What if I said you can quintuple (or more) views on your LinkedIn posts by simply NOT doing two things anymore? Well, I’m saying it.
Keep reading for a stupid easy hack to get tons more views on your LinkedIn posts.
Real quick, I gotta give a shout out to Josh Fechter, who featured this in the Badass Marketers and Founders Facebook group. If you’re not familiar with the group, it’s filled with awesome marketing hacks. I highly recommend checking it out.
Ready for the hack? Let’s get to it!
A LinkedIn Hack for More Post Views
Josh states in the Facebook post that he’s not the only one to notice that this hack works. In fact, it’s detailed quite nicely by Guy Kawasaki in one of his LinkedIn posts.
Guy does an excellent job of explaining the hack so I’ll let him break down the nuts and bolts of how it works:
Again, it’s just two things to stop doing that will drive more views to your LinkedIn posts: don’t include an image and don’t include a link (put it in the first comment).
But wait, what?!
Pretty much anyone who gives advice on social media marketing tells you posts with images get more engagement versus those without.
And, of course, having the link where it’s easier to click will lead to more traffic, right? In this case, maybe not.
To quote Mark Twain, “It’s not what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”
Now I’m not saying you should stop including images and start burying links in comments on all your social media posts – far from it!
But this tactic shows – in this instance on LinkedIn – you’re better off without an image. In fact, as much as 3-5 times better off when it comes to views.Want 3-5X more views on LinkedIn posts? Here's how ==> http://bit.ly/li-hack #SocialMediaMarketingClick To Tweet
My LinkedIn Views Experiment
I didn’t see where Guy Kawasaki tested a post with an image versus one without, so I did it myself.
I’m pretty much the polar opposite of Guy on LinkedIn – meaning I’m a super nobody with my sad little audience of 572 followers. So, it should be telling if this works for me.
I first posted a link on a Thursday afternoon and removed image. Here are the views after one day:
102 views out of my 572 followers. I’m not well-versed in LinkedIn analytics, but that seems pretty solid to me.
On the following Tuesday afternoon, I posted the exact same thing but left the image there:
11 views this time. Definitely seems there’s something to this hack, right?
Also, in a way, my experiment is more telling than Guy’s because engagement cannot be a factor in the views (since neither of my posts got any likes or comments).
So, what gives? Why does this hack work? The truth is, we can never know for sure unless we learn to code an algorithm and get hired on at LinkedIn.
What We Know About Social Media Algorithms
What we do know for sure is that social media sites like LinkedIn and Facebook run on algorithms that control how many people (and which ones) see any given post.
How many times have you heard people proclaiming that organic reach is dead for most small business Facebook pages? Well, it is…and algorithms are the cause of death.
It makes perfect sense. Social media networks are businesses and users are their customers. They want to serve up the best possible product.
Think about it this way: How many Facebook business pages have you liked on a whim or as a favor to a friend or family member? If you’re anything like me, it’s a lot.
When you’re done with this post, try a little experiment. Go to Facebook and see how many business pages you’ve “liked.” You can find the list on the left sidebar of your home feed.
Now, look on your timeline and try to find a post from one of those pages. You might find a couple, but I’m betting not many.
It’s not that those pages aren’t posting. It’s that Facebook won’t show them to you.
If they showed you every post from every business page you “like,” your Facebook feed would be a hot mess of crap you really don’t want to see.
How Social Media Algorithms Work
So how do social media algorithms decide which posts you’ll see?
One way is to use signals from other users. When a post starts to get engagement, the algorithm will push it out to more people. As more people see it and they engage, it goes to more people, and so on and so on.
In the best cases, this is how a post goes viral. Yes, part of the virality is from people sharing. But it’s amplified because the network is pushing it to a bigger audience based on the high levels of engagement.
Occasionally, we can pick up when a certain type of post seems to be generating more reach simply because of the type of post it is – or what it does or does not include.
A few years ago, everybody was talking about how text-only posts on Facebook were performing better than other types of updates. More recently, Facebook seems to be all about native video and giving those posts more organic reach.
In this case, LinkedIn may be favoring posts without images because those have become associated with spammy, self-promotional updates.
Likewise, they may favor post without links going away from LinkedIn because they want people to stay on the platform.
Again, all the evidence for this is anecdotal since we can never be sure how the algorithm works. But, as you can see, that evidence is extremely convincing.
The big takeaway here is not the LinkedIn “hack.” It’s awesome and I encourage you to take advantage of it for as long as it produces results.
But the real lesson is to keep experimenting with new techniques in social media marketing to see what’s working now. Algorithms change. If you pay attention and ride the wave of what’s working now, you’re one step ahead of the competition.
Now over to you! For those of you that give this hack a try – and I hope that’s everyone – I’d love to hear about your results in the comments section below.