Social Media Personalization Series: LinkedIn

May 28, 2014

LinkedInIt’s time to put on your business suit and get to know LinkedIn, the focus of the latest installment in our social media personalization series.

When I first started researching how social media sites were personalized for end users, I was horribly naive. I knew Facebook was a bit creepy (you could guess that based on all of the demographic information you input into your profile) but I thought LinkedIn didn’t personalize to me at all.

Boy was I wrong. 

Personalization on LinkedIn

LinkedIn uses crowdsourcing to generate sophisticated algorithms and utilizes high-level data mining capabilities to identify quality content to feature. Based on your interactions and searches on the network, as well as throughout the web overall, LinkedIn is able to manipulate content to match a user’s specific interests (job search, company page, person’s profile, and more).

This network personalized to the end user based on:

• The search query used

• The keywords in a profile

• The keywords in profiles of those being displayed in search results and how pervious searchers have interacted with those profiles

• A user’s usage and interaction throughout the site (search, clicks, engagements, etc.)

• Data from a user’s Gmail or other e-mail accounts that have been synched (and by proxy Google+ activity)

• The skills listed in a profile, including how they have been verified and by who

o Endorsements from certain users affect the algorithm and who will see a user’s profile

• The content posted as updates, as well as who interacts with it the most

• Websites visited that utilize the “LinkedIn follow” button

• Search activity in other open browser tabs

o Based on personal experience: I had LinkedIn open in one tab and I opened another tab in my browser to search for video promotion tips from reelseo.com. When I went back to my LinkedIn tab, I noticed that LinkedIn was recommending that I follow ReelSEO’s company page on LinkedIn.

So what does all this mean to you as a marketer? 

If you are using LinkedIn company pages to attract future employees or to educate other stakeholders such as media or investors, it’s important to know what signals the network is using to present your information to your target audience. I would recommend:

• Syncing all of your official company social channels to your LinkedIn business profile

• Filling out your individual profile completely (including skills) and getting recommendations

• Filling out your company profile completely (an indicator on the site will show you how to “complete” your profile)

• Being social and active on the platform; post quality content

• Adding the official LinkedIn follow buttons to your website

With LinkedIn, it’s both personal and business. Feel free to share any of your favorite LinkedIn personalization tips with us by tweeting to @KetchumPR.

Katherine Watier Ong works with clients to stay on top of the changing nature of search & social. She has 8 years of SEO and social experience, and is part of the 1 million visitors per month club after taking one of the websites she was promoting from 300K to 1.2 million in one month with an integrated 360 degree promotion program. She is VP, Online Strategy and Market Insights in Ketchum’s online strategy department, and helps manage a team that tracks the online consumer, online analytics, changing online platforms and algorithms, and develops strategies for clients to connect with their online consumer. Follow Katherine at @kwatier, Google+ or connect with her on LinkedIn.