Should you get started on LinkedIn stories?
Linkedin is the last of the major networks to launch into stories. While this format is now part of our daily lives both personally and professionally, the largest professional social network is getting into the dance. With success ?
This launch follows strong teasing on the stories format for several months, but the product when it was released remains fairly basic. A large part of the Linkedin community and power users were expecting something more powerful, and no one knows if the game is worth the candle: so should you go for it? At Kannelle, we weigh the pros and cons in the perspective of adapting the vertical format in our video creation app.
So let's summarize the situation. Let's see what you can do today with Linkedin Stories and the limitations. And we will end with some advice for the brave among the brave who would like to get started.
Linkedin stories, on mobile… only
First of all, the stories are only accessible on mobile. This choice of mobile-only is a shame: for a more business-oriented service, it is limiting because a lot of us are certainly accessing Linkedin when we are working on our computer - to check a company, a contact, jobs etc. For reference, Facebook allows you to create and view stories on its web desktop version.
While waiting for Linkedin to extend the functionality to the desktop, be aware that your stories will only be visible by 57% of members. Important if your target is rather large account / desktop
Visibility complicated to appreciate
On the mobile application, we have a very interesting positioning on “real estate”: at the top, just below the search bar. So clearly visible. On the other hand, the list of stories disappears as soon as you scroll through the feed (the French Academy forgive me this sentence). This visibility is therefore very limited when the app is opened.
The look of the Stories bar is inspired by Instagram featuring profile photos. It would have made more sense to me to choose the Facebook format which includes a photo preview of the story in addition to the profile photo. This would have given more visibility to the stories and especially more desire to click.
The stories bar on the Linkedin mobile app (it's a bit empty, don't you think ...?)
On the personal branding side, it's interesting: if you publish a story, your profile picture ends up in this horizontal list “à la Insta” which, two weeks after its launch in France, was as populated as the Gobi Desert. So if you post, there's a good chance you'll appear at the top of the app for 24 hours, as soon as one of your contacts opens it.
Here, the contacts are back! At the time of the aperitif?
By the way, if you haven't taken care of your profile picture before, here's one more reason to.
While the profile page is an essential part of Linkedin, it is not possible to anchor your stories on your profile at this time. A Linkedin story is therefore ephemeral like a snap. Unless you have a massive audience that connects daily, your story will go like a boat in the night.
Note: one month after the official launch in France, the stories are finally available for the company pages.
Too limited a time
Even though Linkedin gave us 20 seconds, which is 5 seconds more than an Instagram story, it is still too limiting a format, especially in B2B. Even Tiktok, which has business and marketing content (yes!), Allows up to 60 seconds.
Of course, if your talk requires more than the 20 seconds allotted, you can chain stories, but this is not very practical for professional use. As a result, Linkedin stories risk being confined to webinar announcements, which are abundant in these times of post-containment. And given the results, few marketers and community managers are likely to adopt this tactic sustainably.
A creation that is too B2C and not interactive
Besides the time limit, a major feature of stories on Instagram and the like is the ability to add stickers, use filters, tag hashtags and mention other profiles. And finally to have a multitude of call to actions such as polls.
In short, on Linkedin stories, no frills on that side: this first version is below the union minimum. And the preference was not given to tools for the pros.
Yes, there are stickers, but they do not meet a business objective on a network where personal branding and employer brand are essential. This is the same list of stickers that Linkedin pushes us to use when posting photo or video content. “Just another day at the office” says it all.
Finally, even though Linkedin has launched polls as a type of post, these are missing: impossible to ask a question and get the answer via a story. A good example of a failed integration, especially since all the networks offer it. Pity.
Against all expectations, surveys are working on Linkedin. But not in the stories.
Mentions, but not too many
In your stories, you can mention other members, but do not link to the profile of the member mentioned. And you won't be able to mention either a company page or yourself.
Unable to mention a business page. Yes, you read that right. On Linkedin, the pro network. Of course, this limits self-promotion excessively, but at the cost of any promotion. And let's be clear, self-promotion (of oneself or of one's box), is the very essence of this network, for better or for worse.
In the same logic, impossible to mention oneself. The audience will have to click on the small profile photo at the top left if they want to be able to follow up on a story. It’s a shame because it’s the only way to get audiences to use the interesting content mentioned today.
Where are the links?
Let’s paraphrase Patrick Juvet now (no, we’ll stop at nothing): Where are the links? With their charming utility… Where are the links? the links, the links ...
It is possible to add a small text bubble to your story, and you can of course write a URL or a hashtag, but these will not be clickable. Worse, if the user had the overwhelming urge to click on an item, they would immediately be thrown out of the current story. Traffic lost twice so: no click to your destination and premature end of viewing ... Ditto for the swipe up.
This absence limits the possibilities. Even to promote your next webinar, you will need to include a bitly link within your video and put down a candle invoking Isidore of Madrid, patron saint of ploughmen.
Note: Include a reminder button for the next sci-fi webinar? Ask Instagram ...
If Instagram influencers can invite their contacts to their digital events ...
Low quality videos without filters
Whether you choose to use your smartphone's front or rear camera or upload your video at 1080px, it won't affect the quality - it's pretty poor due to some compression on the Linkedin side. Once again, for a network where professional image and personal branding are all about, that's a shame. And to compound the problem, Linkedin Stories are like Gypsies, meaning unfiltered.
Where Insta or Snap accustom us to seeing ourselves in top form, Linkedin leaves us with the appearance of faded managers, straight out of a windowless data center, a gray cube oriented staircase or a month of parenting triplets toddlers in telework… While we had invested in a professional photo for our profile.
Be careful, the stats also disappear!
Penultimate point, and not the least, Linkedin had announced to us the possibility of seeing which members had viewed our stories. And the functionality is there, with a counter, but you'll have to be quick and organized to take advantage of this information. After 24 hours you will no longer be able to access it - those who can remember the information you might have on his posts a few years ago will see what we are talking about here.
So, an important tip: if you post a story, immediately set yourself a reminder for the next day 15 minutes before the time you posted to access your stats and see who viewed your story. Otherwise, all you have to do is call your favorite fortune-teller.
Where's the film music?
This is not to suggest to Linkedin to emulate Tiktok and its choreography challenges with the music to go with it - although a team chore challenge is very cool. But what a joy it would be to have a musical background. And even better with film music - you see, the kind that goes with Mel Gibson's big speech in Braveheart? In the meantime, you can use Kannelle which allows you to simply add your background music (sorry for the shameless promotion).