LinkedIn’s Senior Director of Product Management Pete Davies shared insights this week on the changes LinkedIn has made to its news feed algorithm over the last year and a half. Aiming to create more engagement for users, the company is moving away from ranking trending content and, instead, putting more weight on niche-specific professional conversations.
Giving more weight to niche topics
Whenever a user opens the LinkedIn app, Davies said the platform checks for recent posts from connections and the people, pages and hashtags the user follows. To determine which posts get ranked higher in someone’s feed, LinkedIn’s algorithm uses AI to identify niche, occupation-specific conversations.
“We know from our data that members are more interested in going deep on topics they’re interested in. Consistently, we see better conversation around niche ideas (e.g. #performancemanagement) than broad (#management),” writes Davies.
Leveling the playing field
In October last year, LinkedIn revealed that much of the engagement on posts in its news feed was skewed toward the top 1% of power users on the platform. To create a more evenly distributed network, LinkedIn introduced creator-side optimization — which gives more attention to creators with smaller audiences. Part of this feature means the site may rank a post from a connection higher if the post needs more engagement.
Davies said, while LinkedIn does not give more weight to certain types of post formats (videos, images, long-form articles, etc.), it does consider posts that encourage engagement: “Post things that encourage a response,” writes Davies, “If
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