LinkedIn Creates Promotional Tab in Groups

LinkedIn Groups LinkedIn has created a Promotional tab within the Groups. Recently LinkedIn has redesigned the Groups and eliminated the “News” tab to promote discussions. In eliminating the “News” tab, the default for sharing an article whether it be yours or a trusted and respected member of the social media community, it defaulted into Discussions. Great, now each member of the group that clicks on discussions will see the article you shared. This, as we know, caused concerns with some group administrators and group members were being kicked out for SPAM! Yes, imagine someone thinking a blog article is spam.

LinkedIn Promotional Tab in Groups

LinkedIn Groups are an excellent resource for connecting with other users who share the same interests within the groups. As an active member of the groups, you are expanding your network and creating new opportunities. As the groups are created and monitored by the administrator and not LinkedIn, a solution needed to be created to allow for articles to be shared and posted as for those that do like them and comment this would be very unfortunate if article sharing was limited to status updates. The Promotions tab, does just that and users can share articles, promote their products/services and more market than discuss.Linkedin Groups Promotions tab

The promotions tab has a drop down for users to “Flag” as a Job or as Inappropriate.

LinkedIn Created promotional tab in groups

LinkedIn Group Discussions

The discussions are an area for people to discuss topics, trends, etc as it relates to that group. Where it gets a bit confusing is that in the discussions you can ask questions but there is also the question/answer section that is available to all users and not just those in that group; a blog post can stir up a rather nice discussion but some administrators do not want the posts there. Those that post something that users feel is not best served in the discussions can flag it as a promotion, a job or inappropriate.

linkedin promotions tab dropdownThe promotions tab is a replacement for news in a way. They could have created a tab that said “Blogs” and directed blog articles there. Promotions are sales pitches and yes in a way a blog is a sales pitch but many people get useful and insightful information from blogs. I am not so sure that people would eagerly run and click on a tab, read and comment upon a direct sales pitch. I could be wrong but while the promotions tab does attempt to keep the discussions to discussions (as I guess the conversations about the blog article are not discussions). but there is a minor flaw here. The default for sharing articles is discussions so instead of clicking the LI from share, you have to manually copy the link, go into the group and add it to the promotions. Not so sure that everyone will be doing that.

What do you think? Is this a step in the right direction to have blogs in promotions?

photo credit: Mario Sundar

  • Beth van Elswyk

    I am very interested in the Promotions tab and look forward to see how it pans out over time. I personally am using it to promote my company and their services (market research) into new markets and seek feedback in those markets. I was uncomfortable using “discussions” for this purpose, and did not because I did not want to be mistaken for spam, therefore I am very pleased to see a tab that allows me to promote/ “sell” and learn without interfering in actual discussions.

    Thank you for opening up the discussion on how to utilize the Promotions tab, including pertinent Blogs, which I had not thought of.

    Beth
    Dialsmith, LLC
    Account Executive
    http://www.dialsmith.com

    • http://www.kherize5.com Suzanne Vara

      Beth

      This is exactly my point. You are using it to directly promote your company where a blog is an article that yes is indirectly a sales pitch but is also sharing ideas on many topics where a direct sales pitch is generally about one. Both are equally important to readers as when they are looking for someone with your services, they need to find the information quickly and easily. If they are looking to add a video to linkedin they would not find that on your page but on the blog that I created.

      Maybe keep promotions and add another tab of blogs and make the default for sharing to that tab.

  • http://www.scribnia.com/author/show/473/david-spinks/ David Spinks

    Interesting.

    It would be useful if they gave the manager the ability to move posts from discussions to promotions too…similar to a forum moderator.

    • http://www.kherize5.com Suzanne Vara

      David

      If they have not done so already, this is one that I believed that they were doing. I am not a group admin so I was unable to test that portion and I appreciate you coming over and letting us know that this is not a feature that has been incorporated. It is interesting that members can flag something but yet admins cannot move the article.

      Keep us posted on this if you would as if an admin cannot move the item to the promotions tab, there is no way that people are going to voluntarily and manually and place items into the promotions tab – there are no consequences other than being flagged.

      Thanks a bunch David.

    • Tinagleisner

      David, I just tried the “mark as promotion” and that’s exactly what happened, it got moved over to promotion tab.

  • http://www.hingemarketing.com/blog Sean McVey

    Ever since they got rid of news I didn’t fully feel comfortable posting blog posts in there. And I don’t think they were effective in there either. I supposed the Promotions tab is good for that, but I am afraid no one will go in there. Do you think posting blog posts in there will still get good clicks? Why would people intentionally go into a tab for sales pitches? That’s like turning on the TV and fastforwarding to the commercials.

    • http://www.kherize5.com Suzanne Vara

      Sean

      I agree – people are not going to look in the promotions tab. What could happen is that LI could end up losing some of its allure and become a spam zone. Then the promotions tab will go away and we will be back to discussions. It could be too late then though.

  • Fcwoman Jrnl

    I am excited

  • http://JoeHageOnline.com Joe Hage

    You scooped me; I hadn’t seen this yet. Of my social media outlets, LinkedIn is the one I’ve yet to use as fully as I could. I’m intrigued, will check it out, and interested to know how you’re using LI.

    P.S. Just subscribed to your blog; really enjoyed your guest post at http://www.joehageonline.com/2010/08/19/7-ways-to-create-a-persuasive-facebook-page/ and you’re welcome back any time.

    • http://www.kherize5.com Suzanne Vara

      Joe

      I use linkedin to answer questions and participate in group discussions. I post this blog as well as many others from sources that I read that I feel will be beneficial to other group members. I am an open networker on LI not for the numbers but to establish connections that I can learn from.

      Thanks so much for subscribing. I am going to take you up on that offer for sure.

  • Tinagleisner

    I’m researching this topic as I had someone post what is nothing more than a link to their business website. Previously I could go in a delete the item and that seems to have disappeared. Now I guess I have to mark somethings as a promotion (just saw that I can delete too).

    Oh I like that when I did this, it was automatically moved to the new promotion tab which I’m not familiar with as focusing on getting new site up & running. I guess the words could be more descriptive as I had no idea what would happen but I like that it didn’t get deleted, just moved where it belongs.

    • http://www.kherize5.com Suzanne Vara

      Tina

      Are you the moderator of the group? I think the promotions tab is inviting people to submit links to their site for promotions. Blogs are not direct sales pitches as I have said. I am not sold on them being in promotions. I like that I can find and read new blogs from other group members but I am not going to hunt them down in promotions if it is overrun with sales pitches.

      As for a moderator, it is their group and if they want it all in promotions then of course it has to be in there. I just think some discussions will dwindle as people like to talk about and comment on blogs.

      • Anna Marie Piersimoni

        We are all marketers and need some way to get word out about the products. If the direct sales are offering products from within a trusted group that I may be interested in – an event, a workshop, etc. I might pop over to the promotions tab and give it a scan, but I really like having them separate from informational blog articles.

  • Voicesf

    Yeah, we get that LinkedIn is the “Business” social media site, but it seems that so many of the features are not very intuitive. I think of it like this, twitter is like talking to a hooker. Facebook is like talking to someone you know and LinkedIn is like being talked down to by somebody’s butler.

    If LinkedIn would just pull the stick out of it’s rump and take a depp breath, it might be a better place.

  • Nathanchittyorlando

    Very good addition. I am in the Legal Marketing Group and people are regularly posting non relevant promotions of products or services (like cosmetic surgery!).