It’s no secret that we at LinkedClicks believe that the LinkedIn ads platform should be where B2B companies allocate the majority of their advertising budget.
While it’s widely known how powerful LinkedIn is for professional networking, the ads platform is still in its infancy in terms of adoption. It’s the most powerful tool that many companies are not utilizing.
There are many reasons we feel this way, but the primary being its precise targeting capability.
You can ensure you get the right message in front of the right person, time after time, and that’s what we will be helping you do throughout this guide.
Without further ado, let’s get started.
There are three pillars of LinkedIn Ads that we are going to explore.
The amount of marketers that skip the first pillar, whether on LinkedIn or other platforms, is the number one reason ad campaigns fail.
You can’t just login to the platform and start creating a campaign. I guess you can, it just won’t end well.
On LinkedIn, campaign planning is far and away the most important pillar. The reason many B2B companies absolutely crush lead generation on LinkedIn is because of the targeting capabilities.
The reason some B2B companies claim that LinkedIn doesn’t work or is too expensive is because they ignore campaign planning.
Facebook marketers especially get scared of LinkedIn early on. The metrics are so different that Facebook marketers think campaigns are failing based on micro metrics like cost per click and cost per thousand impressions.
If they were to stay patient and look at macro metrics like cost per lead and cost per acquisition, they’d see that LinkedIn is the most underutilized ad platform out there, especially for B2B companies.
Pillar 1: Campaign Setup
If you are going to create your own LinkedIn ad campaign, you must do proper planning.
When planning your campaign, it is important to consider 3 important elements that will set you up for the best results.
WWH Campaign Plan:
Who are you targeting? - Who is the perfect prospect? - Know your customer, title, company, interests and groups. Plan out who is the ideal decision maker you are trying to reach with your advertising campaigns.
This will be the most important part of the planning process as LinkedIn is the most valuable B2B ad platform because of it’s targeting capabilities. If you don’t take time to really dial in your avatar, you won’t be utilizing what can help you the most.
What are you educating them with? What is the hook, the pain point, the value prop that reveals your customer’s problem and leads them to a solution?
This is the offer, the product or service that your company provides to add value to your customers.
It will be necessary to start with a highly valuable lead magnet (free content) offer that solves a small problem for your prospects.
This will establish you as an authority on the subject matter and also provide immediate relief to your prospect.
The “what” could be a guide, case study, white paper or cheat sheet that solves a specific need or issue for your prospect.
This is the messaging and medium. How do you talk to these customers and where is the conversation happening?
It’s a breakdown of the headlines, text, and imagery used to engage a LinkedIn scroller.
Brainstorm some messaging and image ideas and select your best combinations to test in your first campaign.
Once you have mapped out these 3 main concepts for your campaigns you can begin to build audience groups based around your “who” target ideas and match the “how” messaging to these target groups.
Here is an example of the targeting options you should consider for your campaign:
USA, Canada, UK, Australia
Software & IT Services: Computer Software
CEO, Founder, Co-Founder, Owner, Co-Owner, Founder, Founding Partner
Job Function & Seniority
Senior, Director, VP, CXO, Owner, Partner, CEO
Skills & Seniority
Saas, SaaS Dev, Software + Senior, Director, VP, CXO, Owner, Partner, CEO
Groups & Seniority
SaaS Founders Groups + Owner, Partner, Founder, CEO
Use this if you have an email list of prospects
Current customer list build LinkedIn Lookalike
Downloaded Free Opt-In, but no call
VP Sales, Entry level, training, 1-10 employee,. 200+ employees
In addition to the above, we recommend a minimum budget of $150/day and you must understand what the campaign objective is.
We often see clients we work with that have a target cost per demo of $500 or less in ad spend and $50 or less in cost per lead.
If you don’t know your numbers yet, this first campaign will serve as a baseline of what metrics you need to be profitable using LinkedIn ads.
This is also the time that you want to plan the actual creative you will use. That means writing ad copy for the headline and description along with a compelling image or video.
We’d recommend starting with an image as video campaigns typically are more expensive, according to our most recent data.
Pillar 2: Campaign Setup
Once you have finished your media plan, the hardest part is over. It’s time to actually execute the media buy.
This simply means creating your ad account and setting up your very first campaign.
We’ll take you step-by-step how to do this here:
If you don’t have a company page on LinkedIn, you’ll need to create one: https://www.linkedin.com/company/setup/new/.
Follow the prompts for setting up your company page according to your company size and information.
Once you have a company page created and you are the admin for the page, you can now create a LinkedIn ads account.
Sign in to your personal LinkedIn.com account.
Go to this page to get started with your campaign, and select "Create Ad."
3. Once here, you'll be prompted to create a LinkedIn Campaign Manager account.
Follow the steps and enter your associated LinkedIn Company Page.
4. Once you complete your Campaign Manager account setup, you’ll be directed to your member dashboard.
From here you need to set up your billing information to unlock your account. Click the gear in the right hand corner and then “billing center” to set up your payment.
Now that you have an ad account created, you can setup your first campaign.
We’ll walk you through the initial settings we recommend you start with for simplicity sake.
Step 1 - Campaign
From the campaign manager page, click “Create Campaign”
Select your campaign objective - We recommend website visits to begin.
Name your campaign
Set up your audience
Company (Industry, Names, Size),
Job Experience (Function, Seniority, Title, Skills, Experience),
In regard to audience size, you will be able to make a 20K audience size work with a small budget, but will need an audience greater than 100K for a larger budget.
Make sure that “Enable Audience Expansion” and “Enable the LinkedIn Audience Network” are both unchecked. This is a money pit and traffic trap for beginners on LinkedIn.
Select Ad format - Single image ad to start
Placement - Uncheck LinkedIn Audience Network
Set budget and schedule
Set bid type to CPC to start, using the minimum bid allowed
Conversion tracking - create a conversion - TY page load
Step 2 - Ad Setup
Create 3 ads to start with (each different & unique to find a baseline)
Name the ad
Introductory text < 125 Characters
Headline < 28 Characters
Okay, now that the campaign and ad creative is setup, we need to place the LinkedIn Insight Tag on your website and also setup tracking.
From the campaign manager select “Account Assets” and select “Insight Tag.”
Click Create an Insight Tag and install the code on every page of your website’s global footer.
Once the Insight Tag is properly installed on your website and a LinkedIn member visits, your domain will show up in the website tracking dashboard with the last signal received. This depends on your website traffic and may take up to 24 hours.
Now that the LinkedIn insight tag has been installed on all website pages, we can now create a conversion event specific to the objective of our campaign and track performance.
To create a conversion event go to “account assets,” click “conversions” and click “create a conversion.”