LinkedIn Goes to China

ImageLinkedIn has successfully set up its China operations last month. Now LinkedIn becomes the only major American social network with a significant presence in China. Unlike Google, Facebook and Twitter that are all blocked by Chinese government, LinkedIn has already generated four million users. The objective of LikedIn’s launching in China is to build a talent marketplace that could attract both multinational companies looking to expand presence in China, and to Chinese companies looking for a stronger foreign presence.

While native social media platform like Weibo, Wechat and Baidu have massive users, there appears to be a very big gap in professional social networking in China that LinkedIn can address. The CEO of LinkedIn said that the Chinese language site of LinkedIn could help them reach 140 million professionals in China and expand their current audience of 277 million members.

However, foreign Internet companies face difficulties operating in China because Chinese government has strict Internet censorship. Google has pulled out of China as a result. And LinkedIn has already agreed to cooperate with Chinese authorities on data storage and censorship. Although LinkedIn has a huge ambition in expanding in Chinese market, can LinkedIn succeed in China?

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4 thoughts on “LinkedIn Goes to China

  1. As LinkedIn has agreed to comply with the censorship of China government, I think LinkedIn will have a smooth road to go in China. LinkedIn provides a great platform for Chinese users to look for job in American (and maybe in China in the future), also for American recruiters to look for eligible employees in China. LinkedIn connects the Chinese market with American market, which are the two major business markets around the world. People need this channel, which give LinkedIn a chance to develop in China.

  2. Given LinkedIn’s direct connection between one’s digital footprint and employment prospects, LinkedIn is a much less likely platform for users to post controversial content than Facebook or Twitter. Therefore, I think LinkedIn is far less likely to run a foul of the government than other social media platforms, and will have a greater chance of success in China.

  3. As long as LinkedIn manages the contents and makes sure that the users are not posting any controversial content, cooperate with Chinese authorities on data storage and censorship, and differentiate itself from the other Chinese native platforms that provide similar services to LinkedIn, I think Linked will be able to penetrate the Chinese market and succeed in China.

  4. I think a smooth road is wishful thinking in some aspects. Will the Chinese gvt not monitor “private” forums? I do agree the content may be less political and controversial in nature, but one one hand – LinkedIN agreed to censorship from the gvt and on the other, as we see with other social media platforms already, they will censor and by censor we mean delete/block at their own discretion without notice.

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