested in and the questions they are asking online so you can shape your content accordingly. These include StoryBase and BuzzSumo.
    • Produce better videos – I don’t mean of higher quality, I mean of greater value. I aim to share both a mixture of impromptu and professionally filmed videos on LinkedIn and on my YouTube channel. It varies the content I publish and appeals to those visual and auditory learners who prefer moving images over text-based posts.
    • Write to/for an audience of one – making your content too wide in appeal will impact no one. Instead, try to make your content more targeted.
    • Don’t spam – we all recognise it when we see it. Remember, LinkedIn is for much more than just selling or serving as your online CV… In fact, it’s not really about selling at all.
    • Build relationships, not connections – remember to personalise Connection requests where possible. Click here to find out why.
    • Don’t automate relationships – (I know you are short of time, but don’t compromise). Relationships aren’t built on automation, they are built on personal, one-to-one engagement.
  • Stay in the conversation – I’ve seen too many people publish brilliant content only to fail to reply to the comments from the individuals who wish to know more. This is a wasted opportunity to grow your reputation as a trusted Thought Leader in your industry!
  • Add value, every time – your content should innovate, educate, motivate and inspire. Become a storyteller and share case studies and authentic, real-life examples of how your skills or product have helped others. Make sharing knowledge and insights your goal.
  • Produce quality, not quantity – never publish a post just for the sake of it. If it doesn’t add value or insight, it’s really not worth putting pen to paper – or fingers to keyboard, in this case.

Have I missed anything? if I have, let me know over on LinkedIn!

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