If you’re involved in your company’s online brand strategy through social media, you’ve probably noticed that the one consistency over all social media platforms is that things change, and they change quickly. You need to stay on your toes and be ever-vigilant to how these changes will affect your business and your brand strategy. (You know all about the new Facebook Graph Search, right?)
The newest big announcement? LinkedIn plans to retire its ‘Answers’ Q&A section’ at the end of this month. If you’ve never used LinkedIn Answers, it’s a feature on LinkedIn that enables users to post a question and let other LinkedIn users answer. Or, as an expert, you could go in and answer other users’ questions, thereby proving yourself as a subject matter expert while networking in the process. In fact, by offering useful answers, people drove a significant amount of web traffic to their sites.
LinkedIn announced: “As of Jan. 31, LinkedIn Answers will be retired from LinkedIn. We will be focusing our efforts on the development of new and more engaging ways to share and discuss professional topics across LinkedIn. In the meantime, members can still pose questions and facilitate professional discussions through other popular LinkedIn channels including LinkedIn Polls, Groups, or status update.”
For the time being, it sounds as though LinkedIn wants us to move questions and answers to LinkedIn Groups or polls, or status updates, which leads to the obvious question: Will this increase spam in LinkedIn Groups?
Those who have been using the Answers section to drive business and promote their company branding strategy will probably swarm to join popular groups and drive their spam levels even higher. While questions and answers are already something members submit in groups, there is still a lot of spam to wade through to find the information you need. Those companies and individuals using Answers to generate leads on LinkedIn will need to redefine their strategies.
Meanwhile, we’re left wondering what new and more engaging ways they are going to come up with for users to share and discuss topics.
What do you think? Are you glad to see Answers go or will you mourn this loss? Have you ever used Answers to promote your company branding strategy or product branding strategy?