If you have career advice to share, LinkedIn wants to be the place you go. It announced Wednesday that it is gradually opening up its publishing platform to all users, giving everyone the opportunity to blog.
LinkedIn launched an Influencers platform in 2012 for big-name businesspeople to share their career insights. It showcased posts on topics such as leadership, innovation, successes, and failures from people such as Bill Gates, Richard Branson, and Deepak Chopra.
Since then, the number of Influencers has grown to around 500. LinkedIn said that it will add 25,000 members who will have the ability to publish content to LinkedIn. That capability eventually will be expanded to all members in the coming months.
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"The valuable Influencer posts and the wide range of professional content from millions of publishers that we currently aggregate on LinkedIn are powerful, but only the tip of the iceberg," Ryan Roslansky, director of product management at LinkedIn, wrote in a blog post. "Combined, our members have extremely valuable and varied experiences; however, their knowledge and expertise has not yet been captured and shared."
Once you receive publishing capabilities, you can start writing directly from your LinkedIn homepage. To begin, click the pencil icon in the "Share an update" box. This will take you to the writing tool, which also lets you add images and other media.
When you publish a post, anyone can see it. It's visible to your connections and followers through the news feed on their homepages. Members who are not in your network can follow you from your posts, too, LinkedIn said. People don't need a LinkedIn account to read your posts, either.
According to a LinkedIn FAQ page, your activity will affect your posts' distribution. "The more you engage with the platform the more reputation you'll build, and the more likely members will follow you and your posts. Liking and commenting on other posts are good ways to engage."
LinkedIn gives you access to analytics to gauge the reach of the content you publish. You'll receive an emailed report on page views, likes, and followers, which you can also access from your profile.
Expanding its publishing platform is another move to keep more users on LinkedIn's site longer. In other words, it wants to be your destination for career content -- not just a place you visit when you're looking for a job.
In November, LinkedIn announced that it integrated the social news reader app Pulse into mobile and desktop versions of the site. The app replaced the LinkedIn Today news-creation feature that launched in 2011. LinkedIn acquired Pulse in April for $90 million.
Most recently, LinkedIn launched Showcase Pages, a spinoff of Company Pages. While Company Pages are high-level resources for company news and job postings, Showcase Pages promote content specifically about companies' brands and products.
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