LinkedIn is Bigger than MySpace
Perhaps fueled by the publicity surrounding its recent IPO, LinkedIn is now the second-biggest social network, according to comScore. In June LinkedIn drew 33.9 million unique visitors, up from 33.5 million in May; meanwhile MySpace dropped from 34.9 million unique visitors to 33.5 million over the same period. In June Twitter had 30.6 million unique visitors to its Web site (I can't find any data for Twitter activity from apps and third-party Web sites, which have made up a big chunk of its audience in the past, and which aren't always counted in the big "unique visitors" number).
This is obviously good news for LinkedIn, although the timing makes me think the increase was indeed largely due to the IPO publicity: after oscillating in a range between 20.4 million and 28.5 million over the course of 2010, according to comScore, LinkedIn's sudden growth spurt began after it first announced its plans to go public in December 2010. Of course, if a significant number of those new visitors were potential investors, they might have been far more valuable (in the short term, at least) than new members who joined to actually, like, use the site.
I don't mean to sound too skeptical, as recent surveys make it clear that social media is the place to be for online recruiting. A few days ago I wrote about a Jobvite survey of over 800 human resources and recruiting professionals which found that 89% are now using social media to recruit, up from 83% in 2010. And LinkedIn is obviously the dominant force here: the proportion of execs using LinkedIn for recruiting rose from 78% in 2010 to 87% this year.
Anyway the real story here, in my humble op-ed, is the precipitous, continuing decline of MySpace, which highlights the remarkable volatility of the social media universe. From a peak of 69.2 million in February 2010, MySpace steadily declined over the course of last year to just 50.1 million in December and now 33.5 million today -- shedding over half its monthly unique visitors in less than a year and a half. Ouch!