If you want to hit the bullseye, you first have to aim in the general direction of the dart board. If you’re a B2B marketer doing paid advertising, LinkedIn is your dartboard. It’s full of 380 million business professionals, and a certain demographic of these people create your bullseye. What’s more, the LinkedIn Ad Network gives B2B marketers all the information they need to reach these targets.
REASON 1. It’s Made of 380 Million Tech-Savvy Professionals
As a B2B marketer, you’re out to target business professionals, and LinkedIn is made up of 380 million of them. According to Kim Celestre, a Forrester analyst, “LinkedIn members are highly motivated to maintain their professional profiles and keep their job details current.” New professionals often use their LinkedIn profiles as their resumes, and seasoned professionals maintain their account details for networking purposes. A B2B marketer is knocking at an open door to a goldmine of demographic information that is constantly updated. LinkedIn is full of business professionals who are effectively raising their hands and saying, “Hey, you probably want to talk to me.”
REASON 2. It Can Target for a Myriad of Demographic Details
Following her point about LinkedIn’s profile details, Kim Celestre adds, “This means that B2B marketers who purchase LinkedIn’s ad solutions will be able to tap into users’ high quality profile data for very accurate targeting across a variety of channels.”
On a personal profile, LinkedIn users identify themselves by company, industry, and job title or vocational function. The LinkedIn ad system collects this information about everyone in their network. They know whether a person is a marketing director, a technical writer, an office manager, the head of sales, or the CEO. They know whether that person works for Coca-Cola, Hubspot, Starbucks, or Intel. They know whether a person lives in Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, or Miami.
When using LinkedIn to target your advertising, you can hit the bullseye every time. Optional LinkedIn targeting characteristics include:
Gender / Age
LinkedIn allows advertisers to specify industry, company size, and job title of the individuals they want to see their display ads. Also, LinkedIn is an ideal way to do account-based marketing, because you can show your ads to individuals who work at specific companies. It’s no use giving an untargeted prospect that chance to cost you an ad click just because they’re curious, so it behooves the B2B marketer to be as targeted as possible. LinkedIn lets you do that.
REASON 3. It Can Accommodate Skills-based Lead Qualifications
We’ll use ourselves as a quick case study. Bizible has learned that LinkedIn advertising works exceptionally well for our company. Sure the clicks cost a bit more, but they convert at a higher rate. Because our product targets a specific type of business professional, we want to advertise to only those people.
As these LinkedIn members build their ‘skills’ in their profiles and receive endorsements left and right, we can see which business professionals would be a good fit for our product and which ones we shouldn’t target. For example, those that have advanced analytics skills or those that have demand-related skills, such as paid search, are an excellent fit for what we do. As a result, we’re able to target those that would benefit the most from a marketing attribution product.
Nowhere else in the vast expanse of cyberspace is there an ad network that allows B2B marketers to segment their ad campaign targets based on unique areas of expertise. More power to the marketer.
“I love using skills to segment out users of a certain product. Let’s say you’re trying to reach users of Salesforce – simply target that skill and show your ads only to users who’ve self-selected that skill. There’s no fussing with whether you’re showing ads to a massive group of irrelevant marketers or salespeople, and it leaves you with your exact target. No wasted impressions on irrelevant eyes.”
REASON 4. The LinkedIn Lead Accelerator
LinkedIn doesn’t leave B2B marketers to sort through the hoards of data and prospect details on their own. Their new Lead Accelerator tool helps facilitate lead nurturing in order for marketers to display their ads to the right people at the right time based on where they are in the buying process. This allows marketers to sequentially organize their ad campaign strategy, and optimize the way they approach and nurture prospects through the funnel. Already, the tool has helped numerous companies across the United States decrease their costs-per-lead and increase their conversion rates by more than 50%.
REASON 5. LinkedIn Ads Convert Well on Gated Content
B2B marketers on average distribute large amounts of gated content. B2B sales cycles and buying processes can be long, and as such, B2B leads benefit from plenty of education prior to the close. Gated content also provides an avenue for email capture and nurturing. In our article on our learnings with LinkedIn ads, we explained how our LinkedIn ads converted well on content offers.
REASON 6. The Majority of B2B Marketers Agree
B2B industry benchmarks presented by the Content Marketing Institute show that 94% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn in some capacity to disseminate content, and this same percentage of marketers agree that LinkedIn is the most effective social network for B2B marketing purposes.
The chart below shows the growth in the LinkedIn’s ad network revenue in millions each quarter since the beginning of 2013. These metrics show that marketers have been increasingly using this network since 2012, and according to the data, those numbers are still rising.
When using ad networks that cost a bit more for the click, it’s incredibly important to have B2B attribution in place to allow you to track how well the clicks convert to revenue. That way, you’re able to see which individual ads cause the most conversions, allowing you to optimize your ad spend for maximum effectiveness. Your marketing will only be as good as the data you have.