David McManus / February 12th 2019

It’s LinkedIn… but not as you know it

Our normal lunch break involves disputing the office football opinions (it can get heated), or a frosty walk through Farringdon to find lunch that doesn’t cost more than £7 – and, a daily 15 minutes of LinkedIn surfing.

During this 15 minutes we look for inspiration, latest news in our industry, and we search for like-minded individuals – who we hope will teach us something new that we didn’t know.

Now, despite the somewhat suspicious title of this article, we are firm believers that LinkedIn is far superior to any other social channel for making important business connections, conversing with like-minded professionals and generating leads. However, as the platform rapidly grows, it appears lately that users have forgotten the real purpose of LinkedIn, and are now posting content that should stay well away from the business and employment-oriented service.

 

‘It is now within the daily 15 minutes of surfing that we have come to dread the overwhelming posts of non-professional irrelevance.’

 

In the last couple of weeks alone, our LinkedIn feed has provided us with;

  • An employee eating 40 chicken nuggets in 2 minutes
  • A video of a cat falling off a wall, with a message along the lines of ‘bouncing back from failures’.
  • So many memes. That really have no meaning. About anything.

We find ourselves stuck in a conundrum – because our kryptonite is accepting every connection that comes our way, as we believe everyone can add value in one way or another. But, there is a difficulty of managing the posted content of said connections, and figuring out if they bring substance, or stress.

So, for the greater good, we’ve summarised the four main ways of managing your newsfeed to provide you with relevant content – and to maybe remind you why you started using LinkedIn in the first place.

1) Follow or unfollow companies/people – Unfollowing a person, company, or topic will hide all updates from that entity on your feed going forward. If you’re connected to a person and choose to unfollow them, you’ll remain connected but won’t see their updates in your feed. Don’t worry, they won’t be notified that you’ve unfollowed them. However, members will receive a notification if you decide to re-follow them.

2) Identify interesting topics in your field – Easily improve your feed by discovering new content and customising your feed preferences. By clicking on the ‘…More’ icon on the top right of any post, and selecting the ‘Improve my feed’ option, you can easily update your feed preferences. This includes…

Follow fresh perspectives This is a list of recommended sources to follow. Click ‘Follow’ under a person, company or hashtag to add content to your feed from that source.

View who you are following This is a list of people, companies or hashtags you currently follow. Click ‘Following’ below the person or company to stop seeing content in your feed from that source. The displayed will change back to Follow.

Find your followers This is a list of people who currently follow you.

 

‘Bonus tip: If you regularly post content that is engaging and professionally relevant, LinkedIn may recommend you to other members in their feed preferences as someone to follow – this is an organic way to grow your connection base.’

 

3) Hiding posts – If you see content in your feed that you don’t believe to be high-quality or relevant, you can simply click the three dots on the top right corner of the posts and select ‘hide this post’. Although this will prevent you seeing this post ever again, it does nothing in the way of stopping this style of content appearing on your feed again.

4) Reporting inappropriate or offensive content – As LinkedIn grows in popularity, the chances of inappropriate images, videos, comments or any other type of content is likely to become more prominent. Reporting inappropriate content helps LinkedIn locate this content before it offends professional users.

‘This blog was by no means written with a sole purpose to criticise creative content and/or humour on LinkedIn – after all, whom you decide to follow and the content you like to view, is your own choice – instead, our aim is to aid those who wish to use the platform as a business tool, rather than a facebook profile.’

It is our point of view that LinkedIn, after all, is more like a business meeting than a bar scene. At the end of the day, the focus should be on quality, not quantity.

Don’t be afraid to be human in how you communicate, both visually and with the comments and one-on-one messages you use to interact with fellow professionals.

In order for you to continue your enjoyment of LinkedIn and to avoid the torment of useless content (if you deem it useless), then following the tips above will help you keep your timeline full of motivational, and practical content.