Your Google Ads strategy is stalling, while your Facebook Ads campaigns are not delivering the ROI you expected.
Have you tried LinkedIn Ads yet?
If you’re looking for a new advertising channel to generate traffic, leads and customers, LinkedIn might be the right social network for you, especially if you’re in a business-to-business industry.
According to 2021 data, nearly 70% of B2B marketing teams worldwide have already acquired customers using a marketing strategy based on advertising campaigns with LinkedIn.
LinkedIn Ads, the advertising platform of the professional social network founded in 2002 in Mountain View, California, has its own specificities, just like other major advertising networks, such as Google Ads, Facebook Ads or Instagram Ads. With LinkedIn Ads, we are not exactly in the SEM (Search Engine Marketing) type of advertising, nor in the usual display or social advertising.
LinkedIn Ads have their own characteristics and ways of working, as we will see in the rest of this article.
Before deciding whether LinkedIn’s advertising platform is worth testing for your company, you should first ask yourself the following question: “Would a professional, in front of his or her computer screen at the office, be likely to be interested in my product or service offering?”
The answer to this question is key to knowing whether your target audience is likely to be present on the professional social network, and therefore whether implementing an advertising strategy with LinkedIn Ads can be synonymous with success.
But, as we said before, the LinkedIn Ads platform is usually perfectly suited for B2B marketing.
So if you’re selling something that business owners and professionals are interested in, you should look into the possibilities LinkedIn offers and test its capabilities.
In this guide, we’ll walk you through the five essential steps to setting up effective advertising campaigns on the LinkedIn social network advertising platform, and explain everything you need to know about creating and managing self-service advertising campaigns on LinkedIn through its various ad types, whether Sponsored Content, Message Ads, Dynamic Ads or Text Ads.
All of this is done from Campaign Manager, LinkedIn’s advertising platform.
So before you start launching your LinkedIn advertising campaigns, you simply need to create a LinkedIn Campaign Manager account.
This can be done very quickly by clicking here.
Campaign Manager is a convenient tool with an easy-to-use dashboard that allows you to set a budget, target audience, determine specific goals and have full control over the progress and timing of your online advertising campaigns.
In addition, the LinkedIn Ads platform includes several features that will help you improve your campaigns and achieve your advertising and business goals, including
Dynamic statistics and visual data that match only the criteria, and search and filtering preferences you set.
A summary of all actions your campaigns generate, including clicks, likes, shares, and comments, as well as new subscribers to your LinkedIn account.
Details of the demographic categories of LinkedIn members who clicked on your ads, available for each of your campaigns and ads.
Once you’ve created your LinkedIn Campaign Manager account and completed an overview of the tool’s capabilities, it’s time to create your LinkedIn ad campaigns.
Step #1: Choose specific goals
For each campaign you’re going to create with LinkedIn Ads, you’ll need to choose your primary goals.
The professional social network offers you 3 main options:
With an objective related to what is called brand awareness, you have the goal of raising awareness of your brand through campaigns focused on the number of impressions.
The campaigns called “consideration” can concern the number of visits to your website. In this case, you want to encourage more people to visit your website.
It can also be about engagement, a type of objective related to increasing the number of clicks or subscribers to your LinkedIn Page.
Finally, the video format can help you tell the story of your product or brand and thus fit into this type of objective.
By conversion objective, we mean lead generation. With LinkedIn Ads, you can generate leads using pre-filled forms that include LinkedIn member data.
But it can also be other types of conversions on your website, which LinkedIn calls “website conversion”. This ranges from lead acquisition to white paper downloads.
Step #2: Select your targeting criteria
The selection of your targeting criteria, what LinkedIn calls “audience”, works in the same way, regardless of the type of advertising you have chosen, which we will see in the next step.
Remember that targeting is a crucial element of any successful advertising campaign, and not only with LinkedIn, which will strongly condition your engagement and conversion rates.
To reach your target audience, a sine qua non condition for the success of your LinkedIn advertising campaigns, the social network and its advertising platform provide you with powerful targeting tools.
You can choose from more than 20 categories of “audience attributes”.
Here are the main ones:
Areas of interest
Step #3: Select your LinkedIn ad format
Now that you have your Campaign Manager account, have chosen goals, and have performed audience voting targeting, it’s time to create ads and manage your ad campaigns, via different ad formats.
You can use Sponsored Content, Message Ads, Dynamic Ads or Text Ads, or a combination of all these types of ads.
Let’s see what are the specificities of each of them:
Sponsored content ads are a very effective way to reach your target audience and connect with professionals who matter to your business.
This type of ad appears directly in the news feed of the LinkedIn professionals you want to target.
It comes in three different formats:
Single Image Ads
With Sponsored Content ads, you can achieve the following objectives:
Strengthen your brand awareness, capture leads and “nurture” them at each stage of your sales cycle
Target a quality audience with accurate and reliable data from LinkedIn profiles
Deliver native advertising to a highly engaged audience, both on desktop and mobile, directly to your target audience’s professional news feeds.
As the name implies, Message Ads reach your prospects directly in their LinkedIn messaging, the professional exchange place where people on the social network usually spend a lot of time.
If you create Message Ads, you can do three things:
Send messages directly to your prospects to get them to take action
Measure the effectiveness of your campaign by analyzing which businesses are responding to your messages
Achieve higher engagement and response rates than with a traditional email marketing campaign
LinkedIn’s Dynamic Ads allow you to reach leads by serving personalized ads based on your target’s profile information.
By selecting a Dynamic Ad format, you can customize your LinkedIn ad campaigns for each member of your target audience on a large scale.
This type of ad uses certain data from the prospect’s LinkedIn profile, such as their company name, job title and photo to personalize ads, and ultimately boost your ad engagement rates.
Here are the three formats available with Dynamic Ads :
Spotlight Ad: this option is ideal to generate traffic to your website or encourage visitors to take action
Follower Ad: with Follower Ad, you can promote your LinkedIn page and encourage social network members to follow your page with a simple click on your ad
Jobs Ad: as the name suggests, Jobs Ads will help you increase the number of relevant candidates for your job offers by customizing the ads seen by the talents you are looking for
Text Ads look like simple ads, but they are actually very effective.
They are charged on a cost per click or cost per impression basis.
Here’s what Text Ads will allow you to do:
Create ads with ease and launch a campaign with a few clicks of the mouse
Pay only for ads that work, on a per click or per impression basis
Customize your advertising messages and content, based on the profile of the professionals you want to reach
Step 4: Set your budget and timeline
Before you can get your campaign underway, there are two major elements that need to be defined: the budget and the schedule.
You have three options:
Cost per click (CPC), which is most often the system used in campaigns involving an action, such as lead generation or event registration
The cost per impression (CPM) is totally suitable for advertising campaigns whose main objective is awareness
Cost per send (CPS) is used for campaigns where messages are sent. Each message sent is charged.
Apart from the above options, you also need to adjust your bid proposal, daily budget, total budget and the start and end dates of your campaign.
Step #5: Measure the results of your campaign and make any necessary adjustments.
As soon as your LinkedIn ad campaign is launched, you need to observe and analyze its performance. Access your ad statistics on the dashboard provided in your Campaign Manager account, simply by selecting the campaign you want to evaluate.
You’ll be able to track crucial data like the number of impressions, clicks, and “social actions” of your campaign.
What we call social actions on social networks are actions taken by LinkedIn members who freely interact with your content. This is organic engagement.
Using this data, you can improve your LinkedIn Ads campaigns and performance by refining your targeting, adjusting your budget, and testing different types of ads.