Can a single post start a worldwide movement? You betcha. On 22 May 2017 a lone LinkedIn Lover uploaded a quick post onto the platform that started a worldwide movement. I’m very proud to say that Anna McAfee is a fellow Australian, but even the down to earth nature of a ‘sheila’ from down-under couldn’t have predicted the growth of this movement that has grown to 350 cities and 34 countries in 12 months.
As you probably know by now this simple concept to bring a local element to this global platform started with this post on the left. And it was this single post that was noticed by Alex, Erik and Manu. Together they collaborated in the true spirit of the LinkedInLocal catch cry and brought the #connectinghumans to life by starting more LinkedInLocal meet ups in their own native London, Brussels, New York & Toronto.
It was actually Alex’s post about her first event that caught my attention and like other early adopters I quickly realised this was the start of something big that I just had to be a part of. So I did not hesitate to call Anna to talk about bringing the events to Sydney and it was during one of these calls I strongly encouraged Anna to start registering all the social media accounts pertaining to LinkedInLocal (Twitter, Facebook etc) as I noticed they were all still available whilst I was registering LinkedInLocalSydney.
I immediately got in contact with Jane Jackson, a long time associate, as I’m a lead generation specialist but don’t ever dabble in careers and recruitment. I figured it would look really weird if anyone at a Sydney event had a job seeking question and I didn’t know anything about it. So Jane and I would be a great partnership to co-host the events together as that’s her domain.
When I found out Anna was coming to Sydney on holidays in November 2017, I just knew I had to create an event around those dates and bring LinkedIn Local to Sydney’s South for the first time where a large majority of my network lies.
Here’s the never before release footage of how LinkedIn Local got started and where it was up to from Anna herself as our special guest.
While the hosts around the world were waiting for the website to be completed, I realised that these events were transcending countries, state borders, races, social status and importantly, languages. But without LinkedIn having the auto-translate function as it is now currently testing, I was trying to work out how we could see a group photo and instantly recognise it was a LinkedIn Local event no matter where in the world it was taken.
What I’ve really enjoyed observing is how the different cities have morphed the original concept to suit the local community. I’m not going to talk about those hosts who have warped more than morphed the original concept into a lead generation exercise, much to the chagrin of the founders and legitimate hosts who hold true to the no-pitch, no-sales concept of these events. But it’s truly exciting to see the global events being rolled out in all different ways; from large panel events in Ottawa (with Joel Hansen at the forefront) with 200 attendees, the speed networking events of Eindhoven, Manchester’s co-working workshops that include going down slides with (Amanda Newman & Kirsty James), Launceston’s, formal breakfasts headed by Jeff Ross and even a tropical LinkedIn Local was held on a beach (which I think was Bali)!
Sydney has followed the original concept very closely with the focus not being on sponsors or speakers and instead a cocktail style, drinks, nibbles and some of the latest LinkedIn news with a few tips. In fact we decided to do away with speakers all together and call up people from the audience to be the impromptu speakers on the event, truly showcasing the attendees and concentrating on their stories and getting to know the people behind the profiles rather than the offers of the speakers.
All this attention has worked it’s way up to the very top of LinkedIn with the CEO Jeff Weiner supporting the community and making #LinkedInLocal a listed hashtag that people can follow and use within the platform.
The map right at the top of this article and below is covered with 241 pins. The green pins represent those locations that were up and running when I first posted a map in October 2017. There were 90 locations then. Although I believe it has grown to 350 locations worldwide now, I’m not sure everyone is using the main hashtag that bonds us but only using their local area, as I just couldn’t find them.
I searched for everyone I could find over the last month using the official website now up and running LinkedLocally.com, the company pages listed here on LinkedIn, Twitter handles, Instagram and even Google. But I’m still missing a few unfortunately.
The locations below in bold match the green pins and were the ones highlighted in my original post back in October 2017. Here is the list of 241 worldwide LinkedInLocals. So sorry if I made any spelling mistakes, but this was a lot of collation. ;o)
Aarhus, Aberdeen, Abuja, Adelaide, Ahmedabad, Albany, Alberta, Amsterdam, Annapolis, Argentina, Athens, Atlanta, Auckland, Awfis
Bali, Baltimore, Barcelona, Basingstoke, Bataiva, Bath, Belfast, Belgrade, Bengaluru, Berkeley, Berlin, Billings, Birmingham, Blacktown, Bogota, Bordeaux, Boston, Boynton Beach, Brampton, Brisbane, Bristol, Brussels, Budapest, Buffalo
Calgary, Cambridge, Canberra, Cape Cod, Cape Town, Cairns, Central Coast, Chandigarh, Charlotte, Chennai, Chester, Chicago, Christchurch, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Coffs Harbour, Colchester, Columbus, Connecticut, Copenhagen, Cork, Crewe, Croydon, Cumin
Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Dubai, Dublin, Dubuque, Dundee, Dunedin
Ealing, Edinburgh, Edmonton, Eindhoven, Etobicoke
Fife, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Worth, Frankfort
Geelong, Glasgow, Gold Coast, Greensboro, Guam, Gujarat, Gurugram, Guwahati
The Hague, Halifax, Hamilton, Hampton, Hartford, Hillingdon, Hong Kong, Huber, Hull, Hyderabad
Ibadan, Indore, Inverness, Ipswich, Izmir
Jaipur, Jammu, Jeddah, Johannesburg, Jupiter
Kansas City, Karratha, Katowice, Kigali, Kingston, Kochi, Kolkata, Krakow, Kuala Lampur
Lagos, Lahore, Las Vegas, Launceston, Lausanne, Leeds, Lexington, Lichfield, Liege, Lisbon, London, Long Island, Louisville, Lucknow, Luxembourg
Maastricht, Madison, Manchester, Manilla, Marseille, Marylands, Melbourne (AUS), Melbourne (USA), Miami, Milan, Milton, Minnesota, Mississauga, Monaco, Montpellier, Montreal, Moray, Mumbai, Muscat
Namur, Napa Valley, Nashville, Navi, Nelson, New Delhi, New Jersey, New Orleans, New York, Newark, Nigeria (not sure specifically), Noida, North Carolina, Norwich, Nottingham, Nova
Orlando, Otago, Ottawa
Palm Beach, PappRika, Peel, Permian Basin, Perth, Peterborough, Petropolis, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pinellas, Pittsburg, Poona, Portland, Portsmouth, Poznan, Princeton, Pune, Punjab
Quebec, Rennes, Rio de Janeiro, Rochester, Ruwanda (not sure specifically)
Sacramento, Saint Louis, Salt Lake City, Salzburg, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, San Mateo, Sao Paulo, Seattle, Selangor, Sentosa, Shanghai, Silicon Beach, Singapore, Sion, Solem, Springfield, Stamford, Sunnyvale, Sunshine Coast, Swansea, Sydney
Tampa, Tampere, Tilburg, Toronto, Toulouse, Tournai, Townsville
Vancouver, Vannes, Veluwe, Versailles, Victoria BC, Virginia Beach
Warszawa, Washington DC, Waterloo, Winnipeg, Winston, Wroclaw
To my partner in crime Jane, what started as a partnership of complementary skills and mutual respect, has turned into a great friendship full of laughs and great collaborative ideas. Thank you my friend.
With thanks to Yve Lavine for all the photographs in this post as the offical #LinkedInLocalSydney photographer.
And John Marrett, of LinkedInLocal Montreal this post with the updated map is for you ;o)
#LinkedInLocal #LinkedInLocalAnniversary #LinkedInNinja