LinkedIn taps firm

San Francisco: Social networking site LinkedIn has hired Atomic PR after a competitive pitch among four finalists.

San Francisco: Social networking site LinkedIn has hired Atomic PR after a competitive pitch among four finalists.

LinkedIn is a Web application designed for professionals to create personal profiles listing their current and former jobs, their educational background, and professional affiliations. Members then link to each other to get job leads, hire employees, or keep in touch. LinkedIn currently has 7.8 million users.

Keith Rabois, LinkedIn's VP of business and corporate development, said the company will be launching an official PR campaign this month and will look to Atomic to get out a message about the networking site's worth to business professionals.

Details of the campaign are yet to be finalized, but Rabois said that some of it may be event-driven work.

"I think there is a yet uncovered story about why LinkedIn is more valuable than Facebook, MySpace, or YouTube," Rabois explained. "That story has yet to be written... We don't want media coverage about LinkedIn as just a successful business; we want coverage on why LinkedIn is an incredible business tool."

This month, LinkedIn introduced a new service for personal service providers ("PSPs") for people like doctors, house-cleaners, and car mechanics. LinkedIn users can recommend these professionals to other members.

LinkedIn is likely to face serious competition soon, as Hoovers expects to open its own business- networking social site.

In the final rounds of the pitch for Linked In, Atomic went up against Shift Communications, Racepoint Group, and Cohn & Wolfe.

The review process commenced in August. The company chose Atomic this month because the agency demonstrated the ability to communicate LinkedIn's value.

Billings for the agreement are undisclosed. There was no incumbent AOR, and LinkedIn had been handling PR duties mainly in-house.

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