Yesterday’s San Jose Mercury News features an interview and bio of LinkedIn cofounder and VP of Product Strategy Allen Blue, discussing LinkedIn’s outlook for 2008, particularly their strategy regarding advertising on the site:
When we think about advertising, we think about advertising as a mechanism to bring value to users. LinkedIn is a tool for getting stuff done. And advertising a product or service or magazine – if I can put that in front of you at the right place, it is actually a business resource (you) should be paying attention to.
As people use LinkedIn more and more (they will) discover that advertising has a great place in the social-networking space. We have this great base of people advertisers are interested in advertising to. I think that is true of social networks in general.
Blue was quick to distance LinkedIn from the privacy fiasco surrounding Facebook’s Beacon advertising program:
Q: How far should a social network go in using the information it gathers from members to target advertising?
A: I think the short answer is it goes as far as people using it want it to go. We have always been careful here and we will continue to be careful to give every individual user the control to make sure they have the experience they want. You can share no information at all through LinkedIn (if you want).
Blue also disclosed that LinkedIn is projecting $75 to $100 million in revenue for 2008, and declined to comment on the News Corp acquisition rumor.