Is LinkedIn Dying?

In the beginning LinkedIn was a wonderful way for professionals to connect with each other, share ideas, collaborate and build this Utopian world known as thought leadership.  It was great!  But as I flip through the many emails that contain the “discussions” that are happening within some of the groups I belong to I’m seeing a disturbing trend.

For every true thought provoking discussion I see, there are easily 10-15 let-me-sell-you-something or make-money-fast “discussions” out there.  Now this is not the case for every group I belong to.  And maybe it’s because I belong to many of the Marketing groups LinkedIn has to offer.  I don’t know, but it’s disturbing.

I long for the days when as a marketing professional I could post a discussion about redefining the concept of the marketing mix and get a good, solid debate about the virtues of broadcast media vs. outdoor, print, online or gorilla marketing.  Instead. there’s a very real chance that I would get essentially spammed with junk that has absolutely nothing to do with the topic.

Let’s be honest, we have no one to blame but ourselves.  We’re all out there trying to keep our current job, find a new job or start our own thing and we see LinkedIn as the wonderful communication tool that it is.  But then in our greed for results we take advantage of the system.  If we aren’t careful LinkedIn will start looking like that well known list website that doesn’t exactly have the Mercedes of reputations for providing valuable information.

That’s how I see it!

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Promotional Items Use Poll

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Just because you don’t need a Marketing Manager, doesn’t mean you don’t need Marketing

Many small businesses are in a position of not being able to have a full-time Marketing Manager or Director of Marketing on their payroll because let’s face it, they can’t afford the $50k – $100k it’s going to take to get a decent one on board. So what do they do? They have their well-meaning assistant play with Word or PowerPoint to create an ad for the local newspaper that they have been told will be “the best $300 they’ve ever spent” by the newspaper Account Manager of the week.

A week later the phone still has cobwebs on it and the front door is rusted shut from lack of use. Why? Because the ad was filled with clipart, ill-conceived messaging, no branding and a confusing call to action. And the ad for your “off-the-hook” dance club ran adjacent to the announcement of Mrs. Jensen’s passing in the obituaries.

Now you’ve just wasted $300 and more importantly, you’ve got a sour taste in your mouth because you now think that advertising doesn’t work.

In reality if you’d had a true marketing professional involved you would have had a compelling professional ad designed and you would have paid a lower rate for that ad with much better positioning. Your club would be packed, booze flowing, profits soaring, music pumping and you’d be sitting at your computer finalizing your plans for that Tahitian vacation you’ve always wanted.

OK, maybe it’s not quite that easy. But my example does illustrate the difference having a marketing professional as part of your business can make. Plus, you don’t need to bring them on your payroll. Outsource it and pay for it as you need it.

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