LinkedIn reaches for the stars with first-ever TV ad to debut during Oscars

LinkedIn is hoping to grab the attention of millions of viewers by airing its first-ever TV advert during the Academy Awards telecast this Sunday.

After a troubled start to the year, which saw its shares plummet 40 percent ahead of its fourth quarter earnings call, LinkedIn is seeking new pastures from which to promote its platform.

Set in space, the company’s first TV spot features a voiceover from LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, who recalls some inspirational wisdom gained from his father. Meanwhile, the onscreen text describes NASA’s decision to use the platform to seek out potential astronauts last year, which was met with an overwhelming response as 3 million members qualified for the positions.

Part of the company’s “You’re Closer Than You Think” campaign, the advert attempts to brand LinkedIn as a recruitment network that can help its members achieve the loftiest of career ambitions.

Judging by the ad’s wistful tone and soundtrack, which prominently features the track California Stars from dad rock stalwarts Wilco, its targeted audience isn’t the millennial Snapchat crowd. Instead, it is likely catering to LinkedIn’s most popular age-bracket (30- to 49-year-olds), which made up 27 percent of its overall user base in 2015.

LinkedIn is hoping that the advert’s intergalactic theme will also resonate with fans of The Martian, reports Advertising Age. The popular sci-fi (which also received a publicity boost thanks to its NASA tie-in) has garnered seven nominations at this year’s Oscars.

“A TV ad during the Oscars provides [a] broad reach platform and is the perfect opportunity to launch our own story,” Nick Bartle, VP of marketing and communications at LinkedIn, told us via email.

“We believe that everyone should pursue the biggest goals imaginable. There are moments when those accomplishments are celebrated, and we believe the Oscars is one of those moments.”

Bartle added that in addition to the Oscars, the clip will air during the Jimmy Kimmel Live!: After the Oscars special and during various ad breaks throughout the fortnight following the awards.

LinkedIn currently boasts 400 million members, the majority of which (124 million) are based in the U.S. Commenting on the company’s strategy for 2016, Weiner stated: “Our roadmap will be supported by greater emphasis on simplicity, prioritization, and ultimate ROI and investment impact.”

Emerging Tech

From the moon to mass production: 10 pieces of modern tech indebted to Apollo

This article is part of Apollo: A Lunar Legacy, a multi-part series that explores the technological advances behind Apollo 11, their influence on modern day, and what's next for the moon. You may have heard that freeze-dried food was…
Emerging Tech

Life after launch: Inside the massive effort to preserve NASA’s space artifacts

The Apollo 11 mission put a man on the moon, but NASA didn’t necessarily preserve every step of the process. Researchers are trying to rescue the history on Earth and on the moon.
Emerging Tech

Dark side of the moon: Why lunar landing conspiracies flourish online

Social media platforms seemed lovely at first, places to share dumb jokes and the minutiae of everyday life. Those sites have an underbelly, however, and have been a breeding ground for conspiracy theories.
Movies & TV

Apple TV+: Everything we know about Apple’s Netflix-style streaming service

Apple has an ambitious slate of original programming it has been developing for its streaming service Apple TV+, and now we know some details about where and when we'll be able to see it. Here's everything we know about Apple TV+ so far.

Stop Facebook from tracking you and using targeted ads with these tips

Facebook and businesses that use the site track what pages you like, your political affiliation, and even try to guess your race. All of this is done so the site can target you with relevant ads. Here's how to opt out.
Social Media

YouTube offers creators more ways to boost their bank accounts

Whether you're a top YouTube creator or just breaking into the game, the video-streaming site has some new features designed to help you please your fans and increase your bank balance.

President Trump attacks Facebook Libra, says it’s not dependable like the dollar

President Trump attacked Facebook's new Libra cryptocurrency on Thursday, claiming it will have "little standing or dependability" and that Facebook would need to seek a banking charter if it wanted to move forward.
Social Media

The FTC will hit Facebook with a $5 billion fine over privacy violations

Facebook has agreed to a $5 billion settlement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over its numerous “privacy missteps." Once it goes through, this would be the largest FTC fine for a major technology company – and a huge chunk of…

Lua uses animated emotions to help you keep your plants happy and healthy

The Lua Smart Planter is currently seeking funding on Indiegogo to make this smiling plant pot a reality. The device helps you take care of your plants by showing their needs through a series of animated faces.

Flex your thumbs (and your brain) with these fun texting games

Gaming consoles keep getting more advanced, but you can still have fun with the good old Latin alphabet. Here are our picks for the best texting games, so you can make the most fun out of that limited data plan or basic cell phone.

Facebook says it won’t launch Libra until regulators are happy

Facebook says it won’t roll out its Libra cryptocurrency until it’s fully addressed regulatory concerns – though it added that regulation of the currency itself would largely happen in Switzerland, not the U.S.
Social Media

Twitter’s mobile-inspired dark mode desktop makeover isn’t just about looks may have a new look, but it's one that already feels familiar. The new design for Twitter's desktop version borrows heavily from the platform's mobile apps, with a sleeker look, a new dark mode, and easier navigation.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Twitter’s redesign, Libra’s possible delay, Neuralink

On this episode of DT Live, we take a look at the biggest trending stories in tech, including a Twitter redesign, Facebook's delay of Libra, Neuralink's first public event, growing food in space, and the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11.

The U.S. Senate really doesn’t like Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency plans

Facebook Libra had its first big regulatory test when Calibra head David Marcus appeared before the Senate Banking Committee. It didn’t go well. Senators of both parties had major concerns about Facebook's proposed cryptocurrency.