With around 350 million global users - most of whom use the platform for business - it was only a matter of time before LinkedIn wanted in on the action of social media management. Hence the creation of its new app, Elevate, which Tech Crunch recently reported on.
The paid mobile and desktop app was unveiled just a couple of weeks ago, and aims to help users find content that's relevant to their industry using a combination of Pulse and Newsle algorithms, as well as content actually curated by humans (how novel!).
The purpose is so that users can then share these articles on their own LinkedIn pages, as well as on Twitter and, in time, Facebook - without having to search for the content themselves.
Essentially, the concept can be viewed as an amalgamation of Hootsuite, which allows users to share pre-scheduled content on their social media page; and Buffer, which suggests content to users before allowing them to schedule what time they wish to share it. And just like these two applications, Elevate is aimed at social media marketing professionals.
In theory, with Elevate you can stay active on LinkedIn and Twitter even when you don't have anything particularly interesting to say yourself. It can supposedly even help all employees to become more social-media-savvy, as it its helps with tracking the impact of content on profile views and follower numbers - something that, as product manager Will Sun claims, can enable general "employees to be social professionals."
This could actually be one of the main benefits of the app - encouraging more employees to get involved in the conversation and become brand advocates on social media. Figures show that currently, just 2% of an organisation's employees share company news on LinkedIn, meaning there is a huge untapped audience out there. I firmly believe that companies that are able to galvanise their staff into effective content amplification have a huge advantage over their competitors and that clearly the role that Elevate is looking to fulfil.
LinkedIn has just piloted a paid version of Elevate, which will be available to download via iOS or Android for those who are willing to pay for the service. The aim then is to make it generally available later in the year, when more details about pricing will be unveiled.
While the app seems sure to help businesses generate more activity on LinkedIn, it's important to remember that the most sophisticated curation tool in the world is no substitute for creating great content yourself and taking the time to engage in conversations with others in your industry.
This said, with a clear gap in the market and the weight of LinkedIn behind it, I'm betting on Elevate being a big success. And, needless to say, if any of the Elevate team happen to be reading this, yes I'd love to get involved in the pilot!