Phone chats with the MD of a major social network – Cliff Rosenberg – Linkedin

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It’s not every day that the Managing Director of a major social network gets in touch to set up a phone call with you. But that’s what happened to me a couple of weeks ago when Cliff Rosenberg, Managing Director for Linkedin South East Asia, Australia & New Zealand let my team know he was keen to chat with me.

I didn’t really know what to expect, or where the conversation would go, but Cliff was such an easy-going guy the conversation flowed freely. Cliff showed genuine interest in our business asking me first about how business was going, what our current focuses are, and what our future plans are.

I also made the most of the opportunity asking about Linkedin’s most recent roll outs and future plans, and I was glad I did, because Linkedin are doing some really cool stuff!

Cliff proudly shared that Linkedin has now reached 135 million members globally. Sure, it’s not the 901 million users that Facebook has globally, but considering that Linkedin is strictly a global network of professionals, and that 2 new members are being added to the global network every second, it’s still mind boggling growth levels and figures you’re dealing with.

To cope with the exponential growth, Cliff’s team, which is currently at 60 persons is expected to increase to 100 persons by the end of this year. Could be a good idea to go and follow Linkedin’s Company Page and click on the Careers Tab if you are in the market for a job in this field???

Personally I’ve been using Linkedin since 17 May 2007 (which means it’s my 5 year Linkedin ‘birthday’ this week – nice!) but as I mention in regular training sessions I run on the topic of Linkedin, my hunch that momentum has really been gaining in Australia in the past 2 years, was confirmed by Cliff who shared that the network has gone up from 1 million Australian users, to 3 million Australia users IN THE PAST TWO YEARS. No wonder there is a need for more staff!

With that 3 million users, Linkedin now represents 60% of working professionals in Australia.  In America, Linkedin is already the number 1 recruitment tool, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it heads that way Down Under too. Cliff and his team would certainly like to think so.

As if Australia and New Zealand wasn’t enough to handle, a Hong Kong office was opened just a few days before I spoke with Cliff and the iPad/android app had been launched the day before I spoke to him and was going gangbusters.

Personally I felt the release of an iPad/android app was long overdue, but better late than never as they say.

Cliff also let me know that Linkedin are in the process of rolling out the ability to post a status update on Linkedin’s company pages (different to a Linkedin Profile), with the ability to update all your followers, an individual or a group.

Linkedin plan to continue to develop the functionality of the Company Page which will be very welcome by the Linkedin community as it is currently somewhat restrictive. If you haven’t already got a Linkedin Company Page I strongly encourage you to establish one. See tour Linkedin training solutions here to find out how you can use Linkedin to its full capacity.

For those of you not aware, apart from listing your product range on a Company Page, you can also now list your services. We had a direct sale of 5 products from America the moment we listed our product range on Linkedin some time ago, so despite the fact its not ecommerce enabled, I’d encourage businesses to take the time to do this.

Probably the biggest take home from our half hour or so conversation was Cliff’s undying commitment to a simple five letter word – ‘focus’. Cliff and I agreed that in the fast moving internet industry there are opportunities GALORE!

But the trick in capitalizing on those opportunities is getting really clear on what it is you want to achieve, and focusing strictly on that. This includes saying no, and sometimes to exceptional business opportunities (a business lesson I am still trying to come to grips with).

In Linkedin’s case their focus is on their three main revenue streams namely:

  • Marketing Solutions
  • Recruitment Solutions
  • Subscriptions

There is loads of stuff Linkedin could choose to have a crack at and which they may do at some stage in the future. But for now they will continue expanding their Asia-Pacific empire. Thanks Cliff for the lovely chat! It was a pleasure!

Have you downloaded the Linkedin iPad or Android app? What do you think of it?

Did you watch the one hour Linkedin webinar? What did you think?

Do you currently have a Linkedin Company page or will you be going to set on up? Please share your comments below.

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