LinkedIn Advertising 101

So you’re interested in starting LinkedIn advertising? You came to the right place! LinkedIn has a strong advertising platform where brands can build awareness, recruit new employees, drive traffic to their website and establish thought leadership. If you’re just getting started, these tips will help make your first campaign a successful one.

First, let’s tackle the basics. Log into your personal LinkedIn account and click the advertising icon in the top right-hand corner. It will bring you to an advertising dashboard, which should look something like this:

From here, you can add an account for your business or businesses and easily access them. Once you create an account from your business page, you have the option to choose from three different ad types: Sponsored Content, Text Ads and Sponsored InMail. Which ad type you choose depends on your advertising goals and budget.

Sponsored Content: Reach LinkedIn members right in their feed

Sponsored Content allows you to expand the reach of your existing LinkedIn content or create new content targeted to a specific audience. For those of you familiar with Facebook advertising, it is similar to a boosted post. It helps build brand awareness, establish thought leadership and drive traffic to places like a blog post or press release.

Sponsored Content often comes with a higher price tag, so it’s better for brands with a larger budget or brands with a specific goal in mind for a specific piece of content.

Text Ads: Drive targeted leads across LinkedIn pages

Text ads are the ads that appear in the right-hand column on your LinkedIn feed and on other LinkedIn pages, including the My Network and Jobs pages. They are more likely to drive conversions and tend to be more cost-effective than Sponsored Updates, making them the perfect starting point for a new advertiser or small business.

When creating a text ad, put on your Twitter thinking cap. With only 25 characters allowed for the headline and 75 for the body of the ad, you’ll need to be informative and include a call to action using even fewer words than Twitter’s allotted 140 characters.

For a successful text ad campaign, make sure you include a strong value proposition (why should I click this ad?) and test different versions of the copy and photo. LinkedIn allows you to run up to 100 different ads at a time under a single budget! And while 100 different ads are certainly not always necessary, it gives you plenty of room to play around and see what resonates with your audience.

Sponsored InMail: Send direct messages to the most relevant members of your audience

Sponsored InMail works much like an email marketing campaign. You identify your audience and write a message to be delivered directly into their LinkedIn inbox.

This ad format is great for recruiting, increasing attendance at an event or reaching a very specific audience with must-have information. No one likes cluttered inbox, so make sure you use this type sparingly. Sponsored InMail is also generally more expensive than the other types.

Once you choose the best ad type for your goals and budget, always remember to test! What works for one business won't always work for you, so make sure to try a little bit of everything and have fun with it!

Story by: Kelsey Thompson