What would you do if someone cold-called you to pitch a corporate buyout? Over the phone, that might be an awkward conversation. By email, it’d probably be dismissed as spam. But on the strength of an InMail via LinkedIn, The Weather Channel went on to acquire two significant vacation rental sites last year.
In June 2007, Steve Hassett received an InMail asking if The Weather Channel might be interested in acquiring LakeRentals.com and CoastRentals.com, two sites founded by web entrepreneur Brant Bukowsky of Columbia, Missouri. LinkedIn first enabled Brant to find the right person at The Weather Channel for the pitch. In return, LinkedIn then enabled Steve to surmise that the opportunity was legit. A detailed investigation followed, revealing that LakeRentals and CoastRentals had grown by 50% for six consecutive quarters.
Three months after the InMail, The Weather Channel acquired both websites. “As a result of that success,” Steve said, “I went on to rewrite my profile to make it more of a billboard for what we’re trying to do.”
LinkedIn User Snapshot
How: The Weather Channel Interactive is always looking for dynamic web properties to acquire. By having a profile on LinkedIn, Steve has an official presence through which he can field incoming opportunities. Without LinkedIn, incoming opportunities might get hung up in a company phone directory or left in a dead letter box. An official profile helps people searching LinkedIn to find the right person for the right opportunity.
LinkedIn Tip from Steve
Make your profile a billboard for what you do
• Summarize your professional experience and goals to reflect what you’re trying to achieve in your position
• Fill out a complete professional history, adding positions to represent your experience
• Add hyperlinks to the properties or websites that illustrate your accomplishments – and select “Other” from the drop down menus to give each an interesting title