Events are a popular and effective way for businesses to promote themselves and engage with their audiences. I was excited therefore to be invited to be part of a pilot programme for a new event feature on LinkedIn at the beginning of this year. Long-time LinkedIn members will recall that back in the day there used to be such a feature which for reasons unknown was retired.
LinkedIn gives us a variety of ways to find, connect and engage with our target audience. An events page is a logical and many would say overdue addition.
The new feature is currently linked to the individual page although following feedback from the pilot group LinkedIn is considering making it available on the company page.
Roll out was originally scheduled for June but was pushed back to August to allow for some of the changes suggested by the pilot group to be incorporated.
As a member of the pilot group I was impressed by the responsiveness and openness of product managers to suggestions. It was very encouraging to see that LinkedIn is making time to consult with users and listen and act on suggestions. That said this is still a work in progress.
Based on my experience in using the event feature and on-going discussions with product managers in the pilot group here are the answers to the most common questions. I will endeavour to update this as new details emerge.
1. Is this a premium-only feature?
No, it is available to free and paid account members.
- Will it be available to all countries?
I don’t know. I will clarify this.
- Is it desktop or mobile?
- Is it available on the company page?
Currently, the feature is available on personal accounts only
- Where do I find the feature?
On the desktop, it is on the home page left-hand panel under groups. On mobile click on your thumbnail picture to access the panel (Android).
- Who can I invite?
You can directly invite your 1st-degree connections using an invite button.
- Can I send multiple invitations?
No, invitations are sent individually, you can, however, share the link as a post or copy the event link and send to multiple people e.g. in an email.
- Can I customise the invitation?
No, LinkedIn sends a default invitation. The following wording is sent:
“Excited to organize Bristol LinkedIn Local in Bristol, England! Anyone interested in attending?
- Can I invite people in a group?
You can include the event page link in a group post.
- Can I run a private event?
Yes. Only attendees with the event link can view it. Once the public or private event option has been chosen it cannot be changed. Remember also that attendees can invite their connections without restriction, however, the organiser can moderate attendees.
- Can there be several organisers?
This feature has been requested but currently, only one person can be the organiser.
- Can I add a custom image to my event page?
Yes, you can add a background photo – 552×200 with a ratio of 4:1. Cropping and resizing is currently not available.
- Can I replicate a previous event?
Not at the moment.
- Who can see the list of attendees?
Only other people who have registered to attend
- Can I see people who attended my previous events?
Yes, you can view the event details and attendees in the side panel under events
- Can I send messages to all attendees?
There is currently no facility to do this. As the organiser, you can message your connections.
- Where do invitations appear?
They appear in My Network with connection invitations
- Can I filter my invitations
Yes, in the latest version you can pre-filter invitations by location, company, university
- Who can see posts on the event feed?
These are only visible to people who are attending the event
- Can I associate a hashtag with an event?
Yes, you can add one hashtag which will take users to the relevant event pages but after the introduction of private events, posts in the feed with that hashtag will only be shown to attendees and not publicly.
- Can I edit/delete an event?
- Does the events page integrate with popular ticketing sites?
The page includes a field for the booking-link but this is not integrated i.e. some people will register to attend who have not bought tickets. You will need to follow these people up individually to confirm attendance.
- Can I use the feature as a webinar?
Yes, but you currently also have to add a physical address
- Are there restrictions on the type of events I can promote?
I am waiting for an answer on this. The event terms appear to suggest we can’t promote paid events:
The launch of LinkedIn events has been eagerly anticipated. It gives members a powerful and flexible extra way to engage with their audience at zero cost. Inevitably the feature will not meet everyone’s expectations, for example, those who would like to send out mass invitations. LinkedIn has a fine line to walk between making it easy to engage connections and discouraging abuse.
My experience of the feature so far has been very positive. The one improvement I would like to see as a priority would be the ability to message attendees en bloc, even if this is restricted to one message per week.
Have you had an opportunity to use the events page yet? What worked well and what could be improved?
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