LinkedIn Ads: How to set up a campaign that converts

LinkedIn Ads: How to set up a campaign that converts

LinkedIn is well known as an excellent online environment that promotes professionals and encourages them to talk about their companies.

Secrets of LinkedIn - How to Harness the Potential of Your Profile 1

Secrets of LinkedIn - How to Build a Personal Brand

Learn the strategies that will transform your profile into a powerful networking tool on LinkedIn.

However, this social media platform is not only about finding potential employees, but also about learning. Learning more about marketing and social media can really help you better promote your brand.

But when it comes to paying for people to give them that attention, many marketers have given up on the idea of social media advertising.

In addition to organic content, you should also use LinkedIn ads to offer your posts a boost. A small budget for LinkedIn ads can really do more than you think for your business.

Today we'll talk about everything there is to learn on LinkedIn ads to make your marketing campaigns more effective. Let's jump right in!

A guide to LinkedIn ads

  1. How LinkedIn ads work
  2. How to run ads on LinkedIn
  3. Types of advertising on LinkedIn
  4. Ad targets on LinkedIn
  5. Ad formats on LinkedIn
  6. Advertising costs on LinkedIn
  7. Best practices regarding advertising on LinkedIn
  8. Metrics to monitor when measuring ad performance on LinkedIn

1. how do LinkedIn ads work?

Now that we know that LinkedIn ads can make your content more effective and reach even more users, let's see how the ads work.

Planning a social media campaign can seem difficult at first if you don't have any guidance.

a screenshot from linkedin marketing solution with how to start with linkedin ads

After determining your priorities and the things you want to achieve, you should also decide how much advertising you want to use for the campaign and how much money you are willing to invest.

When you develop an ad on LinkedIn, regardless of the type of ad you choose, your content will be displayed to more LinkedIn users who have recently shown some interest in the niche or industry in which you activate.

Thus advertising on LinkedIn will increase brand awareness, while also having the potential to also increase your ROI by turning prospects into customers.

A screenshot with linkedin campaign manager for linkedin ads

In what follows, a step-by-step guide on how to run an ad on LinkedIn will make it all seem so much easier.

2. how to run ads on LinkedIn?

Creating ads on LinkedIn is similar - up to a certain point, of course - to creating ads on Facebook.

So if you've ever tried this latest form of online advertising, running ads on LinkedIn and the entire LinkedIn ads dashboard may seem quite familiar.

However, if this is your first time experimenting with paid ads, no worries - the whole process of running ads on LinkedIn is fairly straightforward.

Step 1

To start creating LinkedIn ads, you will first need to log into Campaign Manager.

After building your account there, you can move on to the next step.

Linkedin ads objectives

Step 2

Before setting up paid ads on LinkedIn, you need to clearly know what you want to achieve with these paid ads on LinkedIn.

Selecting a target for an ad campaign on LinkedIn is a mandatory step when planning ads on LinkedIn.

Keep in mind that you should choose your target depending on what stage of the marketing funnel your target group, in relation to your preset advertising campaign on LinkedIn.

That's why it makes sense to have multiple ad campaigns running for different audiences.

Step 3

What makes advertising on LinkedIn so great and effective is the ability to establish a highly targeted audience.

When setting up an ad campaign on LinkedIn, you can choose your target's job title, industry or target by professional or personal interest.

Here you can see how you can set the audiences for your LinkedIn ad campaigns.

What's more, when setting up audiences for your LinkedIn ads, the "Matched Audience" option can simplify your work when you're interested in retargeting campaigns - geared toward people who have visited your website.

Step 4

When it comes to the types of LinkedIn ads that the platform puts at your disposal, you'll be happy to know that you'll have plenty and creative options.

Here you can see what formats LinkedIn offers for its paid ads.

Step 5

Just like on any other ad campaign dashboard, you will need to set a budget and schedule for your ads on LinkedIn.

When setting a budget for your ads on LinkedIn, consider that the average cost per click for ads on LinkedIn is 5.26$, being the most expensive social media platform in terms of paid online advertising.

This is a demonstration of how you can set your ad bugets on LinkedIn.

This high cost for LinkedIn ads is justified by the fact that LinkedIn drives more than 50% of all social traffic directed to B2B company blogs, the data shows.

Step 6

Once you've chosen your budget and schedule, it's time to jump to the next step of the LinkedIn ad creation process - working on your ad creatives.

In this section, LinkedIn offers several ad options - Sponsored Content, Message Ads and Text ads.

While Sponsored Content ads refer to in-feed LinkedIn ads in more common terms, the Text Ads category is Facebook's equivalent for right column ads. As for the Message Ads type - well, its name is pretty self-explanatory.

Depending on the type of LinkedIn ad you decide to run, you will need to fill in some specific fields for each type of ad, such as inserting a thumbnail, a call to action, and so on.

Step 7

Once the technical aspects of your LinkedIn advertising campaign are all set up, the last part you will need to cover will be the insertion of billing information. With this last step completed, your work is done.

After that, your ad's journey will continue with a short review process that, once completed, will allow it to be launched into the world.

3. types of LinkedIn ads

Having mentioned them briefly earlier, we will now do a more in-depth breakdown of all the different types of LinkedIn ads available on this platform.

Sponsored Content ad

A Sponsored Content ad is one that blends into a user's posts in the LinkedIn feed, having a featured "Sponsored" tag attached to it to distinguish it from organic content.

Here you can see some of the ad formats on supported by Linkedin as well as the ad's specs.

When deciding to create a LinkedIn Sponsored Content ad, marketers can choose from four types of LinkedIn ads inside this category:

  • LinkedIn single image ads
  • LinkedIn carousel ads
  • LinkedIn video ads
  • LinkedIn event ads

Here you can see more information about The Linkedin carousel ad type.

Sponsored news advertising

LinkedIn Messaging ads are a great way to capture the attention of your target audience, as the brand's message will be delivered directly to the user's inbox.

The LinkedIn Sponsored Message ad type differentiates itself from regular messages in a user's inbox by displaying the "Sponsored" tag and having a CTA button.

Here you can see more info about the Linkedin sponsored messagea ad.

For messages to be marked as read, they must be opened, remaining in the user's inbox even after that.

Text ad

LinkedIn Text Ads are one of the most simplified ad types, consisting of only three elements: a brand logo, a short ad copy and a clickable CTA.

Here you can see spcs and more detailed information about LinkedIn text ads.

They are located in the right sidebar, which remains visible when users scroll down to their newsfeed.

Dynamic advertising

Dynamic ads are one of LinkedIn's wonders. This type of advertising LinkedIn has taken social media advertising to a place where no other social media platform has taken it before.

Here are available specs and more info about LinkedIn dynamic ads.

LinkedIn's dynamic ads are the platform's way of creating a deeper connection between the target audience and the brand developing the ad.

This is a type of social media advertising that shows personalized content based on the personal information of the member who views it.

4. objectives of LinkedIn advertising

Your LinkedIn advertising strategy must be tailored to whatever goal you want to achieve through LinkedIn paid advertising.

Since different customers may be at different stages of the marketing funnel, you should create different LinkedIn advertising campaigns.

This is the reason why LinkedIn offers three different advertising objectives for your LinkedIn ads: awareness, consideration and conversion.

Let's say you made a decision and decided to create some consideration ads on LinkedIn, for example.

In this case, you will need to choose once again, at a more detailed level, which KPIs you want to increase through your LinkedIn paid advertising efforts: website visits, engagement, or video views.

On the other hand, for conversion advertising, you will need to decide whether you are more interested in acquiring leads, converting your website, or job candidates.

Whatever goals you want to achieve, you need to set realistic expectations. Be patient before you worry that results will not be seen.

In addition, you should constantly evaluate the effectiveness of your advertising campaign on LinkedIn to make sure everything is working as planned.

Here you can see al the objectives available for Linkedin Ads.

5. ad formats on LinkedIn

Being professional in helping companies showcase and promote themselves is the nature of LinkedIn, and its advertising options also fall under the same standard.

Like Facebook, LinkedIn offers many types of ads and where you can display them.

What's more, each advertising category has numerous variations to better help marketers achieve their goals with LinkedIn advertising. There's no way you won't find something that fits your brand.

LinkedIn's sponsored ads, which are among the most popular ads due to their high performance, have the most diverse formats.

There are four types of ads in the Sponsored Content section, which are as follows:

  • LinkedIn single image ads
  • LinkedIn video ads:
  • LinkedIn carousel ads
  • LinkedIn events ads

For marketers who would like to try Sponsored Message ads, LinkedIn offers two options: Conversation Ads & Message Ads.

To emphasize the difference between the two, just as the name suggests, instead of delivering a single message, Conversation Ad will offer a choose-your-own-path experience.

It will offer many answers, depending on which direction the conversation flows.

Going forward, for LinkedIn conversion ads, it is important to pay special attention to Lead Gen Forms, which can be created either as Sponsored Content or Message Ads.

As LinkedIn revealed, Lead Gen Forms drive 2-3X more conversions compared to standard campaigns.

Undoubtedly, Lead Gen Forms ad types were created to simplify the process of getting grazed content for the user, to avoid as many possible drop points as possible.

How is this possible?

" When a member clicks the call-to-action button on a LinkedIn ad with a Lead Gen form attached, the form is automatically populated with their contact and profile information. They can then submit their information to companies through the form without having to manually type it in." - LinkedIn

LinkedIn's lead generation ads are among the most common ad campaigns that marketers run on LinkedIn, likely as a result of LinkedIn being responsible for 80% of all B2B leads coming from social media.

Discover what Linkedin spotlight ads are and their main characteristics.

The last remaining LinkedIn ad formats to be discussed are those displayed in the right rail of the platform - Text Ads and Dynamic Ads.

Since we discussed LinkedIn's text ad elements when listing what types of ads are available on the platform, we will focus on the second category - LinkedIn Dynamic ads, which also have two formats available: Spotlight ads and Follower ads.

More info about Linkedin follower ads here.

These two types of LinkedIn Dynamic ads allow you to personalize your message by integrating the recipient's contact information, but their main distinction is related to the purpose they serve.

While the Spotlight ad was created to promote a service, product or event, the Follower ad has the sole purpose of helping the site gain followers.

6. advertising costs on LinkedIn

Before experimenting with ad campaigns on LinkedIn, you're probably wondering how much ads on Linkedin cost.

As mentioned earlier, ads on LinkedIn are one of the most expensive forms of online advertising, having higher costs than Facebook or Instagram.

However, the high valuation of ads on LinkedIn seems to be justified by the amazing results.

If you are to set your budget for LinkedIn ads, you need to think about the type of advertising you will run in your LinkedIn ad campaigns.

Of course, sets of ads on LinkedIn with different objectives can mean different costs.

Based on what marketers who have tried ads on LinkedIn have reported, the average cost of ads on LinkedIn is as follows:

  • CPC: 5.26$
  • CPM: 6.59$.
  • Cost per send (for ads with messages): 0.80$.

In terms of click-through rates, the global average CTR for sponsored content in 2022 is 0.44% - 0.65%.

A more detailed breakdown of the CTR of LinkedIn ads for each ad type indicated the following percentages:

  • Sponsored Content (Single Image): 0.56%
  • Sponsored Content (Carousel): 0.40%
  • Sponsored Content (Video): 0.44%
  • Message Ads: 3% with an open rate of 30%.
  • Dynamic Ads Standard: 0.06%
  • Dynamic Ads Dynamic: 0.08%
  • Text Ads: 0.02%

7. best practices of LinkedIn ads

Having a LinkedIn ads strategy means more than having a few visuals and two or three lines of text to accompany them.

Creating a researched strategy for your LinkedIn ad campaign instead of sending a few sporadic ones from now and then will help you better optimize costs.

This way, you'll be able to build more effective ads that will ultimately generate higher results - either you're aiming for engagement, leads, conversions, or whatever.

Therefore, when developing a strategy for your LinkedIn advertising campaigns, there are some paid LinkedIn advertising best practices that would be great for you to be familiar with to customize and optimize your strategy faster.

Before you even think about positioning your ad campaign on LinkedIn, you need to know who you are addressing.

Getting to know your audience is a must, as they will be the ones to evaluate or approve your ads.

Your audience will decide whether your ad on LinkedIn made them click the "but" button.

Study the behavior of your followers, do some social media listening and learn more about what they like and what disappoints them.

Such an analysis will inspire you to learn more about your audience, potential customers, and perhaps future customers. This way you will know what to offer them to keep them satisfied.

Finding that sweet spot is undeniably a receipt for a successful advertising campaign. However, a lot of testing is required to reach this point.

When you match the ad type to the creative, the right audience and their location on the customer journey map, you know you're on the right track.

Some good news is that unlike other social networks, people are more likely to engage with longer content on LinkedIn. Did you know.

This is actually a result of the fact that 91% marketers consider LinkedIn to be one of the most reliable resources for quality content on the web.

Returning for a second to the customer journey, matching this strategic step and the right type of advertising is infinitely more important.

For example, choosing Sponsored News as the first touchpoint with new prospects may prove to be an ineffective tactic.

But if you instead try this type of LinkedIn advertising with people who already know your brand and have moved beyond the awareness stage, you could get amazing results, as it is known to have a high open-rate.

After all, effective marketing is impossible without lead nurturing!

Nothing says "click me" more than eye-catching visuals. And this has long been tested by many brands when placing their ads on LinkedIn.

We know that a picture or video is worth a thousand words, but you definitely want more. You want to send people a message, a "you need this product/service" type message.

To do this with ads on LinkedIn, you must carefully select images and record videos that can spark conversation in the online world.

Remember that the content of the ad must reflect your brand values. As long as your LinkedIn makes your followers watch it to the end, then you can consider that you have won their hearts, and the investment in advertising is worth it.

  • A/B test your ads on LinkedIn

Remember when we said that testing is the key to all great social media successes?

This is the reason why A/B testing was invented in the first place.

By trying different versions of your ad - with different visuals, text, offers, or targeted interest, you'll be able to understand what makes your audience fat and create more content in that direction.

You can be sure that the best LinkedIn ads have a lot of A / B testing behind them.

This tactic is pure gold for marketers, as its role is to save them a lot of time in figuring out what could be improved.

The testing part helps marketers optimize their budgets, indicating which type of LinkedIn advertising they should invest more in.

When you develop your advertising campaign on LinkedIn, you need to think about who you are targeting. In addition to learning more about your audience, you also need to find out who the decision makers are.

Targeting decision makers is an essential step for every campaign and marketing initiative you will ever undertake.

In this way, you will specifically know how to design an advertising campaign on LinkedIn to attract people who can easily convert into buyers.

Speaking earlier about LinkedIn's in-depth targeting options, once you have identified what your ideal buyer persona looks like, it will be easier to shape your advertising with that in mind.

  • Measure the success of your advertising campaign

Once you've completed your advertising campaign on LinkedIn, it's time to check how effective it was. Looking at the data is equally important when designing LinkedIn ads for your company.

That's why you should definitely track your ad performance in the Campaign Manager dashboard, located under the Campaign Performance dashboard.

You will also be able to track conversions in this LinkedIn dashboard.

8. metrics to monitor for measuring LinkedIn ad performance

Since LinkedIn provides multiple goals that can be achieved with LinkedIn ads, given that you will have campaigns with different goals, it is natural that you will measure them in different ways.

Overseeing LinkedIn's ad performance will give you valuable insights that will help you optimize costs and create better ad campaigns in the future.

When you are working on your LinkedIn Ads report, you should know that the primary metrics available to you in the Campaign Manager will be:

  • Sends - The number of impressions of your ad (impressions);
  • Opens - The number of opens of your ad (unique opens);
  • Clicks - total clicks on CTA buttons and clicks on links;
  • Button Clicks - total clicks on CTA buttons;
  • Banner Clicks - total clicks on banner ads;
  • Link Clicks - clicks on the content of the message;
  • Open Rate - shows the percentage of your recipients who opened your ad (it is calculated by dividing the total number of opens to the total number sent);
  • Click to Open Rate - % clicks divided by openings;
  • Cost Per Send - expenses divided by shipments;
  • Cost Per Open - expenses divided by openings;
  • Average CPC - spending divided by clicks.

Final Thoughts

Running ads on all your social media platforms can be really expensive. That's why you should start with the ones you think have more potential to convert followers.

An advertising campaign on LinkedIn is an excellent starting point, as this platform has been well known for its effectiveness in connecting companies, potential employees and customers since 2003.

Make sure you set realistic expectations in terms of the results you want to get through your ad campaign.

Hopefully, this guide to the world of advertising on LinkedIn will help you design better content for better marketing campaigns.

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