I recently exchanged a few emails with Konstantin Guericke, one of Linkedin founders: we discussed the situation for openBC and Linkedin in Europe. I believe openBC is strong in Europe, especially in Germany and Austria. Linkedin is very strong worldwide. Konstantin shared new figures with me, and made a comment regarding the recent communication from openBC...
I thought it would be a good idea to better understand the current situation for those two excellent social/business networks!
Total number of members: advantage Linkedin
Please find below the growth from Linkedin and openBC (respectively May 2003 and November 2003)
* Both networks have grown faster in the last 12 months
* Linkedin counts over 4 times the number of members than openBC
* Linkedin has more than 1million users compared to openBC which has 1.7million users globally
Methodology: I used the figures available on openBC (Press Releases & Press Review) and Linkedin (Press Releases & Media Coverage). Of course, social networks don't publish their number of members or subscribers on regular basis, so I had to calculate the average growth rate per month between one official announcement to the following one!
Now, let's have a closer look at 4 specific periods since 2003.
Linkedin (May 2003) and openBC (November 2003)
* Those figures are impressive for both networks
* Especially for Linkedin which managed to reach almost 8 millions members in less than 4 years
* Linkedin will almost achieve its target of 10 million members by the end of 2006: well done!
* I believe it is going to be tougher for openBC to reach its target of 10 million members by the end of 2007...
From creation to March 2006
* I decided to use March 2006 as a milestone as Linkedin and openBC both published their figures at that time
* It marks the beginning of a faster pace of growth for both networks
Since March 2006
* Outstanding growth for Linkedin: they add over 13,000 members every single day!
* Excellent rate for openBC too: they add almost 3,000 members every day (even though it has been slowed down compared to the period Dec 05 - February 06...)
* Please note the aggressive growth in Europe for Linkedin. Europe has been identified as a major market for growth. Konstantin is in Germany right now, and Linkedin will target countries like the UK or France in early 2007
Between December 2005 and February 2006
* Excellent growth rate for openBC during that period: they even matched Linkedin's growth rate in Europe. Well done Lars (and your dynamic team), and keep up the good work!
* The growth rate for openBC in the last 6 months dropped-off though...
* Linkedin seems to be far ahead in terms of members both in Europe and worldwide
* And as an active user, I must insist on the fact that I am still impressed with the quality of the members on Linkedin
* The total number of members is a good indicator, but it would be useful to know the number of subscribers and the ARPU. The quality of the members and their profiles is also critical!
* We musn't forget that openBC and Linkedin have two different business models (I invite you to check my post named NET - Linkedin & openBC: no competition!) Indeed, openBC makes its technology available to other networks ("The platform" - white label service) and is quite successful in that space...
Making available some figures about specific countries in Europe? And subscribers?
I would love to compare the growth of openBC and Linkedin in Europe, in countries such as the UK, Germany or France: so openBC and Linkedin, I very much look forward to hearing from you!
Technorati: businessnetworking, socialnetworking, openbc, linkedin