LinkedIn Analytics ~ My Backstage Tour

Jan 24, 2016

LinkedIn Pulse is a work in progress. The analytics you can see, look better than Medium or Facebook Notes. However are these KPIs useful in a world where my posts are being distributed to my network via an algorithm?

A lot of social media, the analytics are suspect and mostly vanity. This is not at the level of wordpress for instance. As an active writer on LinkedIn Pulse, there are a few KPIs that mattter to me.

  • Share Rate (shares divided by likes). This best amplifies content distribution to the limited extent that strong ties give organic ripples anymore on LinkedIn.
  • Comment Rate (comments divided by likes). This is the best indication of actual engagement on a human level.
  • Number of pulse channels featured on (with the new algorithm this is key).
  • Without a high share rate and being featured on 3 or more channel, the viewership and audience reach will be quite limited.

If you are featured, views are no longer an objective measure, since just scrolling past an article in pulse is considered a view then.

Getting Featured Means having an International Audience

Here I will list my last featured posts so you can get an idea of the reach of your LinkedIn pulse articles, if you are lucky. I’m not featured often, but it’s night and day when I am.

Guide to Using Instagram for Brands:

Share Rate: 31.2%

Comment Rate: 3.0%

  • Factors that influence this naturally are:

1) Your home town, country, should always be first.

2) Geographical location of your network

3) Timing of your post (notice I get good Australian penetration as I typically post late at night in EST).

Top 14 Golden Rules of Content Marketing

Share Rate: 38.8%

Comment Rate: 7.3%

  • One of the major sweet spots and I’d argue the future of LinkedIn Reach, is actually India. English speaking and you may have noticed getting featured a lot more with huge numbers.

Most Coveted Cities to Audience Reach In

In my field (Marketing meets Retail meets the Future) operating out of the East Coast, I’d say my own top target cities are:

  1. San Francisco
  2. Greater Boston Area
  3. London, UK
  4. Paris, France
  5. Melbourne, Australia
  6. Greater Chicago Area
  7. Greater New York Area

What Else Can LinkedIn Stats Tell me about my Audience?

Rise of the Freelancer

Share Rate: 26.8%

Comment Rate: 7.9%

  • This can help you tally if your piece reached its intended audience.
  • It’s difficult to make solid conclusions in part because they keep tweaking the algorithm.

My Baselines

Good performance of a featured post to me is then:

  • A share rate of over 33%
  • A comment rate of over 7%
  • A post that targets more than on pulse channel (to get reach, the best pulse articles will be featured on 5+ channels).
  • However, not all pulse channels are created equally. To be featured in theLeadership & Management channel vs. the Retail & Ecommercechannel is quite a different in terms of audience and readership. So target your audience but also learn to write for different demographics and on different issues.

Conclusion

LinkedIn Pulse is a highly stimulating venue for the budding writer or the established professional who wants to generate some inbound lead generation. It’s useful to create and improve our online reputation management (ORM) and become an amateur influencer in our own right.

Whether this exercise is one in vanity or one of true contribution to a field, it is sometimes hard to tell. Apart from the rather unfortunate instinct we have for fame, if you enjoy writing intrinsically sharing on LinkedIn & Medium, is a great joy. As we social media changes very quickly and because LinkedIn does not have any direct competitors, I would consider it a very stable network to invest in.

If you don’t mind toiling in obscurity, becoming a LinkedIn open networker and spending a few hours a week on it, it’s rewarding as an educational channel as well. I’m a good case study I believe in this, with 290 articles in just over 7 months of activity here.

User Generated Content Communities

Joining User generated content cenetric groups is also a great idea to find people like you. My favorite one currently, allows your engaged audience to get notifications when you make a post. It’s aptly called New Post Published! The obvious benefit of being active on LinkedIn is you get a bit more traffic and attention. Until LinkedIn implements pulse channel specific leader boards, I won’t really be satisfied. But here, take a quick look at my stats:

  • This amounts to 47.4 average daily views, about the same I’d get on Medium with much less effort.
  • The traffic is high-quality, in that this translates into a lot of Mail, sometimes too much.
  • The traffic also grows my own network organically, in terms of increases of followers and connect requests (which I accept 95% of the time).
  • My network size has little bearing on the distribution however, since LinkedIn’s algorithm is now in charge. But it lifts the upper cap of my Pulse reach.

The Game of Becoming a Quasi Influencer

More vanity metrics for how you rank in your network, not the most objective measure of anything but pure influencer vanity, and this is not impacting my career salary, more just my online reputation branding.

I’m not looking to be the next Gary Vaynerchuk, that’s for sure!

  • Nor can LinkedIn seriously compare me with anyone like me, I’m quite unique.
  • My favorite thing about LinkedIn as a network? The LinkedIn Help guys onTwitter is the best service I’ve ever had. Their little initials of their names have become like the good omens of my weekly twitter interactions.
  • The idea that there are still human editors somewhere involved in the process, who read and inspire us and distribute for example new budding writers from India. Keeping tabs on @LinkedInPulse, is therefore a good idea.

Lead Generation

This is what a good day looks like for me?

If you replicated it, would it have any value for you?

My final tip is this, subscribe to all pulse channels and try to get ranked on the Pulse main left panel. My last featured post happens to sit #11.

The themed hashtag for January is: #SkillsGap

#SkillsGap, describes how professionals are building their skills this year. Improving how we use social network requires more advanced analytics than the vanity metrics of the past. Ignore likes, views and focus on engagement that maters.