I recently set up an ID on LinkedIn after someone I know invited me to join it, then people I used to work with invited me to join their "network" too, then a couple of recruitment agencies I used used to recruit asked me to join their networks, then a couple of recruitment agents contacted me to suggest a few jobs I might want to apply for, then I heard on Radio 4 "In Business" that some companies were checking up on people via LinkedIn - i.e. they were contacting people in candidates networks and informally asking for a reference. At that point I decided to add some useful information there. I've now set up an Alumni Group for a company I used to work for and invited a few ex-colleagues to join and now have 17 people in the group after only 5 days. Several people are those I didn't actually know, its interesting how the word has spread about it.
Having spent more time on LinkedIn recently I have been impressed with how clever it is - the functionality is quite neat the way it presents you with information about your network and their activities, etc. It's also very quick - to explore how they do this I did a search on Google and as usual got distracted with some background to the company behind it. The key founder is a guy called Reid Hoffman and at the Wikpedia link there's a link to a talk he gave recently on "his thoughts on launching and growing a successful technology business". This covered some stuff directly relevant to MediBlog, one of the immediate messages that hit home was that he was not too interested in the actual revenue streams, instead the focus of a start up should be to have ideas about "placeholders" for your advertising or other revenue ideas plus:
1) How do you get your first million users?
2) How do you get to ten million users?
That is quite scary, the implication being that a start-up should plan to have capacity for 1-10 million users without necessarily have all the revenue to support it. That will require some confidence when we have to move off the initial set of hardware - we probably need to think about that one day soon.