Business publishers are enjoying traffic spikes from LinkedIn
Publishers have their ups and downs with distribution platforms, but LinkedIn is having a moment, at least with business news outlets.
Since LinkedIn overhauled its news feed, added analytics tools for publishers and began testing a trending topics module, business-focused publishers have gotten traffic spikes from the platform, with some of them now drawing millions of readers every month. As for LinkedIn, it said engagement with its news feed is up 40 percent year over year.
Bloomberg has gotten 26 percent more traffic from LinkedIn in the past two months and is now a top-10 source of traffic, even though it’s cut the number of stories it distributes there by 90 percent, sharing only stories that are relevant to LinkedIn users, said Scott Havens, the global head of digital at Bloomberg. Previously, Bloomberg just used automated software to pipe hundreds of stories onto the platform, and it wasn’t even even a top-10 source of referral traffic. Havens declined to provide raw traffic numbers.
“We’ve been seeing this nice uptick,” Havens said.
LinkedIn is still only relevant to a small slice of publishers. It drives less than half of 1 percent of all global referral traffic, according to Parsely, a share that has barely changed in the past year. And not every business publisher contacted for this story has seen its LinkedIn traffic grow, either — the Financial Times and Quartz, for example, remain flat.
But several have seen big gains, partly because LinkedIn has tried new ways to get content in front of readers. For example, when major stories about certain companies are published, LinkedIn has begun sending mobile push notifications to employees of those companies, driving up clickthrough rates.
Forbes — which has over 4 million followers on LinkedIn and is adding about 150,000 new followers per month — recently had a record month in April on the platform, with over 1 million clicks on its stories, according to Lewis D’Vorkin, Forbes’ chief product officer. This was nearly 120 percent more than the traffic it drove the previous April, he added.
D’Vorkin attributes a lot of that success to sharing aspirational, advice content that’s ripe for the LinkedIn audience. “We over-index, perhaps, on the right content for LinkedIn compared to Facebook,” he said. “People know Forbes is about success, not just in business and entrepreneurship, but in all sorts of ways. That’s so ripe for the LinkedIn audience.”
Elsewhere, Business Insider now reliably draws about 2 million clicks per month from the platform, though in a good month it can garner over 4 million. That’s not a lot for a publisher that gets over 55 million uniques a month, per comScore, but LinkedIn now drives more clicks for Business Insider’s finance coverage than Facebook does. That’s partly because LinkedIn’s audience, while quite a bit smaller than Facebook’s, is much more interested in that kind of information, according to Ashley Lutz, Business Insider’s deputy executive editor.
Business Insider, of course, also has a secret weapon in its founder and CEO, Henry Blodget, who drives traffic because of his 453,000-person following on LinkedIn, three times what he has on Twitter. “I’ve definitely gone to Henry before to see if he’ll share something on LinkedIn,” Lutz said.
‘We’re netting out with higher revenue’: Publishers reaping the benefits of Snapchat’s strong second half
With CPMs up as much as 20% year over year in the fourth quarter, many Discover publishers are bullish on the upstart platform for next year.
How Cosmo is building brand affinity with younger audiences through its focus on commerce
Cosmopolitan's focus on e-commerce through a line of branded wines and its own shopping holiday has led to a 254% increase in product sales.
‘Go to market faster’: The Washington Post’s Arc goes outside the tent for payment and data integrations
Subscriber revenue has become more of a priority to the Washington Post's Arc clients since it launched its subscription tools last year.
SponsoredPublishers will lead the charge as cookie-less advertising becomes the norm
Steve Wing, managing director, EMEA, Magnite As the advertising industry moves closer to a cookieless world — one in which browserless environments including connected TV (CTV) and mobile in-app are an increasingly large part of ad budgets — publishers will have an increasingly important role in developing the future of identity. Segment creation and identity […]
‘Profitability in the back half of next year’: BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti (and Verizon Media CEO Guru Gowrappan) on their big merger
A special Digiday podcast episode features Interviews with BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti and Verizon Media CEO Guru Gowrappan.
‘People have had permission to experiment’: Pandemic expedites rethink on 9-to-5 work structures
Starting out as a short-term fix to weather the coronavirus storm, employers are seeing work hours outside the traditional 9-to-5 week as a new normal.