No more LinkedIn answers, a step backwards?

It’s now official that from the 31st January, LinkedIn questions and answers will be a thing of the past. For B2B organisations (like us) LinkedIn provided a platform to demonstrate knowledge and expertise to those who needed it. We and many others have generated profitable leads through answers and will be sad to see such a useful part of LinkedIn scrapped.
 

Sure, there is a lot of spam pouring into answers as well as random referrals that aren’t really of much interest. It’s frustrating, but is it really that bad? The spam we would all like to see vanish is found in member groups. Since the European advertising regulations on Cookies, the number of ridiculous adverts offering the latest diet or must have summer dress has increased tenfold. Group owners already struggle to keep their groups clean and spam free.
 
With no more LinkedIn answers, spam will become focused on groups, adding pressure for the owners to take out the trash frequently and focus more on viral marketing.
 
This change is more than just spam management; it will push members to pay for registration. With less public access you have less chance to make those connections. It may well become ‘essential’ to upgrade just so you can reach out and make valuable connections. A smart move, but they may also be shooting themselves in the foot when nobody makes the switch.
 
At the moment it looks to be a step backwards; seemingly limiting their scalability and upsetting loyal users. However there will certainly be a few avid users who will fork out the monthly expenses to make sure they can keep getting qualified leads. Certainly this change is targeted at people who look to grow and expand their businesses on LinkedIn. This change may well push away some newer or less perturbed users.
 
With all that said, I am interested to see how marketers will take on this change. Iconic Digital Marketing Agency have no doubt the marketing strategies will adapt, when one door closes another opens. It can be healthy to bring about some change. The decision has been made now, so it’s time to embrace it rather than fight it. Let's be flexible, motivated and lead the change.