LinkedIn pulls pin on Stories as it refocuses to video
Another Story experience has fallen by the wayside as platforms finally realise that just because it works elsewhere doesn't mean it'll work everywhere (WhatsApp, are you listening?).
After Twitter abandoned its short-lived Fleets, LinkedIn has gone down the same route and will be retiring Stories at the end of September 2021.
LinkedIn thought-leaders and brands will have to think about a different approach if they want to share quick little insights into office life.
Stories that were promoted from a page in Campaign Manager will need to be recreated as a video or image ad. They will not appear in your Feed otherwise.
"We introduced Stories last year as a fun and casual way to share quick video updates. We've learned a ton. Now, we're taking those learnings to evolve the Stories format into a reimagined video experience across LinkedIn that's even richer and more conversational."
Permanent instead of temporary video
LinkedIn says it'll develop the initial idea of Stories – informal video content that users can share on the platform – and make it something a little more permanent.
Those who are inclined will be able to post videos that showcase their personality and professional credentials to their profile.
So Stories will disappear, but some of the ideas will live on.
LinkedIn is making the change in response to user feedback on Stories, which indicated they didn't want the videos they created to disappear after 24 hours. At this stage, there's no news of when the update will go live, so this is a story you'll have to keep your ear to the ground on.
Launched in October 2020, binned in September 2021
LinkedIn Stories launched in October 2020 and worked the same as every other Story feature.
Users could upload short, creative vertical videos and images which disappeared after 24 hours. It aimed to help users build connections across their profession.
"Sharing Stories is an easy way to share your experiences and insights, and to build meaningful relationships with your professional community. LinkedIn shares Stories that you post for 24 hours."
Stories could only be posted via the LinkedIn app. Individuals or Pages could create Stories, which gave brands a chance to show their personal side. Stories appeared at the top of the page for frequent viewers or in the middle for those who dip in and out of the format.
In a desperate bid to generate eyeballs for Stories, LinkedIn did introduce specific Stories notification in latter months, underwhelming several hundred million users daily.
LinkedIn says it learned two main things from its Stories experience, which it'll utilise in its upcoming video development.
"In developing Stories, we assumed people wouldn't want informal videos attached to their profile, and that ephemerality would reduce barriers that people feel about posting. Turns out, you want to create lasting videos that tell your professional story in a more personal way and that showcase both your personality and expertise.
You want more creative tools to make engaging videos… (and) even more ways to spruce up those videos in a professional context, and you want to do so across LinkedIn."
The carcass of LinkedIn Stories will likely metamorphose into something quite different.
In August, LinkedIn acquired how-to video app Jumprope as part of its expanded video focus.
Before its acquisition, Jumprope enabled users to create step-by-step tutorials using video and still image assets, with preset formats and overlays to help communicate each element. These could then be exported to any social platform.
Following the acquisition, Jumprope CEO Jake Poses announced that Jumprope would be discontinued. The team are now working exclusively on LinkedIn, intending to build out its creator products.
"We started Jumprope to empower anyone to share their knowledge and passion in an engaging video-based format.
But, while 2 million people per month watch Jumpropes on our platform, we realised we could build something so much bigger if we joined LinkedIn. This truly is an opportunity to fulfill the Jumprope vision of reaching a global community."
While the launch of LinkedIn Stories was met with audible groans, whatever comes next has every chance of a much warmer reception.
Unless, of course, it's LinkedIn Reels…