LinkedIn, a global social network for business, is one of the few ways to accurately and reliably target core audiences in B2B marketing. The problem is, with 97% of B2B marketers using LinkedIn for content distribution, everyone’s at the party battling to cut through the noise.
In recent months, this has only got more challenging as face-to-face events decline and marketers push spend into digital advertising. What this means is that campaigns are fighting for impressions, so bids increase and ultimately the cost-per-lead increases.
Even though the cost to advertise may be creeping up, LinkedIn is still one of the best platforms to get engagement and leads from your specific audiences. It’s all about being smart with how you’re using LinkedIn’s features how well it’s stitched into your wider sales strategy.
In this blog, I share some new features and techniques that will help you rethink your LinkedIn strategies, impress your prospects and make LinkedIn work harder.
1. Don’t let clicks go to waste
If you’ve run lead gen campaigns on LinkedIn, then you know how frustrating it is when you’ve received lots of clicks, but not many form conversions, however, this isn’t totally wasted budget. LinkedIn have a ‘Matched Audiences’ option for lead gen forms that collates a list of anyone who has clicked on your lead gen form(s). This leaves you with a group of people who are aware of your product or service but need a little more convincing.
Click list campaigns are ripe for retargeting and building trust with your audience with a little bit of brand messaging, a lighter touch message or a credibility message such as a case study. When this technique is used alongside the form, you get a halo effect which pushes prospects over the line.
Tip: remember to exclude anyone who has converted and is currently in your CRM if you only want to target new unknown contacts.
2. Leverage social engagement for future communications
Another overlooked source of data is ad engagement. LinkedIn Campaign Manager reports on how many people have engaged with your ads including likes, shares, and comments. This is a great opportunity for the sales team to engage with prospects who have seen and liked your content! Add these people to a list in Sales Navigator, send them a connection request with a personalised message and you’ll grow your network and strengthen your brand.
3. Intelligent tracking in one interface
Another helpful feature for tracking data in LinkedIn is ‘Smart Links’. This is a new feature within Sales Navigator which allows you to house content (Videos, PDFs, URLS) in one place, set up trackable links and then report on who’s engaged with your content and when – without even having to leave the platform. You’ll also receive an email when someone has viewed your content.
Having sight of these kinds of metrics provides significant intent signals for sales, leveraging a strong follow up.
Tip: If you’re using Salesforce CRM or Microsoft Dynamics 365 and you have an enterprise account, activity from Smart Links can be set up to writeback to your CRM. However, take caution if you’re planning on mass sending to individuals outside of your CRM as this connection will create new records for unrecognised contacts.
4. Make sure your creative is up to scratch
Whether you’re advertising a whitepaper, services or a demo; you need to make sure your creative is of high quality and suitable for your audiences. We find personalising ads to target different personas can see a significant uptake in leads – matching creative with specific audience job roles, lifestyles, and pain points.
Also, try experimenting with different kinds of content. Do a test to see if static ads work best for your campaign or if video, carousel ads or conversational ads increase your CTR. It’s all about trial and error, providing insights for future campaigns and long-term optimisations.
5. Nail your targeting through results forecasting
LinkedIn Campaign Manager has some clever tools to make sure you’re targeting the right people. When setting up your targeting, take a look at ‘Forecasted Results’ to check if your logic has pulled in the right people and aligns with your campaign goals. The ‘Segment Breakdown’ will tell you the ratios of function, company size, seniority and industry within the audience to provide confidence in your targeting.
6. Confident targeting using Matched Audiences
The ‘Matched Audiences’ feature is great if you have third party or intent data for a specific campaign, or you have a list of companies/ contacts you’d like to target. LinkedIn provide templates and builds this audience which can then be used as a list in your campaign targeting.
From there, you can whittle the audience down to your preferred job titles, seniorities, locations, and industries etc. This gives you complete control over the companies and people you’re targeting.
7. Bring InMails to life through video
Video messages are a great way to personalise and go the extra mile for your prospects. We’ve integrated LinkedIn with Drift which has a plugin on messenger, but you could also use Vidyard, or any other way you’d like to capture video.
A simple hello and introduction can impress your prospects and we find they are significantly more engaged with our messages. On one campaign, we saw a 60% open rate with an average view duration of 23 seconds – all tracked through Drift.
8. Send invitations to grow your following
Another feature LinkedIn introduced this year is the ‘Invite Connections to Follow’ feature. This is a great way to integrate your own network with your company’s network, invite existing connections to follow the page or create awareness for accounts that you’d like to talk to as a business.
Tip: only admins can invite connections to follow but we would encourage a few people with strong followings in your business to do so.
9. Map data effectively by connecting the dots
Integrate LinkedIn with your CRM to optimise the customer journey. If your CRM or marketing automation tool doesn’t have an integration ready to purchase, then third parties such as Zapier can create that efficient data tunnel. The more automated the process, the less repetitive work for you and the slicker communications will be for your customer.
Tip: check out our CRM & marketing automation blogs for information on how to effectively nurture leads.
Do more with what’s already there
Whether you’re using LinkedIn for ABM, social selling or creating brand awareness, there are lots of techniques and strategies that can help you reach your goals. Our team push innovative boundaries to make campaigns work harder for our clients as part of multi-channel integrated campaigns.
With the right plan, you can engage with your buyers at every stage of their journey. Get in touch to make a change today.