The Social Network for Content Marketers

When Microsoft announced it was acquiring LinkedIn for $26 billion last December, the tech world responded with a collective “Huh?”

Why did the enterprise software giant want LinkedIn so badly, and why was it willing to pay so much? Did Microsoft have a secret plan to turn the social network for business professionals, which lost $166 million in 2015, into a moneymaker? Or did it want to embed LinkedIn’s user data into its Dynamics 365 CRM platform and other Office software?

Nine months after Microsoft closed the deal, many of those questions remain unanswered. LinkedIn has only just begun to be integrated into Microsoft products; the LinkedIn business unit continues to cost more than it brings in.
In the meantime, though, something unexpected has been happening. LinkedIn has become more than just a place to park one’s digital resume; it has established itself as an essential destination for marketers looking to reach an executive audience.

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Image Credit: Getty Images

What It Means:

Not surprisingly, LinkedIn dominates business-to-business digital marketing, says Will McInnes, chief marketing officer for Brandwatch.

“LinkedIn is the Facebook for b-to-b marketers,” says McInnes. “If you are an Apple, a Cisco or an IBM, LinkedIn is a great place to market your products.”