LinkedIn is testing sponsored posts from a select set of corporate partners and expects to roll them out for all users in 2013, executives said in a call with analysts following the release of the company’s 2012 financials.
LinkedIn is allowing marketers, including GE, Xerox and BlackBerry, to re-issue research and other sponsored content in status updates that are served to a select group of their followers. The advertising model, similar to Facebook’s Sponsored Posts, is currently being tested only for desktop users.
LinkedIn, unlike other prominent tech companies including Facebook, Zynga and Groupon, has shown solid financial results since its IPO 18 months ago. Its revenue in the fourth quarter of 2012 was up 81 percent from the last quarter of 2011.
The results “have substantially exceeded our own expectations,” said Steve Sordello, the company’s CFO. Sordello and CEO Jeff Weiner attributed to changes to the website over 2012, which make it more useful for sharing content.
The company’s staff grew nearly 40 percent in 2012 to 3,500 employees, and executives said they expect to add another 1,300 staffers in 2013, primarily in sales research and development.