"It's a smart if probably inevitable move: LinkedIn is leveraging its deep base of professional users and resumes to roll out a new marketplace for freelance and contract professionals. ...this is an excellent example of how to generate multiple revenue streams from distinct markets off a single platform."
That comes from the excellent weekly blog of Russell Perkins (pictured), founder and managing director of InfoCommerce, and one of the industry's go-to people on everything data. LinkedIn's move comes at an interesting time for SIPA members for several reasons:
- LinkedIn has proven to be a successful marketing tool for B2B publishers. In a webinar last month—archived like all SIPA webinars for members on our site—Bob Coleman advised, "When I create my LinkedIn profile, I'm not putting up that I'm editor of The Coleman Report—I'm an author and expert of SBA. In the profile section, I'm a keynote speaker—I got a speaking gig that way. Put the specific duties you want to be known for." (Tomorrow there is a SIPA webinar on The World's Best-Kept Copywriting Secrets featuring ace copywriter and member Bob Bly.)
- The new 2016-2017 edition of the SIPA Membership Directory is now available to members on our website. You will find useful information about members, including company descriptions, key contact information, and preferred service providers. Find contacts you want to connect with one-on-one, potential partners and solution providers.
- Many SIPA members outsource work. There was an excellent discussion recently on the SIPA Forum about where to find good proofreaders. (If you want to join the SIPA Discussion Forum, contact Marija Milivojevic at email@example.com.) Similar threads have taken place recently about finding graphic designers, broker recomendations, email and list cleaning services.
- The decision whether to outsource work or keep it in-house remains quite relevant. Marcus Witte (pictured), VP, integrated marketing & demand generation, for SIIA member SourceMedia, said last week that there are many advantages to keeping jobs in-house when possible: being more nimble, speed to market, knowledge of the product, and better quality and revision control. But he also talked about "one of the most dangerous words in our industry: yes. If you do everything, your team becomes a doormat," Witte said. "It's really hard to say no [and to hear] 'you're not supporting us.' But the reality is we're B2B; we don't have the resources of an agency.
- It's also nice to control your own destiny, Witte said. "You know your brand, timelines, budget, what's being presented and how it's being pitched. You also have to have a certain nimbleness where staff from one area can jump in to help staff from another." But, he added, you have to be completely honest with yourself as an organization, if you can't fully commit to the task.
- The importance of multiple revenue streams for publishers has never been greater. The upcoming Best Practices Series event—New Secrets of Successful Events and Webinars, April 7 in Boston—features a full-day lineup of speakers focused on different event models that are bringing in revenue for publishers. I wrote last week about the potential of customization for segmented groups. In the above-mentioned webinar on LinkedIn marketing, co-presenter Jaclyn Baldovin, online content manager at Business Management Daily, talked about the power of LinkedIn to generate leads and engagement and thus build your groups. She suggested creating showcase pages as your sub-brands and then tying those sub-brands back to the main company. "We want to tie our sub-brands back to Business Management Daily," she said.
Added Perkins in his blog post, "Keep an eye on how LinkedIn evolves this new service: they've shown themselves to be pretty sure-footed thus far in the professional connections space."