LinkedIn: 300M+

September 16th, 2014

Oh yeah.  This happened.

What does this mean for you?

From what I remember, the growth is not coming from the US, but from India, Brazil and other countries that might not give you any value.  But, the world is flat, so I guess this is all good, right?

It’s been an interesting ride, from the acquisitions that take it from professional networking to a news website, to the (newer) focus on mobile (which in some countries is more prominent than desktops).

Anyway, enjoy this milestone… the next is 400M members.

NOTE: these numbers are not USERS.  They are signups (or, as LI calls them, members).

Slideshare becomes… FREE?

September 15th, 2014

This is awesome, awesome, awesome.

I remember seeing some features in Slideshare, specifically the one where you could put a poll at the end of a presentation, and wanting it.  Alas, it was what the rich kids could get, not a no name like me.

Looks like they are going to do away with the the premium upgrade, though, and roll out those features to everyone.  That is FANTASTIC!

Thank you LinkedIn :)

Goodbye LinkedIn InMaps (network visualization tool)

September 12th, 2014

Remember when InMaps came out a few years ago?  This was the really cool way to “see” what your network looked like… it never really worked for me because first my network was too big, and it just didn’t show anything.  Then, when I could actually see something, it looked like a hairball that didn’t really make any sense.

Lot’s of LinkedIn experts and enthusiasts got excited over it, but it was always just a flashy widget that really added no value.

They are dumping it, though.

One more feature goes away. They say they are going to replace it with something better.

Strategically, it makes sense to dump this.

But the question lingers, what’s the next thing they are going to dump?  Where do I invest my time and efforts if they keep dumping features?

linkedin_inmaps_retired

LinkedIn Articles: You Gotta Check For Comments :(

August 25th, 2014

Articles is relatively new, at least for people like me (non-influencers).

One of the problems I just noticed is that after you write an article you don’t get notifications when you should take action.

I’m not talking about ego-centric notifications, like “someone just read or liked your article.”  I’m talking about notices when someone comments on your article.

For example, a few hours ago I posted this:

linkedin_articles_notifications

I’m okay to not know a play-by-play of the first two arrows: views and likes.

But I really, really, really want to know when someone leaves a comment.

What do you think LinkedIn?  Do you think you can let me know when someone leaves a comment, so it doesn’t look like I don’t care about them or their comments?  If I know, and can respond, I get a great opportunity to establish or reinforce a relationship… and that’s that I’m there for :)

LinkedIn’s Leaked Business Idea to Grow and Market More

August 18th, 2014

Here’s an article that has a supposedly confidential and leaked document laying out plans for LinkedIn to go to the next level: $1B

In a nutshell, it’s all about selling more ads.  It’s a big, big pie, and LinkedIn wants a bigger slice.

I don’t think it’s really that interesting, it just seems like the next logical step.

But WOW, check out the scathing comments… !  There is no love lost in those comments… seems like there was very little to begin with in the first place.  Ouch.

LinkedIn Announcement Change: Boo! Hiss!

August 15th, 2014

Darn, LinkedIn did it again… another change that is cray cray.

As a group manager/owner, I have the ability to send an “announcement” to group members.  Recently I sent an announcement and noticed that the title of the announcement was overwritten by LinkedIn’s generic title… this is what people see in their inbox:

linkedin_announcement_snafu

Sorry it’s so small, but what they have is “[New announcement]” which I didn’t put it. I think “announcement” is a dumb thing to call this thing, and in my inbox, in the subject view, it takes up way to many characters (which means the other characters are pushed out of the subject).

Also, I don’t want it to be a JibberJobber – Career Management announcement… I want it to be the title of my “announcement.  Check out the entire email – the top arrow points to the subject that LinkedIn inserted (they didn’t used to do this), and the bottom arrow points to the title that I created…

Oh why, LinkedIn, did you mess with this?  This almost guarantees that these messages will be unopened by more people :(

linkedin_announcement_snafu2

For people who have to hack their way around this, you’ll have to send an announcement (which just lost like 25% of it’s value) and then do a normal “discussion” post in the group.  The normal discussion title will be the subject of the next email, as long as … well, as long as you are the only discussion of that day.  Otherwise, it is hit or miss whether yours will be the main discussion, or if someone else’s will.

Would be nice to have more power as a group owner.

LinkedIn’s Competitors

July 2nd, 2014

Almost two years ago I wrote LinkedIn Alternatives: Awesome comments on LinkedIn strategy and competition.  Check out this post on TechCrunch titled The Rise Of The “Social Professional” Networks.

No obviously, LinkedIn is the eight gazillion pound guerrilla… and no one is going head-to-head with them.  But the niche professional sites seem to be making progress.  In the article we learn about sites that are specifically for military, college kids, software geeks, mechanical engineers, data scientists, academics… and then look at the comments in that post to see other niche social sites for professionals.

Will any of these take LinkedIn down?  No.

Will any of them be more important for certain professionals than LinkedIn?  From what I hear, they already are.

LinkedIn: The Great Content Platform (what does that mean for professional networking?)

July 1st, 2014

Check out this Buzzfeed article: LinkedIn Slashes Referral Traffic To Publishers

This means that LinkedIn used to send their users to other sites to read content, but it looks like LinkedIn is keeping it’s users/members inside of LinkedIn, not sending them out at all (or at least, a lot less than before).

This is what some would say is “does not play well with others.”  Of course, there is no obligation for LinkedIn to send users anywhere… Buzzfeed is a company that was built by sites like Facebook where users would say “go read this cool article!”… to have their traffic from LinkedIn go down is kind of a big deal.

For me, the bigger deal is how LinkedIn is silo-ing itself from other websites.  I’m not sure that Buzzfeed readers really care about LinkedIn, or that Buzzfeed does anything good for LinkedIn, but by not sending them any traffic they are, I think, separating them from a potential online heavyweight.  Apparently they are pulling away from (or, using the word from the Buzzfeed writer: alienating) other sites too.  Good on LinkedIn for not needing anyone else, I guess.

Here’s the other big deal: it seems that LinkedIn is decreasing it’s value in the professional networking space, and trying to reposition itself as a content play… like HuffingtonPost for business professionals.  Perhaps it’s the smartest thing that LinkedIn can do, but doesn’t that change why you go there, and what you do there?

What does this mean for you?  Are you going to go to LinkedIn for relationships (professional networking), content, or both, or neither?

 

How “People You May Know” Works (LinkedIn’s people recommendations)

June 25th, 2014

I’m not sure if this is how it works, but it’s the best idea I’ve seen: How Linkedin’s ‘people we may know’ feature is so accurate

Apparently the key is to always log out of LinkedIn… otherwise, they’ll be able to mine your internet activity and make very interesting suggestions.

Hat tip to Anne Pryor for posting this on a LinkedIn Group I’m on :)

LinkedIn & Trust

June 24th, 2014

Can you trust LinkedIn?

Read this post from Mr. LinkedIn: This Is Why LinkedIn Should Never ‘Retire’ A Feature

I totally agree with Mark.  How can we continue to use a system if they keep removing features?  Especially if the features are something I build (by adding my content, like a CRM / contact manager)?

As I use it, then they remove it, I lose trust.

And then they announce the next greatest thing, and I forgive and use that, and they REMOVE IT.

It only takes so many times before I don’t trust them at all.

I revisit my question: what is the value proposition of LinkedIn?  Is it that I can search for and find important contacts?  And hopefully, somehow, communicate with them?

Or is it all the other stuff (a la pinterest + facebook + twitter, etc.)?

If they keep moving their focus around, I go back to the primary value, and if that changes, then maybe I visit them a lot less often.

A la myspace….!