The Goldilocks Syndrome on LinkedIn – what, how and why

Concepts within the children’s story Goldilocks crossover into many situations.  In a business context it’s termed the Goldilocks Syndrome, Principle or Economy.

Wikipedia shares that, “A Goldilocks economy sustains moderate economic growth and low inflation, allowing a market-friendly monetary policy. This occurs when prices of commodities sit between a bear and a bull market.

“The Goldilocks communication principle describes the amount, type and detail of communications necessary to maximize effectiveness whilst minimising excessive scope on the ‘too much’ side and avoiding incomplete or inaccurate communication on the ‘too little side.”

It’s the perfect metaphor to explore using LinkedIn well or poorly!

Too little or too much

Many small businesses are either over exuberant or too lethargic on LinkedIn for different reasons.

With Australian membership sitting at 12 million+ the value is implicit. But gaining visibility and traction hasn’t been as easy the last few years with the surge of competition, members and content.

Whether using LinkedIn for business generation and branding or just a place holder, a robust presence is vital, particularly for knowledge-based businesses. 

Further, all roads lead to LinkedIn from Google and other digital footprints for social proof, employer validation, brand resonance and checks of who knows who.

Too little

Many business have little or no activity due to a lack of awareness of the commercial and networking opportunities. Often it’s a time priority disconnect or motivation. And some are disillusioned with the glut of newsfeed gaming activity.

But LinkedIn is far more than for posting content. Its networking and reference value cannot be underestimated.   

Others are unsure of what and how to contribute or hesitant due to concerns of being unfavourably judged. The plethora of self-aggrandising  wannabe influencers, excessive self-promotional fluff and memes doesn’t always pacify but every channel has this mix of characters and content. .

The above is totally understandable.  But there are millions of incredible minds, outstanding subject content and rich conversations to find and engage.  

Too much

Now to the other extreme where members go over the top with content saturation, gaming mis-use and actions purely to bolster visibility.   LinkedIn is designed for success and community but motivation and integrity is key.

Often actions arise from poor advice via supposed experts or well-meaning friends.   The thirst for visibility can be seductive but due diligence saves time, angst and money.

The over and mis-use of Polls due to their significant algorithm push has become a bit like crack cocaine for many.  Just because others do something doesn’t mean it’s a good idea or even legal (aka using the name field for a brand pitch),

What’s “just right”

  1. Have an open and enthusiastic mind with critical thinking to connect, engage and contribute.  A cracker profile that is visual, clear and inspires is foundational before launching a content strategy aligned to your goals and market.
  2. Bring thoughtfulness and honesty to all  engagement and content applying filters of cadence, calibre, context and clarity.
  3. Post circa one to three pieces of solid content per week from your personal profile and at similarly from your Company page. Reach generally dies on the vine with more.
  4. Build networks with consideration of quality vs quantity. Personalise all invitations and send out at least 20 a week to expand eyeballs and conversations.
  5. Mix up and test content – Polls, documents, video, text posts and now Newsletters.
  6. Newsletters – a brilliant Subscriber based content format which previously was available only to a select few. It’s now rolling out to every member with Creator Mode turned on. Newsletters will level out the content and visibility playing field taking away the desperation in the newsfeed for post saturation. Less is more for newsletter content whilst elevating reach and an amp up of creativity and full multimedia options which give subscribers a richer UX.

Final tip

Hoping or believing you will resonate and connect with everyone on LinkedIn is a fairy tale without a happy ending. No one does exactly what you do in the way you do it, so promote your unique business value and voice whilst not being afraid to shake a few porridge bowls.

DARE Group Australia is a valued content partner of Inside Small Business