The Goal is Not to Be Viral: How LinkedIn has Changed Its Virality Ethos and Feed Algorithm

The Goal is Not to Be Viral How LinkedIn has Changed Its Virality Ethos and Feed Algorithm

Social media platforms are in a state of constant flux and evolution. As a result, the techniques used by businesses to succeed on these platforms, whether that be content creation or social media listening tools, are changing as well.

LinkedIn is one of the oldest social platforms, and it remains one of the most unique. While most social channels are about entertainment and socialisation, LinkedIn is about work and corporate culture. To reflect this, LinkedIn has recently changed its algorithm in an attempt to stop things from going viral in a way that doesn’t reflect LinkedIn’s core values. Read on to find out more.

LinkedIn is Growing

An important thing to note is that LinkedIn is getting bigger. In Q1 2023, the platform had 930 million registered users, an increase from the total of 822 million recorded in the same period the previous year.

However, as more and more people join the platform, LinkedIn owners have expressed concerns that it could be slowly turned into a new Facebook or Twitter.

To prevent this from happening, LinkedIn took a drastic step. It made changes to its recommendation algorithm to reduce entertainment or personal content and cut back on incidents of virality.

Going viral has long been seen as the ultimate goal of the average internet user. It can bring with it fame, fleeting, but fame nonetheless, and maybe even financial rewards. However, LinkedIn does not share a similar sentiment. To them, LinkedIn is an extension of the workplace, and if something shouldn’t go viral at work, it shouldn’t go viral on LinkedIn either.

Valuable Content

With the new algorithm update, LinkedIn is putting more emphasis on content that it believes holds value. Specifically, the AI-trained algorithm is now looking for content that displays knowledge, advice, and perspective.

It’s not enough to post a photo of your coffee before the big meeting. For a post to perform well on LinkedIn, you’ll need to share your advice with anyone else heading into a meeting and what you hope to achieve as a result of yours.

The algorithm won’t just look at your post, it will also look at you in detail, studying your profile to ensure you have the credentials and experience required to be an authority figure, information that will then be used to determine the reach of your post.


Much like other platforms, LinkedIn used to prioritise content with lots of engagements, comments in particular. However, this was easy to manipulate; there would be mass group commenting sessions to artificially drive up specific posts.

To prevent this, the LinkedIn recommendation algorithm now pays particular attention to comments. It’s looking for meaningful, high-value comments, not just a thumbs-up emoji.

Comments must be meaningful and contribute something towards the conversation. The algorithm will also look at who made the comments, assessing whether or not they have experience within that particular industry. All of this data will influence how much traction a post will then get on LinkedIn.

LinkedIn has made big changes to its algorithm as it looks to further set itself apart from other platforms. Going viral isn’t the goal. Instead, LinkedIn users should be looking to offer advice and contribute something positive to the community.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here