Gary Vaynerchuk said in an interview that “attention is the only currency.” I’ve come to understand that myself. LinkedIn is a professional network, indeed, but more and more companies claim their spot on it to advertise their products and services.
Several years ago, when I started managing Sponsored Content campaigns on LinkedIn, I was guided by the idea that LinkedIn users behavior is a lot different than those of other social networks, Facebook for example.
Most companies allocating budgets to LinkedIn are from the B2B. They promote content to generate leads. LinkedIn has continuously been working on improving targeting to encourage companies to invest more substantial budgets. Their strategy worked. Advertisers have seen results and, at the same time, an increasingly tight competition that has led to higher costs of traffic. Target audiences have become attractive to many companies.
I factored in all these changes and tested several approaches to understanding what the best tactics to deliver results.
Make images work for you
The creative that accompanies a Sponsored Content text ad is quite generous in size compared to other channels (1200 x 627). Take advantage of this specificity and change its role from the companion illustration of the ad copy in the primary message carrier. There is no doubt that the image is the one that draws our attention first, so throw on it the most important message you need the audience to see. CTA included! I managed to double the CTR for some ads using this tactic.
Steal the Audience Attention by Using Numbers and Percentages in Headlines, Copy, and CTAs
They are more efficient than most superlative words. Figures and percentages are graphical elements that capture our attention faster than letters. Besides, their weight in the text is much lower than that of the words; they will immediately stand out. Use them to ensure visibility for an idea or topic. With figures and percentages, you can describe a context in which you are well positioned, and that gives you both credibility and audience availability to learn more. Example: “Our company has helped top 3 telecom industry players to increase sales by 50% in 2017. Find out how!”
In LinkedIn, Groups are audiences formed around clearly defined business interests or professions: people either work in the same fields or are part of professional organizations (“Insurance professionals,” “Sales excellence group,” etc.). With LinkedIn Groups, you’re spot on. You can document the audience from the inside. Subscribe before making any decision to find out what are the topics under discussion, the tone and level of detail in conversations. Then it’s easy to deliver messages to them. Of all the types of audiences for which we’ve created campaigns, the Groups had the lowest cost per lead and the highest conversion rate. Like I said, spot on.
Reach Your Audience Beyond LinkedIn
Last year, LinkedIn launched the Audience Network, a feature that allows advertisers to show their Sponsored Content ads on a premium network of websites and mobile applications, alongside the LinkedIn feed. Take advantage of this opportunity: the targeting criteria remain unchanged, but the audience can be shown messages in many more places. I noticed that extra exposure is significant, the number of impressions increasing considerably. Performance reports deliver data on reach, engagement, and associated costs. From my experience, well-defined targeting in LinkedIn can sometimes result in reasonably small audiences. If you enable Audience Network, you may increase reach without compromising your targeting quality.