• The huge amount of data that is
available about LinkedIn users is the
sites hidden asset
• Many businesses have hidden assets
that could create a whole new stream
• Often these opportunities are found
amongst the customers that you
already have not the ones that you
want to acquire1
• In 2013 LinkedIn decided to remove
its Answers section from the site.
• This was a well known part of the site
where users could pose and answer
each others question.
• While the answers section of the site
was well known it was not well used
• LinkedIn removed the function rather
than allow it to distract them from
their core focus.
• One of Reid Hoffman’s guiding
philosophies when looking for
business opportunities is to go big.
• As he has noted whether you are
working on a small business or a big
business you still have to do roughly
the same amount of work so you may
as well go for the biggest
• LinkedIn sought to dominate the
online networking space for business
professionals and it has managed to
• To have a successful social
networking LinkedIn needed to have
a deeper level of engagement with its
• To achieve this it added functions
which would draw users back on a
• To do this it made the site more
social and content driven by adding
in functions such as LinkedIn groups.4
• CEO LinkedIn Hoffman has coined a
phrase which he calls being “flexibly
• The digital world that LinkedIn
operates in, changes so rapidly that
being too fixed in your goals does not
provide the flexibility to succeed.
• At the same time if you don’t have a
sense of where you are going and
you aren’t persistent then you won’t
achieve much either.5
• Reid Hoffman looks for opportunities
to disrupt existing industries.
• He is not looking to simply improve a
business or product slightly. Instead
he wants to completely disrupt the
• By doing so he is able to become a
market leader in this space.
• LinkedIn achieved exactly that by
becoming a whole new way to
manage your professional network
and your career.6
• The first social networking sites such
as Friendster and MySpace focused
on appearing sexy and fun.
• LinkedIn on the other hand was
entering a traditionally boring space.
• However as we have seen LinkedIn is
one of the only social networking
sites that has not only survived but
has even thrived.
• Sometimes the best opportunities
are not with those that on the
outside look the most interesting.7
• In the early days of social networking,
it was believed that people would
use them primarily for activities such
• However that presented a problem
because users would either find
someone and leave the network or
they would become frustrated and
give up. The model guaranteed a high
churn rate in users.
• LinkedIn instead focused on a model
which would allow them to retain its
users for the long term.8
• Hoffman perceives the idea of good
luck a little differently to many
• When most people think of good luck
it is something going well for them or
their business succeeding.
• Hoffman instead says that good luck
is being presented with an excellent
opportunity that you can then
pursue. That opportunity is the good
luck but it is still up to you to do
something with it.9
• Itwas Reid Hoffman’s own network
that played a crucial role in the
success of LinkedIn.
• As part of the “PayPal Mafia” he had
access to capital and talent that
would allow LinkedIn to capture the
entire online business networking
• Whether you’re just starting out as
an entrepreneur or you have a few
wins under your belt, your network
will be invaluable to your success.10