With more then 500 Million professionals on the platform, LinkedIn provides a unique advertising opportunity. Since helpful, informative content makes the platform go – round, LinkedIn Advertising can be a great way to add fuel to B2B inbound marketing campaigns, promoting content throughout the buyer’s journey and filling up lead pipelines. While LinkedIn provides a great opportunity for B2B marketers, B2C marketers have found opportunities on the social network as well. LinkedIn offers 5 advertising options including:
- Sponsored Content
- Sponsored Inmail
- Text Ads
- Dynamic Ads
- Programmatic Display Ads
Sponsored Content, Inmail and the text ads are the most readily accessible to the largest swath of advertisers. With Dynamic and Programmatic ads available through agency partners.
How is LinkedIn Advertising Priced
Like other paid social advertising, LinkedIn advertising can accommodate budgets of all sizes and work to help achieve your marketing goals.
What you pay for LinkedIn advertising depends on what you set as a budget and can be stopped and started as you wish. Like other online advertising, LinkedIn is an auction based system, meaning your ads compete with other advertisers, to be seen by a similar audience. LinkedIn offers three ways to control your budgets:
- Total Budget: You can set a total budget for a campaign
- Daily Budget: You can set a budget for a daily spend amount on campaign that run perpetually.
- Bids: You can set the maximum you are willing to spend per click, impression of delivered InMail.
What works best? That depends. Play around with pricing and bidding to see which drives the results you are looking for.
LinkedIn Advertising for B2B, B2C or both?
Is LinkedIn only for B2B advertising? It’s true that LinkedIn is a powerful network for B2B marketers. But B2C marketers have also found targeting business professionals through the network a possibility.
Take Olive Garden’s efforts to attract the office lunch with their “Break Lunch Block Campaign” cleverly placed and timed ads that appeared on the social network as offices across the country try to figure out what’s for lunch?
How do I Target LinkedIn Ads
With more then 550 Million members, LinkedIn is a no brainer for the B2B advertiser. According to LinkedIn – 4 out of 5 of their members drive business decisions. With that kind of reach, B2B marketers have direct access to influencers and decision makers across all kinds of B2B purchases. But how does targeting on LinkedIn Ads even work?
Customized Linkedin Ad Targeting
From website retargeting to integrating your email lists, creating custom, matched audiences is a powerful way to nurture your known prospects, leads and contacts who are actively in the research and buying process. Make sure you install the LinkedIn Insights tag (more on that later)
Prospecting with LinkedIn Ads
But what about reaching new audiences? Tapping into all that LinkedIn network muscle? Simple set up an audience leveraging one of the many member generated demographic data points including: job title, company, industry, seniority, group membership, metro, school and more.
Creating Your LinkedIn Ad Account
To get started with LinkedIn ads, click on the “work” grid to the right of your account profile drop down.
In the flyout window, click “advertise.” On the new page, Click “Create Ad” either in the upper right hand corner of the page, or the center of the screen.
If you have an ad account already, you can skip this next step. If no account exists you will need to create an add account.
Name the account, assign currency and associate the company page.
Choosing your Campaign Type
Once the account is set up click create campaign (upper right hand corner)
You will need to select the type of ad campaign, Sponsored content, Text Ads or Sponsored Inmail.
Sponsored Content: Sponsored content are ads that look like regular LinkedIn posts.
Text Ads: Simple ads, text based and can include a picture. These ads show up at the top of LinkedIn and in the right hand panel – but not in the newsfeed. Generally have a lower performance but are also usually a little cheaper.
Sponsored InMail: Sponsored InMail gets you into the LinkedIn inboxes of your ideal audience. Create targeted messages to those you most want to reach.
Each type of campaign will vary in the ad creative prompts, but most of the setup and targeting will be similar.
For the purposes of this guide, we’ll show you a sponsored content set up.
Setting up your LinkedIn Ad Campaign
First, you’ll need to name your campaign, assign it to a campaign group (or create a new one) and select your target language. Campaign groups are a newer feature that allows advertisers to group related campaigns together. You could group campaigns by targeting, objectives, budget etc.
Next up – you need to set you campaign goals.
Send people to website: If you have a landing page or more information you want to share with your ideal audience, sending them to your website is an ideal goal. A secondary option here is to add a “follow button” so people can follow your company page right from the add unit.
Collect Leads: Another ad unit type is the lead gen form. If you have something to offer (i.e. a white paper or webinar – or want to find people who are interested in talking with you, this is a great option to remove a step. Instead of sending someone to a landing page where they need to fill out a form, they can fill the form with information from their LinkedIn profile. (more on setting this up in a second.
Get Video Views: Just looking to grow awareness, video ads are a powerful tool. Share testimonials, product overviews with a call to action to learn more on your website after watching.
Once the goal is selected – it’s time to build your ads (note some campaign types have a step in between for additional selections. For example, sponsored content, send people to your website will ask what kind of ad you want to create, single image or carousel.
You’ll load up the content. Whether text and image for text ads, copy for inmail or selecting which content you want to sponsor for sponsored content. You can also create sponsored content that will only show in ads – not on your page.
Once the ads are loaded, it’s time to set you targeting. The world is your oyster here. Here’s what the targeting page looks like and what the key areas mean.
A – If you have customer or prospect lists, you can load these to LinkedIn to create matched lists and use these in your targeting. All matched audiences are available here to be added.
B – If the LinkedIn Insights tag is installed, you can create remarketing audiences and retarget website visitors based on pages they’ve viewed.
C – Know the exact companies or people you want to reach? Load lists of companies or email addresses here.
D – Location is required, target by country, state, city etc.
E – As you start adding in your targeting criteria, the potential audience size will update here.
F – Here’s when it gets super fancy. You can zero in on your audience across 16 different categories of member generated insights.
G – Want your ads to reach people when they aren’t just on LinkedIn? Enable the audience network.
H – Use LinkedIn machine learning to reach audiences that are similar to your targeting, this expands your reach.
I – Have a really good targeting set up you want to use again, save it!
Exclusion/Inclusion – in many of these parameters, you can combine inclusion and exclusion options to target exactly who you want.
The final step in launching your campaign is setting your goal and budget. Here’s what the screen looks like with key areas marked up again.
A – Set your campaign goal. This is what LinkedIn will work to optimize towards: Awareness (more views), Visits (more clicks) or Conversions (more goal completions)
B – If you set up conversions with your insight tag, here’s where you select which ones to measure along with this campaign (note, you can also assign the conversion to the campaign later)
C – Set how much you want to spend daily ( actual daily spend can sometimes run 20% higher than your budget (if you want to set a total budget, click the “show end date drop down under the campaign start date)
D – You can either automate your bidding or manually set CPC
E – Campaign scheduling: start immediately, schedule it in the future (you can also schedule an end date by clicking the drop down immediately below the date picker.
F – Not done yet? Save the campaign as a draft.
G – Ready to go – hi launch and the ads will go into approval. (note ads can sometimes take up to 24 hours for approval before the campaign is fully live. )