LinkedIn’s $90 million purchase of the newsreader app Pulse is just the latest of many recent changes at the site. The move is designed to turn the site from a resume repository to a full-fledged content platform.
Deep Nishar, LinkedIn senior vice president of product and user experience, announced the move on the site Thursday, praising Pulse founders Ankit Gupta and Akshay Kothari and giving some insight on LinkedIn’s plans for the mobile news aggregator.
We believe LinkedIn can be the definitive professional publishing platform – where all professionals come to consume content and where publishers come to share their content. Millions of professionals are already starting their day on LinkedIn to glean the professional insights and knowledge they need to make them great at their jobs. We believe we can help all professionals make smarter and more informed business decisions leveraging all the great business knowledge flowing through LinkedIn in the form of news, Influencer posts, industry updates, discussions, comments and more.
Pulse is a perfect complement to this vision. Pulse’s core value proposition is to help foster informed discussions that spark the decisions shaping the world around us through news and information. This shared view that the power of professional information and knowledge can transform lives and the world makes LinkedIn and Pulse a particularly great fit. We couldn’t be more thrilled to be working side by side with the Pulse team to create new and better ways to help professionals contribute to and leverage this collective body of business knowledge to help them be great at what they do and from wherever they work.
AllThingsD.com’s Mike Isaac noted that this is the latest in a string of changes that are pursuing LinkedIn’s goal of increasing user engagement.
The company launched its “Influencer” program late last year, essentially asking big names in business, entertainment and politics to write original think pieces that users can read on the site. And, in Twitter-esque fashion, users are able to “follow” those influencers across the site, so that only the content users want will appear inside their respective feeds. (Not surprisingly, the move came only months after Twitter cut off LinkedIn tweet syndication, which provided LinkedIn with most of the content flowing through the system up until that point.)
And of course, let’s not forget LinkedIn Today, the company’s news aggregation service which also brings users tons of fresh stories on the regular.
That increase in engagement could add to the site’s potential advertising revenue. AllThingD.com’s Kara Swisher reported on March 11 that LinkedIn was in talks to buy Pulse, joining interested companies like Microsoft and Yahoo. Swisher said the move to purchase Pulse “makes sense.”
LinkedIn also recently launched its “People You May Want to Hire” feature. Forbes’ George Anders says:
LinkedIn’s new algorithms could help conscientious recruiters find promising but non-obvious candidates, whose personal profiles closely match previous winning candidates in ways that human talent scouts might not see at first. That’s the upside. You can bet that LinkedIn will be talking about this prospect in detailed conversations with corporate users of its high-end Recruiter service, where “People You May Want to Hire” will be found.
Pessimistic scenarios are possible, too. Listless recruiters could use the “refresh” button as a lazy way to assemble a candidate pool without getting to know anyone. Odds are that talent-spotting algorithms, like any new form of technology, will be as beneficial or vexing as the person who happens to be using them at the time.