As we’re all painfully aware by now, Facebook has morphed into a complete pay-for-play platform thanks to the prevalence of “sponsored posts.”
But LinkedIn? That’s a different story.
“Sponsored updates”, as they’re labeled, on LinkedIn are a bit less ubiquitous than its Facebook brethren. But, according to many, they can be more successful (if used right).
However, when I started digging into how companies are using Sponsored Updates at this time, I came away feeling uninspired and unimpressed.
As I reviewed the Sponsored Updates in my feed, I started to group them into a few key buckets:
Posts that drive traffic
Posts driving to influencer content
Posts that encourage participation through contests
Posts that drive downloads
Posts that drive subscriptions
So, from looking at the types of Sponsored Updates I’ve seen on LinkedIn, we can glean one thing: Brands are looking to SELL on LinkedIn.
Think about that for a minute.
Now, let’s reflect upon why actual human beings use LinkedIn:
* To research people and potential employers
* To research and find jobs
* To network, nurture and build relationships
* To learn and get smarter
Nowhere on that list do I see “buy stuff.” Nowhere.
Yet, that’s where I see most of the companies focusing their attention–on selling.
I didn’t see a single post that was focused on promoting open jobs.
I didn’t see a single post that was focused on building relationships with human beings on LinkedIn.
And I didn’t see a single post that showcased a company’s employees as a way to stimulate interest in a job.
This is why I was uninspired and unimpressed.
Why aren’t more companies using LinkedIn for what it was intended to do?
Why aren’t more companies using LinkedIn to meet the needs of users?
Why aren’t more companies using LinkedIn for recruiting and retention purposes?
I’m so confused.
But, it’s also a huge opportunity for brands that are savvy enough to realize this and take advantage.
And I look forward to watching that evolution.