A strategy guide for using a semi-pointless social network in all the wrong ways.
Since its founding in 2002, LinkedIn has quickly become one of the most popular video games of all time. It currently has roughly 530 million users, and was purchased by Microsoft in 2016 for $26.2 billion, the same company that also purchased two other trendy games, Minecraft (2014) and GitHub (2018).
For those unfamiliar, LinkedIn is a 2D, turn-based MMORPG that sets itself apart from its competitors by placing players not in a fantasy world of orcs and goblins, but in the treacherous world of business. Players can choose from dozens of character classes (e.g., Entrepreneurs, Social Media Mavens, Finance Wizards) each with their own skill sets and special moves (Power Lunch; Signal Boost; Invoice Dodge). They gain “experience” by networking, obtaining endorsements from other users, and posting inspirational quotes from Elon Musk.
The general goal of LinkedIn (the game) is to find and connect with as many people on LinkedIn (the website) as possible, in order to secure vaguely defined social capital and potentially further one’s career, which allows the player to purchase consumer goods of gradually increasing quality. Like many games, it has dubious real-life utility. The site’s popularity and success, like that of many social networks, depends heavily on obfuscating this fact. This illusion of importance creates a sense of naive trust among its users. This makes it easy to exploit.
To novices, the game appears to be open-ended, and impossible to “beat” in any clearly defined sense. But it is, in fact, possible to win at LinkedIn. I have done so, and you can too, by following this short strategy guide.
One: Create The Ultimate BusinessmanThe most important part of winning LinkedIn is creating the perfect profile. Set your location to New York, San Francisco, or Los Angeles (the only three cities that matter) — or better yet, just describe yourself as “bi-coastal.” Juke your qualifications with high-powered finance jobs and an ivy league school or two (more on this later). Steal a headshot from the Real Businessmen Tumblr to use for your profile photo, and insert stock photos of people shaking hands and taking meetings to both exude power and demonstrate that you’re no stranger to making high-powered deals.