Admittedly, I’ve never been big on LinkedIn.
I don’t like how they constantly ask you to invite “others you may know” to the platform, how they removed API access for 3rd party apps, or how they’ve failed to prevent everyone from getting spammy link requests.
So there’s that.
But, when it comes to B2B lead gen, LinkedIn does have some things going for it.
Specifically, pretty much every professional is on it.
And because everyone is on it, you can target your audience like perhaps no other platform, including:
- By Industry
- By Company Size
- By Location
- By Job Title
- By Job Function
- By Seniority
- By Education
- By Gender
For B2B marketing, this is pretty powerful stuff.
And what I like about LinkedIn’s ad platform is that it’s not just about stuffing another ad in someone’s face.
With Sponsored Updates, you can deliver timely, valuable, and relevant content to the exact audience of your choice.
Sponsored updates are basically the same things as the updates you already post to your LinkedIn company page, except you pay to have them appear in the feed of your targeted audience (pay per click or impressions).
Your audience can still choose to ignore them, but if you do them right, they won’t.
And if you get their attention, you’re going to be getting targeted, quality leads.
Tips for LinkedIn Sponsored Updates
Think about your current lead gen cycle first
You need to start by realizing that the vast majority of those who you will target on LinkedIn are not actively searching or shopping for your product or service.
That deserves repeating…those who you will be advertising to are not looking for you.
So approach your LinkedIn campaign accordingly, knowing that you’re dealing with those at the top of the funnel and thus a “hard sell” ain’t the right way to go.
Create conversion goals
Don’t pay for LinkedIn Sponsored Updates for the sole purpose of “brand awareness”.
Have some conversion goals in mind, such as:
- Webinar signups
- Demo signups
- Free trials
- White Paper downloads
- App intalls
Remember, keep it to soft sell kind of stuff, you’re not likely to get people asking for free quotes.
Start with a small, specific audience
Don’t think broad audience to help fill a big funnel.
Think small: small and specific.
Remember, LinkedIn lets you laser-focus on the audience you want.
Instead of targeting employees at hospitals for your medical software…target CIOs and Operation Managers at Toronto Hospitals who’ve been in their position at least 5 years.
The more specific your audience, the more specific (and relevant) you can make your content.
Craft relevant content
If you’ve created a super-specific audience, this shouldn’t be too hard.
Let’s go back to our medical software example.
If we were doing a broad targeting (e.g. people who work in hospitals) a headline for your Sponsored Update could be something like…
“How Hospitals are Streamlining Workflows & Increasing Patient Privacy”
But if we are targeting those CIOs at Toronto Hospitals only, your Sponsored Updates could read something like…
“How Toronto Hospital CIOs are Streamlining Workflows & Increasing Patient Privacy”.
If you’re a CIO at a Toronto hospital, which headline would you click on?
As well, if you want your content to be more relevant, don’t make it about your product or service: make it about solving a problem for your prospect.
Use landing pages and test test test
Whatever you’re Sponsored Update’s Call-to-Action (CTA), whether it’s to download, signup, or start a free trial, use a landing page.
A landing page is a page designed specifically for your prospect to take action.
Landing pages are important because you can craft them to be relevant to your original Sponsored Post.
Instead of sending people to your website, send them to a LinkedIn-specific landing page where you make it as easy as possible to take the action you want them to (e.g. download a white paper, start a free trial).
Landing pages are also great because you can test them: headlines, images, prices, form fields, etc. to see what gets the highest conversion.
In the end your entire LinkedIn campaigns also need to be tested, tested, tested.