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LinkedIn Shuts Down Events App

November 5, 2012   |   AUTHOR: Julius Solaris   |   POSTED IN: linkedin

Yes dear reader you read correctly, LinkedIn quietly shut down a vital feature for B2B event marketers, the Events App. Now what?

Linkedin-shuts-events-app

Remember, remember the 5th of November. No, Guy Fawkes has nothing to do with this and no fireworks either. Today I am bringing you bad news in a date that some will remember.

I was watching lol cats videos on Facebook over the weekend when I stumbled upon a re-share from a person I value in the event industry, Dave Lutz, on LinkedIn shutting down Events. Rumor has it that an email is being sent to the user base informing of the upcoming closure.

I did investigate a bit and other than random tweets, nothing was out. No TechCrunch death pool post, no ReadWriteWeb deathwatch.

I did a bit of research and here is the only piece of information from the company I was able to find.

You can read it yourself on their help page.

Therefore it appears to be official indeed. LinkedIn Events will cease to exist in less than a month.

A Major Blow to the Event Industry

B2B event marketers relied on LinkedIn Events to build awareness and generate revenue for their conference or meeting.

LinkedIn Events has been a platform that never convinced me. Nonetheless the audience of the social network made it special.

In fact it is very hard to reach business profiles when marketing events to professionals.

In previous conversations with large event planning firms, I gathered that LinkedIn events was one of the most adopted social media tactics (for some a whole strategy) in the sector.

It is easy to see how this news will blow out the strategy of those who put all eggs in one basket.

A Major Blow to Event Marketing Dashboards

It is funny to see how I covered this subject just recently in my post 5 Event Marketing Dashboards for #eventprofs, and I quote:

The successful but mostly unresponsive social network is a goldmine for wise event marketers, specially high calibre conferences and meetings.

The first dashboard who will obtain LinkedIn integration will gain substantial competitive advantage. To a certain extent I believe the lack of such integration will make dashboards also fail.

LinkedIn integration failed a few startups and this is now a topic on the agenda of the guys working with these dashboards.

Effectively there won’t be any integration in the future. Possibly the arena now becomes groups (where an API is available) but let’s be quick before LinkedIn shuts down that as well.

What to Do Now?

If LinkedIn is an important part of your social media tactics not everything is lost. You can still leverage on one-to-one introductions and LinkedIn Ads.

The company suggests to use the sharing features, but to heavy Events App users that may come as an insult.

Unfortunately LinkedIn let go a pretty unique service due to the audience it managed to captivate. Therefore finding a real alternative may be difficult.

In fact publishing a high profile conference on Facebook or Google+ may make it look like a sweet sixteen party. The cited platforms do not offer a business events solution and are quite focussed on pictures rather than offering proper event marketing tools.

In Conclusion

My love and hate relationship with LinkedIn is more inclined to the latter after this announcement. I am not a heavy user of their Events App platform but I know of a great deal of event professionals who are. These guys will now have to face a quite tough situation.

With all things social, relying too much on one platform is risky. Today we have the confirmation. Having your own assets and channels of communication, together with a sound social marketing strategy may save you from such risks.

Yet again a listed company such as LinkedIn cannot afford to have poor performing products, even when the guilt of such poor performance is to be found nowhere but in the company itself.

My coverage of the launch in 2008 closed with this statement:

On the other hand, I am simply getting tired of Linkedin not getting in touch with its user base. I expected they got in touch with our/their community of almost 4000 event professionals to get feedback on how to develop the service.

That community is now almost 100,000 members, yet nobody has ever asked for feedback on the platform. I hope the lesson is learned.

  • Andreas B

    Funny: Xing is very succesful with the integration of amiando for events and generating huge revenues out of it

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Which makes me thing that they are possibly about to acquire someone!

  • Derrick Stomp

    Not quite a smart move from events industry perspective…!
    But from HRM focus perspective it does makes sense. Do think they’re going to regret the step. Maybe an opportunity for Google+ and Facebook..

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Agreed

  • http://twitter.com/TweetStreams All Social

    For me it’s a strange decision, any let’s go Google+
    -Jos

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Ok, let’s see

  • Vinayak Rajanahally

    Perhaps they saw separate Linkedin groups created for specific events. That may have prompted them to withdraw Linkedin events.

  • Vinayak Rajanahally

    I doutbt.. Linkedin could have acquired someone and then shut down Linkedin events.

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    It has to be big acquisition!

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Still a shame but I agree Groups are the future

  • http://Success-Matters.com/ Claire Boyles

    interesting, events on Linked In isn’t something I’ve used much, and I expect it wasn’t a tool that was highly utilised within it’s customer base (Event managers are only a small proportion of those customers)

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Claire,

    large event planning companies relied heavily on it. I am getting flooded on social networks by comments of shocked users.

    Hopefully as some readers are pointing out, this is a sign of an acquisition that will result in a better product. Hopefully!

  • http://twitter.com/GuyClapperton GuyClapperton

    If this highlights one thing then it’s the danger of basing so much of a business in someone else’s back yard. LinkedIn is fully within its rights to close bits off, start charging for entry, deciding only people called Gerald are aloud to post (the last one would be a remarkably stupid idea but they’d be within their rights). LinkedIn is a business – if they can’t make parts of it pay, expect them to close down.

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Pretty much what I am reinforcing in the post, therefore well agreed.

    The thing is that if LinkedIn keeps acting like a business and not as a Social Network, I wonder if they’ll be able to keep posting incredible financial results.

  • http://twitter.com/dhelbig dhelbig

    I was using the LinkedIn event feature and got an email saying they were discontinuing it. When I thought about it I realized that I don’t think I actually got attendees from the linkedin events app. I do, however, believe it helped with exposure and relevance. On to the next big thing!

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Thanks for sharing your experience. I guess it helped most users this way.

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Kate, the thing is that for large event planning companies, specially working with business professionals as an audience, LinkedIn was quite unique.

    The services you mention are great for independent event planners and those working with small volumes as well as those after consumer audiences.

    The B2B audience Linkedin offered is now mostly reachable through ads and groups. This is not enough, specially if you look at event recommendation, which was ok on Linkedin.

    I hope this is a signal of an acquisition, like many are mentioning here rather than just an abrupt shut down as I am flooded with messages of shocked users who used it on a regular basis.

  • moinhussain

    very interesting. Thanks
    for the Information

    Regards Education Portal

  • Vinayak Rajanahally

    Today is 26th November and I still see Linkedin Events feature present. May be Linkedin changed its minds not to shut it down….:)

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    lol

    Who knows?

  • http://www.facebook.com/dbanta Dan Banta

    We have a social media based group that has depended on this feature for our monthly events (RSVP’s). We were right in the middle of building a list for our Christmas party when they cut this off without warning!

  • http://eventmanagerblog.com.com/ Julius Solaris

    Shocking, I am sorry to hear that

  • jmdeherrera

    They had a great event system at first… then they decided to tweak it and it just became unbearable… now it is gone.

    how about using the old system they had, which was fantastic, and call it a day?