Social Media 4 Recruitment

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LinkedIn’s Vision for the Next 10 Years – A Round-Up

LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner recently delivered the LinkedIn 2014 Company Presentation; outlining growth, value propositions for both members and customers, their vision to create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce, and the development of the Economic Graph.

LinkedIn’s Mission Statement: “Connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful”.

Jeff cites “professionals” as the most important word in that mission statement.

Here are a few key growth stats:

  • They’ve grown from 32 million members at the end of 2008 to 277 million members at the end of 2013.
  • Page views have grown from 2 billion to 47 billion in the same time period.
  • Mobile traffic has grown from <2% to 41%
  • Revenue has grown from $79 million to $2,529 million

Core value proposition: Connect talent with opportunity at massive scale

Jeff reiterates that LinkedIn have a continued focus on placing their members first. They are focused in 3 areas:

Professional Identity:

The professional profile of record

The aim is for members to leverage LinkedIn to be able to connect, find or be found by other professionals. It all starts with the personal profile, which is increasingly replacing the CV. People are now updating their profile when they’re not looking for work because it reflects their professional personality. Profiles should not just reflect what they do, but represent them visually with rich media such as pictures, videos and presentations. Adding to your profile “at the click of a button” is key. Users could add certifications once completed and employers will be able to search for these kinds of qualifications through the recruiter platform.


Connecting all of the world’s professionals

600 million knowledge workers and students, or ‘pre-professionals’. They are going to be localising LinkedIn into simplified Chinese. There are 140 million professionals and students in China. Students represent a huge opportunity. Last year LinkedIn rolled out University profiles and are continuing to invest in tools to leverage LinkedIn for students. Reaching out to alumni is also key.


The definitive professional publishing platform 

  • Slideshare
  • Groups
  • Pulse
  • Influencers

These assets are generating over 80 million unique users per month, which ranks LinkedIn as one of the top business publishers on the internet. One of the key successes has been their Influencers programme, where experts can publish their thoughts and knowledge and be followed by members. On average, Influencer posts have generated over 30,000 views. LinkedIn have recently opened this up to more people. Now, every member of LinkedIn can share their expertise. These posts are also immediately integrated into the person’s profile as they hit publish.

For customers, LinkedIn transform the way they:

Hire: LinkedIn powers half of all the hires that their talent solutions customers are generating. LinkedIn have emerged as the leading platform for passive candidate recruiting at scale. They want to invest in the volume of jobs and the ability to match the right member to the right job at the right time.

Market: LinkedIn want to be the most effective way for marketers to engage with professionals. Marketing solutions customers are able to integrate content on a paid basis directly into the home page news stream. Quality of content is very important. 70% of revenue from sponsored updates is from mobile.

Sell: LinkedIn want to be there at the start of every sales opportunity. It’s still early days, but they want to emerge as a leader in social selling. There are 3 key focus points here: Find, Connect and Engage.

Another key theme for LinkedIn in Mobile. They have a multi-app strategy. In 2014 they expect to reach their “mobile moment”, where over half of all of their traffic will be coming through mobile.

Thinking bigger: The next decade:

LinkedIn’s vision: “Create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce”

LinkedIn are really looking to make this happen in 3 key areas:

  1. Find work
  2. Realise your dream job
  3. Be great at what you do

Key challenges:

  • The youth unemployment rate in Europe is 23%.
  • There are 4 million available jobs in the US.
  • China want 250 million people to transition from rural China to cities by 2025 to create a thriving middle class. This would be the largest such migration of human capital in the history of civilisation.

The Economic Graph:

LinkedIn want to develop the world’s first economic graph. To digitally represent and map the global economy.

  • To create a digital profile for every member of the global workforce
  • To create a digital profile for every company in the world
  • To have a digital representation of every job offered by these companies
  • To have a digital representation of every skill required to obtain these jobs
  • To have a presence for every higher education organisation and learning and development tool that would enable members to obtain those skills
  • To overlay the professionally relevant knowledge for every one of those individual members, companies and universities to the extent that they want to share it
  • To then step back and allow capital – intellectual, working and human – to flow to where it can best be leveraged and in doing so, transform the global economy.

The building blocks:

  • 277 million members
  • 3.5 million active company profiles
  • 300 thousand jobs
  • 3 billion endorsements
  • 24 thousand schools and universities
  • Billions of network updates on a weekly basis

The only thing standing between LinkedIn and the realisation of this economic graph is scale, which will simply require time.

Watch the video: LinkedIn’s Vision for the Next 10 Years


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The question of Google Plus

So Google Plus is still relatively new to a lot of people. Whilst it launched in 2011 and there was a lot of buzz around it, a lot of people still have no idea what it is, how it works, or whether it’s right for them.

Here’s what we know:

  • Google+ has been proven to boost SEO ranking.
  • It has over 1 billion users, of which 359 million are active.
  • The 45-54 year old bracket has increased it usage 56% since 2012.
  • Rich media (images, videos, etc) work really well.
  • Personalised and vanity URLs are being rolled out
  • Google+ will automatically generate the top three hashtags for a post
  • Engineers and tech users are widely represented
  • It’s a professional landscape, geared toward connecting businesses and professionals
  • It’s integrated with Google services (Gmail, Google Docs, etc)

On Google+, you can:

  • Create a personal account
  • Create a page
  • Add people to circles based on specific groups or topics
  • Join Hangouts to conduct chats, Q&As or recorded conferences
  • Join Communities to discuss relevant topics with like-minded people
  • Follow Pages
  • Mention people
  • Format posts with underlining, italics or bold font
  • Edit or delete after posting
  • Disable comments and make posts ‘exclusive’ or ‘private’
  • Post content to specific circles of people
  • Post longer content than on other social media channels
  • Upload photos using drag-and-drop
  • Embed posts directly onto websites or blogs

So why can Google+ work for recruitment?

  • Recruiters can use circles to categorise candidates, sending out specific jobs and targeted content to the right audience. Segmentation reduces unwanted posts in your feed. These circles can become talent pipelines, or talent pools.
  • It’s great for developing a connection network.
  • The focus on rich media is perfect for visual job specs or memes.
  • The keyword and SEO benefits are ideal for job searches.
  • Hangouts can be used to host chats or Q&As.
  • Authorship lets you as an author stand out against your content, giving you authority and authorship. By configuring Google so that your image appears next to your content, recruiters can show their expertise.
  • A lot of Google+ profiles include contact information, which LinkedIn doesn’t.
  • You can use hashtags to group content and make it searchable

And here’s a question, do you say ‘GooglePlus’, or ‘Google+’?

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Achievement Unlocked: Gamification

I have a pretty short commute to work in the mornings, about 10 minutes on the train, which gives me plenty of time to scan The Metro on my way in. This morning, I came across an interesting article on Gamification, which is an ever-increasing aspect of social media.

A lot of people grew up with games, and with the growth of personal technology, the possibilities are becoming more interesting. Our lives are already full of rules, strategies and ‘keeping score’. Now employers are using league tables, reward systems and achievement milestones to engage with customers and staff and to encourage a little more friendly competition. Gamification makes every day tasks more fun and keeps people motivated.

The opportunity for recruitment is exciting, giving candidates the chance to compete, achieve and express themselves and giving hiring managers a bit more information about the candidates who take part.

Marriott Hotels have launched a mobile app that makes candidates virtually perform hotel service industry tasks, providing insight into how candidates would approach real work. This also helps to eliminate applicants lacking the patience or aptitude for the job.

KPMG’s ‘Race the World in 80 Days’ game asks candidates to fly a balloon around the world in the quickest time, having completed 10 challenges along the way. Of the 4,548 games played, 110 were completed and 136 graduate applications were made.

Did you know?

The term gamification, which is basically the introduction of game-like processes to everyday situations, was coined in 2002 by British programmer Nick Pelling.

79% of workers say they want their employer to try out new approaches.

More than 70% of the world’s largest 2,000 companies are expected to have used gamification by the end of this year.

The gamification market is expected to be worth £3.3 billion by 2018.

Here’s a link to the online article which has a nice little infographic full of stats from IBM.

Another really interesting article on the subject is Life is a game. This is your strategy guide.

So how can we use gamification more?

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Content Discovery: #NewKlout

“Content Discovery” is sweeping the social networks, with Facebook recently releasing the Paper app (a ‘re-imagining of the News Feed), and LinkedIn using Pulse to share content. Now Klout have launched #NewKlout!

Whilst Klout is well known for scoring  influence on social media, #NewKlout aims to raise your influence score by highlighting interesting content for you to share, tailored to what “will strike a chord with your unique set of friends, fans, and followers”.

You can share this content through Klout, which will be measured by your Klout score rising and falling. You can add and remove content topics, to tailor the types of things you’ll see.


Find out more about #NewKlout here:

I’m currently experimenting with sharing content through Klout, as it allows you to create, schedule and measure the impact.

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What’s in store for social media in 2014?

It’s a New Year and of course everyone is getting in their predictions for what’s going to be big in 2014. I’ve taken a look and compiled a list of some that caught my eye.

  • Employee Brand Ambassadors: Each employee has influence in their own social network, so the more employees who can help share the company’s social media messages, the broader the reach a company can achieve in social media.
  • The rise of social storytelling: Shifting focus from ‘telling’ to highlighting their ‘story’.
  • Visual content will continue to dominate: Creative and fresh ways of incorporating visual content will be highly important this year.
  • New channels to consider: SnapChat, Instagram, Tumblr, Vine, YouTube. These may not be new, but interest in them is certainly peaking.
  • A growing importance of mobile strategy: It’s not enough to have a mobile friendly website, we need to think about how content strategy works with mobile – shorter pieces might work well here.
  • Google+ will continue to rise: It will become a serious threat to other networks.
  • Focus on Advertising: Native Advertising, Paid Advertising and sponsorship, Social media as an ‘Advertorial’. Monetization is big news and companies are looking to pay more for social media advertising.

What else do you think is going to happen in social media in 2014, and how can we utilise this to deliver the best service?


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Google has announced some updated features for Google+ that will improve Hangouts, photos and videos and aim to “take a lot of the work out of messaging, video calling and photo editing”.


  • Location sharing and SMS support for Android: send a map of your current location and use SMS rather than switching between apps.
  • Ability to schedule Hangouts On Air and promote them with a dedicated watch page. Users can also moderate conversations whilst live through Control Room.
  • Full-screen video across mobile and desktop.

Photo and Video

  • Full size backups and background sync so users can back up photos as they take them.
  • With smart searching, Google+ will be able to better recognise search terms for objects within images so users can search for images with ease.
  • Auto Enhance improves each photo you add to Google+.
  • Google+’s “Auto Awesome” photo editing tool includes:
    – Action, which creates images with a strobe effect.
    – Eraser, which can take a sequence of photos and erase blurry objects, creating a cleaner image.
    – Movie, which automatically produces highlight reels from your photos and videos, complete with effects, transitions and an audio soundtrack.

Google have said “With 540 million people active across Google each month, 300 million people active in just the stream and more than 1.5 billion photos uploaded every week, the Google+ community is growing faster than we ever could have imagined. Today’s updates are our way of saying “thank you”—we hope they save you time, and help you share your story.”

Read their blog here.