Linkedin Ads campaigns in 10 steps

Linkedin Ads campaigns in 10 steps

Too many people do not know how easy it is to launch an advertising campaign on Linkedin.

On top of that, Linkedin is the only platform offering a vast selection of professional-related targeting criteria.

Ideal for B2B brands interested in targeting the right individuals in the right organizations.

Even Premium B2C brands love the ability to target customers based on professional criteria such as seniority, job titles (including inferred criteria like gender or age)

Linkedin is expensive compared to other platforms. It is true.

But what is the cost to a business of badly using Linkedin Ads or not at all, while competitors do use Linkedin Ads well?

Note: There is a quick way of knowing if competitors are using Linkedin Ads, for what and how well but it will be for another time.

So if you want to give Linkedin Ads a go, here are our Dos & Dont’s, pre requesites and a 10-step guide to ensure you are getting things done correctly.

Dos & Don’ts

Do's:

  • Break down your campaign and your budget into phases. Ideally, 3 phases targeted at the same audience group.
    • The first phase’s objective is awareness. You want LinkedIn ads to reach as many people as possible and show them your brand and message. In other words: build your brand and measure the number of ad impressions and number of people reached.
    • The second wave’s objective is Consideration: get your customers to take action to learn more about your business.
    • The third and last phase’s objective is Conversion: optimize for lead generation or other actions taken on your website.
  • Use LinkedIn’s forecasted results to refine or widen the targeting based on budget and the right ad format. Aim for an audience size that will allow you to target a small enough group with an average frequency between 5-10 over 7 days
  • Make sure your audience size is right for the budget.
    • If your targeted audience is too big, then people will not see the ads in enough time to remember seeing your brand or not everyone in your audience group will see your ads and there will be no guarantee that people will see your ads in wave 2 or wave 3 have seen your ads in wave 1.
    • If your targeted audience is too narrow, then people will see your ads too many times and they will feel spammed and will tune out.
  • Do enable Linkedin Audience Network.
    • This will allow your campaign to be seen by your targeted audience outside of Linkedin. When Linkedin members you target are navigating their favourite news or business websites, they will see your ads right there (if the website is partnering with Linkedin)
    • This is particularly effective to show your campaign to senior decision-makers who might not be actively using Linkedin and still target them using Linkedin targeting criteria but on their favourite websites.
  • Create 5 versions of the same ad: Linkedin and members will prefer campaigns with multiple versions to avoid audience fatigue. Plus it will allow you to learn which ad creative gets the most engagement or clicks for the consideration or conversion phases

Don'ts:

  • Don’t Enable Audience Expansion
    • Leave the box unchecked if you want to make sure LinkedIn ads stay focused on your targeted audience. If you have too much budget and you want the Linkedin algorithm to expand your campaign to a larger and relevant audience, go for it.
  • Don't skip to the end by doing a lead generation campaign without raising awareness or consideration first.
    • You would not buy a product from a brand you have never heard of or you barely know what makes them different and why you should consider them. So why would you expect buyers you target to buy if you have not made sure they understand your brand and your services first.
  • Don't forget to check back 24h later:
    • You will avoid bad surprises by checking if campaign is running smoothly.
    • Stuck in the review process or the ad creative got rejected by Linkedin. To maintain the professionalism and integrity of the site, new campaigns will not run live until it is approved through LinkedIn's ad review process.
    • Overspending. If your budget is being spent faster than you thought, reduce daily budget or narrow down audience.
    • Under-delivering. If your campaign is delivering too slowly, you might want to increase your audience by adding more criteria or you might want to enable the Linkedin Audience Network (if you did not listen to us 😉)
  • Don't forget to review your budget before launching your campaign
  • Don't forget you can save an audience to reuse it in the future and you can duplicate an existing campaign to create a new one with a different objective faster

Prerequisites:

Before launching your first campaign, you must have a LinkedIn Page and a Campaign Manager account. If you already have a LinkedIn Page and a Campaign Manager account, click here to learn how you can set up your campaign.

1. Create a LinkedIn Page

LinkedIn Pages are a free and easy way to establish your brand on LinkedIn. All you need to get started is a LinkedIn account and a verified email address (Linkedin will verify if you're eligible to create a page on your company's behalf).

There are two key benefits to a LinkedIn Page:

  1. A LinkedIn Page is required to run Sponsored  Content and Sponsored Messaging campaigns with Campaign Manager.
  2. Posting high-quality content on your LinkedIn Page will improve your bid in LinkedIn’s advertising auction. This is because the LinkedIn relevance score rewards marketers who regularly post content that earns lots of clicks, likes, comments, and shares.

2. Create a Campaign Manager account

Campaign Manager is the advertising platform on LinkedIn. After you create a free account, the platform will guide you through each step of setting up your first campaign.

With Campaign Manager, you can select your goal, define your audience and have complete control over your campaigns, but you’ll need to create an account first. Don’t forget to associate your LinkedIn Page to your new account!

Now you're ready to get started!

3. (optional) Set up Linkedin Insights Tag on your website

4. (optional) Upload lists of accounts or customers from your CRM into Linkedin so you can target or re-target via Linkedin

Imagine if the list of your customers in your CRM is just first names and emails.

Uploading them onto Linkedin will open the possibility to target matched contacts from your list with Linkedin targeting criteria, for example, people in HR roles in large companies for a specific campaign to sell courses to companies and another campaign targeted at people who are in C-level roles to invite them to a networking event.

Step 1: Set up your campaign

1. Sign in to Campaign Manager

Campaign Manager is the advertising platform on LinkedIn. After you create a free account, the platform will guide you through each step of setting up your first campaign. Learn how to prepare for your first LinkedIn campaign, and then read on for an overview of the key steps in this process.

Once in Campaign Manager, select “Create” and then select “Campaign”. This will take you to the campaign creation page.

2. Select a Campaign Group

If it’s your first campaign, we recommend using the default “New Campaign Group”

Step 2: Select your objective

An objective is the action you want your audience to take upon seeing your ad. Selecting your objective helps show ad formats, features and bid-types that support your objective during campaign creation. Learn more about the available objectives in Campaign Manager.

Choose Brand Awareness for best & cheapest results. Especially if it is first time you target this audience on Linkedin

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Step 3. Build your target audience

With over 950M+ members in over 200 countries, LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network. With Campaign Manager’s robust targeting, you can target with professional traits—like job title, company name, and industry type, or by professional or personal interests.

You can also customize targeting by bringing in your own data using Matched Audiences—which includes retargeting, contact targeting, and account-based targeting. This will deserve a dedicated article as it is one of the most powerful yet underused Linkedin Ads features.

1. If you target people in the United Arab Emirates, Select UAE.

Do not select Dubai (only a fraction of Linkedin members have updated their city in their profile so it will exclude majority of members in Dubai who do not have an updated profile from your target)

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2. If you have a list of prospects or customers in your CRM, Select List Upload & upload your lists

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Select the right combination of filters, for example:

Job function AND Job seniority (or Job titles)

AND

Company Industry

AND

Company employee size

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3. Uncheck Enable audience Expansion

Make sure Linkedin Ads stay focused on your targeted audience

If you have too much budget and you want Linkedin algo to expand your campaign to a larger and relevant audience, go for it.

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Step 4. Select your ad format

After building your audience, you’ll be asked to choose an ad format for your first campaign. Depending upon your objective, you can select from the various Sponsored Content formats (carousel, document, event, single image or video ads in the LinkedIn feed), Message Ads (ads that show up in LinkedIn messages), or Text Ads.

Learn more about Sponsored Content (Carousel, Document, Thought Leader, Event, Single Image, and Video Ads)

Learn more about Message Ads (Ads that show in LinkedIn Messaging)

Learn more about Text Ads (Right rail and Top Banner Ads)

Learn more about Dynamic Ads (Follower, Spotlight and Content Ads)

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Step 5. Placements

Place your ads on LinkedIn or expand your reach with our trusted 3rd party publishers.

Check the box: Linkedin Audience Network

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Step 6. Select your budget and schedule

Select the budget, bidding strategy, and schedule that works for your goals. Setting the right initial budget will help you automate or control costs and validate your marketing strategy.

Learn how to plan your starting budget and adjust it over time based on campaign performance:

1. Make sure the average frequency is between 5 and 10

It is important people you target remember your campaign but won't feel spammed or bored of seeing the ads too many times.

Adjust audience as necessary

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2. Define Daily and Lifetime budget so your budget is spent evenly throughout the campaign

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Step 7. (Optional) Set up conversion tracking

Please ignore for Awareness campaigns. or create conversion if you have already installed Linkedin Insight Tag

By adding the LinkedIn Insight Tag to your website, you can track conversions attributed to your advertising campaigns.

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Step 8 Set up your ad(s)

Depending on the ad format you selected, you may need to upload creatives. This may include the image, headline, URL, and more. Learn more about each ad format’s requirements and specifications with Linkedin’s Ads Guide.

When uploading image (it is recommended to create 5 different versions of the same ad. you can upload 5 in one go to save time)

Choose your call to action button

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9: Review & Launch

The final step before launching your first campaign is to review your campaign and add a payment method. Enter a debit or credit card, save, and your campaign will enter a review process before launching.

You can should have a last look at the Forecasted Results guide to estimate the impact of your campaign is what you want. If everything looks right, you’re all set!

10. Check 24h later if everything is fine

Track and check campaign results with multiple reporting criteria and charts

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Linkedin Campaign results - Performance Chart
Linkedin Campaign results - Performance Chart
Linkedin Campaign results - by demographics
Linkedin Campaign results - by demographics

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