The purpose of a professional network is to help you grow your business, improve your career, network for jobs, meet like-minded people, and even help save your butt if you get in trouble as fellow members rally around you. Professional networking is a way where people connect to the industry experts irrespective of offline or online. A process that fosters the exchange of information and ideas among individuals or groups that share a common interest. Networking may fall into one of two categories - social or business. In the latter category, one of the implicit objectives is to form professional relationships that may boost one's future business and employment prospects. Professional networking can be defined as a marketing tool or a marketing method that helps us to create new opportunities, share knowledge and find new ideas through networks of like-minded business people. It can be very helpful to share information by utilizing a business network of a group of business owners and/or employees with common interests and goals. People trust preferentially people they know already, either directly or through another trusted person. This means that gaining that trust with new people is much easier when you have a strong network. A professional network is some sort of connected community of people, whether it’s an online community.
LinkedIn is a business and employment-oriented social networking service that operates via websites and mobile apps. Founded on December 28, 2002, and launched on May 5, 2003, it is mainly used for professional networking, including employers posting jobs and job seekers posting their CVs. As of 2015, most of the company's revenue came from selling access to information about its members to recruiters and sales professionals. As of September 2016, LinkedIn had more than 467 million accounts, out of which more than 106 million are active. LinkedIn allows members (both workers and employers) to create profiles and "connections" to each other in an online social network which may represent real-world professional relationships. Members can invite anyone (whether an existing member or not) to become a connection. The "gated-access approach" (where contact with any professional requires either an existing relationship or an introduction through a contact of theirs) is intended to build trust among the service's members. LinkedIn participated in the EU's International Safe Harbor Privacy Principles.
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