LinkedIn Customer ExperienceLinkedIn is, inarguably, the world’s most powerful platform for business professionals. So how did it come to be such a global powerhouse, and what lies behind the tremendous amount of brand loyalty it inspires? The answer was delivered during a case study presented at the Gartner Customer 360 Summit in San Diego, California, last week.

During a session titled, “Disrupting the Customer Journey: Blurring Organizational Lines in a Members-First World,” LinkedIn detailed its plans to disrupt and evolve the customer experience.

The mission of LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network, is to create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce. However, it began to realize that the organization didn’t fully embody its vision to connect every professional. Therefore, to make itself more productive and successful, LinkedIn took a number of steps to reimagine and revitalize its approach.

Andy Yasutake, Director of Technology Solutions and Operations for LinkedIn’s Global Customer Operations (GCO), explained how LinkedIn is blurring traditional organizational lines to truly embody the members-first culture it’s curating.

The first step was to examine customer expectations and find ways to fulfill them. This started by truly defining the profiles of LinkedIn customers, who typically fall under three categories. 

“The first is the job seeker,” Yasutake explained. “They use LinkedIn to make and leverage connections to find their dream job. The second is the user that is gainfully employed, but feeling uninspired by their current position. They too are looking for their dream job and to achieve greatness. The third group consists of users who are where they want to be professionally. They are inspired by what they do, and are looking to share their perspectives to aspire others to be great.”

LinkedIn then leveraged this data to provide the best tools possible for its customers’ career paths. LinkedIn Customer Engagement

In its infancy, LinkedIn was primarily known as an online resume bank. Subsequently, it drastically changed its reputation by modifying its infrastructure, and experienced explosive growth as a result. Following the execution of this disruption strategy five years ago, LinkedIn jumped from 30 million users in 2008, to 380 million in 2015.

This focus on expansion remains one of LinkedIn’s top priorities. Now, instead of just targeting knowledge workers, LinkedIn is looking to engage the entire global workforce, which would ultimately mean taking membership levels from 700 million, to a staggering 3.3 billion.

But, fulfilling this goal is one of the main challenges that the brand currently faces.

To meet this challenge, LinkedIn first changed its organizational structure to bring departments and processes together, and to rely on real customer feedback to disrupt the traditional LinkedIn experience.

And by listening to its members, LinkedIn gained some extremely valuable insight.

Most members, for example, felt they were receiving too many emails. LinkedIn also learned that, currently, over 50% of the site is used on mobile devices. And this was making it difficult to monetize success, which was once easier to do when the site was used primarily via desktop.

These insights opened up a tremendous opportunity for LinkedIn to being building the consistent and relevant experience that members wanted, while still funding success as a company.

After realizing that engagement is now on the customer’s terms, and through the impressive strength of its data analytics, LinkedIn was able to crack the code on how to leverage innovative and emerging technologies to meet the rising expectations of customers in a digital world.

So far, this approach seems to be working well for LinkedIn, which defines growth and success through four key pillars: Prevention, Deflection, Efficiency, and Adding Value

After all, “If you can’t measure it, how can you fix it?” Yasutake asked.

LinkedIn’s rich data enabled the company to come up with the innovative “disruption” framework that created the foundation to enhance the customer journey.

As LinkedIn continues to live out its mission to connect the world’s professionals, it continues to experience rapid growth. Because it realizes the significance of putting members first, and its disruptive insistence to continually modify its customer engagement strategy, the future will continue to shine brightly for LinkedIn.

About the Author: Mark Johnson

Mark is CEO & CMO of Loyalty360. He has significant experience in selling, designing and administering prepaid, loyalty/CRM programs, as well as data-driven marketing communication programs.

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