LinkedIn launched in 2002 and reached 4.2 million members after just introducing public profiles in 2004. The platform went global in 2008 and quadrupled its users.
There are more than 610 million users today, in 200 countries, with over 303 active members; 40% of whom visit the site every day! The platform is closing in on Instagram (1 billion users) and Facebook (2.3 billion users). Beyond merely a database of resumes, LinkedIn now has content, influencers and networking opportunities.
More than 100,000 new articles are published weekly, many from worldwide brands written by senior executives. LinkedIn is now starting to dominate digital marketing with content-driven growth since it is a B2B platform, rather than a more personal social media network. LinkedIn is now responsible for 80% of B2B leads from social media.
For recruiters and job seekers the platform is a way to self-promote – it is creating influencers - serious, professional, intellectual influencers – rather than the “fluff” we might see on Instagram!
What does LinkedIn do?
The network collects data such as location, educational history, professional history and interests. Users also provide recommendations, blog posts, comments, likes and follows, along with endorsements of businesses, products and people along with their CVs. So there is also serious engagement along with the data - a free social network connecting talent and opportunities.
Using influencers to sell products is now a ten-year-old marketing story. But the idea of the professional influencer still has a long way to go.
So disruptive is LinkedIn that recruiters have forever changed the way they headhunt, screen and hire employees. Businesses can use LinkedIn groups to expand their networks and look for talent outside traditional sectors.
Companies can also be promoted to prospective talent, which could reduce recruitment costs by having employees come directly to an organisation whose culture and profile they admire. Such promotion also works from the B2B perspective - making contacts with potential dealmakers.
There are also paid LinkedIn programs; such as premium membership with deeper search results, messaging capabilities and solutions such as job postings. A recruiter app is also available with advanced search filters, analytics and full profiles.
Limitations with LinkedIn
The limitation is that, while casting a wide and international net, not every potential employee is on the platform. Utilising just one platform for recruitment, networking and company promotion is also restrictive as it neither comprises all talent nor all opportunities.
Only twenty million of China’s 1 billion-strong labour force - including 400 million ultra-connected millennials – are registered on LinkedIn. That is 2%, as opposed to Australia’s 55% usage and the USA’s staggering 80%! WeChat is a much more effective platform to connect with future employees and alumni in China. This is a reminder that no platform should be standalone.
How SBA Business can help
If you are interested in a LinkedIn promotion, give SBA Business a call. We can provide outsourced marketing and recruitment teams for whatever your needs.