personal branding

4 LinkedIn Mistakes You Can't Make

With a high user density around the World, big chance you have a Linkedin profile. Are you an active user or do you only log in once in a while to update your account?

Despite the fact that LinkedIn is the biggest professional network, it isn’t it used effectively by a lot of people. When you know how to use LinkedIn in your advantage you can present yourself to potential employers and clients.

Nowadays people base their decision, whether they want to do business with you, for a great part on your LinkedIn profile. That’s why it’s important to have an updated profile.

Yet, on a daily basis I see things on LinkedIn that don’t belong there or are published in the wrong place. In this blog post I talk about the difference between an update and an article, the right place for you to post your message and how you can prevent mistakes.

Update versus article

On social networks like Facebook and Twitter an article is the same as an update. LinkedIn makes a distinction. An update in LinkedIn is an activity that’s shown in your timeline. This message disappears after a while and it won’t be visible for your audience anymore.

But when you write an article your post will appear prominently on your profile, just below your photo.

It’s one of the first things people see when they visit your profile. Your last three articles are visible on your profile and remain in the blog section.

LinkedIn update versus article

What’s LinkedIn Pulse?

Since february 2015 it’s possible for you to write an article, or in other words to blog on LinkedIn.

The fact that 130.000 articles are published on Pulse each week, proofs that a lot of people have discovered this tool. Especially when you want to blog for the first time it’s smart to start with LinkedIn Pulse. You already have an audience (your LinkedIn connections) you can reach. It’s much difficult to reach an audience on other platforms, like your own blog website, because you have to build an audience first.

When you post an article on Pulse, approximately 20% of your LinkedIn network will see your post, but when you share and promote your blog post really well this percentage will increase. When you promote your article about 20 times a month you can reach 60% of your LinkedIn connections.

Download HERE the ‘Ultimate Guide to Master LinkedIn Pulse for free’

Everyone can read your articles, whether they’re a LinkedIn user or not and despite if you’re connected with them. That’s why it’s so important to think about what you want to publish on LinkedIn Pulse and what not.

Mistake #1: Confusing an update with an article

Because LinkedIn distinguishes an update and a post (article) it’s not always completely clear for every user where to post messages. That’s why messages are somewhat placed in the ‘wrong’ place.

You can use an update when you want to share short news. You can:

  • share an interesting link, photo or quote;
  • announce a new collaboration;
  • announce an upcoming event;
  • share a link to a vacancy.
short news LinkedIn

A good example is posting interesting links. For instance, a blog post you’ve read that would also be interesting for your network.

You can use an article when you:

  1. Want to create long form content (more than 500 words);
  2. Want to teach people something;
  3. Want to share your opinion about a specific topic;
  4. Want to share your knowledge on a specific area of expertise.

The purpose of LinkedIn Pulse is to share your (own) blog posts that contains professional and valuable information. Yet, I see a lot of articles that don’t belong in the Pulse section. Below you can read what these are.

Mistake #2: Sharing vacancies through the blogging platform Pulse

Vacancies are often shared as an article through the blogging platform Pulse. I don’t think they belong there.

LinkedIn offers a lot of different options in which you can share vacancies. For this, LinkedIn distinguishes two options.

  • Via a link to the website on which the vacancy is placed, through an update;
  • Via LinkedIn Jobs;

This last option you can find in the menu button ‘Jobs’.  When you click on it you can search for vacancies by function, keyword or company name. You can also post vacancies yourself by clicking on ‘post a job’.

Mistake #3: Spamming commercial content

Sharing advertisements or advertorials for products or services in the Pulse section. The purpose of Linked Pulse is sharing knowledge, not ads.

When you want to share your products or services on LinkedIn, you can use the Showcase page. On this page you can add and display your products and services. A Showcase page is part of the LinkedIn Business page.

 Mistake #4: Publishing company content as an article on your personal account

Sharing copy paste blog posts in LinkedIn Pulse from the company by someone who’s working there.  Company content belongs on a Business page. As an employee you can, if you want to, share this post with your network through an update.

It’s not recommended to share company content via an article on your personal LinkedIn profile. What if you change jobs? These messages are then still prominently visible on your profile.

If you want to know more about successful blogging on LinkedIn Pulse, you can download a free guide HERE.

Drawing the ‘red card’

For everyone who feels bothered by certain content because you think it doesn’t belong on LinkedIn, there’s good news. LinkedIn gives you the opportunity to report an update or article when you think that it doesn’t belong on LinkedIn. This is called ‘flagging’.

When you want to report an update, you first search for this specific update. Then you click on the arrow in the right –hand corner,  next to the person’s name. Click on ‘Report this update’. LinkedIn receives the message and will investigate whether the message is in conflict with their users agreement. If so, the content will be deleted.

You can also ‘flag’ an article. For this you search for the specific blog article. Then you scroll down and click ‘Report this’. LinkedIn researches the article based on their users agreement.  If necessary, this content will be removed.

When you are bothered by certain messages that aren’t in conflict with the users agreement of LinkedIn, you can decide to hide or unfollow someone by clicking on the arrow in the right- hand corner, next to the person’s name. You won’t see their messages any longer, but the person is still part of your network.

It’s not a good idea to respond to messages that bother you, because in that way the message will only spread itself further.

Which updates/articles have you seen on LinkedIn of which you doubt they belong on LinkedIn. I’m curious for your story!