With the backing of Microsoft, LinkedIn has big plans to increase its effectiveness for marketers in 2017. Russ Glass, LinkedIn Marketing Solutions' Head of Products, was interviewed by LinkedIn Account Executive at Vivek Venugopal:
Venugopal: What about LinkedIn has kept you excited about being here? What gets you up in the morning and into work everyday?
Glass: I think LinkedIn Marketing Solutions specifically. It's also very exciting because our mission is to be the most effective platform for marketers to reach professionals. It's one of those issues you can actually accomplish. We've got this global network of professionals, this incredible platform that they come to on a frequent basis, that has great content and great information.
We have an opportunity now to take all of those assets and put great capabilities around it for marketers to be successful. Every day we are a little better than we were the day before and I think we are going to continue to see that kind of growth.
Venugopal: Can you tell us a little bit about what marketers can expect to see out of the LMS platform in 2017 and talk a little bit about the Microsoft acquisition and how that might impact the roadmap?
Glass: I could talk a long time about what we're doing next year and all the opportunities with Microsoft, but maybe I'll focus on the most important stuff, the stuff I'm most excited about. The first half of 2017 we will launch more product than the entirety of 2016.
We're focused on a couple of key areas, the first of which is data. How do we allow marketers to bring their own data to LinkedIn so that they are targeting audiences more effectively and then combine that with LinkedIn datasets in order to do things you just can't do on any other platform? Such as bring their own email data, bring their own account lists, connect with their CRM systems, connect with their marketing automation systems and use website pixels so they can retarget visitors on the LinkedIn platform. Then layer LinkedIn's unique understanding of a professional and who they are in their business life so that you can get in front of exactly the right audiences and you can put content in front of exactly right audiences.
The second big area is reporting and analytics. We have a ton of analytics and reporting efforts that we're going to start rolling out early next year including website audience analytics and conversion tracking, which we started to roll out and will continue to iterate on.
The third big area is return on investment. How do we help marketers, particularly lead-gen marketers, that are trying to convert our members into the buyer's or download case studies or register for events. How do we let them do that more effectively? We're launching products like our lead-gen form product where without leaving LinkedIn and without having to go to a landing page a user can submit their LinkedIn profile information to a marketer. It goes right into their CRM system and right into their marketing automation system. It's an incredible product particularly for the B2B marketer.