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5 Things You Should Absolutely Never Do on LinkedIn

About a month ago, I talked here about LinkedIn opening up its publishing platform to the outside world. And before you know it, the platform has people flocking to it in hordes, setting up accounts, trying to expand their connection network in an attempt to start getting their content out there, and get it seen.

With everyone's activity going up on LinkedIn of course - there are a ton of "habits" that have spewn over from other social networks onto LinkedIn, which have been ruffling more than a couple of feathers.

LinkedIn is a professional networking website. It always has been, and it always will be. It won't be a place for you to share pictures of a night out with friends, neither is it place for games to be played and BuzzFeed articles posted.

I've been an active LinkedIn user for about 5 years now - I've been sharing updates, talking with people, making connections, setting up meetings and following the career trajectory of my associates for a while.

With the influx of the "new" crowd in the last year, especially those that have suddenly realized that LinkedIn is an opportunity for them to network and thrive - they've brought with them some oddiites that are throwing the network a little out of balance and are causing havoc in my newsfeed.

I'm losing respect for these people, as are many others.

Here's what you should not be doing on LinkedIn ladies and gentlemen.

1. Rapid Post on LinkedIn - Spamming the Newsfeed 

In case you haven't noticed, it was the same person (I've blurred out the name and photo of course) that posted these articles - all within a minute of each other. I scrolled through my feed and this is all I saw. Of course, the first thing I did after this happened was hid this person's updates from my feed.

I'm sorry, but LinkedIn is not the place for you to broadcast links to articles that you've found interesting one after the other - and the kicker here for me was that there were no "thoughts" or this person's take on the article put up with the article either. Spam - that's what I call it.


2. Participate in Spammy Comment-Bait Threads [Or Post Them!]

Anyone able to solve the above "equation" is not a genius. Let's get that out of the way. Second, having something on LinkedIn which has "if u r" in the text is worrisome. And if you're participating or endorsing this content - that's even worse.

Your peer will lose respect for you if you participate in such scammy posts that are basically baiting for engagement which really amount to nothing. 

Here's another example of the same:

3. Participate in Flame Wars

This is a tricky one. LinkedIn is full of discussion, and often you'll find someone with an opinion that doesn't quite align with yours the way you'd like it to. While it's hard to "hold back" and express your opinion - remember to do so in a manner that is professional.

All your contacts will be able to see your activity on posts. If you comment, like or share a piece of content - there's a good chance it'll pop up on the feed of someone else - letting them know what your comment was, or what piece of content you're endorsing. If your words aren't kind and if you don't have a professional demeanor while doing so - you could end up in a sticky situation.

4. Auto-Post from other Social Channels to LinkedIn

This is one of my pet peeves. LinkedIn isn't Twitter - and you'd do well to remember that. I've seen users actually sync Twitter with LinkedIn, and all their RT's and mentions and responses to tweets show up on LinkedIn. That's probably the most ridiculous thing that you can do. It causes spam and clutter in the newsfeed - and if anyone wanted to see your Twitter content, they'd go to your Twitter profile or follow you to do so. Please don't let it stray onto LinkedIn.

5. Auto-Post from an RSS / Website Feed

I love Social Media Today. I go through a lot of content on here. Does that mean that I set up a tool that auto-shares every single post that's put up on SocialMediaToday? No. Absolutely not. Can you imagine the amount of articles that my connections would have to deal with?

I understand (as does everyone else) that you'd like to share content from your own blog or your own website or even websites that you follow and would like to endorse, but if you'd like to share the article with your connections and if you're expecting them to take out time and read it - why don't you take out time to craft your own little introduction to the post - letting your connections know why you're endorsing the article and why you'd like them to read it - and also add on what you liked in the article itself?

LinkedIn is tricky business. Everything you do on LinkedIn will always be taken in a "professional" taste. Much unlike Facebook and Twitter where you can pass things off as a personal opinion or a personal touch, which is why everyone on Twitter tends to put the "opinions expressed are my own" - to keep their companies out of trouble.

You can't do that on LinkedIn. The first thing you're associated with on LinkedIn is your company. Your job. Your title. Your role. Your skills and your profession.

LinkedIn isn't a publishing tool or a platform for you to broadcast messages. It's a networking tool, for you to showcase yourself as a professional and make people want to work with you and value your opinion and thoughts. It's not going to happen if you do the above!

Join The Conversation

  • Avtar Ram Singh's picture
    Mar 29 Posted 3 years ago Avtar Ram Singh

    You're one of the smarter ones Davina! Absolutely - if you're posting automatically via your blog - it's understandable. Completely agree with what you've said and glad that there are so many on SMT who did it right with LinkedIn!

  • DavinaKBrewer's picture
    Mar 29 Posted 3 years ago DavinaKBrewer

    Avtar, much like Sue I do selectively schedule a few things to autopost to LI - limited to my own blog and a some stories about LinkedIn. And like you, I do not suggest a lot of cross-posting and certainly never, ever automating to the point of running an RSS feed through any social network. Sure there's good stuff here on SMT or Mashable or some of my colleague's site, but it's counter-productive to post it all. It's a different audience, different vibe on LI - professional and business-minded are what I'm about there. FWIW.

  • greykite's picture
    Mar 29 Posted 3 years ago greykite

    Agreed Avtar - thanks for clarifying. Coincidentally, I had an article published today that highlights the danger of sub-standard content flooding LinkedIn. I think you can add #6 to your list - once you're granted LinkedIn Publishing privileges, don't spam the platform with poor-quality articles.

  • Avtar Ram Singh's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Avtar Ram Singh

    Hey Mike - glad you agree with the post and run behavior. I think you might have misunderstood what I meant when I said it's not a "publishing tool". In the very first line I mentioned it's a publishing platform, what I meant by it's not a "tool" as such - is that people should not use it as a tool to dump links they want people to take a look at. :)

  • greykite's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago greykite

    Hi Avtar – you picked out a few of my pet hates there. Post-and-run behaviour is probably my least favourite and it’s far too common in some groups.

    I agree with almost everything you wrote. The one exception? You say “LinkedIn isn't a publishing tool.” I think that’s exactly what it’s becoming – although it also remains a networking platform, as you say. When I look at LinkedIn Influencers, Pulse and now Publishing, I find it difficult to see what other intention it has. Throw in yesterday’s launch of Content Marketing Score and Trending Content and I see a clear objective emerging – I believe LinkedIn intends to become a major player in the content-marketing world.

  • SusynEliseDuris's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago SusynEliseDuris

    Like #5 a lot. Re: #4, I have a blog and I do set up automatic posts for Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. And, quite frankly, for me, it is a great blogging management tool. But, I do agree synching Twitter with Facebook or Twitter with LinkedIn is sillyness and not a smart tactic. 

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