“We're starting to define from an algorithmic perspective how people are engaging and the quality signals of engagement,” said Price. “We can also track their content marketing performance and score them against their peers.”
Two months ago, LinkedIn launched 'trending content' in Europe, a tool that reads data from the million and a half share buttons LinkedIn has across publisher websites. “We can tell AXA financial which content and narrative and topic is trending with which type of job and which type of market.”
According to Price, LinkedIn's marketing solutions business has been growing swiftly thanks to growth in mobile and content. Last year the company posted 36 per cent year-on-year growth in the final quarter in marketing solutions. Part of that growth is due to the launch of sponsored updates, a native advertising feed for mobile that has registered 19 per cent growth in the first quarter of the year.
“After years and years of 'this is the year of mobile' it's finally starting to monetise,” Price said. “We feel we've found the sweet spot for what LinkedIn is when it comes to marketing.”
What are the best practices for targeted content?
We think that the best content is whatever is useful for that member. The difference between traditional publishing from this platform (LinkedIn) is you can really target your sponsored posts. If you want to, you can publish and target only CEOs in Western Europe and craft that content from an understanding of what they're speaking about and posting.
How does the LinkedIn influencer programme tie into marketing solutions?
The influencer progrmme really has nothing directly to do with marketing solutions. It's an editorial team. They work globally to find 500 business luminaries to post original content on LinkedIn. It's changing in a couple of ways. Those 500 users are constantly being refreshed based on the people who engage with them. It's quite a discussion, who gets on that list.
But what the programme does for us is it makes LinkedIn a go-to hub for content. Beyond the programme we've started opening up the opportunity to post. Let's take a company like AXA financial, there could be many thought leaders there with insights into insurance and finance that is really important for people to learn from. Who's to say they shouldn't eventually be an influencer? We've started opening up to as many people as possible with an aim to granting everyone access by the end of the year.
Can you share a case study for a brand you think has used LinkedIn's marketing solutions capabilities well?
Microsoft has done work with us globally in lots of markets, especially with regards to IT decision-makers with an eye to increasing the penetration of some of their products. For one campaign, they built a custom app that delivered a personal experience for these IT professional that would deliver the information on Microsoft's products they were most likely to want. They sent a link to this app on LinkedIn to target these IT professionals. We had a hand in working with them on the data needed to understand what link went to which person.