I frequently encourage my clients to consider LinkedIn advertising. It’s one of the key channels for B2B marketing communications, especially in technology, engineering and professional services, so it’s important to keep abreast of best practice and to understand what is likely to work, and what isn’t.
Firstly some mind-blowing stats: an amazing 10.2% (808,400,000) of the world’s population is on LinkedIn, and this grew by 11% last year. That’s equivalent to 16.3% of total internet users. If you thought LinkedIn was an unimportant sideshow, think again!
In advertising terms, the UK is the world’s fifth-largest spender, behind USA, India, China and Brazil. It’s one of the fastest media growth areas of all time, and has to be taken seriously. If everyone’s doing it, it’s because it works!
My ‘six ways to win’ are really simple:
- Use the ‘Insight’ tag to measure the ROI: just by adding a single pixel to your ad, you can track it through all its many journeys. Now you know where it’s gone, you can start engaging with those individuals.
- To create a ‘win’ with audiences, focus on achieving large audiences with a brand awareness campaign, smaller audiences for a conversion campaign. I also must stress the importance of frequency: you might be better to reduce the audience size in order to increase the frequency – it’s that important. As a rule of thumb, £100 will buy you 100,000 impressions, and you can develop your reach by using matched audiences.
- Here are some ‘winning’ ad formats: a single image is generally most effective if you are looking for audience response, while video is best for brand awareness. On the other hand, if you run a text-only ad, you should be able to afford much greater frequency. These sound simplistic, but they are the result of much statistical analysis so they have to be taken seriously.
- It’s also important to select the right campaign objectives. You have to choose one, and never fall into the trap of choosing two or more, no matter how tempting. Examples of campaign objectives are brand awareness, website visits, engagement, lead generation, website conversions and job advertising. Remember: just choose ONE!
- I also recommend to always structure your campaign for testing – with multiple ads per campaign – otherwise how will you know if you’ve succeeded or how well you performed? Any form of direct marketing is about testing, and the old adage of ‘test, test and test again’ is especially true of LinkedIn advertising.
- Finally, be relevant and interesting. No-one really wants to read your ad, so make sure you do your best to attract them! If they’re not clicking, there’s something wrong with it.
I hope you can make use of all these hints and tips. They are very helpful for planning and a good guide as to how competent you are at this form of advertising, and what your likelihood of success.
If LinkedIn advertising seemed like a bit of a mystery before, it certainly isn’t now!
My thanks to CIM’s recent Webinar by Sarah Kerrigan for much of the content and inspiration for this article.