Advertising on LinkedIn: Is It Worth It?

Advertising on LinkedIn: Is It Worth It?

I have had a few clients ask me about advertising on LinkedIn.  Today, it seems like everyone is advertising on Facebook in order to promote their business or at the very least, to promote different campaigns they may be running at different times.  So when it comes to LinkedIn, is it worth it to spend coveted marketing dollars on this social platform?  Advertising on LinkedIn: Is It Worth It?


The Good

  • Targeting – LinkedIn has the most accurate targeting of any ad platform. Sure, Google has wider reach and Facebook has more categories, but for pure targeting, nothing beats LinkedIn. This is because LinkedIn users input the targeting data themselves; if they work in a bank, they put in their profile that they work in a bank.
  • There is no algorithmic guesswork by the platform like for Facebook Audiences.
  • You can target very specific attributes:
    • Industry
    • What company they work for
    • What skills have they been endorsed for
    • Their title
    • Even groups they belong to.
  • Audience Sizing – When you’re building your ad – before you have even paid anything – you can see exactly how big the ad audience is going to be (if it has over 1,000 people).  Today, users are six times more likely to read, post, share, comment or like content than engage in career-related activity, such as update a profile or make connections, according to LinkedIn.
  • Self-Service Tool – You can put multiple people on one account, collaborate on ads, and easily do multiple versions of an ad in one campaign.  They also offer a dashboard to keep an eye on ad performance and a button to turn both ads and campaigns on and off.

The Bad

  • The Ads – The first complaint for those who start using the platform is the ad size. You are strictly limited to a 25 character headline, 75 characters in the body, and a 50×50 image.  With a bit of work, though, it is certainly possible to deliver an effective ad within those constraints.
  • Managing a large number of campaigns – The self-service tool was clearly designed for the small-scale advertiser in mind.  It handles your every need until you reach about 50 campaigns, and then it can get a bit meticulous.  For one, every time you go to the ad tool you see every campaign – even those you have hidden. Clicking ‘Show all but hidden campaigns’ at the bottom solves this – but when you use the tool many times every day this becomes tedious.
  • Cost – For those in the branding world, that may not seem high, but many small business marketers are used to running dozens of campaigns with at a buck a day to test different strategies. And these prices make that quite difficult.  This can, however, be overcome. Although, you can’t change the minimums, you CAN run your ads with a $2 CPM. Then, a click through greater than .1% will start bringing down the cost below $2 per click.Also, you can stop/start the ads manually for when your audience is likely to be on so that you’re not spending money when you’re targets aren’t awake.

What To Do?

LinkedIn advertising can be expensive compared to Facebook. When to use LinkedIn advertising as opposed to Facebook advertising can be determined by seeing where your needs fit most.

LinkedIn Advertising:

  • Your product is B2B or B2G
  • Your product is catered to skilled individuals
  • You are recruiting specialized employees
  • You want to target using job positions, education, skills and experience.
  • You want to promote professional content.
  • To collect professional feedback

Facebook Advertising:

  • Your product is B2C
  • Your product is catered to the general public
  • You are recruiting unspecialized employees for general labor
  • You want to target using age, location, language and interests.
  • You want to promote general content.
  • To collect general feedback

Before you start an online advertising campaign, no matter what platform you use, you should always consider all of the following factors:

  • Your Objectives For The Campaign
 – What are you hoping to achieve from the campaign? Is it brand awareness, acquisition, increasing likes, call to action, competition participation, etc…?
  • Your Target Audience – Who are your customers or users? Who do you think will be interested in participating in your competition or reading your content?
  • Your Target Platform –Where is your target audience present online? Are they on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, forums, news websites, e-commerce platforms?
  • Your Resources – How much money are you willing to spend on an online advertising campaign per month? Who will be managing the online campaign?
  • Your Content Strategy – Do you have a content calendar? Will your content change throughout the campaign and do you want to invest differently in different phases of the campaign?
  • The Advertising Market – Do you know what the average price per click or impression or action is? Is this season a high or low advertising season? Are the prices higher or lower now?

Contact me today to see what your next moves in social media should be!

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