If you have a LinkedIn Company Page, an integral part of your marketing strategy has likely been to post regular updates to that page, just as you would your personal profile or any other social network. You might be sharing great articles you’ve found, new information, or your latest blog post.
Unfortunately, little did you know, many LinkedIn members are not seeing those updates.
There are only two ways someone can see what you’ve posted. They can visit your company page or, if they’ve followed you, they may catch one of your updates in their news feed. The problem is that according to LinkedIn, those news feed updates have not been delivered for many members recently. Here’s the full text of an email they sent out late Wednesday:
We want to let you know about a technical issue that is currently preventing some members from seeing company updates in their update stream. Although this issue isn’t affecting all LinkedIn members, it means that any company updates you’ve shared recently have been getting fewer impressions than usual. However, know that all of your company updates are visible to any LinkedIn member who visits your Company Page–including those affected by the technical issue.
Our engineering team is diligently working on this problem, and we’ll let you know via email as soon as it’s fixed. We’re very sorry for any inconvenience and appreciate your patience.
The truly disappointing part of this is that most businesses probably never noticed and don’t really care. That’s because LinkedIn Company Pages are not a vital part of most social media marketing strategies. And LinkedIn is to blame.
There is no indication how long this has actually been going on, and your LinkedIn Insights only reports month-to-month, so it’s impossible to tell if there has been a drop-off in visibility as a result of this issue.
Currently, businesses can create a Company Page that acts essentially as a second website for the business within the LinkedIn world. You can talk about yourself, describe products and services, and set up a virtual HR department for job opportunities. If you’re doing a lot of hiring within LinkedIn, the Company Page is an invaluable tool.
From a marketing perspective though, it’s exremely limiting. You can post status updates but as I mentioned, your audience is really limited to people who are looking for you or have already found and followed you. Since you cannot join and participate in LinkedIn Groups, there is no mechanism for gaining brand visibility (aside from paid advertising, which I will explore in another post).
And to further complicate matters, there is currently no method available to post updates to your Company Page from a mobile app. The LinkedIn app provides no control over your Company Page at all, and even apps like HootSuite can’t send updates.
These are issues that LinkedIn needs to address soon. I have suggested previously that Google+ is rapidly becoming the social network of choice for businesses and professionals and this is a large part why. On Google+, brands are far more capable of engaging and interacting with other people, without that person having to know and like that brand first.
LinkedIn Company Pages have been muted for a long time. Fixing this technical issue won’t solve that. If LinkedIn wants brands to use the platform for more than just hiring, the platform needs to be improved.
Image courtesy of scrbl, Flickr.