How to Run PPC Campaigns in LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a networking site used by professionals from all across the globe. Making the network a uniquely focused avenue for B2B business to run their paid marketing campaigns.
On LinkedIn it’s all business, all the time.
LinkedIn is now home to 500 million professionals, out of which 10 million are opinion leaders and 61 million are senior-level influencers:
Choosing to use LinkedIn advertising gives you access to the following features:
- Advanced targeting options, including job title, function, and industry.
- Ad options that range from self-serve ads to partner solutions.
- A flexible budget.
- Multiple language options.
- Performance measurement through analytics and tracking tools.
Types of LinkedIn ads
LinkedIn gives you the option of creating three types of ads.
1. Sponsored Content
Sponsored content are native ads that have the same appearance as regular posts. With Sponsored Content, you can share posts to your company page with a targeted audience on the network. The ads help you raise awareness about your brand, build relationships, and drive leads.
This is what a typical sponsored content ad looks like:
You should use sponsored content to:
- Extend the reach of your content.
- Attract more followers to the Company Page.
- Get more users to view and click the content across multiple devices.
- Integrate lead generation forms to capture more leads.
2. Text ads
Text ads feature a headline, a description and an image and allow you to capture user attention and drive clicks by being short and succulent. The ads are a desktop only option, and work well if you’re looking to attract the attention of a busy LinkedIn professional.
The ads may appear under the “Promoted” section:
The ads can also appear as text link advertisements found at the top of the page:
With the help of text ads, you can promote job opening to a busy professional browsing through the network.
Using LinkedIn text ads presents you with the following advantages:
- You can easily get started.
- You can set your own budget.
- You can target your audience with B2B filters.
- You can track conversions with the analytics tool.
3. Sponsored InMail ads
Sponsored InMail ads allow you to send personalized messages to targeted LinkedIn users through LinkedIn Messenger and LinkedIn’s email client:
To ensure that your Sponsored InMail ads get noticed, LinkedIn only sends the recipients the emails when they are active on the network. The ads work if you’re looking for a more personalized approach to getting your target audience’s attention.
Getting started with LinkedIn ads
Before you start creating LinkedIn ads, the first thing you need is to set up an account. For running Sponsored Content ads, you also need to have a Company page:
Just enter your company name, a LinkedIn public URL and you’re done. Once you have the company page all set up, follow the steps mentioned below to start advertising on LinkedIn.
Choose your ad product
Select the type of ad product you’re interested in. You should consider using all three formats for maximum reach and impact:
Each option will require you to create a campaign name and choose your target audience language.
Let’s select the Text ads option for the purpose of this guide.
Set up account name
After you’ve selected an ad product, you’re required to select an account name and the currency. The currency you select for an account at this step cannot be changed later on, you can however create multiple Campaign Manager accounts with different currencies:
You also have the option of linking a Company or Showcase page with the text ad campaign.
Select campaign name and target audience language
This step requires you to select a campaign name, the campaign name will not be publicly displayed and will only be used to help you sort through multiple campaigns:
The audience you can potentially reach with your ads depends on the target audience language you select. Most advertisers select English as the default language to maximize the scale of their campaigns.
One thing to remember is that the ad copy should match the language you selected, if you’ve selected English as the audience language you can create ad copy in your available local language as well.
Create your ad
The first thing you need to select at this step is where you would like users to go after they click the ad. You have the option to send them to your LinkedIn page, or select a website.
You should opt to direct users who click your ad to a relevant landing page instead of your website homepage.
A relevant landing page highlights only the offer you’ve promoted in the ads, reassuring the visitor that they have come to the right place. Contrary to your website homepage, that is created to highlight all your offers, benefits and services, a landing page is created to promote a single offer.
All landing page elements are dedicated to highlight the promoted offer – starting from the headline down to the call to action button.
Let’s look at this Extreme Networks text ad as an example:
This is the landing page visitors are brought to after the ad click:
- The page headline highlights the Gartner report mentioned in the ad text.
- The image establishes relevancy, letting the visitor know that they’ve come to the right place.
- The copy highlights the review of the report, and why the visitor should read it.
- The form collects the lead information needed to access the report for free.
- The CTA button lets visitors know they can now download the report.
All the landing page elements are working toward promoting the offer highlighted in the ad. This would not have been the case if visitors had been directed to the Extreme Networks homepage:
The visitor would have to sift through a lot of navigation links and copy to get to the report they wanted to download. Directing visitors to a standalone landing page ensures that they don’t have to work to get to the promoted offer, which isn’t something you should expect your visitors to do in any case.
After you’ve added your landing page URL in the ‘My Website’ section, you can proceed to creating your LinkedIn text ad by adding a headline, image and copy:
Make sure to add an attention-grabbing headline in your text ads to entice the user to read the rest of the ad and eventually click. Try adding a statistic in the headline, or asking a question that piques their interest.
You can also mention the price of the product to get visitors to click, this is what Comcast business does:
Adding an image with your text ad helps you get up to 20% more clicks, the image you add should be relevant to the offer you’re promoting. This is what P&G does with their ad:
Including a call to action in your ad copy can help users spring into action, the copy should be relevant to the offer and personalized. eCornell’s ad’s CTA button copy ‘Apply Now’ helps convince users to click:
After you’re done creating the ad copy and uploading an image, LinkedIn shows you a preview of the ad copy, image, and headline you’ve created. The preview also showcases the ad in multiple placement positions:
It’s now time to define who you want to see your ads:
LinkedIn gives you the opportunity to use a matched audience, this is a custom targeting option to reach website visitors, contacts, and target audience. You can create an audience list for retargeting, or upload a list of companies or email addresses you want to target with your ads.
Select the location where your target audience resides. You can target by country, state, city, or town. You can also choose to include or exclude certain locations for your ads.
Now select a specific targeting criteria to create more laser-focused ad campaigns, you can target your audience based on:
- Company name
- Company industry
- Company size
- Job title
- Job function
- Job sonority
- Member schools
- Fields of study
- Member skills
- Member groups
- Member gender
- Member age
- Years of experience
- Company connection
LinkedIn also pre-selects the ‘Enable Audience Expansion’ option, the feature helps broaden the reach of your campaign by showing it to audience that have the same characteristics or attributes as the target audience you’ve selected.
You can also see your estimated target audience after you’ve selected all your targeting options:
Budget and schedule
This step involves choosing how much you want to spend and when you want your target audience to start seeing your ads:
You can choose to set up conversion tracking by installing an Insight Tag to gather insights into post click and view through conversions of your campaigns.
You can now select your bid type. With CPC, you only pay when a user clicks your ad. Your daily budget is the amount of money you’ve decided to spend for your ad campaign in a single day, the daily budget limit for LinkedIn is $10.
Once the daily budget is reached, your ads stop showing. However, there may be a short period of time your ads are still displayed after your daily budget is reached, you are charged for clicks at that time amounting to up to 20% of your daily budget.
After you’ve selected the daily budget, it’s time to select your bid. The bid is the maximum amount you’re willing to spend for each ad click. Because you’re competing with other advertisers for ad clicks, there is no determined net cost. So, the higher you bid the more competitive your campaign is in the auction.
Plus, with a high bid you are likely to receive more ad clicks, as your ad is shown more than the ads of the other advertisers.
Based on the audience you’ve selected, LinkedIn gives you an estimate of what amount other advertisers are bidding for a similar audience. The maximum bid amount is $2.
For ad schedule, you have two options – either start running your ads immediately, or choose a specific date for your ads to begin showing. You can also choose a campaign end date.
The ad rotation option allows you to select how to rotate your ads to test performance over time and optimize your campaign. You can select from the following two options:
1. Optimize for clicks: Better performing ads appear more often.
2. Allow ads to enter auction evenly: Your ads are entered into the auction evenly, this doesn’t guarantee that better performing ads will be displayed more often.
Measure and refine your LinkedIn ads
LinkedIn ads allows you to access a range of metrics that help you measure and optimize your campaigns. The metrics include impressions, clicks, and ad spend. The network also lets you measure “social actions,” the actions capture how LinkedIn members interact with your content, giving you an insight into how to create future LinkedIn campaigns.
LinkedIn should be your PPC advertising network of choice if you’re a B2B business. The network has a growing user base of professionals, plus it gives you the opportunity to target professionals with various variables such as seniority and job function. The performance measurement analytics help you see how your campaigns are doing and helps you make informed decisions about your future campaigns.
Pay-per-click marketing is an advertising bidding option that allows you to pay only when your audience clicks an ad. Depending on the advertising platform you choose, you get to set desired bids, choose keywords, target customers, and showcase ads to your target audience.
To ensure that your PPC campaigns yield a higher ROI, it’s important you connect all ads with relevant conversion-centric landing pages. Haven’t created landing pages yet?
Create one today with Instapage – a platform that empowers you to create fully customizable landing pages that increase your conversion rates and ROI.
2. Bidding and Budget: