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5 LinkedIn Advertising Tactics That Actually Work

Jamie Hallitt

by Jamie Hallitt on 17th July 2014

Social Media MarketingLinkedIn advertising can be a very powerful tool if it’s used to its full potential. There are five main approaches to using LinkedIn Ads, each with their own outcomes and end goals. The concept behind LinkedIn’s advertising platform is very similar to Facebook’s; you can create static image and video ads that appear in various parts of the page, or you can choose to promote your content via your target audience’s news feed.

Find out more about Facebook advertising here.

Traditional Advertising

As with any form of advertising, a typically “good” way to get a high response rate is to give something away for “free” (i.e. a free whitepaper in return for an email address or phone number) for example:

Free Whitepaper Ad

You should have a landing page set up and specifically optimised for the action you are trying to get the user to make. For example, the advert above for a free content marketing whitepaper should go to a page that allows users to download the whitepaper straight away, such as this one.

In return, you get their contact details, which will allow you to follow this up with a call or email – moving them further along the sales process.

Local Advertising

When advertising to local businesses, a great way to increase your Click-through Rate (CTR) is to create ads that relate specifically to the location you’re targeting. The example below shows how you can tailor your ads to your target audience’s location.

Local Ad

The location targeting for LinkedIn Ads is not perfect though, as you can’t choose to target small towns and villages, and not all of the cities you want to target will be available as an option. This means that you may have to settle with choosing a wider, less-targeted audience across several towns, which can still be very effective.

Highly Targeted Advertising

You can also build extremely targeted campaigns and create ads that are really specific and relevant to your audience. For example, you could target a selected industry in a specific town and show them an ad saying “Want to appear 1st for XXX in XXX?” etc:

Targeted Ad

When building these highly targeted campaigns, you will need to ensure that you have plenty of budget to work with. Your budget is set at campaign level, which means that for each location and industry you target, you will need a separate budget. There is also a minimum budget of $10 a day per campaign and the minimum cost-per-click (CPC) bid is $2.00/click.

Despite the minimum budgetary requirements, these campaigns can be extremely successful due to the relevance that the ads hold to the target audience. This is likely to generate a high Click-through Rate and – if the ad is truthful and the landing page is optimised – the conversion rate can also be high too.

Reactive Advertising

If you work within a very competitive industry, it often pays to be reactive as well as proactive; if you’re able to respond to industry changes quickly then it will pay off.

Reactive Ad

As the above example shows, these ads will help you to stand out from your competitors. They are perfect for building up a good reputation online as it shows that you are well-established and you have your finger on the pulse.

The example shown is an ad that Koozai could use in order to reach out to anyone who has been hit by one of Google’s recent algorithm updates – in other words, if you suddenly went from being on the first page of Google for your main keywords, but disappeared suddenly from the search results. In this situation website owners will most likely panic and look for a solution to get their site ranking in Google again, so this ad would be ideal.

Sponsored Posts

You can now sponsor your posts, which is very similar to Facebook’s promoted posts, whereby you can pay for an update to be shown to LinkedIn users based on:

  • Company
  • Industry
  • Company size
  • Job title
  • Job function/seniority
  • Education
  • Skills
  • Groups
  • Gender
  • Age

These sponsored posts appear about third or fourth in the newsfeed on the LinkedIn Home page and it’s not hugely obvious that they’re ads, as most people don’t spot the “sponsored” label. You can choose between a CPC or CPM model and schedule end dates for each post.

To find out more about LinkedIn Advertising, or to learn about Koozai’s social media management services click here.

Image Credits: 

Social Marketing via Bigstock 

Jamie Hallitt

Jamie Hallitt

Jamie specialises in building, managing & optimising SEO and PPC campaigns and has three years of experience in Digital Marketing. He has a particular interest in the professional services sector and multi-channelled eCommerce campaigns, focusing on ROI and conversion optimisation.

6 Comments

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  • Alexis Pratsides 19th July 2014

    Hi Jamie,

    It’s weird how LinkedIn Advertising remains such a massively undervalued channel, especially when it holds huge potential for most businesses.

    At the moment it seems that the Local & Highly Targeted approaches are working extremely well in the majority of B2B sectors.

    Do you see many instances where LinkedIn advertising hasn’t been that effective?

    Regards,

    Alexis.

    Reply to this comment

    • Jamie Hallitt

      Jamie Hallitt 30th July 2014

      Hi Alexis,

      Indeed, it’s a shame because I imagine the majority of business owners and marketers still see LinkedIn as simply an over-sized, fluffy job site, when really there’s a lot of potential to close some business.

      I definitely agree that local and highly targeted approaches are working best for most B2B sectors.

      That said, I have seen a few LinkedIn advertising campaigns that have flopped due to the target audience simply being too small. The damage is limited because if no-one is clicking on the ads then it’s not costing anything – except time.

      On the other end of the spectrum, I’ve also seen instances where great promoted content has been shown to a lot of people, but the content hasn’t actually offered any value to the target audience. It’s important to write fresh, new content but only if it is actually adding value to the reader.

      I hope this helps.

      Jamie

      Reply to this comment

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  • Marty Rogers 29th July 2014

    Super post, Jamie!

    As Alexis said, I too am shocked that so many people still easily disregard LinkedIn as a legit advertising channel for their products or services. I’ve had some super success from it, but you do need to be creative. Don’t you always?

    Reply to this comment

    • Jamie Hallitt

      Jamie Hallitt 30th July 2014

      Thanks Marty!

      It’s good news for the rest of us who do realise the value of LinkedIn advertising, because the competition remains low and that keeps it fairly low-cost for now.

      Great to hear that you’ve had success with it yourself. Sometimes you don’t have to be creative, you just have to have a key USP that actually means something to your target audience.

      For example, an amazing piece of content, or compelling ads with strong messages will always do better than boring content and ads. However, if you’re using targeted ads and content and manage to present your USP to the people it might matter to, the campaign could do just as well, regardless of how creative the actual content is.

      Let me know your thoughts!

      Thanks,
      Jamie

      Reply to this comment

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