John Vaughan en Directors and Executives, Social Media, Writers Visit PORTFOLIO on my website with detailed CASE STUDIES • The Communication Studio 5/10/2016 · 4 min de lectura · 3,3K

BeBee vs. LinkedIn : By the Numbers

beBee vs. LinkedIn :  By the Numbers

I was delighted to see an article by Christine Stevens which compares how her posted articles, which were parallel-published in both beBee and LinkedIn, performed side-by-side. I was delighted because I was preparing to do the exact same thing - as part of my ongoing "Mirror" series, which I started with a Content Inventory of what appears on beBee.

"Prove it. That is something I insist on when anyone asserts an argument that they are right or that something is the next best thing to sliced bread." 
Christine Stevens (beBee contributor)

I'm with you, Christine.

Here's my own side-by-side comparison of articles I published on beBee and LinkedIn

beBee vs. LinkedIn :  By the Numbers

The pattern of my numbers look pretty much the same as Christine's. That's pretty impressive, especially since our writing topic areas are fairly different. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that her material is more marketing-oriented and generally accessible. My stuff is a bit nerdier and more tech-oriented.

Here are the Bottom-Line Observations:

beBee clearly dominates in terms of Overall Number# of Views. For Christine, the ratio is 3-to-1. For me, the ratio is almost 7-to-1. Wow. Go beBee!

Yet, even with far fewer Views, my Linked articles consistently get more Likes. (and so do Christine's)

My LinkedIn Like/per/View ratio is about 1:8 (1:10 for Christine).

My beBee Like/per/View ratio is less than 1:100 (barely 1:250 for Christine)

How can this be? We've both gotten all those Views on beBee. Why don't we get a whole bunch of Likes there, too?

Bear with me here. I want to explore a couple of ideas...

Framing Question: "What's a View?"

No, I'm not just word-smithing.

  • It's a question that's worth asking.
  • It is particularly germane to this analysis.
  • It's an issue that continues to bedevil UX analysts.


There's a title or a picture on the screen that catches your eye. You visit the page. You scan it to see if it's of interest. It isn't. You leave. Usually within 10 seconds.

beBee vs. LinkedIn :  By the NumbersThat's the norm for activity on the web. We (UX professionals) know it. We've measured it. A lot. It's not a mystery, though it continues to be a challenge. In fact, it's THE Challenge.

People just don't stay a very long on a page - on average only about 10 seconds. Clearly, you can't read an article in that time.

And, if anything, it's become even more that way with the emergence of twittery content, flat&facile design, and mobile scan&swipe behavior.

The socialNet breeds social butterflies.

You'll get lots, and lots ... and lots of meaningless hits before that special-and-rare someone settles in to actually read your article.
Birds, Bees ... and Butterflies


beBee regularly reports 10x the views as the same article on LinkedIn. That's the first head-scratcher (Is beBee really that good? Is LinkedIn really that shitty?). Then you notice that LinkedIn has far more Likes, Shares, and Comments than beBee. Now you're starting to get suspicious. And with good reason.

Insight #1:  Both LinkedIn and beBee use the label "Views". But the term obviously doesn't mean the same thing. They're using totally different algorithms to measure viewership. That's why you get the big (perplexing and counter-intuitive) difference in numbers.

My guess:

beBee counts a momentary 10-second visit to your article as a View. Result: Huge numbers.

Aside: This is a popular technique among marketing types. "Wow! Just look at those Big Shallow Numbers! .... Now give me some money."

LinkedIn takes a more measured approach. You have to stick around on the page for a while before LinkedIn calls your visit a View, but that means it's far likelier that you actually read the article. Lower numbers / Higher credibility. That's why you get more Likes, more Views, and more Shares on LinkedIn. They not only visit the page - they actually read your article.

Framing Question: "What's a Comment?"

This may seem like a silly question, but it's actually not.

It turns out that LinkedIn also under-reports the number of Comments on an Article. They count only 'top level' (i.e. original) comments. When someone replies to a comment ... they don't count it as a Comment. So I counted up all of the individual comments + replies on my LinkedIn articles, as beBee would. It brought the average number of comments on my LinkedIn articles up from 4.5 to 9. The adjusted totals appear in parentheses in the table.

This actually opens up another interesting line of thought. When someone makes a comment, it indicates that your article has made a connection. When a comment turns into a series of replies ... you've generated real engagement.

There's a value proposition in there somewhere. Perhaps we'll explore it further in another article...

beBee vs. LinkedIn :  By the Numbers

"It's not the size of your database. It's the quality of your connections."  
John Vaughan (circa 1981)

Apples and Oranges Analysis

Clearly, LinkedIn and beBee count Views differently. It's obvious that they also count Comments differently. And that difference results in ... different results.

When someone compares numbers on LinkedIn to numbers on beBee: Its's Not Necessarily a Level Playing Field
Maybe we should try Speaking the Same Language

So, let's review our numbers - and remember that the pattern of the proportions holds true for both Christine and me.

  • I believe that beBee's impressive viewCount indicates how many people have clicked on the page where my article resides.
  • I believe that beBee's impressive viewCount does not accurately reflect the number of people who've actually read my article.
  • I believe that LinkedIn's less-than-impressive viewCount accurately reflects the number of people who've actually read my article.

the TakeAway

If you're looking for a large number of raw clickTotals for your article, beBee is probably where you want to be. You'll get quite a few scan&swipe momentary hits. If you insist on calling those "views" - by all means, Be my guest. But I don't recommend it as a business plan.

If you'd prefer to have someone actually read your article and like it, share it, or comment on it, then you may want to make a point of publishing on LinkedIn, as well, because that's where those things happen, too.

beBee vs. LinkedIn :  By the NumbersDisclaimer

I offer these observations without partisan agenda: I critique (or criticize, if you insist) both LinkedIn and beBee vigorously.

This is just what the numbers say ... at least, to me.

In the meantime, I'll copy&paste the disclaimer below. It comes from a previous article that I wrote on beBee. It seems relevant, especially under the circumstances.

Well, I've probably really stepped in it this time.  People can usually tolerate numbers - even if they refuse to respond to them.  Analysis is often reacted to as criticism.  And criticism is usually perceived as being negative.

The numbers are the numbers.  My observations are pretty much on the level of 'obvious', 'understandable', and 'common sense' - or at least how I've intended them.

If you feel the need to ask "Why do you hate beBee, John?" Please don't.

By way of context, you might check out my many snippily critical posts on LinkedIn (They go back for years).

I've been analyzing and advising - or complaining (if you must) - about social media for a while. 

I've got some dirt-under-the-fingernails experience and skills, as well as a passion, to make socialnNets work - for everybody. A lot of it has to do with motivation. But that's another rant ...

beBee vs. LinkedIn :  By the NumbersFYI: Reference

beBee Content Profile: 08/2016

beBee Content Profile: 09/2016

Re-Posts, Pointers, and Hooks

Upcoming Rants:

  • The Keyword is 'Professional'
  • Ambassadorship

(c) copyright John Vaughan / The Communication Studio

Visit The Communication Studio website

Social Convergence : How it all fits together

John Vaughan Oct 20, 2016 · #93

#92 Just another UX slap-in-the-head by LinkedIn @Jared Wiese Thanks for the heads-up. Gave up on attempting to 'influence' LI to NOT do dumb shit quite a while ago. The best that can be said is that at least the LI aficionados never got themselves into Emotional Shitstorm & LynchMob mode about my bad attitude. As ever: LinkedIn could learn from beBee; beBee could learn from LinkedIn (both good & bad).

The question in this context (i.e. the beBee perspective): Can beBee actually interpolate something GOOD from LinkedIn's most recent fuckup?

+2 +2
John Vaughan Oct 8, 2016 · #91

#57 "Likely you have been on LI much longer since you have 3,224 followers and only 199 on beBee." sez @Jim Cody

JV> True enough. Been on LinkedIn since 2005, "in the good old days". Times & techniques have changed radically since then and I am saddened at the result.

* I believe that there should be a viable, self-sustaining Marketplace of Ideas
* I believe that beBee (who apprarently wishes to replace LinkedIn) has much to learn from historical LinkedIn
* I believe that "The Price of Quality" ( is tough to maintain

Aside from that, the numbers actually don't mean shit. For any of a number of reasons. But, specifically: The comparison of numbers between beBee and LinkedIn is profoundly flawed because the techniques and units of measurement (of Views and Comments, at the very least) are totally different.

JC> "I find that more bees are looky loos much like people that don't read the entire article or just browsing for pics or charts."

JV> Yup. It's what I call "The Q-Factor"
By which I mean measurement of Qualitative Values, as well as the Quantitative Numbers

But that's another rant...

+2 +2
John Vaughan Oct 8, 2016 · #90

#87 Excellent common-sense insight, as per usual @Phil Friedman
Just keep repeating the truth.
It'll sink in.
I hope.

+2 +2
John Vaughan Oct 8, 2016 · #89

#84 "Not sure why you keep deleting and reposting your latest comment." sez @Jared Wiese

JV> In order to edit it. Typos. Wording. Perhaps an addition or deletion. Clarity.
I believe that a superior interface would allow you to edit a posted Comment for a brief period after posting it. That would allow you to clean it up, but not alter it further after a grace period.

In order to deal with the last-to-first display ordering in beBee's Comment interface I first posted a series of 4 "chunked" responses to you (#49, #50, #51 and #52) and then selectively deleted and replaced them, so that they appear in common-sense order (take a look).

Compare to your 4-part response (#58, #59, #60, and #61), which is presented in 'reverse order'. Is "common-sense ordering" a necessity? No. But it's decent UX.

A "smart" publishing interface would recognize what happens in a system that forces you to break up a comment into chunks and deal with the situation automatically and gracefully. As we say, "Five lines of code."

+1 +1
Phil Friedman Oct 8, 2016 · #87

#32 #86 Look, Paul and Jared, I think we can agree that "views" ---- whatever they really represent ---- are just an indication of exposure (reach). And that is all an author can ask a social media publishing platform to give him or her. The post itself (it lead, its title image, it's deck, content, and whatever) have to do the work of enticing someone to read it... and possibly like it.... and possibly comment on or share it. For me personally, that, however, is not enough. I have always felt that the true accomplishment comes when my writing is "good" enough, offers sufficient value to the reader, to convert that reader to a follower. I am not saying that is the only way to see things, just my way of seeing things.

I distinguish between following and connecting (in the LinkedIn sense), because someone who follows you asks for the opportunity to read more of your work, but does not expect a quid pro quo for that, other than to be given the opportunity to read more of your work. In connecting there is often an expectation of reciprocity. And we know from LI that often people will send a request to connect not because they want to hear more from you, but because they want to be able to send you offers to sell you something. Of course, that is LI's fault for setting up the concept and encouraging people to use the platform for "social selling". Cheers!

+3 +3
Jared 🐝 Wiese Oct 7, 2016 · #86

@Phil Friedman, I also agree with your entire comment #21. "different people have different goals, and that it is not out of order to view certain stats by way of deciding which platform or platforms exhibit the greatest potential for achieving one's goals re social media. Personally, I never find rational discussion threatening, and don't really see why anyone else does. John Vaughan has presented some data and some conclusions here, which each of us entitled to ponder, analyze, accept, or disagree with. No big deal. Being a beBee or a LinkedIn member is not a religion."

@Phil Friedman, @Paul "Pablo" Croubalian, for time's impact (#20, #27, #32, #50)...
I've just looked again and saw my views and likes go up on both platforms after the last 2 weeks. Let me know if you'd like more details.

+2 +2
John Vaughan Oct 7, 2016 · #85

#78 "I'm a BA. I ask questions and try to formulate conclusions. I don't tell someone theirs are not relevant." says @Jared Wiese

JV> Cool. I'm a UX Practitioner. Often describe myself as "a BA with Design skills". I ask the questions, formulate conclusions, and then deliver solutions. There's more to it, of course, but a critical part of the process is also 'separating the wheat from the chaff" because - as you might imagine - there's a lot of noise, conflation, and distraction out there. It comes with the territory.

Very often a point may be a very-good-point and still be largely irrelevant to the task at hand.
So you stick a thumbtack in it. Maybe you tag it. Maybe you even advocate for making it a task in its own right (I often do).
But you don't allow it to divert you from your focus on the challenge.

Yes, @Phil Friedman always offers excellent insights. I strongly recommend "Building Engagement on Social Media"

Don't know that a recommendation from me is advantageous in this environment, Phil, but I try.

+2 +2