Should You Take Advantage of LinkedIn Advertising?

By Sarah Lokitis | Oct 29, 2012
More Articles by Sarah

Are you advertising on Google? Facebook? What about LinkedIn? In today’s post, I will discuss the benefits of LinkedIn advertising, as well as best practices for using it.

LinkedIn ads are especially effective for B2B industries because of the ability to target LinkedIn ads to specific professional groups. In contrast to social networks like Facebook, users on LinkedIn are visiting the site with a professional mindset and may, in turn, be more willing to receive business messages.

LinkedIn lets advertisers target ads to users by important B2B demographics, such as seniority, industry, or a particular LinkedIn group. Targeting to specific titles, like to VP of Marketing, makes advertising very efficient by letting you reach the people you’ve identified as your target market or persona.

What are LinkedIn Text Ads?

LinkedIn text ads appear in various places on the site and can be set up with a minimum spend of $10 per day. There isn’t much real estate to capture with LinkedIn ads as they are set up with a 50×50 pixel image, a 25-character headline, and 75-character body copy. Every character and space in the image counts!

You can choose to pay LinkedIn with cost-per-click (CPC) or cost-per-1000-impressions (CPM). You can create several variations of your ad and set up Google Analytics tracking on your destination URL to determine which variation drives the most clicks and leads.

A best practice for LinkedIn advertising is to direct ads to a page on your site or landing page to convert as a lead through a contact form. Ads can also be set up to land on your company’s profile page on LinkedIn in an effort to grow followers and awareness.

Optimize Performance

Before you write any ad copy, figure out who your audience is – or who you want them to be. Figure out if you want to target by seniority, company, LinkedIn group, or a mix of several different aspects of your audience. Depending on the size of these groups, you may want to create a few different campaigns to test performance.

Unless you are setting up a branding campaign, include a strong call to action. Users need to be told what you want them to do whether it is Attend a Webinar or Request a Free Trial.

Another helpful tip is to be aware of the color scheme on LinkedIn – blue, white, and gray. If your image blends in with this layout, users eyes may not be drawn to your ad and, it’s likely they will see the brightly colored image next to yours, instead!

To improve ad performance, make sure that the specific offer and copy matches your targeting. Monitor your click-through rate (CTR) on LinkedIn and your visit-to-lead conversion rate by setting up goals in Google Analytics or using marketing automation to determine the effectiveness of your advertising.

What do you think?

Have you experimented with LinkedIn advertising? Has it worked for you? Or, if not, what were some of the challenges you faced? Did your ad not get enough impressions or was your targeting too broad? As an advertiser on LinkedIn, I’d love to hear about your experience. Please share your thoughts below in the comments or find me on Twitter @Lokitis.

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