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Why is it harder to engage people on LinkedIn?

This is a question I’ve wondered for a while, well ever since I first posted to be honest. When you compare the number of views to the number of likes and comments per post it’s almost staggering, especially when you compare that to Facebook and Instagram ratios. This definitely isn’t due to a lack of LinkedIn users, it’s gained 123 million between 2016 – 2018 where as Twitter only gained 9 million users and Facebook even less than that.

A theory I have is when you like or interact with a post on LinkedIn it will appear in your connections feed and let them know you liked or commented. Now LinkedIn is different from other social networks in the fact that it’s professional, as opposed to personal. Meaning all your professional connections, colleagues, leads, clients and bosses can see anything that you interact with.

I think this is the reason why people who are happy to share their opinion and like content on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are a lot more hesitant and thoughtful with their LinkedIn accounts. So the funny dog video or silly meme that you might share with your friends on Instagram or Facebook you wouldn’t even like it on LinkedIn because you don’t want your professional network to see an unprofessional side to you. Let’s face it you don’t want your boss or clients to see half of the stuff you like on Instagram.

Another theory could be that it seems that LinkedIn is like a science in itself. When researching this blog the amount of headlines I saw telling me how to improve engagement was almost overwhelming. One must account for the time of post, type of post, hashtags, network, locations and a whole range of other things as opposed to simply clicking post.

For instance, Gary V has a strategy, called the $1.80 strategy, in which you search relevant hashtags to yourself and leave a thoughtful comment on the top 9 posts and do that 10 times. It gets its name from the expression of giving your 2 cents, as in doing this 90 times would add up to $1.80. What this does is allow you to borrow the posters audience, if they have thousands of followers and even a fraction of those followers see your comment, and this happens across all the posts you comment on. That’s a lot of people starting to know your name.

It comes down to the argument of whether you need a strategy for LinkedIn. The answer is yes, unlike other social media it’s professional with a huge amount of noise and competition to cut through and even be noticed let alone liked or commented on. There are several strategies and tricks you can use to raise engagement, so to answer the original question, it’s harder because a strategy is almost always a necessity instead of a choice.

If you’re getting lower engagement than you would like it might just be time to do some research and come up with a plan.