LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) released its earnings report for the first three months of 2013 this afternoon after the market closed. The company recorded earnings of $0.45 per share for the quarter of the year on revenue totaling $324.07. On today’s market, stock in LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) trended up, finishing the day at $201.67.

LinkedIn Corporation

In anticipation of this report, analysts were expecting LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) to record earnings of 31 cents per share on revenue of $318 million. In the first three months of 2012, the company showed earnings of 15 cents per share on revenue of $188 million. In the hours before the company released its report, whisper numbers indicated that it would beat estimates by a substantial margin.

The biggest stories for potential, or current, investors in LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) are the company’s ongoing redesign of its services, the firm’s attitude toward pricing in the coming year, and, most importantly, the firm’s share price, which appears almost out of control.

Linkedin Corp (NYSE:LNKD) Shares Increased

Since the start of 2013, shares in LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) have increased by more than 70 percent. The company’s shares leaped in February, after an exceptional earnings report made the market reevaluate the firm. That reevaluation is ongoing, but it appears the market sees the company as worth more than $20 billion, and all of it based on future growth.

LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) has some serious advantages over other social networking companies as an investment. The firm has a proven way to garner revenue, and it has been able to grow its business in a stable manner. The company has no competitors exactly, but there are many substitutes out there, and, with web based business, a new competitor could arrive at any minute.

The company is a good one. It appears to be managed well, and it seems well loved by its users. These are all good reasons to invest in a company, and many have been following this rationale to arrive at an investment in LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD). The company is valued at more than one thousand times 2012 earnings, however.

Many investors, and many analysts, feel that LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) has what it takes to stay around and improve its business. That’s exactly what they’re betting on. A more skeptical, or contrarian investor might ask exactly how wide the company’s moat is, and how likely it is that some one will offer the same service, but better.