LinkedIn Opens Publishing To All Members–Why Some are Concerned about Duplicate Content

March 12, 2014

LinkedIn has officially announced that it has opened up publishing access to all of its users. Where once only “influencers” could publish content, articles and the like, now there will soon be free reign for all LinkedIn members to share their content on the professional site’s own publishing platform.

This is a great opportunity for sites looking to grow their brand and their base of professionals, potential clients and more. But even though access is still in the process of being rolled out to members slowly over the coming weeks, there are already a number of people speaking out to highlight their concerns about this new free-for-all publishing policy.

Who’s complaining and why exactly are they so concerned? The biggest party voicing their hesitation about this open publishing policy are Internet marketers–and SEO savvy individuals–who are concerned about what kinds of duplicate content issues something like this could cause going forward.

With publishing open to everyone, some fear that people will begin to repurpose content from their sites to put on LinkedIn and, by rehashing this content, they’ll potentially wreak havok on their sites rankings, and if done en mass, it could cause serious SEO issues.

Businesses, especially those smaller businesses that are already struggling to make the time to create their own content as it is, are going to want to get in on the action. Having content published on LinkedIn is a great way to build an audience, generate some buzz, build your brand and drive traffic, but if businesses are just posting duplicate content from their site, it could impact the way their profile, or worse, their site ranks on Google.

So, how can you maximize this new publishing opportunity without risking your rankings? As simple as this may sound, or as tempting as it may seem, don’t post duplicate content.

As long as the content you publish to LinkedIn is yours to publish, there aren’t any other real restrictions. But when you really think about it, posting duplicate content–even if it is yours–isn’t the smartest marketing tactic in the long run. If you write a killer blog post and want it seen on LinkedIn after it’s already been posted elsewhere, link to it, don’t just copy and paste it. And if you want to get an article seen and shared on LinkedIn’s professional platform–write an article with that purpose (and that platform) in mind.

The ability to publish to LinkedIn is going to be an exciting source of exposure and a great new resource for businesses looking to boost their marketing efforts, but everyone needs to know that to really get the most out of this new open platform, you’re going to need to create original content specifically for it.

While there are some great ways for repurposing content out there, like taking the audio from one of your videos and turning it into a sharable podcast, or turning an idea from your ebook into a sweet infographic–simply re-sharing content just to get it published on LinkedIn’s platform isn’t one of them. Here’s what you can do instead:

  • When you create content determine whether its better suited for LinkedIn or for your site before you pick where to publish it
  • If you really can’t resist re-sharing an article every once in a while, don’t just repost it, rewrite it and don’t forget to link back to the original article.
  • Don’t think of publishing on LinkedIn as an SEO tool as much as a form engaging, brand-building, audience-growing, authority-boosting marketing.

Sites like LinkedIn have serious authority online, so if you’re posting something you’ve already shared elsewhere, whether it’s a killer article, a fabulous blog post, interesting insights or a great infographic–if you’ve used them before, they very well may rank on your profile, and push your actual website down in the rankings. In short, your republished content could crowd your original content right out of Google’s top results. You’re not likely to outrank a powerhouse online presence like LinkedIn, so if you want to drive traffic to your site AND grow your audience and brand authority on LinkedIn, invest in creating original content for each platform you engage in. Trust us, it’s worth it.

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