Thoughts & Trends

Leaked: Here’s How LinkedIn Plans To Have A New Billion-Dollar Business In 3 Years

LinkedIn — six components to a comprehensive B2B platform:
  1. Target — find new prospects and match existing prospects
  2. Nurture — engage prospects at the right place and right time, with the right content
  3. Capture — obtain lead information from interested prospects in a frictionless way
  4. Prioritize — prioritize accounts for outreach (lead scoring)
  5. Connect — find connections at target accounts and gain unique insights to help reach them
  6. Measure — track and quantify impact to understand performance and inform decision-making

What’s LinkedIn’s thinking behind the Bizo acquisition?

Bizo brings the ability to “target” off of LinkedIn, as well as “nurture” through Multi-Channel Nurturing, and “measure” through advanced measurement capabilities. They also bring a talented team with deep marketing technology knowledge experience and a strong cultural fit ….to deliver on our B2B vision.

Key agenda for LinkedIn post Bizo acquisition:

  • Enhance LinkedIn Retargeting: will now allow marketers to retarget their website visitors with Sponsored Updates

Who are Bizo’s Key Competitors and how does the acquisition affect the competitive landscape?

for Bizo’s BMS product, competitors include retargeting vendors (e.g. RocketFuel and AdRoll) that focus on display advertising and sponsored content retargeting. Bizo’s BMN product has far less competition as there aren’t many notable companies that provide prospect nurturing across email, display and social.

Further reading:

What LinkedIn’s marketing prospects look like after its Bizo buy

Can LinkedIn pull it off?

LinkedIn’s marketing solutions revenue was $360 million in 2013, and was weighted towards ads and content marketing that complement LinkedIn’s main business of recruiting and career management. Ads for conferences, recruiting, and continuing education mix with consumer electronics and luxury goods.

So let’s call it a stretch goal that depends on LinkedIn pulling off the following:

  • Successfully integrating Bizo technologies and services, initially across display advertising, content marketing, email, and mobile. If Bizo – which was already one of the few companies with access to LinkedIn’s advertising API – had been doing this already, it would have cost more than $175 million. But with acquisition will come focus.
  • Using Bizo’s publisher network to target and re-target desirable customers when they’re not on LinkedIn property. LinkedIn was doing this on a small scale on its own, but should do better with a network.
  • Increasing the value of LinkedIn’s own inventory through similar re-targeting and “nurturing.” Facebook is successfully doing that with its exchange and third-party data integration; there’s no reason to think LinkedIn can’t do so.
  • Adding to its portfolio of marketing offerings. LinkedIn would eventually try to create a marketplace for its users to sell things – other than jobs – to each other. LinkedIn has the right members, authenticated identity critical for business transactions, and a budding platform for reputation and authority ranking. B2B professional services would be a great place to start.

From the Atlantic: Advertising-based business models are the “original sin” of the internet:

Facebook makes a vastly more sophisticated version of that argument, and faces problems much like those we faced almost two decades ago. Targeting to intent (as Google’s search ads do) works well, while targeting to demographics, psychographics or stated interests (as Facebook does) works marginally better than not targeting at all.
Demonstrating that you’re going to target more and better than Facebook requires moving deeper into the world of surveillance — tracking users’ mobile devices as they move through the physical world, assembling more complex user profiles by trading information between data brokers.
Once we’ve assumed that advertising is the default model to support the Internet, the next step is obvious: We need more data so we can make our targeted ads appear to be more effective. “We’re addicted to ‘big data’ not because it’s effective now, but because we need it to tell better stories.” So we build businesses that promise investors that advertising will be more invasive, ubiquitous, and targeted and that we will collect more data about our users and their behavior.

Adtech:

Predictive Leadscoring:
http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20140813005218/en/Infer-Grows-Predictive-Scoring-Customer-Base-150#.U_D5OEiAIqg

Lead scoring:
http://venturebeat.com/2014/03/05/salesfusion-launches-first-ever-predictive-lead-scoring-inside-a-marketing-automation-system/