There are a lot of opinions about LinkedIn ads and LinkedIn marketing in general. Some marketers think LinkedIn ads are too expensive, while others think they’re an important part of any successful marketing campaign.
But before you can decide on whether it is a good fit for your business or not, you need to know the facts first. It’s important to explore the different types of ad tools, their objectives, etc.
If your goal is to reach an extremely specific target audience, and you have a large budget, you can use LinkedIn’s targeting and matched audiences. But if your goal is only to generate leads, you could automate your outreach instead to save money.
One thing is for certain: if you use LinkedIn marketing effectively, you will reach your target audience and grow your business. Whether you actually go for it will depend on your goals and marketing objectives.
Here we will talk about everything you need to know about LinkedIn marketing.
Getting Started With LinkedIn Ads
LinkedIn offers different ad tools that cover a wide range of marketing objectives. This includes sponsored content, sponsored messaging, video ads, text ads, dynamic ads, and carousel ads. It’s important to know what each of these are before you jump into LinkedIn advertising.
The amount you pay is based on the type of ads you are running on LinkedIn. You may either set a budget or set a bid to control the campaign ad cost. Setting a budget means you have a maximum total that you want to spend per day.
On the other hand, a bid refers to the maximum amount you want to pay for each click or every 1,000 impressions. LinkedIn has three bidding options: pay per click (PPC), pay per 1,000 impressions (CPM), and pay per send (PCS).
With pay per click, you have to specify the amount you want to spend per click on your ad. For example, you may pay $3 per click on your LinkedIn ad.
CPM means you have to specify a set cost for every 1,000 times your ad is shown to someone on LinkedIn. This is a good option if you care more about the number of times your ad appears rather than the number of times someone clicks on it.
Lastly, pay per send is for successfully delivered Message Ads.
If you keep your budget in mind, you should be able to choose the right ad type and bidding option for your marketing campaign.
The LinkedIn campaign manager will show you a suggested bid range which represents current competing bids by other advertisers who have the same target audience. This information is useful if you are not sure how to manage your ad budget and want to avoid overspending.
You also need to keep in mind that LinkedIn Marketing Solutions requires a minimum ad spend before you can run ads. This varies by region, but the typical required marketing budget is $5,000 per quarter.
So as you can see, LinkedIn advertising does require you to invest a lot of money. And if you’re not careful about managing your budget, it can quickly get out of hand. Marketers need to play it smart when setting bids and budgets.
If it’s too expensive, there are alternatives you can pursue such as LinkedIn automation. But if you can spend on LinkedIn ads, you should still go for it. This is the biggest online platform for professionals, and being able to reach your target audience here is definitely valuable.
First let’s take a closer look at the different LinkedIn ad types and what they’re for.
You’ve heard of content marketing: it’s all about showing off your value and establishing yourself as a thought leader in your industry by posting high quality content. Sponsored content takes your content to the next level by ensuring that the right people can see it.
These boosted LinkedIn posts promote your brand by reaching your target audience. Viewers can see the Promoted sign above a sponsored post.
LinkedIn lets you choose between three different types of sponsored content: image, carousel, and video content. If you have high value content that’s worth sharing, this is a good way to get the word out.
Your sponsored content should be a lead magnet: something that is specifically designed to get in front of people and attract them to your brand. Sponsored content can effectively drive quality traffic to your LinkedIn page or website, especially if you are specific with your ad targeting.
Go for this type of ad if you know you are promoting a great piece of content that’s worth the ad cost. Make sure your content has a well-written headline, an informative body, and a clear call-to-action. You should talk about topics that are relevant to your audience’s interests. Content should be timely and relevant so it could maximize your reach.
Sponsored messaging is an ad format that allows marketers to send messages directly to their prospect’s inbox. Compared to emails, these LinkedIn messages are more successful when it comes to driving conversations.
Sponsored messages include InMail and conversation ads, which you can use to drive brand awareness and engage with your audience. It is also a good way to generate leads.
But similar to email, users can opt-out of receiving LinkedIn InMail messages, so keep that in mind.
Sponsored InMails are direct and personalized, which is why they are very eye-catching for readers. They are also very effective if you have an extremely specific niche.
When writing sponsored messages, be straightforward and direct to the point. You should craft your message with your objective in mind so your reader will know exactly what you want them to do. Personalize each message to maximize its impact and so it doesn’t feel like spam.
Speaking of eye-catching, videos are by far the most eye-catching type of content around. You can use them to your advantage and catch the interest of your audience by using LinkedIn video ads.
When going for a video ad campaign on LinkedIn, you need to identify your campaign objective: Awareness, Consideration, and Conversion.
Awareness should be your goal if you just want people to know about your content and brand. This is for marketers who want to create familiarity and brand recall.
Consideration is the goal of marketers who want people to click on their video out of curiosity and interest. This is perfect for driving traffic to your website and generating engagement.
Finally, Conversion is for driving action on your website for lead generation and website conversion.
Your LinkedIn video ad can be 3 seconds up to 30 minutes long, so there’s a lot of flexibility in terms of what kind of video content you want to create. It can be a short teaser-style video showing off your brand, or it can be a fully detailed video packed with tons of tips and tricks for your viewers.
The file size should be between 75KB to 200MB and the file format should be MP4.
Adding a title to your video ad is optional, and it could be up to 255 characters long. The intro text is also optional and can be up to 600 characters long.
Text ads are simple: they are text-based content that appear on the right-hand side or top of the LinkedIn feed. For this type of ad, you can use either PPC or CPM to control your ad spending.
The ad headline can be up to 25 characters while the ad description can be up to 75 characters. LinkedIn also lets you add an image at 100×100 pixels to draw in more eyeballs.
A lot of marketers don’t see enough clicks from text ads that really make a difference, so this shouldn’t be your first choice for a LinkedIn ad. Instead, use these text ads to complement your other LinkedIn ads and sponsored content.
Engaging with your targets at different touch points can increase conversion rate, however, it can also be expensive.
Dynamic ads are unique because they are not fixed. These ads are personalized based on the leads’ profiles. This type of ad may grab details such as your prospect’s first name or work industry, and use it to personalize the ad.
Personalization is great for generating leads at scale. Therefore this approach is highly effective if your targeting is on point.
LinkedIn dynamic ads have a few different objectives:
Job ads are for getting more applicants for your job postings. Spotlight ads are for sharing expertise and insights with your target audience. Follower ads are for gaining more followers. Finally, content ads are for generating leads when people download your content.
Carousel ads are a type of advertising format that allow you to show off multiple videos and images at once. LinkedIn lets you add up to 10 images in a single carousel ad. It’s basically a slideshow of your products, services, or whatever you want to feature.
These ads are good for increasing brand awareness and website visits. They are also perfect for lead generation. Carousel ads let you tell an interactive story so you can inspire and engage with your prospects. If one picture can catch your audience’s attention, then a slideshow of images will work even better.
LinkedIn Ads vs. Automation
Now that you know the different types of ads LinkedIn has to offer, you can decide whether or not they are right for you. But if you don’t have the budget for it yet, there are alternatives you can try.
LinkedIn automation, for example, lets you target a custom audience and engage with them—similar to LinkedIn ads. But the difference is that automation takes a more direct approach. You send a connection request and interact with them once they connect with you.
Automation tools like Kennected will help you find your target audience on LinkedIn and send personalized connection requests at scale. Automation deals with the mundane and repetitive tasks like sending follow ups. This means you are free to focus on more important tasks like converting leads or improving your product. Kennected in particular is great because of the personalization aspect. Even though you are automating, it doesn’t come across as spam. People are more likely to accept your connection requests this way.
Of course, depending on your budget and goals, you can use both LinkedIn ads and LinkedIn automation at the same time. If your audience is on LinkedIn, you have plenty of ways to reach them. Just keep your objectives and budget in mind so you can make the right decisions.