In January 2019, LinkedIn launched its new ‘Water Cooler Report’, in order to help marketers maximize the performance of their content, by featuring the most engaging and most popular posts from LinkedIn Publisher every month. LinkedIn is currently enjoying record high levels of engagement, with the number of updates viewed on the platform increasing by 60% in a single year.
The report is called The Water Cooler, and it will list all of the most popular Publisher posts from the month prior. This means that the first issue of the Water Cooler will be a rundown of all of December 2018’s most popular Publisher postings. As most people are aware, the water cooler refers to that area in the workplace where employees gather to discuss the news of the day, whether it be about fashion, business, entertainment, or sports news.
LinkedIn is seeking to set itself up as the water cooler of the international business world and is therefore constantly releasing new features which can help direct user behavior toward that end. Marketers should consider it priceless information to know what business professionals are most interested in, and are reading on a daily basis because it can provide powerful insights into the business person’s mindset.
Of course, it’s always tempting to focus a marketing message on the products and services your company offers, but it can be even more valuable to stay aware of what potential customers are thinking about, and what their needs and wants are. With this new listing provided by LinkedIn, marketing professionals should be able to get some keen insights into what business professionals are actually interested in and willing to read about. The first month’s listings of popular articles demonstrate that business professionals are anxious to improve themselves and to find work environments which are very positive so that they can become part of that same corporate culture which espouses positive values in the workplace.
The December 2018 Water Cooler Report
The very first Water Cooler Report includes the following list of most popular publisher posts on LinkedIn:
- Be the Spark by Diane Fennig
- 5 Books I Loved in 2018 by Bill Gates
- Your Most Important Assets Aren’t Your Clients: It’s Your Employees by Brigette Hyacinth
- Black Woman Named Deputy Director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center, Making History by Teddy Grant
- Happy Employees Are More Productive. As Simple As That! Agree? By Oleg Vishnepolsky
- The World’s Most Successful People Don’t Actually Start Work at 4 AM, They Wake and Work Whenever the Heck They Decide by Jeff Hayden
- What I Learned at Work This Year by Bill Gates
- Warren Buffett Says You Should Hire People With These three Traits, but Only one Will Point to a Truly Successful Employee by Marcel Schwantes
- When People Ask How You Are, Stop Saying ‘Busy’ by Robert Glazer
- Leading From Hurt Versus Leading From Heart by Brene Brown.
Other content besides the listing
In addition to the listing itself, LinkedIn also plans to include notes especially for marketers, which they can take away from the listings for the purpose of improving their own platform content approach. The articles which garnered the most attention from LinkedIn users in the initial issue appear to have a couple of common threads.
First of all, LinkedIn readers particularly identified with articles that discussed corporate culture. As a matter of fact, the most popular December article, entitled ‘Be the Spark’, explored the power of thankfulness and gratitude in the workplace. Other top 10 articles depicted employees as a company’s most powerful asset, celebrated workplace diversity and pondered leadership which was empathetic.
The second strong thread which ran through many articles was advice-type articles offered by Warren Buffett and Bill Gates. This is a strong indication that working professionals are constantly seeking ways to improve their own approaches, and are especially willing to listen to those people who have demonstrated success at businesses in the past. While this may seem a little unfar, because practically everything Warren Buffett and Bill Gates write is sure to garner a great deal of attention, but it is still an indicator that professionals are always on the lookout to apply proven methods to their own approaches.
Opportunities to reach your LinkedIn audience
As mentioned at the outset of this article, engagement among LinkedIn users has significantly increased over the levels of the prior year. With LinkedIn’s recent algorithm change aimed at ensuring more voices will be heard, there are more opportunities than ever before for a business professional to reach out to his/her LinkedIn audience.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that all of your LinkedIn Publisher posts will achieve extraordinary popularity, but if you are able to develop some quality posts, you will have every opportunity to reach your audience. There’s a good deal more competition on LinkedIn Publisher now than when it was initially launched, and if you can remember back when it was launched, almost every post achieved a massive reach soon after being put online.
With a flood of content in LinkedIn Publisher now, the audience is being a little bit more selective, and your content is going to have to be good enough that it has relevance to leaders, and is both well-written and well researched. Even a high-quality post which has relevance to a great number of users may still end up being just an average performer online, and you should prepare for this without getting discouraged.
One way that you can come closer to developing a more consistent LinkedIn posting strategy is to pay attention to the Water Cooler Report every month, so you can see what users are listening to and reading, and you can formulate your own content strategy along those same lines. That is after all, the point of the Water Cooler report in the first place – to let LinkedIn users know what the most popular posts are, so that all users can identify trending topics and hot button discussion points in the professional workplace.