Monday, June 25, 2012

Tips to Successfully Advertise on LinkedIn

Established as “social network for professionals”, LinkedIn is where people network with other professionals in their industry. That’s why you have to keep two things in mind when you decide to advertize your offer on LinkedIn: first, the ads that will do well are B2B offers – actually, LinkedIn is THE place for B2B advertising; second, those people aren’t there primarily for shopping, so you have to make a killer ad to get their attention – and here are some basic rules to help you start the right way.

Tips to Successfully Advertise on LinkedIn

Creating an ad

LinkedIn ads are very short – 25 characters for headline and 75 characters for copy, and the picture is only 50×50 pixels, so make the best use of each element. Before you start, ask yourself: what is it in my offer that could attract a professional? How can it make his or hers life easier?
  • Headline: don’t put in your company name, it’s not effective – rather clearly lay out what you’re offering. A strategy that is proven to be effective is to call out your target audience by title (“Are you a CEO?”).
  • Copy: include a free offering and a strong call to action: “download now”, “get your coupon”, “request a demo”. People on LinkedIn don’t have time to guess what you’re offering them, so make your message clear. It’s wise to specify the end date, or that the offer has a limited supply – this will significantly increase the click through rate of your ad.
  • Picture: since it’s very small, best practice is to use a photo of a person’s face, or something else relevant to your offer that is visible in smaller size, and make sure it’s in bright colors to match LinkedIn white background.
  • URL: you can choose to send visitors to your LinkedIn group, or to your website. Make sure that the landing page is relevant to the ad, and in some cases you may want to create a special landing page for traffic from LinkedIn to provide great user experience for visitors.
You will want to make many different ads (LinkedIn suggest at least three, but they allow 15 per ad campaign) and to test them; the one that performs better than others will be shown more often, and then you can turn off the others and try out the new ones.
Besides that, it might be useful to check LinkedIn today to find out which news and stories are being shared the most, so that you can modify your offer according to the latest trends.

Targeting the right audience

You can target the audience by industry, job title, geography, company, age or LinkedIn group. That makes it easy to display your ad to the right people (you will not target CEOs if you’re selling office supplies). However, if you choose to select your audience by their job title, keep in mind that different companies have different titles for the similar roles (secretary, office assistant, office manager).

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