Eugénie Bertrand

[En] Everything you need to know about the LinkedIn algorithm

People&Culture

8 avril 2022

3 min

Impossible for the 772 million members to read all of the 2 million daily publications published on the platform. A selection has to be made, and LinkedIn does it for us (this is the case for all social networks). This selection is done automatically, using an algorithm.

So, what is an algorithm?

In practice, an algorithm is a set of automated computer rules whose application makes it possible to solve a given problem. In this particular case, the aim is to reduce the amount of information that LinkedIn users will have access to, and to select and personalize the content that is offered to them. On paper, the objective is laudable and is only intended to improve the user experience.

Problem: The parameters of the algorithm are known only to LinkedIn, and therefore totally arbitrary. An opaque approach, to say the least, which is not without drawbacks.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of this practice?

Given the huge amount of content circulating on LinkedIn, the need to filter and select accessible information is obvious, and the use of an algorithm to do so is essential. On the other hand, the use of an algorithm has two major drawbacks :

The first, and the most studied, is the loss of information for users. Indeed, they only have access to an arbitrary selection of available information, made according to arbitrary and debatable criteria, which prevents confrontation with ideas other than their own. This is the famous Filter Bubble phenomenon described by Eli Pariser and made famous by the Cambridge Analytics scandal.

The second drawback concerns the loss of visibility of who publishes on LinkedIn. As soon as you publish content (post, article, image, video, …), and even before anyone sees it, the algorithm assigns a score based on the level of interaction it thinks it will generate, an assumption of how the members of your network will react to this content. In a second step, this content will be proposed to only a part of the members (among them: some of your relations, your subscribers, members following the hashtags used in your content, etc.).

The algorithm will then measure the effective engagement that the publication provokes, the main criterion being the number of comments received in the first 30 minutes of its publication, and determine if it is interesting to increase its visibility or not: the more reactions you will have received and the faster they will arrive, the more your publication will be widely distributed by LinkedIn, including outside your network alone.

That’s why, some of the publications quickly end up in oblivion, while others have an exponential diffusion .

Is it a fatality? Fortunately not! There are very effective ways to improve the visibility of its publications. Here are for you, the DO’s & DON’Ts of performance on LinkedIn.

DO’s

1. Give to get
Liking, commenting and sharing, in short, interacting with other LinkedIn users is essential in order to be considered by the algorithm as a key member of the network. Not to mention that your relationships will give it back to you, by commenting and sharing in return…

2. Systematically use the hashtags # and mentions @ tools
To reference your content and involve other members. These tools will be the subject of our next article, you will better understand their importance.

3. Share short, relevant content
With a catchy title: as we know, long publications are less successful because people read less and less.

4. Use images and videos extensively
These types of content will perform better with the algorithm and animate your network.

5. Choose the most favorable time to publish
Preferably publish on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, if possible in the morning from 7 to 8:30 am, around noon or from 5 to 6:30 pm.

DONT’s

1. Publish too much
If you publish too often, your publications will not have time to reach their maximum performance. You will also risk tiring out members of your network who, at best, will not read your publication (if it reaches them at all!) and, at worst, will stop following you.

2. Publish too little
.Don’t publish too much, but don’t let yourself be forgotten either. You need to find the right frequency for the topics you cover, between once a week and twice a month.

3. Use too many hashtags
It is crucial to identify the most powerful hashtags and those that will actually increase the reach of publications (to make it easier to find relevant hashtags and measure their reach, see you next week!).

In conclusion, the algorithm is a joy for some, and a despair for others. In order for the algorithm to become an ally in increasing its visibility, it is essential to understand how it works.

Only then will you be able to use it to your advantage to achieve your goals!

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