Do You Have One of the Top 5% Most Viewed LinkedIn Profiles for 2012?

Becky Doles

Well, this is one way of making your customers feel special. Since Thursday morning, LinkedIn has been sending members an email congratulating them for having either one of the top 1% or top 5% most viewed LinkedIn profiles for 2012. As the email notes LinkedIn now has 200 million members, which means that LinkedIn has sent this email to approximately 10 million members – and that’s if LinkedIn is really sending this email to just the top 5% of members with the most viewed profiles.

LinkedIn obviously doesn’t think many members will do the math and realize they’re one of 10 million – even though they offer an infographic in each email with basic stats breaking down the demographics of their 200 million members. In fact, the company thinks most members will feel so special about being a top 1% or 5% profile, that they’ll tweet or share this information via Twitter or Facebook. With that in mind LinkedIn has provided members with an easy option to do so via the email. (To validate this psychological intent, many of those I follow on Twitter and are friends with on Facebook have done just that, flooding my streams with naive pride.)

But another aspect to the psychology behind this email campaign is a feature of LinkedIn that sets it apart from its competing social networks – the feature that enables members to see what other members have viewed their profile. This feature is only available to Premium members, who pay at least $16 per month to “Proactively manage inbound queries and interest in your profile.” Of course, it’s probable that most of the 10 million (or more) LinkedIn members who received this email do not pay for LinkedIn Premium, and therefore don’t see who has viewed their profile. Instead, these “basic” members get a teaser via email every week of a select few members who have viewed their profile, but for most this teaser is rarely enough to convince them to cough up a monthly premium just to get the full list of viewers.

With this email marketing campaign, LinkedIn has effectively planted a notion inside 10 million members’ minds that they may actually be more professionally interesting than they previously thought. As such, this may cause these members to believe it may truly benefit them to know exactly who is looking at their professional history, so they can – as LinkedIn suggests – use that data to be proactive in their careers.

While many are calling this campaign from LinkedIn “spam”, we think it’s an incredibly smart marketing campaign. It will be interesting to see if LinkedIn reveals how successful this campaign ends up being in converting Basic members to Premium accounts.

Did you receive one of the Top 1%/5% emails from LinkedIn? What do you think their motivation is for sending it? Let us know in the comments below.

Becky Doles

Becky is the Senior Content Marketing Manager at TUNE. Before TUNE, she led a variety of marketing and communications projects at San Francisco startups. Becky received her bachelor's degree in English from Wake Forest University. After living nearly a decade in San Francisco and Seattle, she has returned to her home of Charleston, SC, where you can find her enjoying the sun and salt water with her family.

115 responses to “Do You Have One of the Top 5% Most Viewed LinkedIn Profiles for 2012?”

  1. I did receive one of these notifications and didn’t tweet or share it. At first, my thought was the same… 5% of 200 million? How special is that! I started looking on Twitter and felt…ah, so many other people are special, too! Then I looked on Google for “top 5% linkedin” and found this post ranking #1. Now THAT’S good marketing. Well done!

    What is their motivation? Now that you planted the Premium seed, that very well could be. They definitely are trying to increase traffic and promotion of their services. It will be interesting to watch what they come out with next.

  2. asrguy says:

    I got one too, but I don’t see much value in paying to see who’s looking at my profile. If they want to reach me they can.

    I think they’re just stirring things up just like those “endorsements” you get regularly.

  3. John says:

    I received top five percent in my personal email inbox but not in my LinkedIn box. This fact instantly sparked my skeptimism. I usually receive emails in my LinkedIn account and then in my personal inbox second.

  4. Andre says:

    I dont think the size of the sample matter at all, 1% is 1%, the number of users this represents has no bearing on the fact that they are in the top percentile. Be it 100 million or only 10.

  5. Ken Grayling says:

    yep, I got one of those. They hope it will encourage me to ‘upgrade’ – that is, pay them for what I currently get for free!

  6. Waseem Job says:

    incredibly smart marketing campaign

    i’ve received one of these emails and i felt so happy to know i’m awesome so i re tweet it 😀 and share it on my facebook involuntary

  7. I did recieve it, I thought it was a great service, a great marketing Idea, as much as you article here, which generates discussions, contributions, links and shares, and that’s the bottom line of every social marketing strategy, getting out there and getting the most of your social impact, isn’t it?

  8. Abdulmajeed says:

    I think this a good feedback from Linkedin! at least it will take the person himself to think about how he can impact those viewed his profile as well as potential one (assuming he is using for Professional networking” and manage the messages he or she is sending across the “Professional network”. In my opinion some people has lost the track when they use Facebook or twitter and is it for fun or keeping in contact with people. Some professional people do not want professional to capture what they’ve transmitted on Facebook or twitter.

  9. I received the top 5% notice. They didn’t mention upgrading, it didn’t occur to me, and I’m still not interested in upgrading. As someone who does resume writing and career branding professionally, I figure this bodes well for my networking skills which I teach my clients, and could be good advertising for me. I am curious what landed me in the top 10m. Are the other 190m profiles dormant? Do I come up a lot on searches, if so for what? Am I inviting so many people to connect? Do I have a stalker? Or did one of my connection’s cats take a nap on their keyboard? It was actually FB which was quick to try to cash in. When I posted LinkedIn’s canned congratulatory link to Facebook, FB offered to promote it and put it at the top of my friends’ news feeds as a sponsored link for $7. Thanks but no thanks.

  10. e-Patient Dave deBronkart says:

    Um, seems purty obvious to me that their motivation is to get highly connected people drawing people’s attention to LinkedIn. 🙂

  11. aussiewriters says:

    I received it and shared it with the note added – that this was clever marketing from LinkedIn! – I am not sure that so many could have been so naive, Kelly:-) I prefer to think that quite a few of them are social media savvy and saw it for what it was.

  12. Sri says:

    I received it too but its not as special to be part of 10million club. This is good to know but nothing more than that and not worth tweeting. Also, I didnt find any information about upgrading the plan to see my viewers.

  13. Akia Garnett says:

    I received one. It was brilliant marketing. It added great value to their membership retention strategy as well. I shared mine on my social media outlets. @AkiaGarnett, CEO, Brandbuilder –

  14. Hiranmay Ghosh says:

    I am yet to receive a congratulatory message to be within top 100%

  15. I was a bit jealous of my fiancee when she got the email and I didn’t 🙁 I’m an avid LinkedIn user, but I think I need to build a bigger fan base…

  16. Munira says:

    When I 1st saw a friend post the link on fb, I was like wow! With the 2nd one posting, I was curious. The 3rd one created doubts in me. And with the 4th one, I said that’s it and started googling, landing on this article. Now I hardly have 300 friends on fb and if at least 4 of those had their profiles in the top 5%, then the probability of getting this email is much higher than 5%. Also, why doesn’t the linkedin profiles of these people say they’re the top viewed, instead they’re all getting notified by email. Hence, I suspect this is just spam sent randomly to people – and I guess most of the active users got it or will get it soon. But as stated in the article, it surely is an innovative and effective way of marketing.

  17. sally says:

    top 5% of 200 million = 10 million? That’s pretty basic math; am sure that is patently obvious to everyone – so, no, I don’t think LinkedIn was trying to hide anything or make it seem more important than it is — still it would be kind of cool to be in the top 5 or 1% of any group. Naïve pride? Again, I think it’s kind of cool and would certainly share the information if I were part of the 1 or 5% – but that’s about it. It is what it is – no more, no less. Why not put it out there? It is a great marketing strategy, for them – but, not sure that I would upgrade my service upon getting one of those emails.

  18. DJ K. says:

    I received the 5% acknowledgement as well and although temporarily flattering, I assumed it must be some type of marketing to promote my added investment in and promotion of the site

  19. so what? says:

    iWhile marketing smart is always a good thing, the problem is it does not tell you how or why? there is no personalization to the 5%-

    people looked but so what? the url link in the email was dead.

    so its 10 m spam campaign which means nothing. So everyone feels good cause linked in told you so?
    This is like yogi said ” i knew I was on the wrong train, so I left early” –this is all wrong but I feel good because -Linked in ran a statistic—

  20. Ryan Lopez says:

    Obviously it was effective if you created a whole other blog about it What was your intention; ) JK. I was a 1%er and I felt great with the message. I don’t know their motives nor do I really care. Good Pub is a Good thing!

  21. Charles (KnNell) Knell says:

    As a marketer you have many options for motivating thru emotion: anger, love, hatred, guilt, etc. If you don’t touch at least one of these, your prospect won’t act. This is a case of Linkedin sending the message, “we love you for giving us your time on our site!”. Without visitors, we are, all of us, out of business!

  22. Just a guy. says:

    I did and am certain your premise is 100% accurate. I also agree it was a bright marketing maneuver.

  23. Nick Orlando says:

    I’m flattered… but only because “Top 5%” sounds so much more impressive than “One out of 10 million”…

  24. I’m always happy to be noticed as one in 10 million. 🙂

  25. Rich Sadler says:

    Receiving the Top 1% email, I thought they’re motivation was
    quite obvious… build the premium membership and get those who do not opt for that feature to use LinkedIn more. Or minimally allow the social marketing venue to have or reflect more credence in the minds of the consumers of their product.
    Granted it’s not a huge deal (mine is one in 2 million – drop in bucket – you can hear the echoes) but the numbers matter not. Personally I think it is an impressive campaign. Good for the minds at LinkedIN!

  26. Tom Krueger says:

    I received the top 1% most viewed profiles and was both flattered and shocked. Being top 1% of anything feels nice. However, I don’t know what I do to get to that level. My first assumption is that must be little difference between to 1% and the rest. It certainly does make me wonder how many views I’m getting and how I can leverage that.

  27. dpleese says:

    I received one of the 1% messages. I think you’re analysis is right–brilliant bit of marketing that cost them almost nothing. I did the math, as one of 2,000,000 1%ers, it isn’t anything to bragg about.

    It is nice to know that my effort on my LinkedIn profile seems to pay off. I’m getting hits. If I get a note that I’m in the top 0.001%, then maybe I’ll tweet.

  28. Tracy Ahern says:

    Hello! I was a 1%er and have not yet – but do intend to – share it. And, I will share it at a time when I know the most people are viewing LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Any publicity is good. 🙂 Thanks for the blog post about it. I’ve been watching this campaign closely and I’m intrigued by the reactions that people are having to it. I feel it’s a genius play by LI.

  29. Raul Colon says:

    I received one a few days ago about being in the top 10% of 2012. But today a client called me that he got one which mentioned he was in the top 5% of Puerto Rico’s viewed Linkedin profiles.

    They are sure at work trying to make everyone feel special. Reminds me of Enron where they made the numbers look pretty for everyone… 🙂

  30. Melanie West says:

    Thank you for this great article!

    I received the top 5% notice and felt great for a few seconds and then my skepticism kicked in, which led me here. I agree, a BRILLIANT marketing plan from Linkedin…with a clean and keen user experience…personalized with no pressure, and still has the potential to increase revenue for them…sweet insidiousness….

  31. Jeff Erdmann says:

    What do these numbers really mean?

    Last week LinkedIn emailed, “Jeff, congratulations!
    You have one of the top 1% most viewed LinkedIn profiles for

    It is always an honor to be recognized achieving something.

    However it has left me scratching my head wondering what the numbers really mean?

    Did the top 1% have more views than those within the top 5%
    or 10% or vise verse?

    After “Googling” the subject it is still murky what these numbers really mean.

    Some say that the top 1% of the 200 million users means they
    had 200,000 views

    According to a rough average over my profile came up in search results some 2000 times in 2012.

    Just curious if anyone really knows what these stats mean???

    Jeff Erdmann

  32. It’s Monday and to see an email that you are the top 1% viewed on linkedin is a nice way to start the week. I did share it through my social media outlets and also think it’s brilliant marketing.

    Whatever their motives, it is a nice way to get more engagement. Why do magazines and organizations have dinner awards?

    People appreciate acknowledgement whether from a boss, spouse, parent and now a social platform. With looking at the glass half full I am 1% out of 200 million or 1 in 10 million, I still made the cut.

  33. Sam says:

    I got an email and posted it on Facebook and Twitter because I was laid off in November 2012 and am looking for work and having a “reason” to post my LinkedIn profile will not do any harm…

  34. Yes, Kelly. I just received my 1% congratulations today. When I first opened it I was thrilled until I did the math. They almost had me fooled. A very smart marketing campaign indeed. 🙂

  35. Aaron Jones says:

    I receive a congratulatory message from them and just set up my account with linkedin not even two months ago. My thoughts were, ” This is Crazy!” Funny reading about this though.

  36. Karen L Jefferson CPMR CSP says:

    It is an interesting ploy. One piece of the equation that we do NOT know is how many profiles on LinkedIn go completely UNviewed? UNloved? UNcounted?

  37. Lesley says:

    I thought it was fun to get. Hey, the top 5% is top 5%. Nothing wrong with that! It does not push me to upgrade, but it does make me wonder why my profile gets so many views. I have almost 500 hundred contacts, so I guess the odds are increased that I’ll get random interest. There is another dorky one going around Australia saying the person was one of the first 200k or so to register in Oz. No body seems to be bragging about that one.

  38. Alan Foster says:

    Linkedin is a great resource and at $16.00 a month affordable! if you are serious about business then why would you not upgrade?

    • Ed Johnson says:

      Hi Alan,

      I too prefer using my own name instead of an initial or code-name. Good Going!!…

      I also agree with you, and am considering an upgrade to Premium. As you well said…”If you’re serious about business, Why Not?”

      Presently, I don’t have enough information to know or compare the benefits. Have you upgraded, and if so, have you experienced any good benefits? Would you please let me know?…My contact information is below.


      Ed Johnson, J.D.
      [email protected]

  39. Bryan says:

    Apparently they sent it to the top 10% (as some of my “lowly” top 10% friends tell me). That’s 20 million spam mails. A lot of people lost respect for LinkedIn this week.

  40. T says:

    I got one as well, I think that this is not a great marketing idea but the sort of idea that makes people eventually mistrust the source, and apparently, according to your article, for good reason?”

  41. JP says:

    If I’m in the Top 10% views, well I guess that the average views on Linkedin is quite low… And given the fact that those who look at my profile are the ones who know me – which is exactly the bias of the social network habit – this is not tempting at all to gear towards the Premium membership.
    Yet I recognize that the first reaction was “wow, impressive !” then I did the maths. then I used my old-school spirit… then I recognized it was a smart marketing idea… Eventually, I hope they will make money out the dummies who will fall into the trap and subscribe premium !

  42. jshsrh says:

    I received the top 5% email . . . and my first gut reaction was to FB it . . . but I didn’t – 2 seconds later reality hit home that this is a marketing campaign! I’m still flattered by the fact – 1 in 10,000,000 is OK by me – I haven’t changed my opinion on the brand – however my nose will be put quickly out of joint if I continue to get ‘sign up’ type emails/subliminal messages fired at me.

  43. Liz D. says:

    I got one of the top 1% emails and my first thought was “There is no f***ing way” and then I did the math when I saw the infographic. I’ll admit, as a marketer myself I think this is a brilliant plan as most of that 10,000,000 are NOT marketers and wouldn’t have recognized the tell-tale signs I saw, so it worked and that’s highly commendable!

    I’m glad they are being so innovative but it doesn’t really do anything for me. Maybe if we got some sort of electronic badge to put on our profiles I could use the near-useless title to my advantage as another boost for “looking good on paper” (so to speak) but just spreading the word doesn’t do anything for me.

  44. Yeah. Got one… shared it. Won’t get a premium account. 🙂

  45. I was shocked and felt very curious to know about the statistics of how many views, what makes the top 1% hits without the premium package, it may be an opportunity for more and more marketing campaign to bring in to market ourselves and products , thanks for linked-in to share such statistics,

    Did you have
    top 1% to top 5% hits

    200 million
    TOP 1%
    TOP 5%


    Hurray! I have one of the top 1% most viewed @LinkedIn profiles for 2012.

  46. Tim Peterson says:

    They’re handing out congrats to the top 10% now and I took the twitter bait. I think its smart marketing myself but each to their own

  47. Nigel Ethelston says:

    I got one and thought, blimy the other 95% must be doing something really wrong.

  48. But it isn’t 1% of 200 million… In my case it’s 1% of translators in Israel, which is just a few hundred. I agree that it’s a marketing tool, but there’s nothing wrong with that. We use LinkedIn as a marketing tool as well.

  49. Richard Piatkowski says:

    Surely being in the top 5% of most things is a good thing isn’t it? The size of base from which the 5% are taken (in this case 200m) doesn’t make the fact less factual or less real.
    Hands up who wouldn’t want to be in the top 5% of earners if the working population was 200m!!
    It’s good viral marketing – yes. It’s flattering – yes. Will I use it to self promote – yes. Are people who are saying “you’re 5% of 200m – blah” just simply overthinking the whole thing – YES!

  50. […] here!), but it’s really a sales pitch for LinkedIn’s Premium-level accounts. This article on HasOffers explains it. First, understand that 5% of LinkedIn’s user base is 10 million people. Second, […]

  51. Teara McGinn says:

    I got one of the top 5% emails and even though I knew I wasn’t particularly special (5% out of 200 million) it was hilarious how much I had to fight the urge to share. LOL — my own mind was being used against me in marketing. But I did resist after all was said and done. Now I see that the top 10% are going out as well. It might have been better for them to leave it at 5% or even 1%.

    We are analyzing social media marketing situations like these in a Social Media for Business performance course through the University of Waterloo, check out our blog at

    • Ed Johnson says:

      Hi Teara…Thank you for this link…I went to the site, and registered for “Social Media for Business Performance.”

      I want to learn and know how I can use Social Media to increase my business contacts and connections, and gain good positive exposure for my businesses and interests.

      I like LinkedIn the best, but I’d like to know how to use it more effectively.

      Please contact me directly with any more specific details or tips, or information.


      Ed Johnson, J.D.
      [email protected]

  52. Johan says:

    This campaign has gradations, too: I’m one of the top 1% among editors in Russia! The category has to be pretty narrowly defined for me to be in any top 1%. The device was so transparent to me that I felt no twinge of temptation to go premium, but I agree that it’s good marketing.

  53. kdub2020 says:

    i got one today and first thought that went through my mind was bs/ scam / spam. i agree with you – its spam. added no value to my relationship with linked in.

  54. 1% club… (life time achievement? probably not.)

  55. Linda says:

    I am active on LI everyday, I teach a course on LI and have had over 500 people view my profile in the last 90 days and appeared in search results over 800 times. I have not received this email. This surprises me and makes me wonder how I could not receive this when others who are not active have?

    • Ed Johnson says:

      Very Good Questions Ms. Linda! Do you have one of the Premiere Accounts? I’d like to know your thoughts and recommendations on the Premiere Accounts. I’ve been considering upgrading, but have no real information on how beneficial that may be. Would you please contact me through LinkedIn or at [email protected]?


  56. Edie Uyesugi says:

    Hm – yeah…I agree it’s certainly a gimmick…but at the same time, what blog/website isn’t! But, apparently they’ve expanded it to the top 10%, because I got one of those today.

  57. Ed Johnson says:

    “Congratulations! You have one of the top 5% most viewed LinkedIn profiles for 2012!” … Is this for real? …What a nice way to start the day!! Right?!! …”Feeling Famous!!” It’s Very Smart and Very Creative Marketing!! … And it cost LinkedIn nothing…It’s Very Ingenious!!

    I quickly realized that LinkedIn’s marketing motive in sending these “Top 5% Notices” out to 10 million of their 200 million accounts, was (1) to obtain huge exposure, anticipating that a lot of people will very probably Facebook and Twitter their New “Top 5% Fame” to all their friends and family, and (2) also to persuade some of them to upgrade from Free to their $16 to $99 per month Premium Account Services.

    I Googled this, and found that LinkedIn had apparently sent this out to 10 million LinkedIn Subscribers with exactly those thoughts in mind. (200 million x 5% = 10 million) It surely appeals to peoples’ egos!! The Real Deal is that 5% of 200 million accounts is 10 million people, some of whom have or will FB and Twitter their “Top 5%” Rating, and some will probably also upgrade their LinkedIn accounts, since they now feel so very “Top 5% Famous!!” …

    On another note, you and your family will most certainly benefit by knowing about the American Anti-Cancer Institute…

    Ed Johnson, J.D., Attorney, Chairman,
    American Anti-Cancer Institute Advisory Board.
    [email protected]

    I Most Highly Recommend Ordering The New Book,
    Killing Cancer – Not People, at the AACI Website:, as the current stats show
    “1 in 2 Americans will get Cancer,” and “Cancer
    is the leading cause of death of children under 14.”

  58. Ed Johnson says:

    “Congratulations! You have one of the top 5% most viewed LinkedIn profiles for 2012!” ….What a nice way to start the day!! Right?!! …”Feeling Famous!!” It’s Very Smart and Very Creative Marketing!! … And it cost LinkedIn nothing…It’s Very Ingenious!!

    I quickly realized that LinkedIn’s marketing motive in sending these “Top 5% Notices” out to 10 million of their 200 million accounts, was (1) to obtain huge exposure, anticipating that a lot of people will very probably Facebook and Twitter their New “Top 5% Fame” to all their friends and family, and (2) also to induce some of them to upgrade from Free to their $16 to $99 per month Premium Account Services.

    I Googled this, and found that LinkedIn had apparently sent this out to 10 million Linkedin Subscribers with exactly those thoughts in mind. (200 million x 5% = 10 million) It surely appeals to peoples’ egos!! The Real Deal is that 5% of 200 million accounts is 10 million people, some of whom have or will FB and Twitter their “Top 5%” Rating, and some will probably also upgrade their LinkedIn accounts, since they now feel so very “Top 5% Famous!!” …

    On another note, every American will certainly benefit by knowing about the American Anti-Cancer Institute…

    Ed Johnson,J.D., Attorney, Chairman,
    American Anti-Cancer Institute Advisory Board.
    [email protected]

    I Most Highly Recommend Ordering The New Book,
    Killing Cancer – Not People, at the AACI Website:, as the current statistics
    show “1 in 2 Americans will get Cancer,” and “Cancer
    is the leading cause of death of children under 14.”

  59. Nicole C. Scott says:

    I received the top 5% notification. It really is a great marketing angle for sure. But here’s the kicker, I’m already using the premium account. The reason I chose the upgrade, was primarily to use the option to direct message valued contacts. Which has come up from time to time for a variety of reasons. Not to mention, I was also interested in trying it out to become familiar with the user interface for both types of accounts as I assist others with setting up their profiles on many social networking sites. By using it, I would also know if the perks are worth the investment. (sort of an ROI assessment). To see who views your profile was an added bonus. It helps to see which job applications actually worked because you know which companies are checking you out.

    Personally, I like the Linkedin platform and think it is wonderful to have a social networking site specifically for Business. The site is certainly helpful for both B2B and B2C strategies, so I hope they become even more popular. I love how company sites now use Linkedin integration as well, because it is far more efficient with time, compared with having to fill out form fields for each company when applying for jobs. Linkedin has your photo, resume, endorsements and recommendations, as well as ways to link to and share/show examples of your work all in one place! Certianly far superior to paper resumes. Those should go the way of the dinosaurs, just like fax machines IMHO.

  60. Laura Ann Tull says:

    I got it and shared it only because I am an actress and well get people looking at my profile- though I don’t pay for the service to and probably never will. As an actress there are more important services for be to be apart of in the entertainment industry. I retweeted it because of issues I am having with my UNION and that well- I have had people say they have seen a short I did or something and was even told by a COP I have fans. I thought it was weird but the value of a name is so crazily important in my industry it is nuts. I worked on sets for YEARS as a background artist Trained with several people how to cold read and be on sets and also have a theater degree. Unfortunately there is a great deal of unfairness in the industry and well I have been blacklisted after I had an accident and my UNION is treating me like I am not a MEMBER when well- I got in the way many of the 120,000 members got it. I lost my breasts while being on sets and worked hard and had a fantastic rep on sets. There are though individuals who have the attitude that only their friends can be actors who have made it or that only the CELEBRITIES in the UNION are real actors- and that HAS TO STOP. Why train and fight to be good if you can politically be abused. AND I AM GOOD. PERIOD. Peace and well thanks You are right- it is a market tool- but I am having fun with it.

  61. allklier says:

    I got it and my first reaction was doing math – but the opposite way. I didn’t think of the 10M (as I never read the detail on 200M members in the fine print). My math was, I knew exactly how many views my profile had (being a premium member), and I said, if that number gets you in the top 5%, LinkedIn has a bigger problem. In fact for a while I suspected they ran their query wrong. I used to do web analytics for a large site, and am used to crunching numbers like this. But good point on the population size. That makes a lot more sense now.

    I heard a lot of social reactions from others that got the email, so it’s definitely working. But I also saw negative reactions from top LinkedIn users, so it comes at a bit of a price.

  62. Marcus says:

    They did it so people could blog about it and get free marketing.

  63. Erik Veland says:

    Pretty sure they also stole this idea from Kred (did I even sign up for that thing?) who sent me a “Congrats you are in the top 1% of influencers on Kred” a couple of weeks ago.

  64. Christian Aligo says:

    i also received the same email and the first thing i did was to check if it was real or another spam ….

  65. Jennifer says:

    I called it when I saw it start last week (I am a behaviorist) and I knew that the intent was to play to the warm and fuzzy. It made me laugh….so I posted it, tweeted it, and shared again on LI – all with the caveat that this was a brilliant marketing scheme for LI to use in order to attract more to join LI! We all want to be recognized for our good work, efforts, shares, intellect, views…whatever. But this was a smart campaign. And by no means do I believe that people were naive when they RT, posted or shared. Perhaps some were, but many recognized this for what it was. Even the email itself went to my spam folder – when most all of my LI emails do not! Even “Spam” filters recognized the marketing plan! Kudos to LinkedIn for playing on the psychology and the predictable behavior of people! 🙂

  66. Gund Wehsling says:

    You are wrong on all three points. I got 10%. I know the visitors are from industries I have an active interest in, nearby. I’m on a free account.

  67. Dr. B. Wessling ("LaoWei") says:

    I got a congratulation to be within 10% = 1 out of 20 million members, I printed the message in A2 format and put it on the wall in my office hallway, right besides my soccer championship cups.

  68. Abdullah says:

    You are totally right! it gaves me a nice feeling and tweeted abt it 🙂 but before i start to share it on other social media platform i though about it and said it is really smart! now linkedin is working on the loyality of their users which gives them that feeling that they are well noticed not just a member of this huge network! in all ways i love linkedin and i’m not thinking about buying the premium subscription.

    Kelly you are so smart 😉



  69. Kelly Clay,

    Keep up the great work 😉 We are all part of the 3.4% of go getters.


    Jesse Arnold Miller

  70. Kevin Nakao says:

    We think this type of professional recognition is awesome and want to honor LinkedIn’s Top Users. MeritShare will honor the top 1%, 5%, and 10% most-viewed profiles with a MeritShare online badge and public award page. The benefit to the recipient is that a MeritShare award page is more permanent than a post in a social media stream. The MeritShare award page is also optimized for search; many MeritShare profiles with a photo and a badge show up in the first page of Google results for someone’s name.” A personal and professional branding win!

    To receive a MeritShare award, just forward the email you received from LinkedIn to [email protected] and we’ll send you a special “Connector” award through MeritShare.

  71. Lungs_of_Steel says:

    What’s so incredibly smart about receiving an email from LinkedIn when I rarely visit the site and haven’t been actively searching for work? I think it’s BS.

  72. Guillaume says:

    Seriously, I’ve received it, and I was thinking that it was some fishing because the email ending by [email protected] and not [email protected]

  73. Drew27 says:

    Genius campaign, giving users content that encourages them to share. Well done LinkedIn, well done…

  74. Trainer_007 says: sent me the 5% and had me feeling good for about 5 seconds. (That’s the time it took me to do the mental math.) Clever ploy but not very nice.

  75. Linked In is a networking hub with a very astute and capable marketing team. Kudos for them. And I did feel curious about how I got to the 5% position, but not enough to go pay for the service.

  76. ali says:

    I believe that people might be interested in my profile, but when i got the email, i just thought about the amount of people that must had received it and thought it was just another marketing tool from Linkedin. And, how pathetic to share the news via twitter or email. How naive people can be in this day and age!? Or simply, very large egos. Me, cynical? very.

  77. Well, I didn’t get one of those, so… I definitely have zero interest in their Premium membership now, because, you know, I guess my profile just isn’t “good enough” or something. So for me – big backfire.

  78. Rob Harmer says:

    Do the math, 1%, 5% 10% the numbers are huge. Or are they?

    I don’t have that many contacts (~420) so my observation is that the number of people who are viewing other peoples profiles is small (in the premium class) hence it is easy to achieve 1%, 5% or 10% as the case may be.

    The cynic in me says that its a great marketing ploy to leverage people who are currently on free membership into paid memberships.

    If LinkedIn shifted 1% of it’s membership of 200M into paid membership by this marketing campaign then they have just banked circa $40M per month.

    All by stroking everyone’s ego. If they carpet bombed the whole “free option” audience which wouldn’t surprise me (I suspect they bombed the whole list as I am on a premium subscription) then they have achieved what they set out to do, tip you over the edge into paid membership.

    Very clever. You have been LinkedIn to a base level fee of ~$20 per month per person. Do the math, I should have had shares in LinkedIn.

    This is social engineering at its best, so how come most of you didn’t spot this?

    Based on my observations I think that Kelly Clay is right on the money!

  79. […] 10 million other LinkedIn users have also received the same message. A significant majority of the 10 million people who have received the message have used it to poke fun at the professional networking site. […]

  80. Some people feel totally duped! From the marketer perspective it looks like it’s just a huge LinkedIn Scheme:

  81. NadineTouzet says:

    I got the 10% version of it…

  82. Greg Alder says:

    When I first received the email, I asked my usual question: Is this spam? Satisfied that it wasn’t, I then resisted the temptation to tell the world – but didn’t know what else to do with this news. I agree that it’s probably a smart move by LinkedIn to improve user engagement and, as you suggest, prompt an upgrade to Pro. A good assessment.

  83. mkool says:

    haha..I got one such email also and I was one of the top 5%..and guess what..i hv less than 200 connections…os logically it does not make sense..i just ignored the email and sent to trash.. 🙂

  84. Startup Hive says:

    Top 1% and took advantage of a 1 month free upgrade but not renewing.

  85. Norm Miller says:

    Ya know, I really didn’t think about it in terms of a marketing ploy or anything other than what it sounded like, a congratulatory message. To tell you the truth it was nice to receive the top 5% e-mail and it really didn’t go much further than that. I don’t nor will I (at least in the foreseeable future) have a premium account and regardless I do enjoy the benefits of the networking capabilities of Linked in. Maybe your right and it was nothing more than a semi-successful marketing campaign (we don’t know how many people switched to a premium account), however I belong to other social networking sites and haven’t received so much as a, “thank you” from them, so regardless of the motivation it was successful because I am encouraged to stay on Linked in and continue networking and marketing myself, and should the need arise maybe I will get a premium account but I doubt sincerely it will be the result of a top 5% viewed e-mail.

  86. gene says:

    I got one. I felt good…then went on with my life…It was a brilliant move by linked in and only made me more impressed with their marketing strategy.

  87. Carla De Petris says:

    nice to know

  88. Charles says:

    Yes – i received it and it is complete BS. there is no way in the world I am in the top 5%

  89. jillalex says:

    I got the 5% email and I thought, wow, it doesn’t take much to get into the top 5%! I am not a Premium member but I do try to glimpse under the popover who may have peeked at my profile. It usually looks the same each time to me–someone from California, someone from Microsoft. It makes it hard to believe I’m really in the 5% if these glimpsers are reglimpsing–or are they unchanged week after week?
    Or, even sadder, could the 5% include how many times I look at my own profile? Now _that_ would make sense! 🙂

  90. ljs says:

    After reading your article I wrote to Linked In, asking how I qualified to be in the top 10%, even after reading their answer, still not sure, as I don’t have that many endorsements, am choosy about who I link up with and started my account around 4 years ago…must be in the area of “other specific details.” I don’t pay for anything and I don’t post my photo either, here is their answer:

    “As part of this, we’re acknowledging some of the members who make up our network. We reached out to members who were the some of the first to join LinkedIn, who’ve had the most profile views, who are the most connected in the world or a specific country, and members who’ve received the most skill endorsements. More specifically, we looked at those who have active accounts and were within the first million to register, have more than 100 profile views (excluding self-profile views), have more than 100 connections, and have the most endorsements for popular skills in their country.

    Unfortunately we aren’t sharing any other specific details, but want to thank you for being a part of the LinkedIn network.”

  91. […] in the following picture? You might have since 10,000,000 of LinkedIn users did and according to this post and that post the whole think was a marketing trick from LinkedIn that went viral and evidently a […]

  92. John LeDonne says:

    I received the top 5% email and I was very excited to know that all me attention and dedication to my profile paid off. I mentioned this to a good friend of mine and she informed me that this was a false campaign by LinkedIn. When I heard that I was incredibly disappointed and was really hoping that this was not true. I started my research to find the truth and came across your post. Based on the information of your post it sounds like this information provide to my about being in the top 5% could actually be true. Regardless in it is true or not, LinkedIn has yet to persuade me to pay for a professional account. LinkedIn has just not developed enough value in their product for me to want to pay for it. There is so much that they could do from a professional ongoing education platform to add value to its users and make money but they have not put their thinking caps on – I wish they would start thinking, hint, hint.

  93. brigiite says:

    Yes I did and I agree with you since I am not a paying member.

    I am also realizing how unprofessional Linked In has become since they are posting photos of all their members who have never even even met each other.
    This happened to me and as a Professional in my Industry,
    People are endorsing me from the US ,when I work in Malta EU and I had a one off Client who was actually an American tourist !

    Brigitte Pace


  94. Flavio Caron says:

    As a humble top 5% charter club member, I have not tweeted since tweeting is new to me, or facebooked since I do not use it yet. This being said, it is what it is, a nice statistic that can be used for our own marketing in a postive way. I will pass it on when it makes sense. As far as LinkedIn strategy…..sweet job all…..lots of talk going on isn’t there? 🙂

  95. marta ramiers says:

    I agree with your analysis – it was an interesting and clever campaign, and not particularly bothersome to any member. I for one look forward to hearing its impact on membership!…and yes, LinkedIn is a lot more useful professionally than any other socieal network…..

  96. JR Obdami says:

    Elite Status could have been a brilliant idea. Where was the Product Tie In? Forget about ego strokes. How about bragging rights and free profile buzz? What they should have done is slapped a Badge on each elite profile – Red for 5% and Blue for 1% – surrounded by a big gold ~^~ PREMIUM ~^~ wreath. The congratulations letter would explain that their Elite Status entitles them to ONE MONTH (reds) and THREE MONTHS (blues) premium service and list all the wonderful benefits that will terminate along with the Premium Wreath if not renewed.

    After three months, you’ve gotten used to that gold wreath on your Blue badge. And the Reds who didn’t renew after one month? Those badges look small and scream “I’m Cheap.” You consider that against a measly $16/mo…chicken feed for a Blue Elite… actually it’s just $9/mo on an annual basis if you factor in that the first three months were free. And it’s certainly been cool knowing who’s been looking at your Elite Profile.. . Lemme get my calculator…$16 x (1% to 5%) x 200M ….dang!

  97. Don Mingo says:

    I received a message that I was in the top 10%. My thoughts are, “Is it true? Is it a true reflection of who I am or what I do, does it matter or help my perception of myself, and do I really care?”

  98. Mike Ryan says:


    This is interesting information and thank you for providing this information.


  99. Mike Ryan says:


    One other question: Is there any way that one can find out where within the top 5% you place. As you said with 200 million users it just means you are in the top 10 million.

  100. Claudio Weinstein says:

    I received this and promptly flexed by peacock feathers! Ok, so a lot of other people got the e-mail too…So what? Anything I can do to support Linkedin is allright with me. In a corporate world of self serving internet conglomerates, I believe Linkedin is doing it right…So far.

    I deserve any status boost I get with Linkedin and I will flaunt it for all it’s worth…And to me it is worth plenty. With any luck you will discourage more people with your article and I will be probably 1% of the people who actually will promote the achievement.

    By my estimates, only about 10% of Linkedin profiles even care to be viewed. So that leaves 22 million as a universe. Now I am one in a million. That suits me fine.

    And by the way, I Don’t twitter/tweet or whatever it is, anything. So if there is going to be any calling out here, I call out Twitter as a Non-necessity and a heavy Vanity play. On the other hand, Linkedin is a Must have.

  101. Craig T says:

    Actually everyone can see who has viewed their profile , you may need to adjust your settings

  102. […] When I did my research, I got these comments on LinkedIn Help Forum from Moderator Derak Homann and a blog post from Kelly Clay […]

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