Thanks for the congratulatory email LinkedIn but so what?

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LinkedIn email

I received an email from LinkedIn on 7 February which congratulated me for having one of the top one percent most viewed LinkedIn profiles in 2012. After my initial excitement waned and I got to hear from a whole bunch of other people that they also received the same email, I started thinking about how important the message LinkedIn sent me really was.

Most people create a profile on LinkedIn for a specific reason and these generally revolve around getting employed, meeting new business partners and identifying new business opportunities for themselves or for the organisation they represent. Depending on an individual’s area of expertise or the products, services and solutions provided by the organisation that employs them, they are generally interested in connecting with companies in particular industries and relevant stakeholders within the organisation.

Based on the services, solutions, products and individual expertise provided by the organisation I represent, this is the message I would have loved to receive from LinkedIn.

David, congratulations! You have one of the top 1% most viewed LinkedIn profiles for 2012. Since LinkedIn has 200-million members globally, you are one of 2 million members attempting to get noticed, so to make it more useful to you, we have provided additional information that may add value to you.

Who viewed your profile?

Of the 3 500 people who viewed your profile in 2012, we have provided a breakdown by country, industry, job title and company name and what was viewed on your profile.

Who liked and shared your updates?

In addition, we have provided a list of all the persons who “liked” your content and shared your content with their connections, broken down by country, industry and job title.

If my focus is on content marketing this will help me tremendously to determine what subject matter we are producing is being viewed and by whom. This is also a great way to open doors at organisations and get the first meeting

Who commented on your LinkedIn group discussions?

We also know how important it is for you to know what interaction took place on the LinkedIn groups you manage, so we have sent you a breakdown who commented on discussions you started on your LinkedIn groups, broken down by country, industry and job title.

This will help me ascertain what discussions my members are interested in so I can plan on doing more in the future.

Who would you like to connect with?

We reviewed your connections, and based on the industry, job titles and country of the persons you are currently connected with, we have sent you a list of persons who you may be interested in connecting with.

This will help me connect with more of the right people within organisations who may be potentially interested in the content I am putting out there and the relevant solutions and services my organisation provides.

Conclusion

LinkedIn has all the information we need so why not share something meaningful with its members? I would quite happily pay for this kind of information because it shortens our sales cycle and we are able to contact a potential prospect knowing that they may be interested in specific subject matter.

LinkedIn has been focussed on providing a great service to recruiters for some time now and I believe they still weigh their loyalties in the favour of the recruiting companies. They should get some advice from some of the content marketing specialists out there and gear themselves to provide, what I believe can be an exceptional, value-adding service to B2B marketers.

Sending an arbitrary message telling me that my profile is one of 2-million others that has been viewed does not help me position my company’s thoughtware and people better. If I was looking for a job, I may get a little more excited but not much, because I have no idea who was looking at my profile, their industry, their company, their job title or their name.

LinkedIn, you developed your social network for professionals to connect and interact in a professional way, so please do not resort to cheap and nasty unprofessional communication in future. If you want to monetise your platform further, there are a load of value-adding services and information that you can provide that marketers and sales people would love to get their hands on.

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  • http://ivinviljoen.net/ Ivin Viljoen

    A lot of people asked the same question. What does that mean for my business and network.

  • http://twitter.com/Neilich Neil Bryant

    Actually from a CRM point of view, I wouldn’t be surprised if this wasn’t Linkedin’s single biggest sales day for converting from free to paid accounts. The mail was masterful.

  • http://twitter.com/DavidGrahamSA David Graham

    I would love to be a fly on the wall in their marketing department. Thanks for the comment Neil

  • http://twitter.com/DavidGrahamSA David Graham

    Nothing for us. Plenty for LinkedIn. I conducted a search this morning and the LinkedIn email created a LOT of buzz globally. A brilliant marketing ploy to have everyone talking about your product. Thank you for the feedback Ivin

  • Smallz

    Nice article! Linkedin needs to take a leaf out of Google’s book and provide more analytics on your profile for free. The try and make you pay for this and I think its a mistake. Not because the info is not valuable but because their competitors can offer it for free and undercut them. Because they hide it behind their premium offer I still do not know how good they really are. They should rather give this info to their users so they become the undisputed champs and lock in our trust. Right now they look like they are trying too hard to monetize our data. I can still find a job and hire talent without Linkedin but still using the web.

  • http://ivinviljoen.net/ Ivin Viljoen

    Kudo’s on the quick reply. I see you know the value of connecting with your readers.

  • http://twitter.com/DavidGrahamSA David Graham

    Very interesting! Thank you. I agree on the monetisation bit. Thanks for your comment

  • http://twitter.com/DavidGrahamSA David Graham

    I try my best Ivin :)

  • http://twitter.com/NadiaToffar Nadiberry

    I agree with David, this email added no value to its users.

  • http://twitter.com/DavidGrahamSA David Graham

    Thank you for your comment!

  • Chris Collacott

    Hi David,

    I got a similar email but for being in the top 10%… I have a way to go until I reach the elite circles you move in :)

    Whilst I agree with you entirely about lack on insights and analytics, it still gave me a positive response that my efforts are producing an effect. I haven’t pony’d up the cash to go premium but it has reinforced my use of LinkedIn and my brand perception of them.

    Even if sales didn’t spike, a couple of snazzy DM emails will have deepened their relationship with millions of account holders. Nice way to keep your database of 200 million popping for very little cost.

    Actually, thinking of the converse, does anyone know if they sent emails to the bottom 10% to try and get them to become more active?

  • wayne yoshida

    David – thanks for your thoughts. I received the same message, and thought, “I bet they sent this to all of their users. . . ” It’s just to tease us all with the amount of information they possess, based on our profiles and activity – and are holding it for ransom. But, alas, they need to generate revenue. . . . all the assorted advertisements is another indicator of this.

    I wish LI could have used their database to show us ads that are more relevant to us – I have no need for electronic cigarettes or a new smart phone. I am also not interested in playing lottery-type games and other such nonsense.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=647640806 Jon Severson

    Actually I’d disagree with everything above and then some. This was a huge back fire. 1% seems special only until you realize it means squat. It’s a false sense of accomplishment. In reality, over 2 million people qualified as part of that 1% when you do the math. And since it’s based solely on views….it’s of little worth.

    Everyone was excited at first…..you felt as though if you made the 1%, 5%, 10% you were part of an elite group. But then when you realized you were special….just like everyone else….it’s effect wore off.

    Now, had the metrics been based on influence based data (number of groups you own, size of network, number of actual recommendations vs the fake “endorsements”, activity, and number of views perhaps it would have been successful. But in the end….it was a dud.

  • ADedlow

    Surprise surprise, how many inactive members do they have, I asked myself, if I rate in the top 1% viewed? Mmmmm cynical me!

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