This week LinkedIn announced that they had reached 500M members.  This milestone is very much in line with the growth rate prior to their acquisition by Microsoft, and for the moment should allay concerns that the acquisition would derail LinkedIn.

While Facebook has far more members, the size of their network offers little benefit to individual members.  By contrast, every LinkedIn contact I add or is added by someone in my network gives me better visibility into the overall LinkedIn network.  Even relatively average LinkedIn members can have access to a network of millions of third order connections.  The power of the “network effect” means that for the foreseeable future LinkedIn will extremely hard to disrupt.

What does all of this mean to your job search and/or personal brand?  The answer is simple:  more is better when it comes to LinkedIn networks.  A larger network makes you more visible, while at the same time giving you better visibility into the network.  LinkedIn conveniently provides a free tool to expand your network with a pick-list generated from your email contacts.  What are you waiting for?


How good is your LinkedIn Profile?
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