How to scale your business with Linkedin ads

With 645 million users, LinkedIn could be a powerful marketing force for growing your reach and boosting brand awareness, especially if you find yourself in the B2B space. In fact, Linkedin is the second most popular marketing channel among B2B marketers, just behind Facebook.

In addition to the sheer size of the potential reach, LinkedIn added a few new tools that can really take your marketing to the whole next level. In addition to upgraded targeting capabilities, Linkedin now offers objective-based advertising making it possible to run campaigns geared towards a specific marketing goal, such as brand awareness, engagement, and lead generation.

Linkedin ad types

Linkedin offers several ad types that differ in terms of format and placement.

Sponsored content. 

With sponsored content ads, you can promote content that has already been published on your LinkedIn company page. Sponsored content ads are available in three formats (single image, video, and carousel) and you can either pay per click or per a thousand impressions.

Sponsored content ads are great for driving engagement because they appear in the users’ news feed, and feed engagement has doubled from 2017 to 2018. 

Direct sponsored content.

Unlike sponsored content, direct sponsored content ads are not published on your LinkedIn Company Page, but they still appear in the users’ news feed and look like a regular post. 

So, direct sponsored content is an excellent choice if you want to A/B test different ad variants without clattering your page feed. 

Sponsored InMail ads.

Sponsored InMail ad format allows you to send direct messages to LinkedIn users. These messages appear just like regular InMail messages in users’ inboxes and are sent out only when the target recipients are online. 

Sponsored InMail ads are measured on a ‘cost-per-send’ basis, and include a custom greeting, a call-to-action button, and a link to your website. So, they are great for driving traffic and getting conversions. In fact, sponsored Inmail ads are more effective at generating conversions than email marketing, according to LinkedIn.

Text Ads.

Text ads are shown only on desktop where they are displayed on the right rail of the users’ news feed. They are purchased either on a pay-per-click or cost-per-impression basis.

Text ads are great for testing your ad creatives since LinkedIn allows you to create and run multiple ad variants in one campaign. They are also great for boosting your brand awareness since they have the lowest CPM (cost per impression) compared to other ad formats that are available on the platform.

Dynamic ads

Dynamic ads are highly personalized ads that leverage information from LinkedIn member profiles to display a uniquely targeted ad to each viewer by including their profile picture and addressing them by name. 

Similar to text ads, dynamic ads are also displayed in the right rail of the news feed. If you want to create a dynamic ad, you would need to contact the LinkedIn team.

Dynamic ads are great for boosting your brand awareness and expanding your fan base on the platform.They are also great for getting leads – users can submit you their opt-in information right in the ad without having to type it.

Best practices for running successful LinkedIn ads:

Hopefully, you now have an idea of which ad format would be most suitable given your advertising objectives. But before you rush off to create your first ad campaign, make sure to familiarise yourself with the following best practices to get the most bang for your advertising buck:

1. Know your target audience

Before you get started with LinkedIn advertising, it is critical that you know who you are trying to reach (i.e. your target audience). So, make sure you have your marketing persona/s at hand when you are selecting your LinkedIn targeting options, but be careful not to ‘overtarget’ since the more targeting parameters you include, the smaller your audience will be.

2. Make your call-to-actions crystal clear

No matter what you are trying to accomplish with LinkedIn advertising – whether it is boosting brand awareness, driving traffic or growing your followers’ count – you won’t do it without the right CTA. 

Make sure to craft a CTA that is congruent with your advertising objective, and position is in a way that makes it stand out from the rest of the ad. A CTA that is too muddled with the rest of the ad copy is far too easy to ignore, so keep things simple! 

3. Use large images that feature people

According to LinkedIn, ads featuring people can boost your CTR by as much as 160%. 

It is also best to use larger images instead of standard thumbnails. Content with larger images enjoys a 38% higher click-through rate. LinkedIn recommends 1200 x 627 image size

Also, make sure to test how your images are displayed on mobile before starting your ad campaign since the overwhelming majority of LinkedIn engagement comes from mobile.

4. Test your ads

The great thing about LinkedIn is that the platform allows you to create as many as 15 ad variants in one campaign. So if you want to get the most bang for your advertising buck, make sure to create at least 2-3 ads per campaign. 

Once you run your campaign, the platform’s algorithm will automatically display your best-performing ad variants i.e. the ones that are getting the most click-throughs. You can also choose to monitor your ad performance and stop underperforming variations manually in the Campaign Manager.

LinkedIn ads may not be the one-size-fits-all advertising solution for all businesses. That being said, they are an excellent choice if you are in the B2B space and/or your target audience are high profile decision-makers at the top hierarchical organization level. If you think LinkedIn ads are a good fit for your business, follow the tips outlined in this article and you will start gaining traction in no time!

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