LinkedIn or bust? That might explain the view of many Australians as get in on the world’s largest professional networking group at a furious pace.
Between March and October, one million Australians signed up for LinkedIn accounts, swelling the country’s LinkedIn population to five million – over a third of the voting population.
This means an Australia joined LinkedIn every three minutes or so. Over the past five years, Australian membership on LinkedIn has grown nearly 10-fold – from 540,000 in 2008.
“This is yet another important milestone, illustrating that Australians really understand the potential economic opportunities that they can create by leveraging online professional networks,” said Clifford Rosenberg, Managing Director for LinkedIn Australia, New Zealand and Southeast Asia. “We are also seeing a strong uptake from our Australian members leveraging LinkedIn as a professional content platform to discover and share insights, locally in Australia and globally as well.”
Students the fastest-growing segment
Among Australian companies, Telstra tops in LinkedIn memberships, followed by National Australia Bank, Commonwealth Bank, ANZ and Westpac. Among industries, IT and Services is an unsurprising topper but Construction surprises by being second, with Financial Services, Education Management and Hospital & Health Care following in that order.
The student market is LinkedIn’s fastest-growing segment, as recent university graduates realise the growing importance of professional networking as much as LinkedIn’s direct role in landing them good jobs. Monash University tops in memberships, followed by RMIT, University of New South Wales, University of Sydney and University of Melbourne. The networking firm recently launched a special LinkedIn University Pages to further target the student population of 30 million at the nation’s universities.
Innovation, value-add are key
Such product innovation has been important to LinkedIn’s growing popularity, bringing great value to members. Its Influencer program, for example, was launched last year. Today, it has over 300 global leaders who engage with millions of professionals. The program has five Australia-based influencers – Qantas CEO Alan Joyce, ANZ’s Mike Smith, Creel Price, founder of Entreprenaissance Movement, Freelancer.com CEO Matt Barrie and RedBalloon’s Naomi Simson.
Another popular program is LinkedIn’s talent and marketing solutions and a third is Sponsored Updates.
“We are seeing a growing, diverse portfolio of Australian companies taking notice of the increasingly massive data set LinkedIn provides and using it to transform the way they hire talent, market their brand and sell more effectively,” said Rosenberg.
LinkedIn has 259 million members worldwide.