The definition of things which are inevitable – death, taxes, and Stories finally being rolled out to all users on LinkedIn.
The problem is that of all the social media platforms, LinkedIn seems the least Stories friendly right now.
It’s mostly serious, work and business focused, and there are always people bemoaning posts which they claim are “turning it into Facebook”.
So, will this new feature which has been trialled by university students on LinkedIn make it feel like more of the same as Facebook and Instagram?
Or will it offer something unique, a combination of a work-focused, serious platform and a lighter, fun way of sharing content that doesn’t stick around forever?
How has this come about?
In 2018, LinkedIn said it was looking at rolling out the Stories feature it had been trialling with university students in the USA.
Its Student Voices trial looked similar to other Stories features on other social media, making it video and image led and lots of fun.
It helped students at different universities interact with each other and felt familiar to a generation raised on Snapchat. LinkedIn thought it would promote engagement among Millennials and Generation Z.
It’s taken two years for LinkedIn to confirm that the roll-out will be happening soon. So, expect to see it in your app in the coming months, though there has been no release of up-to-date screenshots of this feature as yet.
A LinkedIn spokesman said: “They (Stories) offer a lightweight, fun way to share an update without it having to be perfect or attached to your profile forever. Does that exist in the business world? I’d hope that most of my interactions in the break room or passing people in the hall are similarly ephemeral and light.”
Will this damage LinkedIn’s brand as the place for serious thought leadership?
It’s too early to tell, but the way users interact with Stories will be key as will the type of content being posted.
It’s unlikely that LinkedIn will turn into TikTok any time soon, though, as it remains the social media where people look for a job or fish for business to business contacts.
There is also, of course, the option of using LinkedIn publishing arm for those who want to share carefully crafted, serious content.
How could your business use LinkedIn Stories?
There are several ways in which businesses could leverage this feature…
Sharing live video from events – The perfect way to spread the buzz about events such as expos, conferences, and launches.
Posting a daily update – Share your company’s news and the latest movements at the same time every weekday, for example. That could include meeting new starters, celebrating new contracts, or showing your processes.
Plugging your business blog or podcast – If you’re interviewing someone, shoot some low-fi video to plug it.
Demonstrating how to use a product – Show your customers how to use something by demonstrating on Stories.
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