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How to Use Paid Social Media Services For Lead Generation:LinkedIn Ads

Last week, we discussed the effectiveness and targeting capability of paid social media services to enhance your lead generation process. Now it’s time to get the details on HOW to set up paid social media services for your company to begin acquiring new customers.

To really get into the details of each option, we are going to break them out. Today’ let’s talk about LinkedIn ads.

Set Up A LinkedIn Ad In 8 Steps

For brands targeting the B2B market, LinkedIn is number one for social media lead generation. LinkedIn ads also have the longest track record for business advertising, which gives companies an added level of security in their investment.

To get started, go to your profile in LinekdIn and click on the drop-down option “Advertise on LinkedIn” under Home (see image above).

On the LinkedIn Ad landing page, follow the steps below to set up your LinkedIn ad.

  1. Name your campaign. For example, “Webinar Promotion, March 2013”
  2. Select a language you want your ad to show in.
  3. Select a Media Type – Basic or (NEW!) Video.
  • Tip: Video is recommended. People would much rather watch a video than read an ad. Your efforts will stand out more as this is a very new option on the site.

  • Create at least one ad variation.
  • Tip: A/B Testing is a critical way to gauge the responsiveneness of your target market to your promotion. At least one variation in the headline or byline should be put into place for the first leg of your campaign. Each variation should have only one alteration to best gauge the criteria appeals most to your audience.
  • Add in your destination URL.
    • Tip: Build a dedicated landing page for each of your campaigns in lieu of just sending them to your website. A related landing page will result in a much-higher conversion rate.
  • Select your headline and ad text.
    • Tip: Keep it simple and draw attention. In other words, be sure your promotion “speaks for itself”. If you are promoting a webinar, promote the benefit of the webinar to attendees, not just the title.
  • Select an Image and Video to draw the attention of your audience.
    • Tip: Videos need to be less than 2 minutes long for this purpose.
  • Link the ad to your Company Profile.
    • Tip:This will garner more awareness of your company page even if the viewer does not click on the ad link.

    Targeting Your LinkedIn Ad

    This is where the power of LinkedIn ad really shows. For the greatest return on investment, target your ads to appear using the following criteria:

    • Location
    • Job Title
    • School
    • Skills
    • Group
    • Gender
    • Age
    • Company Name

    You can also target the LinkedIn Audience Network, which is described on the LinkedIn site as “The LinkedIn Audience Network is a collection of partner websites that display LinkedIn Ads on their pages. This allows you to reach the LinkedIn members you are targeting, even when they are visiting other websites. Partner websites may include those in the Google double click Ad Exchange.”

    Tip: Once you target your audience, your LinkedIn ad builder will show you how many potential LinkedIn members you can reach with your targeted criteria. If your targeting criteria drops your estimated target audience to less LinkedIn users than you’d like, reduce your targeting criteria a little to increase the audience capacity.

    For example, say you are a regional company in the Chicago-land area and you are promoting a webinar.  You have selected a target market age of 40-55 years old and a location of Chicago, IL as part of your targeting criteria. To increase your audience capacity, maybe open your age demographic to 35-60 and the Chicago Metro area, in lieu of just the city itself.

    The last step of setting up your paid social media lead generation ad is to select your daily budget and the ad timeline. LinkedIn will provide a recommended Cost-Per-Click, so you can, decide how many clicks you would like to get each day and what your financial capabilities are to drive that traffic.

    As you consider the above details for your LinkedIn ad campaign, take one more tip as food for thought for your paid social media services strategy .timeline (Test, for about two weeks, with any social media lead development and be sure to A/B test that effort before investing your “highest” per diem budget. Finally, set a timeline for your ads to run so you can assess the results. We would recommend running an ad no longer than a month, at a minimum two weeks. Stop it, gauge the results and then adjust or change as necessary to ensure that you maintain the highest possible ROI for your paid social media services.

    Next week – Twitter and Facebook paid social media services.

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