Over the past years, LinkedIn has gone through many changes, from new features to updates in functionality. We even noticed that many of these changes derive inspiration from Facebook. And it’s no surprise why LinkedIn wants to be more like Facebook. For many years, Linkedin struggled to get consistent engagement from its users. People would only use it when they got a new job or if they were looking for a job. But now, many updates later LinkedIn is being used by over 106 million active users. People are using LinkedIn to build their personal brand, for finding a job, getting leads, promoting their business and so much more. But what does the future hold for Linkedin and how will this impact businesses? Here are our top 4 predictions for how Linkedin will change in 2018 and beyond:
1. Turning those videos into real-time videos
100 million hours of video are watched every day on Facebook. And over 82% of users watch video content on Twitter (Hubspot, 2016). It’s no secret that the future of social is video. LinkedIn already allows users to upload their own video content to their posts. And we believe that LinkedIn will follow the trend of the other major social media platforms, by allowing users to share real-time videos (similar to Facebook live). Businesses could be able to share real-time footage of events, behind the scenes and showcase new products to build excitement.
2. Webinars, the next step from LinkedIn’s publishing platform
Linkedin has grown a lot of over the past few years, buts it active usage rate is still lower than any other major platform. Venture Beat found that only 25% of LinkedIn’s 450 million users, visit the platform monthly. LinkedIn will need to continue to give its users more reasons to log in more often. One way it might do this is through focusing on helping businesses and individuals become experts in their industry. With more than 1 million people using LinkedIn’s publishing platform, sharing over 130,000 posts each week. The next step for experts is to hold webinars directly on Linkedin. We predict LinkedIn incorporating a webinar functionality allowing users to promote, share and invite their connections directly to webinars. This will give businesses and individuals the opportunity to develop deeper and meaningful relationships with their connections.
3. Focus on the professionals
After some criticisms, LinkedIn will avoid becoming a Facebook clone. It will turn its focus to what made it great in the first place, a social network for professionals. It will offer more integrations to help the busy professional. We even predict the return of ‘Refresh’, an app that LinkedIn purchased years ago and have not yet re-launched. Its goal was to allow users to connect their calendar with Linkedin, allowing connections to see when you are available for a meeting. This could be a great update for businesses to allow them to set up meetings with potential clients, share events and much more.
4. More external advertising opportunities
More than one year into Microsoft’s ownership of LinkedIn, it was announced that LinkedIn will start supporting ads in the inboxes of Microsoft Outlook users. And unlike the ads that appear in Gmail, LinkedIn’s ads will support images. This increases the chances of click-through and engagement. We believe that LinkedIn will continue to focus on building partnerships and looking for ways to sell adverts outside of their own platform. Linkedin has acknowledged that users using their native advertising (on LinkedIn itself) have failed to get the traction and engagement required. The main reason relating to the lack of daily usage by users. LinkedIn hopes by partnering with third-party sites and apps, will help advertisers reach their impression and budget goals more effectively.
5. Getting the whole B2B shopping experience
Facebook’s marketplace launched in 2016 and quickly became a brilliant opportunity for business owners to get their products across to new customers on Facebook directly. The marketplace even led to a growth of prospects by 77% who may have not otherwise connected with the business. LinkedIn’s company pages, on the other hand, have always lacked that kind of engagement. Those of you who have created a company will know how frustrating it can be to grow and engage your page’s followers. Maybe it’s time to allow businesses to directly sell their products and services on LinkedIn. While Facebook focuses on the B2C market, LinkedIn could be the marketplace of B2B businesses!
Final Thoughts: How LinkedIn will change in 2018
Linkedin is a brilliant platform for businesses to find and connect with their customers. However, it still has a long way to go, to get users visiting every day and actively engaging on the platform. We hope our five predictions of how LinkedIn will change in 2018 and beyond work out in the future. And help LinkedIn become a more dominant force in the world of digital marketing. However, we can’t predict the future and don’t know what special features LinkedIn has up its sleeve. What do you think of our LinkedIn predictions? Do you think they are realistic or impossible? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
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