Like It, Love It, Celebrate It: Why Social Media Marketers Will Love LinkedIn’s New Reactions

If you look below posts on LinkedIn, you might see something
slightly different than you’re accustomed to seeing.

Where posts on your feed previously generated Likes, they might
now be receiving a few different reactions. Appearing under content
with a variety of multicolored circles, these new reactions are
expanding the ways LinkedIn users can express themselves.

Who Needs More Than a “Like”?

The need to express oneself on LinkedIn might seem excessive or
unnecessary for a professional platform, but Product Manager Cissy
insists these new options were in more demand than you might

One of the things we regularly hear from all of you is that you
want more expressive ways than a ‘like’ to respond to the
variety [of] posts you see in your feed. At the same time, you’ve
also told us that when you post on LinkedIn, you want more ways to
feel heard and understand why someone liked what you said.

The latter is incredibly common; when posting something that
could be construed as bad or disappointing news (headlines about
disappointing hiring trends or discouraging experiences, for
example), a
“like” hardly feels like an appropriate reaction
. Product
designers for the platform took up this challenge heartily,
“determined to stay focused on our members’ needs and the
unique conversations they have on LinkedIn,”
said product designer Ricardo Rivera
. They sought to create
options that helps users to know “why someone ‘liked’ what
they shared, as well as more lightweight ways to express that a
post resonated with them.”

The Result: Meet LinkedIn’s New Reactions

In addition to the preserved “Like” option, users worldwide
will soon have access to the following four reactions:


Part of the process that LinkedIn product designers used to
determine the most appropriate reactions was an analysis of the
most common 1-2 word responses to posts. Their number one finding?
“Congratulations.” As a result, this reaction button
(designated by a green set of applauding hands) was developed for
users to “praise an accomplishment like landing a new job or
speaking at an event.” Marketers can use instances of this
reaction to gauge appreciation for company milestones, appearances
on industry lists, and additions to their respective


Chen writes in her product announcement that this button,
designated with a reddish coral heart, would be most appropriately
deployed “to express deep resonance and support, like a
conversation about work-life balance or the importance of
mentorship.” This one seems to be a direct result of data
provided from feedback mechanisms like user surveys and comments-
where people often said, “I need a ‘love’ button.” Social
media marketers can keep an eye out for this reaction upon the
release of new products or product features, or helpful responses
to follower queries.


At times, it can be helpful to be able to indicate that a point
made you think- without doing so in a way that indicates you
“like” it. The Insightful reaction, represented by a yellow
lightbulb, was designed for precisely this. “In past research,”
Rivera noted, “we found that posters want to know whether these
ideas have an impact on other people. This insight (no pun
intended) inspired the “Insightful” (and “Curious”)
reaction. When using content to present ideas that they hope will
spark behavior changes or meaningful feedback, observing the use of
this reaction can help content creators determine whether their
content is achieving the desired goal.


This reaction, closely related to the Insightful response,
“lets [users] show [their] desire to learn more or react to a
thought-provoking topic.” This option could provide particular
insight to content creators, as it could provide clear clues about
what elements of a concept or process might merit follow-up or
supplemental coverage. This reaction, denoted with a purple
“thinking” head, is one that likely finds special utility on
LinkedIn—a more educational space than other platforms who have
deployed reactions previously.

Four New Ways to Connect Humans Worldwide

While LinkedIn’s decision to develop additional reactions

doesn’t seem like a novel one
, especially three years

after occasional competitor Facebook released theirs
, what does
seem novel here is the deliberacy with which the platform moved.
Three admirable principles upon which the company based their
reaction development were constructiveness to a poster, meaningful
interaction drive (versus vanity metrics), and global universality-
Rivera and his design team insisted that “reactions should be
understood globally so that every member of the global workforce
can have productive conversations with each other on

To acknowledge that humans can have a multitude of reactions to
a single stimulus, in turn acknowledges the humanity of people
using the platform. This is a stride that aligns with LinkedIn’s
recent larger focus in this area: “LinkedIn has been infusing a
warmer, more human look and feel in all of [its] visuals to help
build more emotional connections,” and the manner in which this
change was deployed demonstrates that. After so many years of
fighting its reputation as a stiff, hard-to-understand platform,
moves like this and their “Kudos” feature are actively making a
dent in that perception.

And for marketers seeking to infuse humanity in their
communications, LinkedIn is finally a platform that can “meet you
there,” as it were.
Inc. points out
that “a more diverse range of options lets
marketers know how people truly [feel] about their content.”
Although the full range of reactions isn’t captured
here—notably, there are no negative or potentially negative
options provided—it does give social media managers and social
listeners new insight into the audiences they’re seeking to
understand…and all the many feelings they may have about you and
your company.

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The post
Like It, Love It, Celebrate It: Why Social Media Marketers Will
Love LinkedIn’s New Reactions
appeared first on Social Media Week.

Source: FS – Social Media Blogs 1
Like It, Love It, Celebrate It: Why Social Media Marketers Will Love LinkedIn’s New Reactions