Image credit: LinkedIn
What is LinkedIn Influencers?
LinkedIn Influencers is a fresh program that was introduced to LinkedIn in 2013. It essentially consists of conversations initiated by a select few holding influential positions in their respective fields. ‘Influencers’ contributing to these conversations include, for instance, Barack Obama, Bill Gates, Michael Bloomberg, Richard Branson, and other leaders and CEOs from iconic companies and institutions in many different fields, from eBay to JP Morgan Chase to Burberry.
What are the conversations about?
The conversations center on the leaders’ careers and personal lives. These thus include talking about daily activities, giving general tips for achieving success in business, providing specific business insight and initiating controversial discussions affecting professionals in general, among other topics. What has been the response by users so far? The program has had quite a successful start by prompting increased engagement by LinkedIn users, who have been turning to the site more frequently to follow these conversations and engage directly with the worldwide leaders initiating them. At the time of writing, LinkedIn Influencers has more than 300 leaders contributing to the program, all sharing regular feeds with the LinkedIn community. Users can also ‘like’ a comment made by an Influencer, as well as cite another member of LinkedIn to call that person into the conversation. The executive editor of LinkedIn, Daniel Roth, said that LinkedIn Influencers was transforming user engagement. During the first quarter of 2013, he reported, 63% more pages were viewed on the site compared to the same time last year. The initiative is thus proving to be a successful new tool in attracting more interest to LinkedIn by the professional community and in encouraging users to spend more time on the social media platform.
What has been the response by CEOs so far?
The LinkedIn Influencers initiative has not only provided a boost in user engagement, but has also attracted more interest from CEOs themselves. The program is presenting an easier and more efficient way for CEOs to connect, firstly, with other CEOs, secondly, with other businesspeople in the same industry, and thirdly, with a larger pool of international business professionals. Daniel Roth said: ‘we have a long list of C.E.O.’s who are asking to get in.’ Just like being on an exclusive guest list, being part of the LinkedIn Influencers program is becoming like a prestigious status to hold. Glenn Kelman, the chief executive of online real estate platform Redfin, told the New York Times ‘[…] if you want people to know about your company you have to be there. It is just a new competitive weapon.’ Thus, the LinkedIn Influencers program is proving to be a successful tool for the social media site in attracting more interest from both the general professional community and the top leaders of world organizations.