mSpoke, the online recommendation software start-up has been purchased by professional social networking site LinkedIn. LinkedIn will use the acquisition to integrate and add functions to its rapidly expanding network. There are three core mSpoke products – mPower, mTrend and mSense. mPower creates widgets and personalised e-mails to let web publishers filter content according to the preferences of users, which is great for direct e-mail marketing. The mTrend API allows companies to monitor competitors and emerging trends.
For LinkedIn the most valuable component would probably be the mSense tool which analyses content and creates and annotates metadata within systems. This data could be used to help LinkedIn to provide recommendations to users about other relevant people in the LinkedIn networks based upon trends, usage or networking patterns.
LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner has indicated that mSpoke shares an interest in ensuring that content is relevant and called the purchase “a natural fit”. Recently, LinkedIn has started to become more social adding “Likes” and “Dislikes”, follows and ways to discuss content. Also, LinkedIn have added Facebook-like newsfeeds on the homepage and link sharing options similar to twitter to generate more traffic and data to the site. LinkedIn is even integrating with Behance, the creative social networking website.
All of these developments and additions will generate a lot of valuable data which should, when crunched with the mSense suite, make LinkedIn a more useful and intuitive site to use. No figures have been released regarding the purchase price but the benefits should mean great value for LinkedIn.