The LinkedIn Ads Show is your source for news, how-tos, and insights about the LinkedIn Ads platform. Hosted by LinkedIn Ads expert and partner, AJ Wilcox, you'll get up-to-date, actionable advice, as well as occasional interviews with LinkedIn's product that will make you a LinkedIn advertising rockstar.
Get the Lowest Costs from LinkedIn with these Advanced Bidding Strategies! - Ep 89
30:49Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: New Interests for Interest Targeting Explanation of CPC vs CPM bidding on LinkedIn Relevancy Score and Auction Episode Follow AJ on LinkedIn NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Show Transcript You're paying way too much for your LinkedIn Ads. Today, we're going to fix that. We're talking about bidding on this week's episode of the LinkedIn Ads Show. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. Hey there, LinkedIn Ads fanatics! For those of you diehards who've been around long enough to have listened to Episode Six, it was all about bidding and budgeting, and it was our most listened to episode of the entire series. Well, things have changed with bidding a good bit since we recorded that episode back in early 2020. So I definitely think it's time to refresh ourselves on the topic. Not to mention, I'm a very different podcaster after 89 episodes. And so I'm excited to have one of the most important topics covered in an episode where I don't sound nearly as awkward Bidding is the number one reason that advertisers are paying too much for their ads on LinkedIn. And this is incredibly important to master because this is something that really affects your bottom line. The strategies and principles that I'm sharing with you today came after I'd spent over $30 million on the platform. So these learnings are well earned, and I'm excited to share them with you. We've now spent over 150 million on the platform. And we just continue to fine tune these. So make sure to listen to the very end of this episode. Because at the very end, I'm going to give you my framework for how to get the lowest costs from LinkedIn ads every time. In the news, you may remember back in episode 87, we mentioned that the new feature called website actions was seen out in the wild, and that it might be part of a beta. Well, I got confirmation from Mark Gustafson this week that it is indeed in beta. So if this is something that you're dying to get access to, then reach out to your rep. And Mark, thanks for that correction. There was a new post on the LinkedIn ads blog this week by Jae Oh, and Jay is definitely someone that I'd love to have on the podcast. So we'll see if I can get him on in a future episode. But he posted all about the new release of interests for LinkedIn targeting, we've linked to the whole article down below in the show notes. But he basically explained the interest targeting on LinkedIn in three different categories. He talked about general interests, service interests, and the newest product interest attributes. They launched over 20 new service interests, and over 120 new product interests. He said, you can now fine tune your campaign targeting with over 400 professional interest categories. For product interests, he mentioned that there are 18 categories to choose from. And the initial focus is software, which makes a lot of sense, because when they rolled out product pages, they were exclusively for SAS software,. Makes sense that that's where they would be getting the data from. And they go down to subcategories that zero in on specifics, like you mentioned, data visualization software, revenue management, software, sales, analytic software, etc. Under the new service interests, it's all about engaging with services pages, they launched with their initial set of about 20 categories that includes services such as real estate, environmental consulting, and app development. So if this is interesting to you, definitely go check out that article, I want to highlight one of the reviews, Patrick Alessi who's the Head of Customer Success at ProfitMetrics.io in Denmark. He left this review. He said, "AJ is clearly an expert in his field. Listening to this podcast has already given me a lot of tips and insights that I didn't have before". Patrick, thanks for that, I'm turning a little bit red. I'll move on here. If you're a lover and a listener of the show, and you haven't left a review for us yet, please go and do that, especially on Apple podcasts. I know I say it every episode. But it really helps with the algorithms of getting the show mentioned and shown to new people who haven't discovered it yet. The biggest compliment that you can pay us is by leaving a review and help other advertisers find the show. And of course, if I can figure out who you are, when you leave your review, sometimes you can't tell from the username, I'll give you a shout out. So I want to feature you. Alright, let's go ahead and get to the topic. Let's hit it. First, we need to talk about the different bid types that are available the ways that you can bid. The default is called maximum delivery. And it used to be called auto bidding back years ago, and I actually liked the term auto bidding better than maximum delivery, but whatever, I was not consulted. The way that maximum delivery works is you pay by the impression and LinkedIn bids as high as it needs to in order to spend your daily budget. It's the default option for most campaigns. And it is the most expensive way to pay for your traffic about 90% of the time from the studies we've done. It's only available for sponsored content, which is your newsfeed ads. But if you're anything like us, the vast majority of our budget ends up going into sponsored content. So it'll feel like a lot. Next, we have manual bidding. And with manual bidding, you can pay either by the click, or by the 1000 impressions. The concept of being able to pay by the click is what put Google Ads on the map. I absolutely love getting to tell people that when you're paying by the click, you don't pay a dime unless LinkedIn can get someone to actually take action. What LinkedIn does is it gets as much traffic as it can at your maximum bid until it hits your daily budget. Although many of us know it regularly overspends daily budgets, manual cost per click bidding results in the cheapest cost per click from LinkedIn about 90% of the time. So I get really comfortable with manual bidding. And I suggest you do the same. What's interesting about manual bidding is it's actually a hidden option. I joke about this, but in a campaign, you'll see under bidding, maximum delivery and cost cap bidding. And then there's an option that says more options. And when you click that, it reveals manual bidding. So this is effectively a hidden option, because it's an option that takes up one row that LinkedIn has hidden with a toggle that takes up one row. Obviously, this means that it was hidden intentionally. If you're listening to this podcast, I'm imagining that you are an advanced advertiser. And this is by far the best option for advanced advertisers that are looking to improve performance. It does take more work, but boy, it's worth it. When LinkedIn costs what it does to be able to get costs down 20, 30 50%. You'll also notice a little checkbox under manual bidding when you select it that says enable bid adjustment for high value clicks. And if you hover over the little question mark there, it says it allows LinkedIn to bid up to 45% higher to capture someone that LinkedIn thinks is most likely to convert. I would argue that this data is very limited on who is actually high value so I usually uncheck the box. In theory, this works the same way that target cost bidding used to work. But we'll talk about that here in just a moment. The option in between is called cost cap bidding. And LinkedIn says, "With automated cost cap bidding, you can set your maximum cost per key result. Oour bidding system will deliver as many results as possible at or below that price point." So of course, this sounds really cool, so we went and started doing a bunch of tests. And although they were limited, we tested cost cap against manual bidding, where we left the bid exactly the same. And in every case, we ended up with the same volume, but our costs were just higher. So I can't recommend cost cap bidding. But cost cap bidding replaced target cost bidding, and it went away a year or so ago. We never found success. In fact, the results that we had were very similar to what cost cap bidding is now. It appears to act very similarly. And I'm not sure why they took it away and replaced it. But in order to give it a different name, they must have changed something significantly on the back end. But we can't really tell the results are so similar to cost count bidding. Now, right underneath your bid type. You'll also see something called optimization goals. Those of you who are really experienced with Facebook advertising, you might remember the old bidding method on Facebook called OCPM, or optimized CPM bidding. OCPM on Facebook was awesome. I absolutely loved it. And what it did is it allowed you to pay Facebook's really low CPMs. So you're bidding by CPM, but the auction system is optimizing to show ads to those who are most likely to click. So you've really got the best of both worlds pay on low CPMs. While the advanced system found those who are most likely to click, it resulted in really low costs per click is fantastic. When you change your optimization goal to landing page clicks while you're bidding with maximum delivery, this is effectively the same thing as Facebook's old ocpm. The difference here though, is that LinkedIn CPMs aren't cheap. And I don't think that LinkedIn data is nearly as good at Facebook's about who's most likely to click. You can also set your optimization goal to impressions, which means you're telling the system to optimize towards showing as many impressions as possible, which isn't really an optimization. It's more of just what the ad platform is meant to do. But based off of your objective, you may also see some additional optimization goals. Like if you're in a video views campaign, you can optimize for video views. If you're in the brand awareness objective, you'll notice that you can optimize towards reach meaning hitting as many different people as possible rather than showing the same message the same person over and over. If you're in lead generation, you can use the optimization goal of leads meaning bid on those who are most likely to actually fill out a lead form. With website conversions, you can optimize towards people who are most likely to convert and then under sponsor messaging ad formats, the only optimization goal you get is sends, which is basically like optimizing for impressions. The system's not having to think too hard. So your optimization goal and your bidding strategy can change based off of the objective and your ad format. And there's way too many permutations to cover here. But for example, under the brand awareness objective, if you want to run a dynamic ad, let's say a spotlight ad, you'll be limited to just impressions as your optimization goal. Whereas under any other objective, you'd be able to set clicks as your optimization goal. And many people don't know this, but you can run a video ad under a website visits objective. If you set video views as your objective, you're limited to only being able to bid by the video view or by the impression. But if you put a video underneath a website visits campaign, you can set an optimization goal of landing page clicks, which is a cool hack. Okay, with that groundwork being laid, we can talk about how bidding actually works. If you haven't yet, go back and listen to episode 72 about relevancy score on LinkedIn, and how the auction works. We get really geeky into it. So when you start manually bidding, which again, I recommend about 90% of the time, it works on the basis of an auction. And LinkedIn calls it a second price auction, which is the same model that Google engineered back at the very beginning of Google Ads. And the logic goes like this, an impression comes up for auction. So let's say someone from your target audience just logged into LinkedIn, they navigate to their feed. And now LinkedIn hosts this very fast auction, that just takes a moment to let all the advertisers who want to show up in this user's feed to start to compete. Whoever wins this auction wins that impression. And then when someone eventually clicks on their ad, they end up paying one cent more per click than the loser the second place person would have paid. Whether you win the auction or not, it's a combination of your relevancy score, which is how well LinkedIn says that your campaigns are performing and your bid. If you have a high performing ad, meaning that it gets a high click through rate, it means you don't have to bid as high to get traffic. If your ads are low performing. It may feel like pulling teeth to get LinkedIn to try to show your ads or LinkedIn or show them but you get gouged by crazy high costs. So under this auction system, you show enough impressions that you start to get clicks and other interactions on your ads. And since you're bidding manually, you pay no more than what you bid. So you might be asking yourself, if that's the way the auction works for manual bidding, how does it work on maximum delivery or auto bidding? Maximum delivery is cost per 1000 impression bidding where again, LinkedIn gets to bid by the impression and bids as high as it needs to to spend your daily budget. This feels like a little bit of a conflict of interest to me, just imagine handing your wallet to LinkedIn and trusting them to only take as much out of your wallet as it really takes to advertise. It's not gonna happen. Since you're bidding by the impression and you're bidding high. LinkedIn doesn't even need to hold much of an auction for you. Because the whole auction environment, it's a way of maximizing profit among advertisers who are bidding only for performance. But when you're bidding by the impression, the auction doesn't care how your ads are performing, or performed in the past, because it gets paid handsomely guaranteed, just for showing your ad. So bidding this way, it's far easier to get traffic, you'll notice that it takes far less babysitting your campaigns to spend your budget. But because you're bidding so high on CPM, it leads to a much more expensive, effective cost per click 90% of the time. If you want to see how all the math works here, check out the YouTube video that I linked to below. It's all about CPC versus CPM bidding, and you can really see me nerd out. Now I've mentioned a couple times that maximum delivery is more expensive 90% of the time. But what about that 10% of the time that it's actually more efficient. We've found that that break even point starts when your click through rates get to two to three times the benchmark for that ad format. That of course means you need to know what your benchmarks are. So go check out episode 15, in case you missed that. And that click through rate of two to three times that's an average sometimes with more competitive audiences, we find that you have to be performing more like three times the benchmark. Alright, here's a quick sponsor break and then we'll get to dive into the advanced bidding tips. 14:44 The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to you by B2Linked.com. The LinkedIn Ads experts If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities from your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn Ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use and can be painfully expensive on the front end, which is probably why you're listening to this episode. At B2Llinked, we've cracked the code to maximizing your ROI while minimizing the costs you pay on LinkedIn. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn Ads strategies that are customized to your unique needs, and tailored to the way that B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 11 years, we've worked with some of the largest LinkedIn advertising budgets in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, book a discovery call at B2Linked.com/apply, we'd absolutely love the chance to get to work with you. Let's jump into those advanced bidding tips. When you're bidding manually, I recommend usually bidding significantly lower than what LinkedIn recommends, I'll just remind you the average cost per click on LinkedIn is usually between about $8 to $14 per click in North America. So if LinkedIn is telling you that you need to be bidding $25, $40, $60 per click, you really don't have to trust that advice. It's bad advice. If you have a giant budget like Fortune 500 or if you have really small audiences, oftentimes you will have to bid significantly higher to spend those budgets. For instance, we know that we can't fill our budgets with bidding near the floor if someone's budget is more than like $10,000. So generally, I suggest bidding low and then if you're not getting enough traffic, then start to increase your bids. But many of you have asked me about starting by bidding high and then backing down. And I used to recommend this strategy, because by doing it, you can kind of pad your relevancy score. But I don't recommend it much anymore, just because of how much money was wasted during the first few days because of how much money was wasted during those first few days of bidding really high. I found that LinkedIn relevancy score will eventually shake out. If you have good ads, chances are, even if you're bidding low, the system will learn that you have good relevancy scores, even if you're bidding low. Sometimes if the ad platform gets it wrong, like if we're bidding low, and the platform gives us poor relevancy scores and so we see that the ads just aren't getting served, oftentimes, we'll pause those ads, and we'll relaunch exactly the same ads. We call this refreshing. So that's a tool in your tool belt. But if your ads are good, and your audience is tight, performance should be good and you shouldn't have to try to trick the relevancy score algorithm. Alright, let's talk about budgeting. So when you're doing manual bidding, you'll see that there's a daily budget. And there's also actually a lifetime budget, but we'll get to that. But when you're doing manual bidding, your daily budget is effectively just a safety net, that shuts your account off and takes you out of the auction, so that you stop spending. And LinkedIn will allow itself to spend over 50% of your daily budgets, which I think is a little bit excessive, but hey, I'm not on the back end. When bidding manually, I like to set my daily budgets really high, just to get it out of the way because the last thing you want to happen is your daily budget kicks in, shuts your account off before you actually find what that campaign is capable of spending at your bid level. Then after a couple days, you can analyze where you're hitting spend wise, and you can either lower your bids, or raise your budget, or maybe even both. So that's under manual bidding. But how does daily budget work when you're using maximum delivery? Well, this way, it's very simple. You set a budget, and it hits it or likely exceeds. Unless your audiences happen to be pretty small, then it might not actually hit it. But on small audiences watch because those costs per click, you might be paying $50 per click, since maximum delivery gets to bid so high. Keep an eye on that. So we mentioned lifetime budgets. If you've been listening for a while, you've likely guessed that I'm a fan of daily budgeting. I love that control that it gives us or the evergreen advertising approach that we recommend. When lifetime budgets first came out, it was back when a campaign would expire when it hit its lifetime budget. And when it expired, there was no bringing that campaign back from the dead. If that campaigns results ended up being great. You'd be recreating that bad boy from scratch. accounts would be littered with 10s or hundreds of unusable campaigns. They took up space and they weren't good for anything except for reporting. So to work around them, I used evergreen campaigns with daily budgets. And if for whatever reason I didn't want to keep running ads to a certain audience, I would end up pausing that campaign and I can resurrect it again in the future by simply unpausing it. And this does mean that you have to be consistently paying attention to the account. If you try to do the set it and forget it thing, you can end up overspending budgets. And this works out great for us because managing LinkedIn Ads is all we do so we don't mind having to have to look at an account every day. But I realized that there are those of you out there who manage multiple channels, and maybe don't have the bandwidth. And if that's you, then lifetime budgets can be okay. But here's how lifetime budgets work. For example, if you have a campaign that you want to give a lifetime budget of $1,000 to, the campaign then goes and tries to spend that $1,000 and then shuts off. This can happen over the course of one day, or it can happen over the course of two months. It's really just however long it takes based on your bids. Now you can set a daily budget as well. So let's say you set a daily budget of $50, and a lifetime budget of 1000. So it would try to spend the same $1,000, but it would pace it out over about 20 days. But of course it could take longer. I do like this level of control better if you want to use lifetime budgets, because blowing an entire campaigns budget for the month in one day is very difficult to explain to a boss or a client. So back to budgets when we're manually bidding, let's say that you have a $50 per day budget for a campaign. If you're bidding too high too aggressively, you could spend that entire budget by 5am, before the workday is even started. And on top of that, of course, LinkedIn reserves the right to overspend your daily budgets by 50%. So it could be even worse, you could spend today's and tomorrow's budget by 5am. If you're not bidding aggressively, if you're bidding more on the low end, that budget should last all day. Daily budgets with maximum delivery bidding are a little bit different. Because what you put in is your daily budget, LinkedIn is going to bid as high as it takes to actually spend that. Whereas with manual bidding, if you're only bidding, let's say $8 a click, and you have a budget of $50 for the day, if people just aren't clicking, LinkedIn is not going to do anything to try to get you to spend more towards that $50 mark. You might just spend $14 for the day and be done. And of course, there's a lot of back end logic that goes into this calculation, which is probably one of the biggest reasons that LinkedIn recommends not trying to time your campaign by pausing them and unpleasing them at different times of the day. You can imagine that if max delivery is trying to spend your budget by the end of 24 hours, if you pause your campaign until the beginning of the work day, and then pause at the end, you may only end up spending half of your daily budget, which would obviously be confusing for that algorithm. With manual bidding, though we don't have the same issue, which I actually really like. As a reminder, daily budgets work off of UTC timezone, which is in the UK. Now I'm here in the Western US, I'm in the Mountain Time Zone. And so when a campaign has hit its daily budget for the day, it turns back on fresh at 5pm. So you can spend the entire day's budget before the day actually begin. I really, really don't love that. In fact, I actually really hate it. All right, I've got the episode resources for you coming right up, along with my framework on how to get the lowest costs from LinkedIn Ads 100% of the time. That's coming up right after the resources, so stick around. 23:23 Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away. Alright, like we mentioned in the news section, the article from Jae Oh on the LinkedIn ads blog all about the new interest targeting, you'll see a link to that. You'll also see the YouTube video that I did on CPC versus CPM bidding. You'll get to see all of the complex math behind how that calculation works. Episode 72 was all about relevancy score and the auction. So you'll see a link to that. Make sure just in case you missed that episode, you go back for it. If you or anyone else is looking to learn more about LinkedIn Ads, maybe you're just getting started, check out the course that I did with LinkedIn Learning all about LinkedIn ads. It's by far the least expensive and the highest quality course out there. If this is your first episode you're listening to, welcome! We're so excited to have you here. Make sure you hit that subscribe button. But if this is not your first time you've listened, please do consider rating and reviewing the podcast. Like I mentioned earlier, it's by far the best way that you can say thank you for the hours and hours that it takes to put this podcast together. With any questions, suggestions or corrections reach out to us at [email protected] So here's the framework I've been telling you about. Marketers really love frameworks so I'm giving you one of my favorite campaign launch frameworks. This works with any size of budget, any size of campaign, and it's designed to produce the very lowest costs on the platform period, 100% of the time. Get ready to take now notes. So you start out by bidding a campaign with manual CPC bidding. And I recommend significantly lower than the recommended bid range. In North America, maybe start around the $7 to $8 mark. And you set a budget that's significantly higher than what you actually want to spend. And don't worry, you likely won't actually be hitting it so don't be worried about it being sky high. I really like to set my budget so high during this initial testing phase, just to get it out of the way. You might be asking yourself, well AJ, how high? Here's my rule of thumb, I want it high enough that there's just hardly no way that it'll ever spend it, but not so high that if it did spend its budget, that I'd lose my job. So I launched my campaigns with that low manual bids with high budgets, and day one to one and a half will probably be the learning phase. So you don't want to touch your campaigns during that. The results from day two, though, should be pretty informative. On day two, you compare your actual spend for those campaigns with your desired budget. Now, notice, I didn't say your daily budget, I said your desired budget. And that's because I told you to set your daily budget higher than you actually want to spend. And that's because you don't want your daily budget to get in and shut your campaigns off mid day, you want to get a good feel for that audience's ability to actually spend based off of your bid level and your ad performance. For example, let's say that you set your daily budget at $200 per day, and you're actually wanting to spend about 50, at the end of day to look and see how that compares, did you weigh under spend the $50 mark, it means your bid likely isn't aggressive enough to reach enough of that target audience. Or it could be that your audience is just too small to spend that budget. I'd recommend increasing your bids by one to $3 per click, just depending on how severely you understand. What if you just kind of understand what it does mean that you'll need to bid higher to get into the auction enough to spend your budget. And here, you don't have to increase your bids quite so much. You could try increasing them by 10 cents to $1. What if you actually hit your desired budget for the day, it means that you're bidding at just the right level to spend your daily budget. And this is the holy grail. You just found out how to bid low enough to get the best pricing, but high enough to spend your whole budget and get scale. What if you actually spent higher than your desired budget though? Well, lucky you. Even at a low initial bid, you still overspend. And that means that you get to lower your bids even more and get even cheaper traffic while you're still spending your daily budget. Depending on how much you overspent by, you can lower your bids by again 10 cents to $1, or maybe a few dollars. There's no exact science here, you've got to make changes and see how the campaigns respond. Now as soon as you're comfortable spending your desired budget, then go ahead and lower your daily budget to match your desired budget. Or maybe lower it to a little bit under since LinkedIn can overspend your budget. And now your safety net is back in place. Oh, doesn't that feel good. Now you've let this campaign run for a few days, I like to look at a three day uninterrupted stretch. Now I want you to look at your click through rates. Do you have any that are consistently way above benchmark? With sponsored content campaigns, I look for click through rates that are over 1%. With text ads, I look for click through rates that are over .045%. If you get one of these, hurray, you can now switch to maximum delivery bidding. And this will actually start saving you money. And like we've discussed before, maximum delivery bidding is really convenient, it's a lot easier to use as an advertiser, then watch over time. Because if you have another three day stretch, where your click through rates are falling below that point at which your click costs became cheaper. Then you want to switch back to manual CPC bidding, and then rinse and repeat. The reason this happens is over time when you show your ads to the same people, they get less and less likely to click. And we call that saturation. You can go check that episode all about AD saturation. But this could happen over a week. It could happen over a month or two months. So you have to keep your eye on click through rates over time. And I reevaluate, I go through the same process. Every time I launch new ads or new offers since they're sure to change the click through rates, which then changes the relevancy score, which changes where your bids need to be in order to spend your ideal budget. If you launch new ads, and they get click through rates that are significantly higher, that's great. That means you're probably going to get to go and decrease your bids and get even cheaper traffic and still spend what you want to spend. Or maybe you launch new ads and they don't spend what you want them to, you can go and reevaluate by increasing your bids a little bit. Maybe you've been talking to your rep and your rep has been saying, no don't bid low because you'll end up getting bad quality leads. This is, from our experience, absolutely false. Without fail, every time we've tested lead quality associated with bid levels, we find no difference in lead quality. If you find that there's a difference though, go check your targeting, since you may inadvertently be letting people in who aren't part of your ideal customer profile, your ICP. So that's the framework. I hope you love it. Hope you took great notes. With that being said, I'll see you back here next week. I'm cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives.
LinkedIn Ads Discrepancies You Need to Know - EP 88
22:29Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: Job Title Targeting Nuances Workplace Learning Report In-Demand Skills Civil Rights Day (MLK Day) Ads Analysis Follow AJ on LinkedIn NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Show Transcript Did you know that the LinkedIn Ads definition for a video view is different from LinkedIn organic definition, or that a senior seniority isn't very senior at all? We're covering 11 things on LinkedIn Ads that don't mean what you think they mean, on this week's episode of the LinkedIn Ads Show. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. Hey there LinkedIn Ads fanatics! The LinkedIn Ads platform continues to evolve. It's really coming into its own as a tier one channel, truly ungrateful. That being said, there are still several areas of the platform where LinkedIn's definition of something is not going to match up with your likely definition of that same something. In today's episode, we're going through the 11 areas to be on the lookout for so you can make sure that metrics and campaign manager don't lead you astray. First in the news, LinkedIn recently came out with their workplace learning report. And it's actually based on LinkedIn Learning. And you'll find the link below in the show notes. It was actually a really complete report. And I read through it, and the one conclusion I came to is surprise, we're in a fast paced industry, and we need to keep learning and growing to stay ahead. The good news is, if you're listening to this podcast right now, which you obviously are, it means you likely already understand this. So I congratulate you for being in the top 1%. LinkedIn also released their 2023 most in demand skills. And this is based on skills that people are looking for in their job postings, and probably also based off of the skills that people have in their profiles that only LinkedIn has access to. And again, really no surprise here, they mentioned that things like social media as a skill are in demand. The problem with the skills on LinkedIn is that so many of them are so broad, that I don't even find them valuable to draw trends from, let me know if I'm off base and you disagree. But check out the report, as I've linked to it in the show notes as well. Also continuing from the popularity of our analysis around the holidays here in the US, we just published an analysis of ad performance around Civil Rights Day, or Martin Luther King Day here in the US. And that's live on the blog right now. Go check it out if you want to see the trends. And as a sneak peak, Superbowl and Valentine's Day are also coming up. So stay tuned. I want to highlight one of the reviews. It was left by the user name Giugiugiu. And they say, "AJ is probably the best LinkedIn Ads expert on the market. I attended one of his workshops in Boston a couple of years ago and I was in aw. I finally found someone who knows how this tool works. He's funny and very good in explaining all the functionalities. Absolutely the go to resource if you're starting with LinkedIn Ads. Thanks, AJ for sharing your knowledge." Well Giugiugiu. I wish I knew who you were. So I can thank you specifically. But I really appreciate the super kind review here, me and my whole team, we try so hard to explain the functionality very simply, and so grateful we can be a resource to you. A huge thank you to everyone who's been reviewing the podcast lately. It's really picked up aand I really, really appreciate. And if you haven't left a review yet, please do it. I want to feature you live here on the podcast. Alright, without further ado, let's hit it. 3:20 Like we talked about in the intro, we're talking about the discrepancies that you might find in the platform today. So let's say that there's a discrepancy in the platform. Why does this actually matter? Why do you actually need to know about these discrepancies? I think it's really important to know what you're actually reporting on. You obviously want to make decisions with accurate data so that they're the right decision. You also want to have confidence in your data. That way you can defend it if you're challenged. An example that I come across really often in digital marketing is the bounce rate in Google Analytics, because it doesn't mean what you think it means, unless you've actually done like the Google Analytics training courses. I don't know if the definition has changed for Google Analytics 4 that's rollout. But with Universal Analytics, a bounce just meant that they didn't go to another page. So if you're sending someone to a landing page where the whole goal is to get them to convert, then it actually makes a lot of sense that you have a 95% bounce rate. I want you to be able to digest accurate information, because you're actually using this data to go make decisions. It's not good business to be heading the wrong direction at anytime. So now that we're in agreeance, that this is actually important stuff, let's jump into the first one we have. 4:34 Sponsored Messaging Ad Formats under Performance So sponsored messaging ad formats, if you're under the default look for performance, you really can't trust much of the data there. Anything relying on a click is just totally boldface wrong. If you listen to episode 79 about the B2Believe event that happened in November, you know that LinkedIn announced some big changes in Q2 2023. So this may or may not be relevant in the future, but I'm guessing it is, I'm guessing this is still going to be an issue. So if you're looking under performance, if you look at your clicks, as well as your cost per click, and your click through rate, it's actually calling an open a click. So you might look at your sponsored messaging and say, wow, we have a 55% click through rate and our cost per click is less than $1. I hear this a lot and tend to just shake my head, because definitely, that's not what's happening. What's happening is they're measuring your open rate and your cost per open, which isn't very valuable if you ask me because people will open it just to mark it as read. But a valuable definition for a click to me is actually someone taking action on the ad. That means clicking on some sort of a call to action that I've given. The simple solution here is under the performance column. Look under sponsored messaging. There, it actually breaks out your sends, your opens, and your clicks, and gives you the proper metrics. So this is one that's actually more or less been fixed, if you're looking under the right column's breakdown. 6:05 Conversion Column Another one that we come across really often is you're looking at the conversions column, trying to decide your cost per conversion, or your conversion rate and decide if that's good or not. It's very important to understand that the conversions column should actually be called total conversions. Because it's not just conversions, it's made up of your click through conversions, which is great. That's exactly what you want. But it also includes your view through conversions, which, depending on your campaign, depending on the other channels you're running may or may not be conversions that you actually want to attribute to your LinkedIn Ads. The solution here then is to go to the columns drop down and select conversions and leads. You'll of course, see the conversions column, but right next to it, you'll see your click conversions and your view conversions. So when I'm taking my data and doing an analysis, I'm gonna throw this data into Excel. And then I get to decide which column I actually care about. And most of the time, I'm going to use my click conversions column, instead of just my conversions column. As an agency, I would be so embarrassed to go to a client and tell them that yeah, we had 10 conversions when they look in their CRM and see that there's only four. And then I look like I'm lying. 7:21 Clicks Column The next one is somewhat related. And that's just looking at your clicks column. Because the click metric actually changes as your objective changes, I think it should be called chargeable clicks. If you're using the objective of engagement, the definition of a click is any click that happened on that app. So if someone hits like on your ad, or clicks to go see your company page, all of those are going to be called clicks. But if you're using the website conversions objective, a click is actually a lot more indicative of what's happening, because that was someone who clicked on your call to action that took them to your external landing page. If your objective is lead generation, just like engagement, you'll notice that any click on your ad becomes a chargeable click. And these tend to go unnoticed because they have such a high conversion rate. But you really should know. And that means that if you go and look at your cost per click metric, and your click through rate metric, they're affected the same way as well. So if you're looking at multiple campaigns that have more than one objective, your metrics are definitely being skewed, it's almost like you have to look at the metrics for each objective separately. When I get this data to a spreadsheet, I choose one metric to unify all of my definitions. So instead of just using the clicks column, I like to use landing page clicks. And you can find this under the engagement column drop down. Inside of campaign manager, it's called clicks the landing page. And of course, it's just another column when you do an export to Excel. But when you're looking at the engagement drop down, you'll see that there's one called other clicks. We don't know everything that counts as an other click because you'll see a lot of other types of clicks there that have their own columns. But most of the time, it's when you have an ad that has the ...see more at the end, because your text was truncated for being too long. Other clicks is someone extending that. All right, here's a quick sponsor break, and then we'll dive into more discrepancy. 9:20 The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to you by B2linked.com, the LinkedIn Ads experts 9:29 If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities from your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use, and can be painfully expensive on the front end, at B2linked, we've cracked the code to maximizing ROI while minimizing your costs. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn Ads strategies, customized to your unique needs, and tailored to the way that B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 12 years, we've worked with some of the largest LinkedIn advertisers in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities from your ideal prospects, book a discovery call today at B2linked.com/apply. We'd absolutely love the chance to get to work with you. 10:21 Video Views All right, let's jump into video metrics because there's a lot interesting here. Like I mentioned at the beginning of the episode, the organic definition and the ads definition for a video view, are very different. If you post a video either from your company page or personally, and then you look at the views that have racked up, a view as anyone who watched at least three seconds of that video. But the definition for a view in Ads is two seconds with 50% of that video on the screen. And if you're curious why the definition for ads is shorter, realize that when you're bidding by video view, LinkedIn only gets paid when someone counts as a view, hence why they'd want to make it 33% shorter. 11:03 Video Completion Percentages And then how about the definition for video completions because this is something that has been changed very recently. If you're looking at the formula for a 100% completion rate of your video, that's calculated using your completes divided by your starts. This means anytime the video started, whether it made it to two seconds or not. So of course, it would make sense that your view rate is going to be your views divided by starts. Well, it's definitely not your view rate is views divided by impressions. To see how much this is actually affecting you, go compare your impressions to your views and your starts. And you'll see sometimes this can make a really big difference. 11:47 Organic Stats Another one dealing with the organic stats, you may or may not already know this, but when you post something that's not a video, your posts show the number of impressions that that post got, that means the number of times it showed up in someone's newsfeed. But anytime that you post video, it shows views which are very different. Like I said, go compare your impressions to your views, you might find that one video gets one view for every four impressions, you might find another one gets one view for every one impression. So they can be very different. 12:22 Forecasted Results Column How about as you're actually building a campaign, you'll notice over in the right hand column, there's a section called forecasted results. We actually had a client recently who was upset that their results didn't match the forecasted results. So I think this is really important to point out some people are looking at these like their gospel. What you need to understand about the forecasted results column is that these numbers are not based on your performance. They're based on your bid and your budget, your optimization goal, and your audience size. But because they don't actually take your performance into account, it's wildly inaccurate. I'll give you an example. If you know that when you launch ads, you get click through rates that are like 1.5%, you'll look at those forecasted results and they'll say, oh, we expect that you're gonna get a click through rate between .45% and .6%. But if you have a click through rate, that's more than double what they're predicting, you'll likely get cost per click way lower, and you'll likely get served a lot more than what they're predicting. It really needs to take into account your performance before giving you forecasted results. Plus, as we were playing with it, we found that it was blatantly wrong in several cases. The example that we looked at, it was predicting that cost per click would be lower when bidding by impression than it would have if we were bidding by click. It showed an expected click through rate of .45% to .6%, which is not in the range where bidding by impressions would be cheaper. So there's some bad math going on here behind the scenes. I do hope that someone from LinkedIn will look into that. But as a reminder, don't bank on these figures. They're not based on your performance, or your audience. These are simply something to let you know what you might expect, probably for the most basic brand new advertisers. 14:08 Rotate Ads Evenly Alright, let's talk about rotate ads evenly. Because in theory, it sounds really interesting. For me, I love AB tests. I love to test things. And to get an accurate AB test, you really need to have both test versions shown about the same amount of times. So of course, when you're editing the campaign, and you're on the ads page, when you see that little cog and you click it and it asks you if you want to rotate your ads evenly or optimize for performance. If you're like me, naturally you'll want to say oh yeah, I do want to rotate my ads evenly. There's a major reason why you don't want to do that. I call this the charge me more and show me less button. Here's why it acts like that. When it says it's going to rotate your ads evenly, it's not showing your ads evenly, it's entering them evenly into the auction. And here's the big difference. Each of those ads gets its own relevancy score from LinkedIn. And LinkedIn won't tell you what the relevancy score is. The only indication you get is at the campaign level from a campaigns report. So let's imagine that one of your ads has a relevancy score of four, and the other one has a relevancy score of six. If you select the option for rotate ads evenly, you're forcing both of those ads to go into the auction in even number of times. But the ad that has a relevancy score of six is going to win more auctions at a cheaper price. And when you're forcing the ad into the auction, that only has a relevancy score of four, it's going to lose more auctions, and when it does when it's going to have a higher cost associated with. So the net effect here is that when you are running this option, you'll notice your overall costs per click will rise. And your overall impressions will fall. For years, LinkedIn have talked about a new tool that they're going to come out with, but I think they're going to call like the AB testing tool or something. And I do hope this solves the issue here because we don't want to mess with the auction. What we want to do is show our ads evenly so that we can get accurate tests. So I do expect that we'll be able to have some sort of a solution for this in the future. 16:19 Senior Seniority The next discrepancy here is in seniorities. You'll notice that there's a seniority called senior seniority. And people tend to think that this means like an executive, maybe in job titles like senior vice president or senior manager. But according to LinkedIn, that's not what senior means. It actually means individual contributor. This is someone who manages projects and things, but not people. And of course, LinkedIn doesn't actually know who is managing people and who's not. But they try to deduce this from job titles. In a past episode, we mentioned that dentists show up under the senior seniority, which I think is crazy. I remember I spent millions of dollars on the LinkedIn Ads platform, targeting the senior seniority, along with VPs, and C level before I ever realized. So take my learnings and go and save yourself some time and headache. 17:15 Super Titles Now, we mentioned this next one, on the job titles episode, when you're targeting a job title, you may be targeting a lot more than what you think you are. The way that this works is something called super titles. Titles on LinkedIn are a free form field. So people can go and write whatever they want. You can give yourself a cutesy title or a really standard one. And then to make this a useful feature for advertisers, LinkedIn then has to go and collect all of the job titles out there and stick them into buckets of common groupings that you might type to target a group of these people. And then they take it a step further by aggregating similar titles into something called super title. And the reason I think that this happens is it might not be a great user experience, if you went into job title, and had to select 50 or 60, similar titles to get who it is you want. They want you to select 2, 3, 4, 5, whatever, and then feel like you've accurately covered that audience. There are definitely some glitches, though, and how this works. I mentioned this back on Episode 60, all about job titles. But we noticed that if you target the Chief Marketing Officer job title, it's also going to include Marketing Consultant, job titles as well aand you can't exclude it. Because if you're targeting CMOS, and you do an exclusion of marketing consultant, job titles, your audience size drops to zero. 18:42 Company Size Targeting All right, next, let's talk about company size targeting. What you need to understand is when you are targeting by company size, you're only targeting by known company size. What that means is, if you're targeting by company size, let's say 11 through 50, the only people who can show up in there are those who are associated with a company who has gone and declared that it is size 11 through 50. And you may have noticed that there's a lot of people on LinkedIn who either aren't associated with a company page, maybe they wrote the company name in their company, but it's not attached to a page so it just shows up as a little like gray building as a logo. It means those people will not be part of this targeting. And the way this will rear it's ugly head is if you ever tried to use company size targeting as an exclusion, you'll be very, very surprised. Let's say you want to exclude small companies. So you exclude myself only through maybe 10 employees. What that's going to do, LinkedIn is going to go out and obviously try to target those that are 11 and higher, but it's also going to be targeting all the unknowns. The people who represent companies that don't have a company page, which usually tend to be smaller companies. So, you went in thinking that you were going to exclude small companies, and you ended up getting even smaller companies as part of your target. So unless you have a great reason for wanting the unknowns to be targeted, you don't want to use company size for exclusions. They're only for inclusions. Are you aware of any discrepancies that I might have missed here? Let us know by emailing us at [email protected] and I'll make sure to include your feedback here in the next episode. All right, I've got the episode resources for you coming right up, so stick around. 20:39 Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away. 20:50 All right, if you look down in the show notes below, you'll see links to these resources. Episode 60, where we talk about the nuances of job titles, that episode is definitely worth listening to. You'll also see a link to the workplace learning report that we talked about in the news section, as well as the in demand skills report. If you're hiring, or even trying to just improve where you are in your career, it might be worth checking those out, making sure you're making strides on those in demand skills. I mentioned the analysis that we did based on Civil Rights Day, or Martin Luther King Day here in the US to go read that on the B2Linked blog. If you or anyone else is looking to learn about LinkedIn Ads for the first time, go and check out the course that I did on LinkedIn Learning. You'll notice the link down below and it's by far the lowest cost and the highest quality course you'll find about LinkedIn Ads. If this is your first time listening, please hit that subscribe button so you don't miss the next episode. But if this is not your first time listening, please do consider going to rate and review the podcast. This is the very best way that you can support us and say a big thank you for the hours and hours and hours that we put into this show. With any questions, suggestions or corrections reach out to us at [email protected] And with that being said, we'll see you back here next week. Cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives.
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LinkedIn Video Ads that Result in OPPORTUNITIES - Ep 87
LinkedIn Ads for Market Research - Ep 86
18:19Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: Ep 43 about Gen Z Market Research on LinkedIn Sarah Weise LinkedIn Ep 65 about Microsegmentation Sarah Weise's LinkedIn Learning Course on Market Research Certified Marketing Experts Certification Follow AJ on LinkedIn NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Show Transcript LinkedIn Ads is a market research tool. Yeah, you know it. We're talking about market research on this week's episode of the LinkedIn Ads Show. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. Hey there, LinkedIn Ads fanatics! For a long time, I've treated LinkedIn Ads as much of a market research tool, as an ad platform. You've probably gotten a little bit of a taste of this, if you've been listening for a while. Especially episodes like 65, where we talked about micro segmentation. So if you haven't listened to that episode, definitely go back and add it to your queue. But today, I wanted to cover market research and let you into these additional uses of LinkedIn's fantastic ad platform. Of course, all of this is made possible by LinkedIn's incredible targeting. 0:53 First in the news, LinkedIn first cohort of certified marketing experts just graduated this week. During episode 76, n the news section, I announced the opening of LinkedIn's Certified Marketing Experts Program. And it's basically an ad certification exam that you can take to show your prowess on LinkedIn Ads. It's actually really complex. It has four levels, and it's its own learning management system all baked in with tons of different lessons. If you haven't checked it out yet, first you become a certified marketer, then you fulfill some requirements to become a certified insider, then you can rise up to being a certified expert in training. And then once you've met the requirements there, you can graduate to a LinkedIn certified marketing expert. All of these levels, you can then add to your LinkedIn profile as a certification, which is really cool. I was lucky enough to be selected for their first cohort. So LinkedIn flew six of us out to their offices in New York City, inside the Empire State Building, for a few days. And as of recording, I just got back in yesterday, I have to say it was awesome to get to hang out with the other six graduates in New York, we had great food, great collaboration opportunities, and learning together, I'll be posting a synopsis of the event and some of my learnings and takeaways, and they're probably already out by the time you're hearing this. But if you want those details, make sure you're following me on LinkedIn and go find that post. You'll also find a link in the show notes to that certified marketing program. So if you haven't already, I'd highly recommend you go and get signed up and get certified. Seriously, if you're hardcore enough to listen to a podcast all about LinkedIn ads, you really deserve the credentials to prove your geekiness. Okay, I'll get off that pedestal. The next news item really got me excited and then let me down on January 24 of 2023. LinkedIn rolled out the ability to break down performance by device type. We were so excited when we noticed it. And we posted about it. The way it worked is within campaign manager, you go to break down, and then in that drop down, you'll see either impression, device type, or conversion device type. And then it would break out your actual ad performance by desktop web, mobile app, and mobile web. Well, we posted about it got excited about it started playing with it. And then within hours, it was gone completely. Not sure what happened. But while we had it, we did notice some discrepancies. If you go under impression device type, it displays all metrics broken down by device type. Where if you go into conversion device type, it only displays conversion metrics. But the conversion metrics between the two are a bit off. So maybe it was a rollout that LinkedIn didn't intend to roll out yet. Maybe someone accidentally hit the button. I don't know. But we're highly anticipating its return. And I know I am reaching a bit on this, but it feels to me like exposing the metrics around devices and how they're interacting is the first step to allowing us to target by device, which is a feature I've been pleading for since 2013. All right, let's jump into the market research topic on hand. Let's hit it. 4:02 First, I think it helps to define what market research is. The definition I got when I just binged it. That's a thing, right? Binging it? Anyway, is that the action or activity of gathering information about consumers needs and preferences. And if you listened at all to Episode 43, where I had Sarah Weise on the program. She is a market researcher. This is what she does for a living. So in that episode, we did talk a little bit about market research. But that episode was mostly about a survey we did about how Gen Z uses LinkedIn. But we went ahead and linked to her LinkedIn profile as well as that episode in the show notes. So feel free to go check that one out to get caught up. Okay, so market research is all about gathering information about needs and preferences from your consumers. So why in the world am I talking about doing this on an ad platform? Well, my reasoning is very simple. The targeting is so good. It allows you to create like little focus groups. And then based on the behaviors that we see, and even the differences between groups behaviors, that tells us what someone is willing to engage with, or maybe what they're not willing to engage with. For instance, if you look at click through rates, they'll really tell us who's interested. And if you are offering some sort of a conversion, the conversion rate will tell us how intensely interested they are enough to actually convert. Years and years ago, I remember reading the book, The Four Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss. And although I'm not a huge proponent of the methodology found in that book, one of the things he mentioned that I really liked was he used Google Ads back then to test different titles for his book. So what he would do is hit put both titles that he was considering into an ad, and run those ads, and then see which one got more conversions. I think he ran them to something like a landing page that said, click here to be notified when this book becomes available or something like that. I remember thinking that was a little bit misleading, a little bit skeezy. But the concept really carried with me. And I realized early on that because LinkedIn is targeting allowed us to target by very specific elements of who someone is, as a professional, we could do testing much in the same way. And actually even better if you ask me, so much of the communication I've had with market researchers, has been them trying to find people who fit a certain criteria, they have a certain level of experience in business, or have a certain seniority, or in a certain company size. And all of these are things that just by the virtue of LinkedIn targeting, we can already do very, very easily. One of the ways that I'll use this is within a single campaign. So we're targeting the same person, I will AB test ads to test different ideas, or even different motivations. So for instance, one of my ads might be fear inducing, like I'm trying to communicate, if you're not paying attention to this concept, you're gonna be behind in your career, and you'll get fired and passed over for promotions, that kind of feeling. And then the other ad might make them feel like more of a hero. Because you're doing this, you're ahead of the curve, you're gonna be lauded as a hero within the company. And what I've done there is just figured out to a certain type of professional, which concept is actually more engaging to them. So that's really cool. You can also really do the same thing that Tim Ferriss did, where you have two ads, each going to a different offer that doesn't exist, and then have a conversion action to sign up for early access or expressing interest. Another way you could do this is by AB testing audiences. So let's say you have the same two ads, you put those into two different campaigns that are identical except for one difference, what you're looking for is to see a lift in one of those audiences, Episode 65, all about micro segmenting. This is all about that, you have the same targeting, except you can break out campaigns by something. One of the ones I really like to break out by is by level of seniority. So all the other targeting stays the same. But maybe one campaign is targeting managers as a level of seniority. And then another one is targeting just directors, another one just VPs and another one just C level. And then we get to compare performance differences between the different levels of seniority. You'll get to find out something like does my content speak to executives, or low level management, or even individual contributors. Based on the engagement of each seniority, you could consider creating new offers just for them. And again, click through rate, it's going to tell you your level of engagement. CPCs, or CPMs, could tell you what it costs to get in front of a specific segment. And then conversion rates can tell you how invested someone is in actually taking the next step. And I know it's crazy, I think you just assume that if you're going after someone who's in the C suite, it's going to cost more to reach them than someone who's a manager or someone who's an individual contributor. But that's not the case. So many times we've done this test. By being able to speak relevantly to a C level audience, you get click through rates high enough that it actually costs less to reach them than it does to reach someone of a lower seniority, which is obviously already a cool learning in and of itself. Your boss is probably going to be really excited when you tell him or her that it's actually cheaper to reach a CMO or a CIO or a CTO than it is to reach a manager of IT. Obviously creating new segments new audiences can be a lot to manage within an account. So if you don't want to actually do this through micro segmenting and breaking out different campaigns. You can also do a little bit of this through the demographics tab. If you're on the demographics tab, you can break down your ad performance by company size, by industry, by seniority, and quite a few other things. With company size you can find out do larger companies interact with my content better, or smaller companies, or enterprises. Industry is obviously pretty self explanitory. Seniorities, we already talked about. You can also break out performance by location, but one thing I've learned is that when you're breaking down by location, be aware that earlier time zones in the day will be over represented in your data, if you are hitting your daily budgets. What I mean by that is, if I was just targeting North America, for instance, if I have a combined daily budget of like $50, it's totally possible I could spend that entire $50, just on the East Coast, like New York and Toronto are getting into the office that day and turning on their computers and booting up. But if you're not actively hitting your daily budgets during the day, then location will be a lot more accurate. You can break down by job function. So like, does someone in accounting, care more about what you're advertising than someone in finance. You can also break down by job title, but I will say that it's a little bit less helpful for market research, just because it's so granular. But if your targeting is really on point really tight, then maybe job title will be a lot more helpful. All right, here's a quick sponsor break, and then we'll dive into how to use LinkedIn Ads to find out which keywords are most engaging. The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to you by B2Linked.com, the LinkedIn Ads experts. 11:17 If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn Ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use, and can be painfully expensive on the front end. At B2Llinked, we've cracked the code to maximizing ROI while minimizing costs. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn Ad strategies, always customized to your unique needs, and tailored to the way that B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 11 years, we've worked with some of LinkedIn largest advertisers in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, book a discovery call at B2Linked.com/apply. We'd absolutely love the opportunity to get to work with you. 12:07 Alright, let's jump into how we use LinkedIn Ads to test different keywords. So you may have the same ad copy, the same offer, but you might be curious if one keyword peaks someone's attention more than an another one. As a recent example of ads I was launching, it was for a client who has software where a machine learning model does a lot of the work. So what I did is I launched ads, the same version, but one of them talked about AI like artificial intelligence, and another use the words machine learning. And if everything else is the same, all except for that word, it gives us a lot of certainty that using the word that got the highest click through rate, maybe it's most topically interesting. Wth the rise of chat GPT, and DALL-E, the image generating service through AI, the word AI has gotten a lot of headlines recently. So I won't be surprised if this test shows that AI is more interesting than machine learning. Just as another example, if you were targeting marketers, you could try having the word marketer and the word marketeer. And everyone's got an opinion about the word marketeer. So I'm not pushing it by any means. But it is another example of some sort of a keyword test that you can do from within your ads. 13:19 Now, if anyone's listening who actually does do market research, I'm sure you are putting your glasses up closer to the your face and saying what you're talking about AJ is not actually market research. And that's correct. It's more a lot of audience testing. But you can actually use LinkedIn Ads to do actual market research. For instance, the offer in your ad could be a survey to get responses, or to elicit participation from specific audience segments. Market researchers are usually given specific constraints around what they need. So if they have 300 participants, but they need 350, it's not crazy to think that you could go on to an ad platform and pay a little bit more participant just to fill up the study. So for instance, if a market researcher needs more surveys from people in a certain corporate environment, they might pay $50 to $100 per participant, but it might still be worthwhile. Something we've seen to be successful is offering gift cards in exchange for a participation in a survey. And that tends to work well on LinkedIn Ads. So then that leaves us with what do you actually do with the data you collect while you're doing this market research? I think the obvious answer is to make hay while the sun shines. When you find anything that's performing better, optimize towards that top performing ad copy, or those offers, or those audience segments. You may be really surprised if one segment of your population really becomes your core audience that the whole company's marketing team turns to focus on. And you can find this because LinkedIns amazing targeting is helping you do it. If a certain segment is performing well. You can go and raise budgets on those top performing segments. You can increase bids to try to get more of that traffic. You can go and write more ad copy like your top performing copy. You can go and create more offers like your top performing offers. And of course, all along the way, if there's a segment that isn't delivering, you can pause it, you can bid it down, shut it off. This really is the magic of being able to micro segment your audiences because really anything that we want more of, we can turn those dials up in a way that we couldn't if they were just combined into one larger campaign. Being able to raise budgets and raise bids on those super high performers, and turning the dials down lowering bids lowering budgets on the segment's who aren't performing. If these were combined into one campaign, you have no levers that you can pull to get more of what you want. You can also craft new offers for that high performing segment. If you know one segment is performing better than anything, go out and start creating specific content for them. They're obviously hungry for what it is you're offering. Alright, I've got the episode resources for you coming right up so stick around. Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away. 16:18 All right, all of this is going to be in the show notes below, but Episode 43, we've got the link to that. It was the one all about market research around Gen Z on LinkedIn with Sarah Weise. I've also linked to Sarah Weise's LinkedIn profile. Episode 65, was all about micro segmentation so we've linked to that as well. You'll also see a link to Sarah Weise's LinkedIn Learning course, all about Market Research Foundation. If this has been interesting to you talking about market research, you'll definitely want to go to the source and learn deeper about what's involved. I linked to the certified marketing expert certification down there as well make sure you go and get signed up and participate. If you or anyone you know is looking to learn more about LinkedIn Ads, check out the course that I did with LinkedIn Learning all about LinkedIn Ads. The course is an hour and a half long, it's relatively simple, and it covers a lot of the topics we talked about here on the podcast. It is by far the best course I've seen on LinkedIn Ads, especially given its cost, it's extremely affordable. If this is your first time listening, welcome! So excited to have you on board, make sure to hit that subscribe button so you'll get to hear all of our future episodes. And if this is not your first time listening, please do go and review us. We spend about six hours per week creating these podcast episodes. And we do it out of the kindness of our hearts. The best way that you can say thank you if you're enjoying these is to go and leave us a review, usually on Apple podcasts. But if you find anywhere else that you can leave a review we'd love that too. And of course, we'll give you a shout out to thank you. With any questions, suggestions or corrections about the podcast, reach out to us at [email protected] And with that being said, we'll see you back here next week. Cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives.
LinkedIn's Audience Network - A Deep Dive with Peter & Lipika - EP 85
28:08Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Show Transcript AJ Wilcox Have you thoroughly tested the LinkedIn Audience Network yet? Some big changes have been made to it recently. And there's a lot to appreciate. Today on the LinkedIn Ads Show, we're diving into the LinkedIn Audience Network. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. AJ Wilcox Hey there LinkedIn Ads fanatics. If you're like me, you've seen the option for enabling LinkedIn Audience Network and sponsored content campaigns for years. Maybe it's something that you've occasionally used, or in some cases, maybe you've always excluded it. Well, LinkedIn recently made big changes to the audience network. And I wanted to bring LinkedIn's product team in to come and talk to us about it. Now we as marketers, we seem to always be shortening things to acronyms. I've called the LinkedIn Audience Network LAN for lots of years. And in this episode, we mostly refer to it by its full name, but don't be confused. It's the same option that I've talked about in the past. Now, Peter Turner was one of the product people at LinkedIn for lots of years. And I've gotten to interface with him for a long time, as he's worked on many different projects. And as I wanted to have an episode all about the LinkedIn Audience Network, of course, I knew he was all over it. And I wanted to make sure we brought him on. And he introduced me to Lipika Gimmler, who's also over it. And so we're trying to kind of dual interview approach. So I hope you like hearing from both Peter and Lipika. AJ Wilcox I wanted to give a shout out to Rob Baijens from the Netherlands. And Rob I'm sorry if I butchered your last name. But he left a review on the podcast and he said, "100% the LinkedIn go to podcast five stars love AJs podcast, he gives so much insights, updates, and inspiration when it comes to LinkedIn advertising and more. What I especially like is not only his guru level expertise, although he is a LinkedIn guru, but the AJ also tells the audience when he simply doesn't know yet asking the audience to share their thoughts. This makes his podcast 100% authentic. I want to apologize to AJ for not taking the time until now to give him the five star review he deserves", with a little smiley face. "AJ, please keep up the good work as you bring so much value to the LinkedIn community. All the best Rob Baijens, the Netherlands." Rob, I don't care how long you waited. I'm so grateful that you left this review. I do try really hard to be truthful when there is something I just don't know or don't have enough data on. So I'm glad you picked up on that. I do have an ego. I don't like to admit when I don't know something, but I try really hard for you guys. Thanks so much for heeding the call when I asked for reviews. So thank you. And of course everyone else, please do follow Rob's lead here and go and leave a review as well. As a reminder, make sure you go back and listen to episode 83. It was the holiday ad Performance Report. We've had about 35 man hours go into producing that episode and the report. If you skip that episode, do go back and listen to it. Okay, without further ado, let's go ahead and jump into the interview. AJ Wilcox All right, Lipika and Peter, I'm so excited to have you guys here. Lipika, let's start with you. Tell us about yourself and what you do at LinkedIn. Lipika Gimmler Hey, AJ, my name is Lipika. And I'm a product marketing manager at LinkedIn. And I work on the LinkedIn Audience Network. And I typically sit at the intersection of our product build and our go to market teams, really helping in the formulation of product value propositions as well as partnering with our product teams in continuing to build meaningful solutions for our customers. AJ Wilcox Fantastic. And, Peter, same question to you. Peter Turner Hey AJ, great to be here. I've been at LinkedIn for a little over six years now. I've had a variety of roles focused on different partnership programs. Throughout this time, one of those programs has been the LinkedIn Audience Network. And I've been a part of the growth of LinkedIn Audience Network from its founding. And now my team looks after the partnerships and ecosystem strategy necessary to keep growing the value we create for marketers. AJ Wilcox That's awesome, Peter, as long as I can remember you and I've been talking about the LinkedIn Audience Network. The impetus for this whole interview was I haven't had an episode about the LinkedIn Audience Network. And I've always been telling myself as soon as I can have Peter on that's when we're going to have an episode. So this is the culmination of that. Really excited to have both you and Lipika here. Well, I think we need to start out with just a general definition here. What is the LinkedIn Audience Network? I'd love for you to tell us even more about how it works, what it's used for? How we see it within campaign manager. Lipika Gimmler Yeah, absolutely. So in a nutshell, the way we describe the LinkedIn Audience Network is that it's a placement available within LinkedIn suite of advertising products. So it essentially enables our advertisers to reach their targeted professional audiences at scale across a network of vetted publishers really to maximize their advertising outcomes. So by leveraging the LinkedIn Audience Network, what advertisers can do is number one, they can extend the reach of their sponsored content campaigns, to LinkedIn professionals who happen to be active on trusted third party apps and sites and advertisers are also able to boost campaign performance across full funnel objectives. So by leveraging the LinkedIn Audience Network, they can achieve better return on adspend and improve their marketing outcomes by really activating their campaigns across both the LinkedIn feed and the LinkedIn Audience Network. So it really is a powerful, powerful tool that should be considered by advertisers who want to really expand the scale of their B2B campaigns. AJ Wilcox And I love the audience network for the exact reason. When we're just advertising on LinkedIn, it almost feels like we're bidding on someone and we're waiting for them to come back to LinkedIn. But through the LinkedIn Audience Network, we're able to reach those exact right professionals, with the right targeting pretty much all the way across the web. So I'm a big fan. Lipika Gimmler Yep, absolutely. And that's exactly what the product was designed to do is to really work in partnership with a LinkedIn feed to help our advertisers ultimately reach their intended audiences across the touchpoints that matter whether that's on the platform, or whether that's off the platform. So it really is a fantastic tool to consider experimenting with. AJ Wilcox Perfect. And Peter, tell us about how LinkedIn decided who would be a great publisher to partner with on the audience now? Peter Turner Well, first, we couldn't have an audience network without publishers. And so we're deeply grateful for our publishers and the role they play. Our publisher partners strategy is one that is deeply rooted in our principles provide value to our B2B marketers. And we do this by extending campaign scale and reach while helping ensure that their brand messages appear in safe environments. We look at both quantitative data like the relative level of invalid traffic on a publisher as well as more qualitative reviews of their ad experience and ad load. We prioritize publishers that we know to be spaces where our professional audiences are present and engaged, and we have checks and balances in place to bid on quality inventory. Because brand safety is incredibly important to our advertisers and to us, we work with leading partners like DoubleVerify, Integral Ad Science, and Pixelate to help protect marketer campaigns. AJ Wilcox And what I love about this is it seems like every ad platform who has an audience network, the general feel is it's going to be a lower quality network. But I've never felt that with LinkedIn, it always feels like there's premium placements. And I would imagine that you're probably to thank for that. Peter Turner Just like with LinkedIn, we take brand safety very seriously and want to make sure that marketers can trust coming off LinkedIn as much as they trust running from their campaigns on LinkedIn. AJ Wilcox Most of us know that the various display networks out there for digital marketers are commonly regarded as being low quality. So how is the LinkedIn Audience Network different from the Google Display Network? And Facebook's Audience Network? Lipika Gimmler Yeah, that's a great question. And to really summarize it succinctly, the LinkedIn Audience Network is truly designed and built differently from other audience networks, as it's ultimately rooted in enabling our advertisers to reach highly coveted professional audiences and engage b2b decision makers across the touchpoints that matter, and do so at scale. So we consider our audience network to actually be a core part of our ad placement offering. So it's considered to be a truly vetted product from both a performance standpoint and from a brand safety standpoint, as Peter alluded to, so advertisers who are looking for ways to further scale their campaign and engage with their target professional audience across the surfaces that matter, find a lot of value in leveraging our audience network, as we've had studies show that marketers can achieve up to nine times more monthly touch points to reaching LinkedIn members who tend to be more active on our audience network. This is definitely something that really does set us apart from other audience networks. And we've also invested a lot in making sure that we reach and target the right audience through integrations to third party supply sources, and bolstering our audience graph. And of course, doing so safely with leading brand safety and suitability solutions through the partners that Peter mentioned as well. DoubleVerify being one of the most recent partnerships that we've forged in the past quarter, Peter Turner AJ, we found that advertisers achieve better return on adspend improve marketing outcomes by by asking their campaigns both on LinkedIn on instant work, and alongside the LinkedIn feed. Advertisers see an estimated cost per 1000 impressions reduced by 47%. And 63%, lower cost per conversions when leveraging the Audience Network. AJ Wilcox And that makes perfect sense to me. This is the right people seeing your message more often. in more places. I like to use this thought idea of like, what makes you cool in high school? Is it one friend who tells 1000 people that you're cool, or is it 1000 different people saying that you're cool. We know what drives popularity, and its multiple sources. I really see that as being one of the the big ways that the LinkedIn Audience Network helps our campaigns. Peter Turner We help LinkedIn marketers be cool. I like that. AJ Wilcox Yeah, exactly. So speaking of cool, what are some of the ways that marketers are using the LinkedIn Audience Network? If you want to share any like cool case studies or what people are doing? That has been really exciting? Lipika Gimmler Yeah, absolutely. So we've actually seen some remarkable case studies of customers leveraging LinkedIn Audience Network for very various use cases such as brand awareness being one that comes top of mind. So an example is a leading technology company that works with LinkedIn primarily because of our zero party and our first party data. So just double clicking into what those terms mean specifically. So zero party data is anything that our members willingly provide us via their LinkedIn profile information. So this is publicly available information that they have on their LinkedIn profile and updated continuously. Whereas first party data is what we can then derive from user behavior on the platform. So an example of this would be engagement data. So this customer in question that leveraged LinkedIn Audience Network for brand awareness, actually leveraged it for a very specific use case, which was Account Based Marketing. So they leveraged our audience network to really reach hard to find strategic members of the buying committee, and were ultimately able to see a 58% decline in CPM or cost per 1000 impressions, and saw 151% increase in their ability to reach CXOs, which was a core audience segment that they were looking to target. Similarly, we've also seen advertisers leverage the LinkedIn Audience Network for consideration campaigns. So here, an example that comes to mind is a client who leveraged the LinkedIn Audience Network to lower cost per clicks by about 65%. And saw an uptick in click through rates by about 90%. And we have another client who saw 2.2 times higher video view through rate, and 2.5 times higher video completion rate and 64%, lower cost per view. So as you can tell from a lot of these examples, the LinkedIn Audience Network is really great for full funnel objectives. So well, brand awareness is sort of an obvious use case for advertisers to use our audience network for we've also seen a lot of our clients use it for consideration and bottom of funnel campaigns as well. Lipika Gimmler We also as a team recently figured out that the LinkedIn Audience Network, if you're using the single image ad placement, you can build your single image ad retargeting audience very quickly. So those are some of the great things I hear you loud and clear for the results that you've seen across these other clients. Peter, what about you? Peter Turner Yeah, you know, it's not just for branding. As Lipika talked about, AJ, we've all seen customers leveraging LinkedIn Audience Network for bottom funnel objectives as well. I didn't get to work with our customers as much. But these examples are so impressive, this one sticks out to me. There was a client who's a leading provider of business cloud communications, who use the audience can work as a way to help their team connect the brand initiatives to business outcomes and saw 65% Lower CPMs while driving 93 times more conversions from CTOs the audience that mattered most to them. And another interesting use case we've seen recently is one in APAC, where an agency client enabled LinkedIn Audience Network for their branding campaign and then built a retargeting campaign afterwards, to retarget audience reach via LinkedIn on instant work enabled campaigns via Legion forms. And they saw a 2x increase in Legion form converts as a result. It's kind of like that example you were talking about AJ building that retargeting audience from a LinkedIn Audience Network campaign. AJ Wilcox We were so excited when we found out that the audience network could build your retargeting audience. I mean, anytime we're going after an audience on LinkedIn, you have to have a minimum of 300 people. It can take a while to build a retargeting audience and 300 people, but it built very quickly on the audience. So I think that's way cool. Here's a quick sponsor break and then we'll dive into the rest of the interview. The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to you by B2Linked.com, the LinkedIn Ads experts. AJ Wilcox If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn Ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use, and can be painfully expensive on the front end. At B2Linked, we've cracked the code to maximizing ROI, while minimizing costs. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn Ads strategies customized to your unique needs and tailored to the way that B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 11 years, we've worked with some of the largest LinkedIn Ad spenders in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, book a discovery call today at B2Linked.com/apply. We'd absolutely love the opportunity to get to work with you. Alright, let's go ahead and jump back into the interview. AJ Wilcox So what some of the work that goes behind the scenes and ensuring that LinkedIn's Audience Network is brand safe, and that advertisers have the controls that they need. Peter Turner AJ, this is one of my favorite questions and one that you know, we spend a lot of time at LinkedIn, a lot of work goes on behind the scenes. So at its core, we want to make sure that marketers feel really confident running off LinkedIn just as much as they do on LinkedIn. And we continuously work to uphold LinkedIn brand safety standards, across both the feed and the Audience Network. There's both manual and automated brand safety checks that we perform as a team. And we partner with industry leaders, such as iOS, DoubleVerify and Pixelate to filter out low quality inventory across the network. And we also have an in house team that manually invests and audits publishers regularly, to make sure that we're prioritizing publishers based on performance and audience engagement to maintain the quality of a network. This is core to what we deliver for our marketers, and really important for my team to get right. Lipika Gimmler Yeah, and in addition to all of the fantastic under the hood protections that Peter mentioned that essentially come out of the box with a LinkedIn Audience Network, something that we're really, really excited to announce, the launch of this quarter is a brand new brand safety hub, where an advertiser can actually design their own brand safety guardrails to reach their desired professional audiences across third party apps and sites, while still remaining aligned with their brand safety needs. So with this new brand safety hub that we've launched, what people can essentially do is number one, they can download and review the entire list of publishers that make up the LinkedIn Audience Network. So as to, you know, take a look at them and ensure there's transparency into what makes up our audience network. In addition to this, they can also create an upload, custom allow lists and custom block lists to be very specific in identifying the publishers that they want their brand messages to appear on. And finally, we also have introduced a new feature where advertisers can now import and apply their own DoubleVerify powered authentic brand suitability and custom contextual targeting profiles to the LinkedIn Audience Network campaigns. So this is a brand new partnership that we've forged with an industry leader like DoubleVerify. So it's a pretty fantastic new feature that can be leveraged by advertisers who use DV in their campaigns. So in addition to all of these new features, we also have category blocking, which essentially leverages tech lab content taxonomy categories, at the campaign level. So a ton of customization, a ton of manual controls that our advertisers can apply in setting up their brand safety guardrails is what they can look forward to, in addition to the automated checks that are already in place within the product. AJ Wilcox Lipika, I have to say, I'm a huge fan of the new brand safety hub. Some of the initial exploration that we did, as soon as we found out that we could upload our own targeting and block lists, we thought, well, hey, what if we started showing ads just to apps, maybe for something like a mobile app? Or what if we blocked apps and just showed to publishers, and we wouldn't have had that level of control without the brand safety hub. So props to you guys for releasing that. That was a really cool release. Lipika Gimmler Yeah, absolutely. It was something that was a top asked by a lot of our customers. And we're really, really excited to be able to bring them to life and encourage anybody and everybody who is sort of on the edge of wanting to test out the LinkedIn Audience Network to kind of give it a go and see how it works out for them from a brand safety perspective, specifically, and obviously, feedback is always welcome. AJ Wilcox So Lipika, I know this is kind of your wheelhouse. I'm curious to ask about what the future of the LinkedIn Audience Network looks like. Lipika Gimmler Yeah, absolutely. So the future for the LinkedIn Audience Network is absolutely bright. And our teams are consistently working to introduce new ad formats and ad placements that are exclusive to the LinkedIn Audience Network. As I mentioned, prior LinkedIn Audience Network is considered to be a core part of our advertising solution. So there's a lot of investment from an r&d perspective, and a lot of investment in terms of really soliciting what our customers are looking for, in terms of what's going to bring them value. So we really are looking to further fortify LinkedIn as a whole as the B2B marketing partner of choice for brands and agencies and the LinkedIn Audience Network is a key component to how we're going to get there. So we're really excited to what's in development. But at this point, there's a lot of under the hood work that's being done. But we're happy to share more about it in the coming months, hopefully, on a future episode that we might be able to guest on again with yourself, AJ, AJ Wilcox Perfect. Well, we'd sure love to have you back for any new developments. That'd be fantastic. Always. So excited to see how fast LinkedIn is moving at coming out with new features, and especially around the LinkedIn Audience Network, I've noticed, I'll be inside of campaign manager and just see something new and go, wow, I didn't even know they were working on that, especially like the brand safety hub, those awesome. We had an episode several back about the cookieapocalypse that's happening. I'm curious how the cookieapocalypse is affecting the LinkedIn Audience Network, especially after chrome stops respecting third party cookies. What can we expect? Lipika Gimmler Yeah, that's really great and a very timely question, because it's definitely top of mind for a lot of folks in our industry. And this is one that our team has really been focused on for the past few quarters to address and to find meaningful solutions for. Ultimately, it boils down to the fact that the LinkedIn Audience Network, again, is truly an extension of LinkedIn, with the anchoring feature being LinkedIn's zero and first party data, our targeting data, that is really second to none when it comes to professional audience targeting. So along with these deterministic data assets, we rely on our proprietary privacy enhancing group identity solution, which essentially leverages LinkedIn first party data to group members based on shared professional attributes. So examples of this could be title or seniority. And this essentially enables us to reach professionals at scale through our first party data and not individual trackers. So we've truly think that B2B can be better served by using group level, and other privacy enhancing solutions that are rooted in this proprietary first party professional data. And with our audience network, advertisers can harness the power of LinkedIn's targeting to really accelerate their marketing outcomes across a network of vetted publishers where their audience is engaging the most. And they're able to do so while enhancing member privacy in an evolving identity landscape. So the investments we're making across LinkedIn within this particular space is definitely being bolstered within the LinkedIn Audience Network as well. AJ Wilcox Perfect. So it doesn't sound like we should be afraid of cookieapocalypse happening, it's not going to shut the LinkedIn Audience Network down. Lipika Gimmler Not at all it is in fact being thought of at the forefront of all of this innovation. So you know, we'd recommend we encourage our advertisers to leverage the Audience Network to really reach their audiences at scale, because it's not something we're necessarily afraid of at this point, but we're actually thriving in the current environment. AJ Wilcox Beautiful to hear. So as we are turning on LinkedIn Audience Network campaigns, and we've been testing them quite a bit, we've noticed that when you turn something on, it's going to react in the auction slightly differently. So I love to ask, like, how does the LinkedIn Audience Network interact within the auction for LinkedIn traffic? How might you scope the right balance of ensuring that you have as much traffic going towards on network as LinkedIn Audience Network? Peter Turner So at LinkedIn, we work to maximize marketing outcomes for all of our customers across all the available placements we have. It's really based on what they're trying to achieve a scale. So our platform algorithms work to show brand messages across both feed and LinkedIn Audience Network that match an average professional target audience first, and then based on the campaigns objective second, and, and at the same time, while considering their budget in bid type. And again, the priority is to drive you know maximum key results, as per their objectives at the lowest cost. And this ultimately decides how impressions are split across the LinkedIn Audience Network and our feed, as our ad platform behaves in a placement agnostic matter, and considers all available placements at par with each other. This also helps ensure that advertising on LinkedIn is seamless and data driven, while being anchored in our robust and proprietary professional audience graph for member interactions with LinkedIn. One suggestion for advertisers, as I'm thinking about the problem presented, you know, prefer testing and monitoring a campaign or forums across, you know, the LinkedIn Audience Network and their feed distinctly would be to run parallel AB campaigns, one with LinkedIn audience network enabled and one without while mimicking the exact same campaign parameters. This way we can assume that 90% of LinkedIn Audience Network enabled campaigns will deliver on LinkedIn Audience Network, while the other would be pure feed campaigns, and better the chance of reaching professionals across both the feed and LinkedIn Audience Network semi-equally. AJ Wilcox And that's exactly what I'd recommend to because you can't run just a LinkedIn Audience Network campaign. So duplicating both campaigns having one set to do the LinkedIn Audience Network, the other set to be LinkedIn only. That's a great way of AB testing the campaigns, so I'm a fan of that approach. All right, so final question for both of you. What are you both professionally and personally most excited for right now or this year. Lipika Gimmler Yeah, I'm personally really excited to see more B2B marketers leveraging the LinkedIn Audience Network and finding interesting use cases for it in their marketing campaigns. A ton of times we connect, when we connect with our advertisers, we find use cases that we hadn't even thought about in the first place. So it's really, really engaging for us to connect with our clients and learn about how they're utilizing the audience network within their toolkit. And there are so many learnings that are to be had by experimenting with the LinkedIn Audience Network and unlocking test budgets for it. So I'd really encourage all of the marketers who are tuning into this episode to connect with your LinkedIn account team, and explore ways by which you can expand the possibilities of what can be accomplished by tapping into, you know, LinkedIn and the LinkedIn Audience Network to achieve your B2B marketing dreams and ambitions. AJ Wilcox Love that. And, Peter, same question to you. Peter Turner This is a fun one for me. So I've got two young boys at home, one and three. And so I'm getting a ton of energy and excitement, watching them learn and grow. And as much as I think about my work at LinkedIn, and specifically on the Audience Network, I spent a lot of time reading about parenting, and how to raise kind kids, and connect it back. That multi dimensional sense of who we all are, is really the key to LinkedIn Audience Network, I spend a lot of time on LinkedIn, but I also spend time elsewhere. And the value that the audience member creates is for marketers to reach me in multiple ways. And I'm very excited about that. AJ Wilcox I'm excited to hear congratulations on being an amazing parent who cares, and is trying to raise kind of children. That's awesome. This kind of concludes the questions I had, do either of you have anything else that you want to add? Lipika Gimmler At this point? Not really, I think this was a fantastic opportunity to really connect with your audience and to chat with you, AJ about, you know, what the foundational concepts are that the LinkedIn Audience Network was founded upon, and just all of the excitement that we have for what's to come. So we're really grateful for the opportunity and the time here, and we hope to come back and share more about, you know, the product roadmap, and maybe talk with customers and learn more about some of the use cases that are using the audience network for so again, appreciate the chance to chat today. Peter Turner And AJ, from mindset, you know, like the open to it, we've known each other for six or so years now working across, you know, various solutions at LinkedIn. And it's great to be on the podcast, and thank you for all you do to champion you know, and and support that LinkedIn marketer. It's not unusual for me to have a question about how to run a LinkedIn ad campaign and think to ask you first, and so I really think of you as an expert on what you do. And so thank you for the time today. AJ Wilcox Well, thank you, Peter. Thank you Lipika! Grateful that you would come and share so deeply with us and answer all my terrible questions. So much appreciate it! And have a great rest of your day. Lipika Gimmler Thank you. Thank you. AJ Wilcox I've got the episode resources for you coming right up. So stick around. Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away. AJ Wilcox Alright! I hope you enjoyed the interview. I wanted to walk you through some great resources we've got for you. If you're looking to learn more about LinkedIn Ads, look no further than the course that I did on LinkedIn Learning all about LinkedIn Ads. You'll find the link in the show notes below. It is by far the most detailed, the least expensive, and the highest production value course out there, so check it out. If this is the first episode you've heard, congratulations, we're excited that you found us. Make sure to hit that subscribe button on whatever podcast player you're listening to. We'd love to have you back next week. But if this is not your first time listening, I would ask you please do leave us a review. Most of these reviews are done in the Apple podcasts section, but if you have anywhere else that will let you leave a review, please do. It truly means a lot to me. With any questions, suggestions, or corrections, reach out to us at [email protected] And with that being said, we'll see you back here next week. We're cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives.
All About Groups Targeting on LinkedIn Ads - EP 84
14:13Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: LinkedIn Ads Group on LinkedIn NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Show Transcript On LinkedIn Ads, you can target members by specific groups that they're in. By name! I know right? We're talking about targeting LinkedIn groups on this week's episode of the LinkedIn Ads Show. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. Hey there LinkedIn Ads fanatics! The ability to target the members of specific groups on LinkedIn has been a blessing to advertisers since LinkedIn came out back in 2008. I can hear you Facebook advertisers out there salivating, because Facebook has never allowed us to do this. And it really would be incredible. Groups on LinkedIn had been through quite the journey over the years. But on today's episode of the LinkedIn Ads show, I'll walk you through the pros and cons, as well as some tips on how to use it and make it work even better. Make sure to stick around until the end of the episode, as I'm going to share a little known hack to targeting groups. Let's hit it. First off, what are LinkedIn groups? When I very first joined LinkedIn, groups were one of the things that were most widely publicized as it being a great place to interact with others. So I went and joined a bunch of marketing groups, a bunch of technology groups, and a bunch of automotive groups even. Being a new marketer. and being really into cars, I went and joined one of these automotive groups, and ended up having a conversation with a marketer from Ferrari, I thought that was so cool back in the day. Over time, those LinkedIn groups have kind of turned into a bit of a dumping ground due to a wide variety of factors that have made LinkedIn groups less attractive than, let's say meta groups. People stopped actually coming to interact in groups and the ones who did were usually just going to help promote something of themselves. So they became kind of a spammy link dumping ground. If you go look at your groups that you're a member of just look through and see, I would say every once in a while you find a group where there's real conversation going on people actually helping each other and making suggestions, but for the most part, I just see link after link after link with very little explanation as to why someone is even putting a link there. And when you're in a group, and all you see is basically a bunch of bots that are dumping content and leaving, you're not going to stick around either. But anyone can go and start a group on the platform, and it's free. If you're a marketer, which you probably are if you're listening to this, you can go and join a group called marketing executives group, or digital marketing optimization, or digital marketing manager and agency owners. What's really cool about these groups is you get a bunch of people who are like minded in the group together. And because it's on LinkedIn, it's really easy to tell who is who, what companies they represent. And because of the lack of anonymity, I think people tend to be a lot kinder, and a lot more helpful. Also, being part of a group is really cool when you go to actually make a connection with someone because now you have something more in common with them than just, I saw your posts show up in my newsfeed, you can say something like we're in a common group together, we've had a conversation. So common groups membership can be a really good way of getting the attention of someone and getting a connection request accepted. So we talked about how LinkedIn groups have kind of devolved over time. But something that I really appreciated about it is that most of the time, you're not going to leave a group, you're just going to stop going to visit very often. So what that means is someone goes and joins a group around a topic that's really important to them. And even if they're not spending time in that group, LinkedIn still knows that they're a member of this and then we can target that trait using LinkedIn Ads. And it's an important distinction to note that, when we're targeting using groups names on LinkedIn, it doesn't mean that we're targeting them with ads only when they're in the group. Rather, we're targeting them wherever they are on LinkedIn, because we know that they are a member of this group. So even if they never come back, we can still use it for targeting. And you can join up to 50 groups last time I checked. And in the show notes below, there's a link to the LinkedIn Ads group on LinkedIn. And it's one of the good examples I can think of. They're doing a really good job of curating it, keeping the spam out, and there are a lot of people, they're asking really sincere questions about the platform. 4:21 So when should you use groups targeting? I think it's really important to compare the other different methods of targeting that you could use to see really where groups fits in. So if you're targeting by job function, a lot of times that's way too broad. I would fit under the job function of marketing. But because LinkedIn ads is such a specific skill, and not every marketer has that skill. And so Job function is oftentimes very, very broad, especially in my case. Skills are even too broad. Sometimes, you can list up to 50 skills in your profile, just like groups, and it's another one that a lot of people will list skills and then forget to remove them later. Skills can be too broad sometimes as well. Of course, we can also target by job title. But titles can be too restrictive. And groups targeting tends to produce very small audiences. But think about it, if someone went way out of their way at some point on the platform to go and join a bunch of groups around topics they cared about, they're probably going to be a lot more active and engaged on the platform. So think about it this way. They produce small, but mighty audiences. Because of this groups tend to be a very underutilized targeting method for my experience. Okay, here's a quick sponsor break, and then we'll dive into how to select groups to target. The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to you by B2linked.com, the LinkedIn Ads experts. 5:49 If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use, and can be painfully expensive on the front end. Here at B2Linked, we've cracked the code to maximizing ROI, while minimizing costs. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn ad strategies, customized to your unique needs, and tailored to the way B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 11 years, we've worked with some of the largest LinkedIn advertisers in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, book a discovery call today at B2Linked.com/apply, we'd absolutely love the chance to get to work with you. All right, let's jump into how to actually select the groups that you might want to target. There's a couple of ways that you might do this. The first is you can go on to LinkedIn, click on their search feature, their universal search, and just start typing keywords for the types of groups that you might want to join. You could then filter that search just to the names of groups. And you'll see quite a few options there. Group membership is also something that's on someone's profile. So another way you could go about this is start doing some persona research. Go and look at the LinkedIn profiles of those within your ideal customer persona. They may even be your current customers, and scroll down to their group section and see which groups they belong to. If you start to notice some of the more common ones, you could add them to your targeting. Another way that you can select groups to target is to go in and actually try this targeting method. And inside of campaign manager, you go to audience attributes, interests and traits, and then member groups. And you can start by just typing the keyword that you might care about. So for instance, if I was going to target marketers like myself, I could type in something like marketing. And LinkedIn would suggest about 20 different groups, all about marketing. Or I could type LinkedIn Ad. And the only option I really see here is LinkedIn advertisers group, which happens to be the one that I suggested earlier to go and look for a good example of. It may be helpful to you to try to find groups that have larger audience sizes within them. Because sometimes they're too small to be meaningful. If you're targeting a whole bunch of groups that have like 10 people in them, maybe those are just a waste of space. Or you could do a ton of tiny ones, and try to get enough audience members to try to make your audience large enough to run or be successful. But whichever direction you decide to go, realize that you can only target 100 of anything inside of campaign manager. Except for companies, you can target 200 companies at a time. So that means if you've found over 100 groups to target, you'll want to weed it out and go with only the larger ones and leave the smaller ones out. As you're reviewing these groups within campaign manager, if you hang over the question mark next to the group name, it'll show a little pop up saying how many people are in the group. And as you hover over that, you'll see the group size. That can be helpful in narrowing things down. Sometimes I'll hear people bashing groups targeting on LinkedIn, they'll say things like, well, are people even active in LinkedIn groups? Or do they even join them? We kind of addressed this earlier, when we said that when someone goes and joins a group, they don't often leave the group. And so they're still attached to it for targeting. And so even if they're not active, they're signaling that they have a large affinity towards this topic. And that can help us a lot in our targeting. Do people join groups? Not really, LinkedIn even tried to do a refresh of groups a few years back, trying to revive them? And spoiler alert, it didn't work very well. There was a lot of talk about what it was going to do, how revolutionary it was going to be. But in the end groups didn't change all that much. I don't think they did enough of an overhaul. So it seems like LinkedIn is not proud of their group's product anymore. Because if they weren't proud of it, they would be pushing it. They would try to be recommending to members more groups that they should join, but instead what we see is they kind of hide it. It's really difficult to even go and find groups even when you're looking for them. So that means when you are using groups targeting, you're gonna get small audience sizes, and they're probably not growing all too much. When you're using groups targeting criteria, I like to layer other targeting criteria on top. Things like seniority and company size, and company, industry, and all of that. So it really is right for using. Groups really can be a good place to play as an organic marketing method. The trick is that you just have to start real conversation. You can't turn into a link dumping spammer and expect to have any sort of real interaction in the groups. Get in, actually interact with people, don't just dump links. And anytime you do share a link, make sure you provide enough information about why it is you think what you're sharing is valuable. Then actually connect with other like minded people who are engaging like you are. One cool thing that groups have done here in the last few years, is that group posts are now sometimes shown in your newsfeed. You'd have to wait around hoping that people go back into the group to see your stuff. Now, the best group stuff is actually going to show up in your newsfeed. 11:06 All right, I did promise a hack here towards the end. This is a trick that I've used now for years, that when you are targeting by groups, if you type in a keyword, let's say you type in something like marketing, LinkedIn is only going to suggest 20 different groups to you. And if you like all of them, and you've selected all 20, that's the absolute max you can target. Like LinkedIn is not going to show you any others. Until you do what I call the ABC trick. I have to give credit for this trick to my very first LinkedIn Ads rep. She showed me back in 2011, how to do this, the platform has advanced quite a bit, but this still works, there still isn't a better way. So what you do is you type your keyword. And then after you've exhausted those 20 suggestions, you do a space and then A and then LinkedIn is going to suggest the 20 that match that starting with an A and then you select whatever suggestions there, that's maybe another 20, you delete your A and you go back and do B, then you go and do C, then you go and do D, you go all the way through the alphabet. And Lincoln's gonna keep showing you suggestions and by the time you've gotten to the end of the alphabet, you've really found most groups. And in fact, if there are so many that you're going after, you're gonna get over 100 and then you're gonna have to decide which ones do I take out anyway. All right, I've got the episode resources for you coming right up. So stick around Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away. All right, like we talked about the LinkedIn Ads group, there's the link right in the show notes that you can go and join. Get involved in conversation about LinkedIn ads, it really is a great example of a group. Also, if you or anyone you know, is looking to learn more about LinkedIn Ads, make sure you check out the course on LinkedIn Learning that I did with LinkedIn. It teaches a lot of the same principles as we go over here on this podcast, but it's very high quality and very inexpensive to use. I think it's like 10 bucks to buy the course. A lot of people even get LinkedIn Learning for free with their elevated LinkedIn profile. But definitely go check that out. If this is your first time listening, welcome. Thanks so much! I'm glad to have you here. Make sure to hit that subscribe button and your podcast player so you keep hearing us here in the future. If this is not your first time listening, please do us the favor of leaving a review for the podcast. You probably hear it a lot. I know I say it every time, but it really is the very best way you can say thanks for all the content that we put out. With any questions, suggestions, or corrections, reach out to us at [email protected] And with that being said, we'll see you back here next week. Cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives!
Should You Run Your LinkedIn Ads Over the Holidays? - Ep 83
24:13Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: Covid19's Effect on LinkedIn Ads Bidding and Budgeting NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Follower Ads (Red call-out boxes) Follower Ads impressions were decimated on both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Since these are only served on Desktop, it shows how few people were on LinkedIn on their desktops. The other ad formats didn't see such large decreases, telling us that members largely switched over to mobile during the holidays. Follower Ads costs skyrocketed on holidays. An indication of what happens to prices when to the audience vacates the platform while advertisers are still bidding. Single Image Sponsored Content (Purple call-out boxes) Single Image Sponsored Content impressions were above average the day before Thanksgiving but dropped to 80% and 68% during and after. Signals many people taking time off work and not spending as much time on LinkedIn. The day before and day of Christmas was interesting to see an increase in impressions, although these were weekend days which are traditionally lower anyway and wouldn’t be hard to beat. The day after New Years (January 2 nd ) saw 17% higher-than-average usage, which is what we expect to see. Costs around Thanksgiving skyrocketed to 35%, 52%, and 69% above average, making for very expensive traffic. Around Christmas, costs were elevated 3-16%, which is up, but not egregious. New Years costs were really surprising though. They actually dropped from 1-33% of average, which is what we usually see after the New Year, but to see the diminished costs during the holiday was interesting. We would guess this is due to advertisers pulling back; although I don’t understand why advertisers would pull back en masse for New Years but not at Christmas just a week before, unless it had something to do with running out of budgets by the end of the month and needing to pull back. Video Ads (Blue call-out boxes) The day before Thanksgiving was pretty much business as usual, but we definitely saw fewer impressions the day of and the day after Thanksgiving. Christmas Eve was up 6% but the day of and the day after were down to 81% and 54% of average. New Years Eve had lower impressions which we’d expect given the holiday, but similar to Sponsored Content (since they share the same inventory) were up 11% and 7% respectively. Thanksgiving CPMs were elevated 3-31%, but Christmas did not follow suit, strangely. Christmas CPMs actually dropped 11-32%, which I don’t have an explanation for. New Years CPMs also dropped significantly, but we expect that for the same reasons we see decreased costs around New Years every year. But a drop between 50%-71% is huge! After New Years Analysis Unsurprisingly, impressions and clicks increased after the New Year (1/3-1/5) since we’re back to work and all rested up from time off for the holidays. What is surprising is that costs on Follower Ads were still elevated by 11% even after the holidays. Show Transcript What happens to your LinkedIn Ads on holidays and vacation? Well, it's a total pain to calculate. So I went ahead and did it. I can do hard things. We're talking a holiday ad performance on this week's episode of the LinkedIn Ads Show. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. Hey there, LinkedIn Ads fanatics, I'm sure you've wondered if you should pause your ads on holidays, or just let them ride? Well, I'm a total data junkie so I took it upon myself to crunch the data and find out and it gets juicy. We're gonna walk through it and analysis that I did over a lot of data to tell you conclusively whether or not you should be advertising on LinkedIn over holidays. And make sure to stick around until the end for an extra bonus analysis that I did about ad performance after the new year. All right, let's hit it. If you've been listening for a while, you may remember Episode 32, where I did a whole analysis of what happened to LinkedIn Ads availability, and pricing during the COVID 19 pandemic. And I really enjoyed doing that study. It was a ton of data crunching, but a lot of fun. Well, and we get asked all the time by clients whether or not we should be pausing over the holidays, especially in November and December here in the US, where we have Thanksgiving and Christmas, followed closely by New Years. In the past, we've oftentimes given the advice to pause entirely over those holidays. And there are a lot of reasons why. The first is that it's towards the end of a quarter and a month so these larger companies are bidding more aggressively to try to finish strong. And this is going to lead to increased competition, which means you're going to pay more at these times. It also happens to be the end of a year. So budgets that are use it or lose it, they have to be spent. So advertisers are again bidding up and this is leading to increased competition and costs. And meanwhile, people are traveling and taking more time off due to the holidays. This leads to less time spent on LinkedIn, which means fewer impressions to go around. And so more advertisers fighting over those. It's really important to understand that what you pay on LinkedIn, it's all an auction. And the auction is driven by supply and demand. The supply is the people on LinkedIn that are logged in and ready to receive ad impressions. The demand is our demand as marketers trying to get in front of them. And we're bidding in order to do so. So what we pay right now is this interplay of people being on LinkedIn, and US advertisers trying to get in front of them. So when the supply of LinkedIn visitors decreases, all else held equal, our costs are gonna go up. But in this case, where your visitors decrease, and competition increases, it means your overall advertiser costs are going to skyrocket, which is obviously not great if you're trying to be efficient with your advertising. If you're using manual bidding during these times, you kind of have a hedge, or a bit of insurance when costs are going up. Because when costs rise, you're naturally just going to lose more auctions. And so when those costs get over your bids, you just naturally leave the auction. And then of course, when costs come back down, you'll be back to receiving traffic the way that you were. If you're using LinkedIn's maximum delivery of bidding, though, you're just going to ride that wave of high costs all the way up, and then back down, and you'll be subjected to whatever is happening on the platform. Costs can spike with no warning whatsoever. And those high costs are especially a problem since the platform doesn't allow you to do any sort of timing of your ads. So if you want to pause your campaigns or pause certain ads, it has to be done manually. Or in our case, we ended up building an internal de partying and ad scheduling tool. So that that wouldn't be a downside for us. But we realize most people aren't going to have something like that at their disposal. And we've talked a lot about costs increasing, which is totally a huge factor in whether you should be advertising over the holidays. But there's something else to keep in mind. It's lead quality, we found something that is the same every single year. And that is any demo or call scheduled, 95% of time it's going to get pushed back to after the new year. Just think about it. How many calls have you said, hey, let's push this into the new year. Well, now you've pushed a meeting forward potentially several weeks. So by the time you actually go to do that meeting, you've most likely forgotten entirely who this person was and why you wanted to talk to them. So over the holidays, if you're paying more for those leads, just to leave them cooling over the holidays. Obviously, it's not a great combination. And this is what we've seen in past years. But my question was, does it still hold up today? I always like to test my assumptions and see what platform changes have happened. I was actually spurred on to do this because I had six different LinkedIn reps, all pushing really hard, saying that we should be advertising over the holidays. Some even went as far to say that costs drop over the holidays. This wasn't the case from what I've experienced in the past so I really want to do this analysis. And I'm ashamed to say that this analysis took 31 hours of my life, I started and it was pretty straightforward. And then I kept coming across cool data points that I wanted to study and dive deeper into, I had to restart three times. And I'm certain that if I were really really insanely good at Excel, this probably wouldn't have taken this long. But let's jump into the methodology. I had some requirements. First of all, we needed these accounts to be decent spending. But they also had to be spending similarly. So we hand picked accounts that were spending between about $15,000 to $20,000 a month. They also had to be really similar in brand strength so we picked very well known companies in their space. And all of these accounts happened to be in the Fortune 1,000. We also wanted to make sure that the ads were similar in focus, and they were using similar ad types. We didn't want to combine one account that was running text ads, and another one running sponsored messaging, and then another one running sponsored content. We pretty much scored the jackpot, because we had five accounts that match this criteria. They were good spenders, but they were also similar. They were all Fortune 1000. So they're gonna be really well known across the board. They were all running the same ad formats, we really couldn't pass this opportunity on. As we dove in, though, we realized that there were several variables that had to be controlled for. The first was whether or not this was a weekend or a weekday. For example, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year's Eve, and New Year's Day, we're all on weekends this year. We didn't want to compare a holiday to a normal weekday, or even a combined average of weekdays and weekends, since weekends and weekdays both act very differently on LinkedIn. Plus, the days after each of these holidays were a weekday. It was Monday. And of course, we needed to be able to tease out the difference between a holiday Monday and a normal Monday. Thanksgiving was really kind to us, it made sure that the holiday itself as well as the days before and after were all weekdays, which made it much easier to analyze. Oh boy, I wish I could have just thrown out weekends and weekdays differences, it would have saved me a lot of time. The next variable we had to control for was ad type. If you were to calculate the click through rate across multiple ad formats, let's say for instance, sponsored content and text ads, the average would be absolutely meaningless. You can't average sponsored content and text ads together. Sponsored content has like a .44% average click through rate, while text ads have a .025%. So text ads have a click through rate that's like 1/12 of the average sponsored content. Plus text ads show way more impressions because there's not much of a frequency cap. And so if you're showing both of those ad formats to the same size of audience, your text ads are going to show a lot more impressions. And that would totally sway your click through rate to a much lower number that really wouldn't make sense. So all this to say that in this analysis, I had to break out the different ad formats so that cost per click and cost per impression would actually be meaningful. For metrics to track I knew costs, were going to be the one that was my main concern. And I started out by using cost per click. And then I realized occasionally there were days with no clicks, and then I'd have a zero in a denominator. And nobody likes seeing error divided by zero in their Excel. So I ended up adding in CPM as well. And it was nice to show them alongside. And then CPM never has a problem with a zero and a denominator. And the final variable to control for was account changes. These had to be accounts that couldn't make any major changes to adds to bidding and budgets. And in cases in these accounts where there was a major change, we just threw out any day where those changes were made. The result of all of this was over 121,000 rows of data to be crunched, and a 60 megabyte Excel file. So the sample sizes were pretty robust, and the findings were strong as well. Okay, we're gonna jump to a quick sponsor break and then we'll get to dive into the actual results of the analysis. The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to you by B2Linked.com, the LinkedIn Ads experts. 9:38 If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn Ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use and can be painfully expensive on the front end. At B2Linked, we've cracked the code to maximizing ROI while minimizing costs. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn Ads strategies, customized to your unique needs, and tailored to the way that B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 11 years, we've worked with some of LinkedIn's largest advertisers in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, book a discovery call at B2Linked.com/apply. We'd absolutely love the opportunity to get to work with you. 10:31 All right, let's jump into the results of the holiday analysis. And don't forget to stick around until the end for that bonus analysis that I know you'll love. If you go to the show notes page, you'll see a paste of all of the data that I'm going to be talking about. So I'm just going to describe to you what it is that you're seeing. The first column is the holiday that we're talking about. So you'll see Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's There, you'll also see a column for ad type. Underneath ad type, you'll see the acronyms FA, which is a follower ad, which is one of the dynamic ad formats. You'll see SC, which is short for sponsored content. And it's specifically single image sponsored content. Because we also have VI for video ads, which is also technically sponsored content, it uses the same inventory. Then you'll see a column called Day. And what that is, is we tracked the day before the holiday, the day of the holiday and the day after. So we could paint the whole story of what's happening as the week progresses on holiday week. Then you'll see all the data, the data are all percentages have an average day of its kind. So if you see the column of impressions, we're showing you how many impressions Christmas Day got, as opposed to a normal Sunday. Because these are a percentage of benchmark, if you see anything that's under 100%, it indicates that there were less of that that day than there are on a normal benchmark day. So impressions, for instance, if you say less than 100%, on impressions, that indicates that there were fewer impressions served that day than average. Clicks is the same way. If you see less than 100% clicks, that means that there were fewer clicks that happened. But I think what's even more interesting is that when you see the clicks percentage is higher than the impressions percentage, that tells us that people were more active that day at clicking. Our CTRs went up that day, which is pretty cool. You'll see a column for spend and this is just the ability to tell our campaigns on average, able to spend more or less or about the same. It's the spend ability of campaigns on that day. The next column is CPC or cost per click. And again, seeing less than 100% indicates that campaigns have lower average costs per click than average. If it's over 100%. That means average costs per click were higher than average. Makes sense, right? You will see some blanks under the cost per click heading. And that's because there were some days where follower ads didn't get any clicks and so rather than having a really ugly divide by zero error, I just deleted them out. But the next column is for CPM or cost per 1000 impressions. This is likely a better way of gauging costs than CPC, just because this was how we were getting charged regardless of if people were clicking or not. And again, less than 100% indicates that campaigns were spending less than average, over 100% means that we're getting gouged a little bit. Alright, let's start specifically with follower ads, because they were really interesting. In the graphic, these are the red call out boxes. So anytime that you see a red box around data that was dealing with follower ads. What was interesting is that follower ads impressions were decimated on both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Literally impressions were around 10%. But since these are only served on desktop, that shows us how few people were actually on LinkedIn on their desktop machines. Since the other ad formats show on mobile, and we didn't see such large decreases, that tells us that members largely switched over to mobile devices during those holidays. Then when we look at costs, follower ads costs skyrocketed across all holidays. And to me, this is a perfect example of supply versus demand. The supply of advertisers stayed constant because LinkedIn doesn't allow us to do ad scheduling and leave the auction. Meanwhile, the demand of advertisers stayed constant because LinkedIn doesn't allow us to pause our ads certain times and take ourselves out of the auction. And at the same time the supply of members on the platform because they weren't there on desktop devices they left and that causes costs to shoot through the roof. For example, on the Thanksgiving holiday costs tripled, on Christmas, they almost doubled and on New Year's Day about doubled. Okay, so that's follower ads a little bit interesting. 14:56 Now let's move on to single image sponsored content. These were the ones in the purple call out boxes. So sponsored content impressions were above average the day before Thanksgiving, but then dropped to 80% and 68%. On the day during the holiday and after, this totally signals to me that people were working right up until the day before, and that during the holiday and after they went ahead and took time off, and weren't spending as much time on LinkedIn. The day before and the day of Christmas were really interesting to see an increase in impressions. And I didn't really have a great explanation as to why this was, although both of these were weekend days, which are traditionally lower anyway, and so it wouldn't be too hard to beat the average. The day after New Year's, this is January 2, we saw 17% higher than average usage, which is what we expect to see after the new year. And we'll tell you all about that data here soon. The costs around Thanksgiving skyrocketed to 35% to 69% above average, making it a really expensive holiday to be advertising. Around Christmas costs jumped 3% to 16%, which is certainly up, but it's not egregious. New Year's costs were really surprising though, they actually dropped one to 33% of average, which is what we usually see after the new year. But to see the diminished costs during the holiday was interesting, usually we see them after, we would guess that this is due to advertisers pulling back. Although I don't understand why advertisers would pull back on mass for New Years, but not Christmas that was just a week before. Unless, of course it had something to do with running out of budgets by the end of the month, and needing to pull back. Now let's analyze video ad. There were the blue call out boxes on the image that you see on the show notes page. If we look at the day before Thanksgiving, it was pretty much business as usual. But then we saw a huge dive in impressions on the day of and the day after Thanksgiving. The costs on Thanksgiving, though they jumped 3% to 31%. But strangely, Christmas didn't follow suit. Christmases CPMs actually dropped between 11% to 32%, which I don't really have an explanation for. New Year's Eve definitely had lower impressions, which we'd expect given the holiday. But similar to the other sponsored content that we've already talked about, since they do share the same inventory, the impressions were actually up 11% and 7%, respectively. And as you'd expect, New Year's CPMs dropped significantly, which we do expect usually, but it was a huge drop between 50% to 71% drops in price. 17:32 So my takeaways here are that generally costs go up over holidays. So I recommend pausing your ads over those times. And even in cases where costs will drop over the holidays like for Christmas and New Year's, I still recommend pausing your ads due to the lead quality drop. I would not suggest pausing your retargeting ads though. I think your retargeting ads are good to keep going. And remember how we talked about supply and demand, how it affects our pricing on LinkedIn. Let's talk about something that makes our pricing even worse. Rising costs are totally exacerbated by advertisers who are bidding by the impression rather than by the click. The reason this is the case is because when someone is bidding by click, they're only paying when someone actually takes action. And then the advertiser with the highest click through rates, ends up getting the best relevancy scores and that drives everyone to be better. If you're bidding by the impression though, it really doesn't matter how you're performing. Any advertiser willing to pay enough, LinkedIn is going to bypass the auction and start showing ads. LinkedIn has caused rising costs smartly on their part, but I think it's terrible, by making maximum delivery the default bidding method because it's the default, the less experienced advertisers just end up going with it. We talked about in episode six about when maximum delivery should be used. But it's effectively bidding by the impression but letting LinkedIn bid as high as they need to, to make sure that it can spend your entire budget every day. So if your daily budget is like $10 for a campaign, it may only need to bid like a $60 CPM to spend it all. But if your daily budget is high, let's say something like $1,000, and you have a relatively small audience, you might find that the platform has to bid $400 CPMs, in order to show your ads enough to spend your money. Just as a reminder, if your click through rates are two to three times the benchmark CTR for that ad format, then it's actually in your best interest to bid CPM as it saves you money. 90% of the time, though, you're not going to be beating your benchmarks by two to three times. And maximum delivery is the most expensive way to pay for your traffic. If you're bidding maximum delivery just because it's easier to spend your budget. You're just pushing yours and everyone else's costs up on the platform. And the only winner here is LinkedIn Corporate, who's watching their revenue climb quarter over quarter. So we as advertisers, what can we do about out this? I would encourage you don't bid max delivery unless you have really high CTRs. I would also encourage you to pause over holidays. And please don't bid really aggressively at the end of a year or a quarter or a month, if you don't have to. Because if we as advertisers stop pushing the costs up, then prices come down for all of us, then, who knows, maybe there are some advertisers out there who need to be bidding on holidays, and they end up getting lower costs to do so. Okay, I mentioned that if you're going to stick around to the end, I would share a bonus analysis with you. What we generally see is after the New Year, holiday performance tends to look really good on the platform. Costs come down, it becomes a lot easier to spend your full budget. So I wanted to do this analysis and to actually quantify this. First off, looking over three different ad formats, follower ads, single image sponsored content, and video ads, we average the 20% increase in impressions. And we saw clicks increased by 14%, which is pretty similar. It shows there's more people on LinkedIn spending time after the new year, and they're about as engaged as usual in clicking. When we look at costs, though, we see that follower ads have an 11% higher CPM, but cost per click is about the same. So that shows the difference made up of people actually clicking. Single image sponsored content, though, the costs actually dropped by 22% afterwards. And video costs actually dropped by 49% to the CPM, not bad. All of this goes to show that performance after the new year really is good. Takeaways from the New Year are advertise strong for the New Year. Traffic is up and costs are down and lead quality tends to be really high, too. Anecdotally, what we see is that now that people are back in the office, they're pretty rested from having a nice long break, they're a lot more likely to be agreeable towards having a meeting. There's not a whole lot of other stuff clouding up their schedule. Plus, they tend to have budgets again for the year which were depleted just the previous month. It's the beginning of a month and a quarter, so people don't feel like they have to bid super aggressively to try to finish things up strong. I absolutely love the first week of January every year. All right, I've got the episode resources for you coming right up, so stick around. Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more AJ Wilcox, take it away. 22:38 First off, the tables that I was reading off of, they're gonna be in the shownotes. So go visit the show notes page, if you want to see specifically what I was talking about there. Also, check out the link to Episode 32, all About COVID-19's effect on LinkedIn ads. Feel free to compare those and see this COVID-19 act more like a holiday or is it totally different. Check out Episode Six, all about bidding and budgeting to dive deeper into maximum delivery, and manual bidding and all of that. If you are one of your colleagues or looking to learn more about LinkedIn Ads, check out the link to the course that I made on LinkedInLearning.com, right within the show notes. It's by far the most detailed and lowest cost course out there and it's by LinkedIn Learning, so you know, the production is awesome. If this is the first time you're listening to us, make sure to hit that subscribe button, because you obviously care about LinkedIn Ads. If this is not the first time you're hearing this, though, can I ask a special favor? Can you go and rate and review this podcast in whatever podcast player you listen in? It would go a long way to say thanks for the 31 hours that I've sunk into this report. With any questions, suggestions, corrections, reach out to us at [email protected] And with that being said, we'll see you back here next week. Cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives.
AdSearch.io is the LinkedIn Ads Library You've Been Waiting For - Ep 82
23:13Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: AdSearch LinkedIn Ads Library Sander's LinkedIn Profile NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Show Transcript Have you ever wanted a library of all the LinkedIn Ads out there that you could look through for inspiration? We've got just the thing for you coming up on this week's episode of the LinkedIn Ads Show. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. Hey there LinkedIn Ads fanatics! I would bet that most of us have wished that we could go somewhere to look at the highest performing ads on the LinkedIn Ads platform, maybe for inspiration as we're writing new ad copy, or maybe even to look at competitors ads side by side and check out what they're doing. Today, I'm interviewing Sander de Lange, from AdSearch.io, which is a very affordable LinkedIn Ads library to do just that. We talked through what it's capable of pricing, and especially the actionable ways that you as the LinkedIn Ads marketer can go and use these tools to your advantage. Sander is an agency owner out of the Netherlands, and he's the founder of AdSearch.io. Let's bring him on. AJ Wilcox Hey Sander. So excited to have you here on the podcast. Sander de Lange Hey, AJ, great to be here! AJ Wilcox Cool. Well, tell me a little bit about yourself. Tell me a little bit about the company ad search. Love to hear all that background? Sander de Lange Yeah, sure. So about myself. I'm from the Netherlands. I'm married. And we just got our first daughter. AJ Wilcox Congratulations. Sander de Lange Yeah. Thank you. Thank you, me and my wife, we really love to travel. So currently, I'm working remote from Thailand, which is our favorite country in the whole world. AJ Wilcox Oh, I have not been but I want to. Sander de Lange Yes. AJ Wilcox Cool. Well, tell us about the background of AdSearch.io Sander de Lange Yeah, sure. Sure. 10 years ago, together with my business partner Ozlem, we launched a marketing agency called Team Digital.nl. In the Netherlands. We're focused on getting B2B customers. And we do a lot of LinkedIn Ads for our clients. We really love the platform because of the great targeting and great way to reach ideal customers. But we were really missing a LinkedIn Ads library. So yeah, this year in 2022, we launched AdSearch.io, which is the world's biggest LinkedIn Ads library to help you find great LinkedIn Ad examples to mobile in seconds. AJ Wilcox Love that. So tell us about why you were looking for a library. Obviously, that was a problem you were looking to solve for yourself. What is that problem that we LinkedIn advertisers should be thinking about whether we're feeling this or not? Sander de Lange Yeah, exactly. So the idea actually started because of a few few challenges we kept running into because if you advertise on LinkedIn, you probably know that LinkedIn Ads has a higher cost per click than other ad platforms, which can be a bit scary for people if they start launching their first campaign because every new campaign can be a risk. Some people also might notice that ads with low engagement actually pay more per click. So you know, the LinkedIn algorithm works with the ad relevancy score. And that's based on factors like click through rate, comments, likes and shares. And the more relevant the ad, the lower the price you pay. So this also means that if you have ads with low engagement, you pay more per click. So creating relevant, engaging ads is very important. And on top of that, we kept running into that you need also enough fresh new ad creative to prevent audience fatigue. And that's actually when your target audience sees the same ads over and over and your ads can lose their impact. We figured that you don't want to be wasting ad budget on the wrong boring ads, because that can get expensive. And we wanted to find a way to decrease that risk. And that's actually where you had something to do with this. Because I'm a frequent listener of your podcast and you actually quoted you, you said, like, when you're spending money on LinkedIn Ads, it's inherently high risk, because the costs are higher. So any research you can do ahead of time to find out what your audience will like is going to be very useful. So that inspired us to create AdSearch.io. AJ Wilcox Oh, so cool. I'm glad I can be of any help there. So you obviously felt this pain, you realize that we need some sort of an ad library? How did you go about solving? Sander de Lange Yeah, so we believe that it was missing. And as librarian and it's a great way to get inspiration for new campaigns, you need to study ads that are performing well to generate ideas. And we didn't just want to create the ads library where we just put a few ads in there. And that's it, we really wanted to go the extra mile and add all kinds of features and functionality, so you can really find highly relevant ads quickly. So we did that by adding a few type of features. The first one is the search features. So you can really find relevant ads quickly. You can search by keywords, the whole database of ads is searchable by keywords. So for example, you could search for CRM or email templates and find ads that contain those keywords. You can search by company name or even by URL. So for example, if you search URL search, and you use like read remarketing, you will find remarketing ads. So that's the search features, you can find relevant ads quickly. And then step two is the sorting features. So you can discover the most engaging ads very quickly. So you can sort by engagement metrics, like likes, shares, comments, you can find the ads your audience loved most. And then you can use the filter features to find exactly what you need. Like you can filter by country, industry, ad formats, company size, all kinds of stuff. So if you were looking for a video ads containing the keyword CRM from a US company in the 50 to 200, staff range, you can find it. AJ Wilcox Oh, that's so cool. So I love the standard. How should LinkedIn advertisers actually use your tool? Sander de Lange Yeah, so I'd like to get into like a really step by step process with just a high level overview. First, it's really useful for everybody advertising on LinkedIn, but mostly people who can use it as LinkedIn advertising agencies and freelancers. In house LinkedIn advertisers can use it, but also the ad creative design teams. And they can use it for campaign optimization to improve the success rates and generate A/B testing ideas. But also, it might be helpful for the sales team to find companies that advertise on LinkedIn so they can reach out to them. Yeah, and of course, we're competitive research to spy on the best ads in any industry. But if you want to get into the step by step process of how we use it in our agency, we could go through that. AJ Wilcox Yes, I would love to see the step by step. And my background here for asking is because I think with a lot of these tools that are just giving us ideas, it's really difficult to come up with actionable principles, a lot of things you might look at and just say, Oh, that looks pretty, it looks nice. That sounds good. But then when you actually go to take action, there isn't. So walk us through your method for how you use your own tool to research and launch ads, that would be really cool. Sander de Lange Yeah, let's go through three steps that we use for our clients to get a lot of value out of it. The first is the A/B testing an idea generation process. Step one would be like researching the ads. So for example, I opened the tool and search for the campaign subject by keywords. So let's say, email templates, or something like this, or CRM, the tool will generate results of ads containing those keywords. Then I would go in the left sidebar, and sort by most reactions, or most comments to find the most engaging ads, and then I'll start studying their strategy and try to generate two ideas I would want to test. For example, I want to test using lead gen forms versus landing pages or test a different offer or test some type of ad copy. I'd go through all the ads that end up at the top, for example, study their introductory test and generate two ideas I want to test, study the ad creative and the visual, generate and think of two ideas I'd want to test. For example, square image ads that you had been on about the CTR increases that that can get you versus the non square ones. I go to the headline, try to generate two ideas, but also click through to the landing page and see what they do there. And also study the comments that people leave on the ads, because if you click view original ads, you can see sometimes people leaving questions or some type of stuff like this, which can be good intelligence for your campaign. So that's step number one trying to see all of these add elements and generate ideas based on top of that, once you've generated the ideas, I tried to see if you go to the ad creation and launch process, so all of these ideas, I'd rank them based on the potential impact they have, the ease of implementation and decide which ones we can launch and use in our next campaign. I'd see if I can share the ad examples that we found in a tool with the design team. You can click show ad details and easily share them with the team. You can also bookmark the ads to find them back later, easily. Then your design team will create them. And then when you upload the ads, you make sure to give them very clear names inside of LinkedIn so you can easily find back and find the results for A/B test. And you write down in an Excel sheet your hypothesis on which KPI you will judge the test. AJ Wilcox I'm a huge fan of that level of organization. Thank you for sharing that. Okay, so I'm just taking notes. Here we have the A/B testing idea generation. Then once you've generated those ideas, you go and actually start implementing the creative. And then step three was analyzing your results. Sander de Lange Yes, exactly, exactly. So step three would be the optimization and analyze process after you've launched them. So if you gave them a good naming structure, it would be very easy to find the results per ads, and you can then check if the results are statistically significant. And pause the loser, keep the winner alive and try to make a new variant based on the winner. So you can try and beat it. And if you do that, you can go back to the library and see based on the winner if you can find any other ads that might help you with that. AJ Wilcox Beautiful, I absolutely love that. What I like to do is, all of my ads that I launch on a certain day, I'll actually put the date. And whether it's the A or the B version in the ad name. So in the ad platform, I can go and just type the date, and then all the ads I see will just be either an A or B, I can very quickly evaluate. I'm a bit of an Excel geek like I would rather get it out to excel and run it in a pivot table. But if it was simple, like there was only a few of them, that'd be really good to do right within the platform. So I love that recommendation. AJ Wilcox Here's a quick sponsor break, and then we'll dive back into the interview with Sander. Unknown Speaker The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to you be B2Linked.com, the LinkedIn Ads experts. AJ Wilcox If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn Ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use, and can be painfully expensive on the front end. At B2linked, we've cracked the code to maximizing ROI while minimizing costs. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn Ads strategies, customized to your unique needs, and tailored to the way that B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 11 years, we've worked with some of the largest LinkedIn advertisers in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, book a discovery call at B2linked.com/apply. We'd absolutely love to get to work with you. All right, let's jump back into ad search.io. AJ Wilcox I'm curious, and I don't even know if you can share this, but where are you getting the data from on these? How does your software determine which company is important enough to index their ads? Sander de Lange In the beginning, we were looking at companies that have ads with a lot of engagement on them. But there's actually not that many companies that are doing a really great job on this. So we started to expand a little bit to add more ads in the tool so people can find lots of inspiration. And then we try to now adding more ads by companies that are doing a really good job. Based on the likes and the comments and the shares. Yep. AJ Wilcox Do you have any way of estimating how much a company is spending? And part of the competitive research would be looking at a competitor and trying to figure out like, are they spending $5k? Are they spending $300k a month? Can your tool do anything like that? Or do you have a rule of thumb that you might use to estimate how much I'm spending? Sander de Lange Yeah, as of right now, we don't have it yet. But we've definitely been thinking about if we could estimate or create a formula to estimate that that would be great. We do have some other cool ideas that might correspond with this a little bit. But as of right now, we didn't yet figure that one out. AJ Wilcox Do you have any thoughts on how we could use this tool for sales intelligence, I'm imagining if you're trying to sell into a certain company, or trying to sell into an industry, how you might use that to get a foot in the door. Sander de Lange Yeah, for sure, you can use our tool to find clients in specific regions and industries and company sizes. So you would know they are advertising on LinkedIn. You can already see the type of ads they are running. So what a sales team could do is that they could reach out and offer audits to a specific target industry. First of all, generate a list of qualified LinkedIn advertisers in that space. Currently, we have around 60,000 advertisers in the database, so there's probably going to be some qualified prospects in there. Yeah, and reach out to them offer ideas on how they should improve the advertising strategy, and see if you can offer them audit or free consult to develop a sales opportunity for the company. AJ Wilcox Very cool. I love that. What about competitive research? How would you go about using this? Let's say you're launching ads for a company, you want to research their competitors? How would you go about doing that? Sander de Lange That's a good one. Let's say you want to research one of your competitors. One of the things that our tool makes available is that you can actually find the ads that the most engaging ads your competitors are running. So that's one thing our tool can do that you can find on LinkedIn that easily yourself. So for example, if it's a big company, there might be 1000s of ads, they're running at every one time. And you can just go to our tool, type in the company name. Once you click on the company logo, there'll be view all ads by this company that will show you the ads they are running and then you can sort them by reactions like likes or sort them by comments. You can see these ads are the most engaging ones. And maybe also go through the comments that people leave on your competitors ads because that might be really valuable information as well. So based on that, you could see what's really working for them. AJ Wilcox And do you have to do all of this within the tool? Or is there like an export to Excel for us Excel junkies? Sander de Lange That might be a really good feature to add AJ, so you've given us a good idea. We have it on the back end, but maybe we should make the export available. AJ Wilcox Or at least to my account, because I would love to get some good use out of that. Sander de Lange Okay. I'll write that down AJ Wilcox I love getting big data into Excel. So I think the biggest question I think we're all going to have is, What does a subscription cost for those who aren't currently using it? Can you walk us through what pricing is like? Sander de Lange Yeah, sure. Currently, the pricing plans are per quarter or per year. So as of this point, they are $49 US dollars per quarter, or $99 per year. And that would include unlimited searches, unlimited filters, bookmarks, everything. There's no limitations on the plan. So I gotta be honest, here, we're not sure how long this is going to be that way. As of right now, that's the current pricing. AJ Wilcox Perfect. But that does feel really reasonable to me. I do hope everyone here who's listening who thinks this might be interesting, go and get subscribed, make sure you're grandfathered into any rate to before increases in the future. So love that. Are there any questions that you wish I would have asked you anything cool about the tool you want to point out? Or anything coming up on the roadmap that we should know about? Sander de Lange Yeah, I'd like to bounce a few ideas, that'd be great. Well, one of them is that we think we might have discovered a way to create also some insights into the targeting of a specific LinkedIn Ad campaign. So you could see, for example, what type of targeting your competitor might be using. But I'd like to see what would you think of that? Is that something that would be interesting to you? AJ Wilcox Oh, that would be so cool. To me. I mean, that takes your competitive intelligence, text that up to 11. Can you share with us how you'd narrow in on that? Or is that proprietary? Sander de Lange I gotta be a bit careful here. But what the end result would be, you know, LinkedIn recently released that feature where you can see like, okay, your audience, they have these types of skills, these type of job titles, these type of company sizes, all that type of stuff. AJ Wilcox Yeah, the audience insights feature. Sander de Lange The audience insights feature. We would be able to create something like this, but then for other companies, then your own for your competitors, that will be the end result. AJ Wilcox Oh, I love that. Okay, yeah. Sign me up. Whenever that happens. That'd be fantastic. Sander de Lange That's good to know. And maybe maybe we're also thinking of adding a few more ad channels in there, and maybe doing like a monthly curated, best LinkedIn Ads newsletter type of thing, you know, AJ Wilcox Oh, yeah! Because the LinkedIn reps, obviously, our team, when we're working on 50, 60 accounts a month, we always have a whole bevy of account reps. Sometimes we get put on their newsletters. And so I've got 20 emails a month from reps. But a lot of times what they do is they show like the top ads per month in that industry. And so if you had one that was always updated, you'd have to wait for it from a rep or ask your rep for it. That would be really cool. Sander de Lange Yes, yes, yes. Okay, then you've given me a lot of valuable feedback there. AJ Wilcox So I do have a question. That is, it's this is selfish of me, it's very much to our own strategy. But a lot of times, what we'll do is we'll build one ad per campaign, and we'll have a lot of campaigns, which means that if you actually looked at the ads on the company page, they would have very few likes, or very few comments. But if you aggregated them all together, by all the ads that looking at the same, there could be quite a few. Is there any way to combine similar ads in your tool? Or I'm imagining like a live pivot table, but something that's like, oh, this same image, the same ad text is found across 50 different ads? So we've aggregated them for you. Is there anything like that? Sander de Lange Yeah, I think if we would make like the Excel exports available, you would be able to do that. Yeah, if the introductory text or the headline matches, you'd be able to do that in Excel. So that could take the intelligence to a new level. So that's a good idea. AJ Wilcox Very nice. Okay. I like that I can do that. Cool. Well, I think the last question I want to ask you is, both professionally and personally, what are you most excited about? Sander de Lange I'm really excited about all the positive feedback we're getting on the tool. So developing it even further with new features is something that really excites us. And personally, I'm trying to see if I can keep doing this working remotely thing because in my country right now, it's wintertime, and I'd love to get some more sunshine in my life, you know, AJ Wilcox Oh, yeah. But I would imagine in Thailand, like your money goes a long way. And you can pretty much live like a king. Sander de Lange That's true also. So inflation and everything. This is a good move. AJ Wilcox And you're traveling right now with a baby, right? Sander de Lange Yeah. AJ Wilcox How was that? Is that difficult? Sander de Lange You're right the first time we have our daughter is now almost one year old. We've been here like 11 times before but this the first time with a baby and yeah, it's a bit different, but she's loving it here as well. I think it's definitely something we can keep doing. AJ Wilcox Oh, yeah. Where's the rest of your team? Is the rest of your team all within the Netherlands? Sander de Lange Yes, yes, they're based in the Netherlands. But ever since the pandemic, we've been getting used to more remote working, they are welcome to join me here if they want to, but they've got all their lives in the Netherlands. So sometimes they do, sometimes they don't. AJ Wilcox Cool. Curious, you're doing an agency, you're also running SAS software? Is that a split that you want to do forever? Or do you like one over the other? Sander de Lange Yeah, so I like both of them. But as you know, we're trying to get into more recurring business models. And it's just interesting for me to learn all of these models, I can also use that knowledge in the agency life, you know, growing a SAS company. But eventually, I think I'd like to make a decision there, because I noticed that running multiple projects requires two dilutes the focus. In the end, I'd like to make a decision there. AJ Wilcox Okay, I like it. Well, this has been fantastic having you on. Thanks so much for your openness, for giving me so many cool ideas. I am a user of your product, but I just found out about 10 extra ways to go and use it. So I would invite everyone go and join while costs are low. Because this is definitely one of those things I could see charging significantly more for and, and even charging more to agencies versus an in house person who might not use it as much. So lots of good growth possibilities. But you guys all heard it here first get in at $49 a quarter or $99 a year. Sander de Lange Yeah. Thanks, AJ. It's been awesome to be on. AJ Wilcox Thank you, Sander. We'll be excited to hear how things develop in the future. And we may have you back on to give us an update on the tool sometime. Sander de Lange Okay. Cool, AJ. AJ Wilcox I've got the episode resources for you coming right up. So stick around. Unknown Speaker Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away. AJ Wilcox If you go down and look in the show notes below, you'll see a link to AdSearch.io, as well as a link to Sander's LinkedIn profile if you want to go and connect with him or follow him there. If you or anyone you know, is looking to learn more about LinkedIn Ads, look no further than the course that I did with LinkedIn Learning, all about LinkedIn Ads. It's by far the highest quality and the lowest cost course out there. So click on the link in the show notes for that. If this is your first time listening, welcome, and please do hit that subscribe button. But if this is not your first episode, please do rate and review the podcast in whatever podcast player you use. Especially those reviews. They help a lot. And it is the biggest favor that you can do me for enjoying the show. With any questions, suggestions, corrections, and anything like that on the podcast, reach out to us at [email protected] And with that being said, we'll see you back here next week. Cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives!
Advanced Facebook Ads and TikTok Ads with Jon Loomer - Ep 81
54:07Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: Jonloomer.com Jon's TikTok Jon's Podcast Jon Loomer on LinkedIn NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Show Transcript Today we're diving heavily into Facebook Ads. Have I gone crazy? No, but I have Jon Loomer, and that's 1000 times better on this week's episode of the LinkedIn Ads Show. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. Hey there LinkedIn Ads fanatics! Very early days when I was starting B2Linked, I came across Jon Loomer, who was the first Facebook Aads expert that I ever found. He provided the model and inspiration around a lot of what I built B2Linked into. Since then, he's built a veritable empire. Podcast, coaching, courses, joint venture partnerships, and he did it all with a focus on being able to spend time with his family. If it feels like I'm fanboying a little bit, it's definitely because I am. I've talked to a lot of you listeners who are also responsible for Facebook Ads. And so I invited John on the show. Generally, whatever we see as being successful in Facebook Ads eventually makes its way into LinkedIn Ads within about fourish years, so I thought the info he shares could be precious for us. He also shares strategies on how we can combine efforts between LinkedIn and Facebook, as well as shares valuable info for us on TikTok Ads. I'm very pleased to share this interview with you with Jon Loomer. Let's hit it. AJ Wilcox Everyone, I'm so excited to have Jon Loomer here with us. Jon, thanks so much for coming. Jon's a Facebook Ads educator, business owner, and just generally a great guy. Jon, welcome to the show. So excited to have you here. Jon Loomer Oh, man, I'm excited to be here, AJ. Thanks so much. AJ Wilcox Oh, you bet. Let's start right into the questions because I know we're gonna have a lot. First, tell me about your story. Tell me where you came from. business wise, I'm really interested in what you've done with your personal brand, how you decided, like, where and how to focus on Facebook Ads in digital marketing, tell us all that stuff. Jon Loomer There's really a long story and not quite as long story. It's difficult not to be long either way. But I've had this this business for 11 years now. And prior to that I had no experience starting a business. I didn't really even consider myself a marketer, even though the last job I was laid off from was VP of strategic marketing. It's a whole other story of like, I didn't think I was even qualified when I applied, but I worked for the NBA originally back 2005-2008. And that's a whole other episode, we could talk about that probably because there's a lot of fun stories from that. I mean, I oversaw fantasy games, which is the most ridiculous job ever. It was the greatest. But we lived in New Jersey, we had to move from Colorado to New Jersey. So I did make some concessions with my wife, they're like, okay, this will be a temporary thing. Back then you couldn't really work remotely. And I begged and begged and begged. And then that was it. So after that I was laid off a couple of times. Lots of nice things about the NBA job, one of the things was I was exposed to Facebook for the first time in 2007. That's when there are 50 million people on the platform, they were just opening it up to the older folks. So anyone who was in high school and college. We partnered with Facebook to create an app before you could create your own app. And that was a first admin of the official NBA Facebook group before there were pages. That's just how long ago that was. But I fell in love with the platform at the time. As a kid I moved around a lot, so to be able to reconnect with people that I thought I would never see hear from again was like so amazing. But I was also using it from a business perspective very, very early. I got laid off for a second time in 2011. One thing I knew was I couldn't move my family again, because we just went through that whole madness. I was also very spoiled in terms of the jobs I had just had. It's funny because I think everyone should do something that they do not enjoy as well. So I was an insurance underwriter for five years prior to the NBA job, and it provided some really good perspective. If you're an underwriter, I'm sure you love it. It's great. I didn't enjoy it. But that's part of why I got into the whole fantasy game stuff in the first place. And why ended up working for the NBA. Anyway. So the experience I had though, specifically around Facebook was really important. I started using that when I was at American Cancer Society after the NBA job. So once I was laid off, okay, one of the first things I did was I started a website. And again, one of the tools I kind of learned at really American Cancer Society during that time, was to create a WordPress website. And I just started writing because I had nothing better to do besides look for jobs, and I use the website basically as a way to show what I could do with the stuff I knew, hoping it would help me find a job. And every once in a while something would really hit and the topics were kind of broad, but they're all social media-ish. Eventually social media marketing specific and then probably six months after that started, I started to see the Facebook marketing is where I needed to focus. When that's really started to take off consistently, and I started to run ads. Now I had no money because we were just bleeding through cash at this point, bleed through savings because I didn't have a job. I was making a little bit of money from like affiliate marketing, and like ads on the site stuff because I started to get some traffic and that started to improve. But I started to run ads, and even in the very beginning, I was running like $1 a day and back then you can make an impact at $1 a day. And my main goal back then was just like building my audience, too. So as I was running ads, you know, that gave me something to write about. So I started reading more and more about Facebook Ads and start getting more confident. And power editor was the big thing for if you want it to be advanced, but no one knew how it worked. It was really complicated and buggy and confusing, which is perfect if you want to get attention for something. So I started writing about that. And my first course was on Power Editor. And that just exploded since 2012ish that I've focused almost entirely on Facebook advertising. That's been my niche. But again, I no background is starting a business, I didn't even realize I was a marketer until I applied for that VP of strategic marketing job. And it's been quite a journey, because with over 11 years, there's a lot of ups and downs and everything in between. AJ Wilcox But I have to tell you, the first exposure I had to you was I was using Power Editor. I came from the world of Google AdWords, Google Ads now. And I love the Google Ads Editor functionality of using spreadsheets to upload things. Of course, Power Editor was the first thing I jumped into when I got into Facebook. And I went and read a bunch of your stuff. So anyway, thank you many, many years ago for helping me through the Power Editor stuff. It was a cool first focus. So focusing on more of the recent, what are some of the most exciting developments in Facebook Ads? Jon Loomer Well, first of all, it's become a much bigger challenge, right? So you have the good old days when, if you're advertising, you were one of the few. And if you knew what you're doing, you're one of the exclusive group. And you could have a ton of success for not a lot of money. And then more and more advertisers joined in, and it got more and more expensive just to reach people. And I think the biggest change, though, over the last couple of years was iOS 14 opt outs and everything that happened there. And the result of that was more than anything drop in conversion results. So whether or not your advertising actually was less less effective. What's funny is it may have been fine. But Facebook was not connecting conversions to your ads, which clients really want to see, typically. They're not gonna say, oh, yeah, we trust that that was actually working. It's funny because it went from the complaint that Facebook's Ad reporting was inflated to now there's a scramble, like, I gotta find these conversions and get credit for these conversions. Where are they? So that was just a really difficult, you know, year and a half or so. But the biggest developments over the last, you know, month or two months in it, not everybody has these things yet, but Facebook is starting to bring some of these things back. And so one of the biggest things is, and I still contend that opt outs, end of the day probably didn't really impact our results much. I think the biggest impact was losing 28 Day click attribution. So that's where, you know, a lot of people would claim that the reporting was inflated, because it's like, oh, well, why is it I get credit for this. If someone clicked on an ad and then converted 28 days later, right? Sure, you can make the argument that one day click is more relevant than 28 Day click, but the truth is, they still originally clicked on your ad and then ended up converting so getting that credit was good, especially if you had a more expensive product, anything that took more of a commitment. And it's not just that oh yet, that's a nice shirt, I'm gonna buy that losing 28 Day click and going just a seven day click one day view hurt a lot of advertisers and brands because they lost that reporting that is coming back. Now it's not the default reporting. So that's still seven day click one day view. But if you have this, you would cut the go into your columns drop down. And there's an option to compare attribution, which is another thing that went away since the iOS and then came back, which is really important for other reasons too. You can then add columns to your report to break down your conversions that are within one day view, one day click, seven day click, and now on 28 day click. It's really interesting because even though your default reporting may show you've got 20 conversions, if you add those columns, you may see another three or five conversions to happen outside of that seven day click attribution window. And that's really helpful with showing Yes, I made an impact that completely changed the perspective of your advertising. Those two things that compare attribution, 28 day click attribution being available, and also the ability to break down conversions by things like placement, and geography was something that went away with iOS. That's coming back as well. AJ Wilcox Wow. So what do you think the overall impact from the iOS 14 update is going to be for Facebook? It sounds like they had to get rid of some things. And then now they're bringing them back. Do you see we just have less data? Is it coming back in full force? Jon Loomer I only have theories on this, because I haven't heard anything official from Facebook. But it seems to me first of all, they got rid of those things out of abundance of caution. Yeah. Because because they were caught flat footed. This is one of the few times they were not in control, they were reacting to something that Apple was forcing them to do. And I don't think they knew what the full impact of it would be. Because reality is like looking back, I don't really understand why they got rid of those things. Let's just say that any of the iOS opt out conversion data, if that became less reliable, fine. But not all conversions happen on an iOS device, and maybe the people opted in. So the point is, like, they threw away all this stuff, just because of iOS. Because yeah, I get it that if you opt out of tracking, anything beyond seven day click is probably not reliable for those people, right. So we throw away all those conversions that came from Android device, that came from desktop, you know, like, that just doesn't even make sense. So even if that's incomplete data now, I think that's data that advertisers would be very happy to have it back. So yeah, I think they probably overreacted. I don't know the full background of why did it. But I know that things like modeling improved, because originally, when the changes were made, it was just seven day click attribution, or seven day click optimization, by default, they got rid of even the view through, which was big. And then eventually even they said, the modeling improves, they change the seven day click one day view, My bet is part of this just has to do with the modeling improving, that they brought it back, because the question has to be asked, right? It's like, the issues facing advertisers, for the future aren't just about iOS. It's about you know, browsers, it's about other devices. It's about any of these companies deciding we're going to prevent you from tracking going forward, they could decide to do that. So why would Facebook put in the effort of bringing these things back, unless they were confident that they'd be able to continue to go that direction? So my bet is because of the modeling, or whatever it is, they've got to make that data reliable. We're heading in that direction. And maybe this is just a guess no one's ever said this. But maybe 28 Day click one day view optimization is coming back. I mean, it would only make sense if they've got that data, and they're gonna show it to us, right? I think that would be pretty awesome. AJ Wilcox When they've had enough time now to check their models, they can check their models against reality and fine tune them. I think, once they have high confidence, they bring them back, and then adjust the optimizations for them. That makes perfect sense. Jon Loomer Right. So it's getting better, it's getting better. AJ Wilcox What about modelled conversions?Does Facebook do this? I know Google did eight years ago or something where they had the standard conversions column be one that was based off of models, and it wasn't the actual conversions that occurred. People had a little uproar about that, then I think it's still available. But I've been honestly, I've been out of Google Ads for a long time. Does Facebook have that same sort of thing? Like, do they have a modeled conversion? Do they try to push it on advertisers? Or is it very much like it does the conversion pixel and conversion API kind of rule there? Jon Loomer The data includes model conversions. So there's not broken out, there's indication when metrics are in exact, based on modeling based on, you know, having other factors contributing. But beyond that, I think the closest that that Facebook attribution tool that used to allow for different modeling and different windows, they got rid of that. Again, went away with all the iOS stuff, I assume, because became less confident in that type of data. But I don't recall there ever really been an uproar over that maybe we were about to create that AJ. AJ Wilcox And I know LinkedIn has talked about modeling conversion data. If their conversion data becomes less accurate. I would be personally offended if I ever reported to a client Oh, you got seven conversions and then they looked in there CRM and said we only see three here, like, what are you talking about? I look like a liar, like model of conversions is feels like an affront to me it feels dishonest to report to a client. Jon Loomer Understood. Just generally, that's a battle for advertisers overall like getting data to match up. And oftentimes it's a misunderstanding of the data, or they've set up the pixel wrong or something. I don't think that typically the issue is actually with modelled data that it's off. We could go down a whole rabbit hole on this, but like, for example, you could have a results column for conversions, right. And you're optimizing for conversion promoting the sale of a specific product. Facebook reports 200 conversions, you're showing 100 sales of that product. The reality is those conversions include other conversions too that happen while they're on your site during that time. And if you hover over there, you can actually see the breakdown of all those conversions. But things like that create confusion. It goes years back that why does this not match up to Google Analytics? And the reality is Facebook has data too that Google Analytics does not, like views through especially like Google is never going to get the views through stuff. Obviously, if Facebook says you've got 10 purchases, and on the back end, you know that you've only sold eight. And you're not talking about oh, what has came from Facebook or not? Because that's a whole other story, too, is like you can't rely on data that says referred from Facebook. But if you know, eight total sales compared to 10, report it, that's a problem. Usually, though, where I start with that is less blaming it on Facebook and did we set this up? I'd ook at that first? AJ Wilcox Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. All right, well spend some time there. But boy, I just don't like the idea of modeled conversions. Like, show me exactly what I actually had don't predict what I should have had given. Obviously, the majority of our listeners are in B2B. I'm really curious, like, what are some of the most effective things in B2B advertising on Facebook, especially now, Jon Loomer It really depends on that service that you're offering. But more than anything, whether it's advertising or not, video. You know, having some sort of video strategy to raise awareness for your brand, raise authority, whatever it is that you need to build for that B2B relationship, depending on what kind of product you have for them. We can't just rely on the links these days, and then clicking on those links and go into your website. And this has been a big adjustment for me too, because for the longest time, I am a data guy. I'm a stats guy. And like, I know that business happens on my website, and my website, my email list are central to everything working. So I've long contended that, like, I can promote blog posts, that's fine, right? I can track that goes to my website, even though that doesn't sell anything I can then see okay, what do people do on my website, once they've been referred on blog posts, the problem becomes like getting marketers, I think this is definitely the case for B2B too. To using video is like you don't always have something to sell, you shouldn't always be selling something with video. And you shouldn't always have a link to go to your website. And that sounds crazy. And I know, to some old school marketers, because I was that guy, probably just a few months ago said, Why would you do that? First of all, it's playing the game. I've never been big on playing the game. But I haven't played the game and so long and my business suffered from it. So fewer and fewer people were seeing in a news feed because I was not using video. Now suddenly, I'm using video. And once you know it, everybody, I'm getting so many comments every day. Jon, I haven't seen you in years. Where have you been? You know, so video with the right frame of mind when you create these like creating video for value, to provide value and be seen as someone you should go to or a brand you should go to for assistance, because that's often the B2B relationship, right? Where you may not need them at that moment. But they're seen as an authority, and you trust them and you consume their content once you need them, you will go to them. And that's kind of the importance of video. AJ Wilcox So what do you think the reason for this is? Do you feel like Facebook has gone all in, like doubling down on promoting the video inventory? Or do you feel like users consume it more? And so Facebook feeds it more to their users? What do you see driving this trend? Jon Loomer This has long been the question on Facebook, because we can go back to other formats as well. Like when we talked about the algorithm and you know what benefits and what doesn't? Is it Facebook, favoring a certain format because people are engaging with it more, or people engaging with it more because the algorithm is favoring it, showing them that content? I think it's a combination of those things. But obviously, it's it'd be foolish to push video if people didn't want to see video. You know, the funny thing, I'm going to go on a tangent here just for a second. Remember the days when an auto play video came out? And the uproar, like, how do I turn this off? This is gonna be a huge failure. What is Facebook doing? That's pretty much every app right now is autoplay video. So point being that was pushed, was it because Facebook knew it would be successful? Because man, there was a lot of negative pushback to that. My bet is though they saw regardless of what people said, how they consumed it, that's often like as a marketer, I think that's an important lesson, generally. I don't listen to polls, when they ask what apps do you use the most? Facebook or not? And then oh, look, that this group of people is no longer using Facebook, they're abandoning and Facebook. And then you look at data and it shows something completely different. So anyway, I think this is kind of an example of that. But anyway, I do think there's something to video being so incredibly engaging. I mean, like Facebook is also reacting to TikTok, obviously. Instagram, they kind of went that direction, first with Instagram, trying to mimic TikTok. And now we're carrying that those rules over to Facebook as well, I can tell you firsthand, if you're just promoting links, if you're just sharing links, you're not gonna get the distribution that other companies other brands get from using video. And again, I understand you want to drive traffic to your websites or like, if that's the only metric you're looking at is traffic, then you might not see the benefit of this. But if you're playing the long game on this, if you want to create a connection with your potential customer, Video is just as the way to go right now. AJ Wilcox Oh, I love this. I've seen something similar on LinkedIn, where if you would have asked me a year ago about LinkedIn's, video ads, I would have told you avoid them, they are on average, about 20% more expensive per click than single image ads. Just don't do it, like people don't go to LinkedIn to be entertained, so they're not gonna stick around for your video. But in just the last six months, we've seen some video ads now starting to outperform a single image. And that doesn't tell me that LinkedIn changed their algorithm or anything like that. It tells me that user behavior is changing. People are actually coming back to LinkedIn to spend time and consume rather than just come because they had a connection request, check it, answer a message or two. Jon Loomer Yeah, and I think it's challenging. And it's not that you can't drive traffic with video. It's just always gonna be a secondary thing, especially at TikTok, I mean, anyone who's used TikTok clicks to a website from the TiKTok app, or it's such a roundabout thing. Like if you put a link in there, in like comments or anything, it's not even clickable. So they always say, oh, click the link in my profile kind of thing. That's like, the most roundabout way, because they want to keep you on the app. So like, as marketers, I understand that that's like, you have this block that says, this is wrong? Why would we want to do that? But I have some stories here. So I've been doing this for a couple of months. And beyond just having people say, oh, John, I haven't seen you my newsfeed forever, you helped me back in 2014, which makes me feel old. But at the same time, beyond seeing that a lot, all of a sudden, I had one on ones, two one on ones on Monday and Tuesday, but all four of them told me that they were there, because they started seeing my videos. And there are people who signed up for my membership, same thing, and I started telling the stories, like, yes, I am here because of those videos. I was not able to connect that in any way, with metrics, anything to show me that that was the truth. My traffic's not even like, crazy, like anything spiked or anything because of this. It's just because of that connection, that emotional connection you can create. But these people are human, I trust this person. It's not even like there's a specific video or anything that you can point to. It's like, it's the collection of the effort that led to it. And as you can see, it's kind of changed my business. And I just want to screen it so people understand it. AJ Wilcox And that's so funny for data guys like you and I because if you look in your analytics platforms, you're not going to see this. And so totally difficult to say because I think we expect sequence, we expect a funnel to show us that something's working. And in your case, like you've shared with us very specifically like the end of the funnel grew, and you see nothing in between to tell you that it's working. That's pretty crazy. Jon Loomer And it has to be the word of mouth. It has to be the people who tell me that if they don't tell me that, I'm just guessing. I have no idea if that actually contributed. So that's the hard part about what we do. AJ Wilcox Yeah, it's true. What we started doing we started asking in a free form field in Our forms when people apply, how did you hear about us? And of course, we're capturing UTM parameters. So we know what platform sent them. But it's really interesting to compare when someone says, Oh, I saw you on YouTube, but their link came from a LinkedIn Ad. And we're like, going, okay, like we're seeing where other platforms are contributing kind of cool. Alright, so I'm imagining the majority of our listeners there are responsible for LinkedIn, obviously, like, why would you listen to LinkedIn Ads Show if you weren't responsible for LinkedIn, but you're probably also responsible for Facebook as well? What would you suggest to advertisers who are responsible for both LinkedIn and Facebook? How do you make the platforms be synergistic, add to each other, work together in harmony? Like, do you have any tips, tricks, strategies? Jon Loomer I think in all cases, every platform has strength. And every platform has its weakness. I think the biggest weakness for Facebook, especially B2B is sorting out your targeting audience. Particularly if you're not optimizing for a purchase or conversion at the time, if you're like, if you're trying to build awareness about your brand, you're going to be reaching all kinds of people in every field whatsoever, like, you could try using their interest targeting and whatnot, especially if you're optimizing for something like engagement, video views, traffic, anything like that, it's usually a mess. Whereas LinkedIn, you can use that specifically to reach people, especially in the B2B situation, who are there for business. Right? So whether it's by their job title or their industry, I think I would consider and look, I'm not a big LinkedIn Ads guy, but I will consider you can correct me on this, that from an awareness perspective, reaching the right people has to be much easier on LinkedIn, than on Facebook for that B2B situation. Right. And then if you're able to drive them to your website at some point, with something, that's where Facebook becomes a little bit better. Piggybacking off of LinkedIn, like off using the comparison with with Google Ads, right? For whatever reason, Facebook's never come up with a reliable search ad, they've experimented a couple of times with different types of search ads. But if you are a business that is only needed when someone needs you, alright, so I don't know why I was using the plumber, but like a plumber. You're not going to follow a plumber on social media, right? And just blanketly targeting everybody. I mean, you can build your brand, but you're probably spent a ton of money just telling people, you're a plumber. So those types of ads on Facebook are difficult. Whereas on Google, you can attract people who are looking for that solution. And then on Facebook, you can remarket to those people who were driven by the Google Ad. So Facebook is ideal, first of all, for Ecom, I would say. So if you're selling product, and you've got a category of product that Facebook knows well, you can optimize for that and do great going broad what not, you don't even really need to actually just put out a blog post on it. That's really where Facebook thrives. And the remarketing, good as well. But the weaknesses in Facebook would be, especially in a B2B situation, attracting the right people at the surface level, top of the funnel, but also the whole reach people before they need you situation. AJ Wilcox I love that. We talked about in our news section a couple episodes ago about how Facebook released the newer B2B targeting and there's five segments. It's interesting, because when I'm used to going into LinkedIn and typing, here are the job titles I want to target, for instance, Facebook used to offer that then took it away. Now we have like, oh, here's this one segment that is we think this is business decision. This is everyone probably manager and above whose job is anything from accounting to sales? It's kind of interesting that they would put it into buckets. Do you see Facebook doing much more? Is this just a foray into it? And then they'll give us more specific targeting later? Jon Loomer It's funny, you mentioned that example. Because it's one of those things was like, oh, yeah, they did this. And I completely forgot. I don't see it as being very valuable. And maybe it is valuable to some of the people who have used it, I've seen value in it. But it's also kind of going against the direction Facebook's heading with targeting. And that direction is like, just go broad. And let the algorithm work. So unless you have something specific, like I need to reach people with this certain job title, a lot of that kind of broad business decision maker stuff, I don't know how effective that's really going to be. Yeah, if someone's had crazy success with it, feel free to correct me on that. AJ Wilcox Cool. Well, I'm excited to try it out. We're certainly exploring anything. I love LinkedIn Ads, but not because the platform is something magic. It's because of access to the right audience. So If there's any other platform out there, that's going to give me control over B2B. I'm going to adopt it, I'm going to accept it. AJ Wilcox So here's a quick sponsor break, and then we'll dive into advanced Facebook Ads strategy, as well as the new hotness of TikTok. The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to you by B2Linked.com, the LinkedIn Ads experts. AJ Wilcox If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn Ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use, and can be painfully expensive on the front end. At B2Linked, we've cracked the code to maximizing ROI, while minimizing costs. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn Ad strategies, customized to your unique needs, and tailored to the way B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 11 years, we've worked with some of the largest LinkedIn advertisers in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, book a discovery call today at B2Linked.com/apply. We'd absolutely love the chance to get to work with you. All right, let's jump back into the interview with Jon Loomer. AJ Wilcox Alright, so I've got to ask, are there any no brainer things that we should be doing with Facebook Ads? Obviously, the platform changes a lot and is constantly adding new stuff. Is there anything no brainer that we might have missed? Jon Loomer I feel like we've talked about the latest developments. For me like the biggest thing, if you've got 28 Day click, you have to dig in search and find it and uncover it. And that's a no brainer, like, show me that more conversions happen, that's really important. The other thing is, if you're running an ad for purchases, I strongly advise that you experiment with going completely broad. Which sounds crazy, I am someone who for years, I just loved a micro targeting. Like target the most relevant people, it could be the smallest audiences, people are most engaged with my stuff. And it's not that you shouldn't ever do that anymore. But I think what we've seen is Facebook's really, really good when it comes to sales. We kind of mentioned that before the algorithm doing things in real time that you can't, or it takes too long to do, to figure it out, and you're going to waste money. So not even bothering with lookalike audiences and interests just going completely broad for Ecom. And when you're when you're selling a product, beyond that, like Facebook ads, I think any advertising platform is so much of an experimental thing, right? I have never had to tell you always do this, this is one thing, because it's it always works. Should you use broad targeting? Should you use narrow? Should you use these certain optimizations? It all depends. So many factors impact the success or lack thereof of your ads. The fact that I'm even telling you consider broad targeting is because I've eventually gotten over my objections to it. Unless you try things you'll never know what actually does, it doesn't work. So I would experiment like crazy if you can. AJ Wilcox I'm with you. I think that would be really uncomfortable for me if LinkedIn ever said just go all broad, we'll find your right people be. It would be really hard for me to trust. I would also wonder like, what is the learning period? Like how long do I give a test before I give up and go? Nope, it had its chance. I mean, I pulled my budget back? Jon Loomer Well, so a couple things with the concept of broad targeting, and then the learning, right? So the truth is that no matter what we do right now, that's the direction Facebook's going. Because if you target an interest, a group of interests, and you're optimizing for any type of conversion, advantage detailed targeting is automatically turned on. That's their expansion product for detailed targeting. So that gives Facebook the ability to go as broad as they want to go beyond what you said you wanted to target to get you the results that they think they can get you. So same thing with look alike audiences, advantage look alike audiences, which is look like expansion, is automatically on for conversions. So if you say, oh, I only target this 1%, they can go to 10% if they want to get you more conversions. So I don't know if everybody knows that. That's the direction it's going anyway. But in terms of the learning period, that's also where we should be careful because that first seven days is Facebook's learning phase. And that's when you'll even see in that delivery column that learning your results are going to be less stable during that time. Additionally, I would be wary of making any changes or drastic changes like stopping anything based on the most recent three days, especially if you've got a lot of people in your audience who are on iOS devices, because there can be a delay in some of that reporting for privacy reasons. So you can't connect the dots or Facebook can't, I don't even know who abuses this so why this is necessary? That reporting can be delayed, which is also why we go back and look at reporting, like, wow, that went up, how'd that change, it's because of that delayed reporting. So don't make any drastic decisions within the most recent three days. But also, if you can let it get through the learning phase. So that's where the algorithm is learning about what works and what doesn't work and trying to get you the best results, the most efficient results. Once you get through the learning phase, that's pretty much when, okay, this is the best rate you're gonna get probably it might fluctuate a little bit over time. But if it's still not working, once you get through the learning phase, yeah, shut it off. AJ Wilcox Okay. So seven day learning phase, if you turn something on, like ultra broad targeting, I have seen some ads reach saturation, before seven days. What do you do about that? Like, if you want to make sure you have seven days, but your ads are reaching high frequency in that time, which would normally tell me to trigger a refresh? How do you balance that? Jon Loomer So it's all about what is my cost per desired action? Right? So audience saturation is something that I don't think most people even realize how to access that data. So you'd select your ad set and on the right hand, part of ads manager, there's an icon, it's like a magnifying glass, the Inspect tool. You click on that, and within there, there's a bunch of charts and graphs, and one of them is for audience saturation. And there are four different metrics related to audience saturation. So I'm going to remember all unfortunately. One is frequency, one is reach, one of them is first time impression ratio. And there's one more. So basically, you can compare it to your cost per conversion. So essentially, yeah, you might see that the frequency is going up, the reach is flattening out. The first time impression ratio went from up top to way down at the bottom. You might see all those things. But if that is not coinciding with an increase in cost per conversion, then who cares? Right? If those two things are connected, that's when you make that decision. So that's why you know, when people often ask, you know, what's that saturation rate or that frequency when you shut it off? That misses the point, if you're getting good results? Who cares what that is? AJ Wilcox Yeah. And it's at the point that you see those results stop that you go and measure that up with against saturation. That makes perfect sense. So since Facebook is kind of old news, Now, tell me what you think might be the most interesting right now in the world of digital marketing? Jon Loomer Oh, well, I'm suddenly dipping into TikTok. So not just from a organic point of view, but I'm using it for advertising as well. So if you've run any Facebook ads before, the first thing you'll notice if you've ever jumped into Tiktok Ads is it looks exactly like Facebook Ads. I haven't heard this specifically mentioned, but I'd be shocked if it's not true that TikTok's engineering team is made up of former Facebook engineers. I'm sure they are. Yeah, because not only is it just set up the same, it's called TikTok Ads manager. Like any of the terminology you're used to is all used there. Custom audiences and look alike audiences and breakdowns and they just came out with an audience Insights tool that is just like the old Facebook audience insights tool, which was really valuable before they scrapped it because of privacy concerns. But everything just works the same. Now, obviously, the platform and the format's different. So your results and kind of your overall strategy could be different. But that's the biggest thing for me is like jumping into that it kind of opened up a new world of wow, I feel really comfortable here. Our marketing world is that's just scratching the surface of like, the kind of as we're talking, you need to get involved in short form video in some way. If you're not comfortable with TikTok, that's fine. The nice thing and really the primary reason I got into TikTok, even though I like laughed about it in a joke probably three months ago, was if it was a unique format that you couldn't apply anywhere else, I'd probably never would have gotten into it. But you could take that and take that same file. Like you probably don't want to take the TikTok version with a TikTok watermark. I mean, I do all my recording and editing off of TikTok, which may or may not be the wrong way to go. But by doing that I can upload to TikTokand add TikTok music. Again, upload two reels and add reels music on Facebook and Instagram. I can upload to YouTube shorts and then you've probably know this, I've created a square version, I just throw it on a square Canvas for LinkedIn. And so the benefit of that is like, you know, even if your TikTok efforts are flat or just not leading to huge results, it's like you've got all these other platforms you can apply that to. And this isn't just like a matter of cross posting, because the way I kind of manage each of those is different. Like ever seen any of my LinkedIn videos, like I provide a lot of long form thoughts, in addition to the video that I wouldn't provide those other places. It's led to all these people on Facebook and Instagram ike I didn't really didn't use Instagram before doing this. I use it as a placement to reach people with my Facebook Ads. And that was about it. It took me a long time to even get into sharing photos. Like, I just didn't even want to do that. And again, that kind of goes back to the whole my objections to photo sharing, I need to drive people to my website, which is why I wouldn't even use Instagram. But anyway, applying that to these different platforms. And then all of a sudden, you can get that aggregate lift, which I think I'm seeing right now. I mean, that's the biggest change right now in marketing is, if you're not getting involved in this, I worry for you. I think it's important. AJ Wilcox That's good advice. By the way, LinkedIn now accepts a native square video for their posts. So you may use the same canvases you're already using for others. Jon Loomer So if I use the nine by 16, what will happen? AJ Wilcox Is it vertical? Jon Loomer So I'm using the vertical, I use that for TikTok and reels and shorts. I throw it on a square canvas, I don't have to change the video in any way and I don't have to crop anything out or anything. So then I have my colors or whatever in the background and the sides. So then it's square. I don't think that uploading the tall works on LinkedIn does it? AJ Wilcox So it does now in the ad platform, I just don't know about organically. Okay. All right. What's interesting is they tell us that if we upload vertical video, it will serve but it will only serve to mobile devices. But that's one of the only controls we have for what devices LinkedIn Ads show up on. I sure would like it the other way around, I'd love to be able to say this format only shows on desktop, but whatever. Yeah, I don't know about organic. We've had some questions about that and I haven't had a chance to test it out. Maybe test it out and let us know, Jon Loomer When I started doing this was square is the ideal on LinkedIn for organic, which is why I did it. And I tried to do in a way that's not going to create a bunch of extra work by just okay, I've got this created video with all the captioning on it, just throw it on a square canvas. And it looks I think, fine. As opposed to trying to recreate the square dimensions, AJ Wilcox We do find over and over that square outperforms every other format for both image and video. So yeah, cool. I think you're on the right path. What are some of the things that marketers should be using TikTok for? Jon Loomer First of all, in your brand, right, so and what your goals are, at minimum, t's just about creating connection with a potential customer, right. So if you have a service, where you are an expert is supposed to be an expert in where they can hire you to do something, you should be mostly about educating them on that thing. And I know for years, the argument against doing something like that was like, oh, but then they'll just do it themselves. I think it's the complete opposite of that, like, yes, they might take bits and pieces of that. But eventually, they need an expert. And because you establish that expertise over and over and over and over again, they'll go to you when they need that help to hire you or recommend you or whatever it be. So I think if you're a service, just sharing your expertise on a regular basis, no strings attached. Like, again, I know this is an obstacle for a lot of brands of constantly pushing selling this this product product product, I would avoid that as much as you can, or you still get mostly ignored. So there's that. But you can also do things like you know, product specific how people use your product. If you're like more of a like a retail, or then it's less about establishing any kind of expertise, it could be more lifestyle, how people are using it, just fun, entertaining videos related to your product. There's just a lot of different angles you can take. The ultimate bottom line though, is you can't be 100% buy my stuff. It's gonna stand out in a bad way. You gotta be thinking, first of all, how do I grab their attention? How do I provide value? How do I you know, make their thumb stop? That's the goal. AJ Wilcox Oh, that's perfect.What about for B2B? Have you found anyone who's done a good job in B2B on TikTok? Any tips for us who are in B2B? Jon Loomer So the stuff I've been following, unfortunately, I can't even think of names. They're just like faces that show up in that tic tac feed. But a lot of that stuff that I follow is B2B. It's people who are experts in a field and I apply a lot of what I learned there to what I do, it's just a lot of educating. So this is how you do something in this field, and this my expertise, and do it quickly. Right. That's the other difficult adjustment for me and I'm sure a lot of old school marketers is like, get to the freaking point, fast. So not only get their attention, but also get to the point fast, they're ready to move that next video. So you've got to provide some value, solve a problem. So think about what are the problems that your target audience have focused on something very specific, wrap that up in a minute or less, I mean, it could be 10 seconds. There could be something so specific that you can get out in 10 seconds. And man, I wish I could give you some specific names. There's several of them who are just really good at the how to. So it's list the top three things you should be doing blah, blah, blah, or why this one thing is so important. It's those types of things. But I encourage anyone who's on TikTok or reels, start following people based on these keywords, engage with the stuff that you like, oh, that's really useful, follow them. And you will start seeing your feed catered to that. There's this there for you section of TikTok, for example, we're constantly seeing more B2B type of content there that I find really useful and t's based on my own engagement. AJ Wilcox Very cool, great tips. Thanks for sharing that. What about you, either professionally, or personally? Or both? What are you most excited about right now? Jon Loomer Man, I tell you, this is a different part of my life. So personally, I have three sons, my business I built around being able to spend as much time with them as possible. And we shared a common love for baseball. So everything I've done really over the first 10, 11 years is about making sure, first of all that I had a business I had an income, I also had freedom of time to dedicate to coaching. Well, my two oldest boys are now in college. It's crazy. And my youngest is now in high school. So my coaching days are over, which is probably good timing. Because after a while, when you take that approach of like, I just want to be as free as possible and work less in this industry, you start getting left behind and that it was I think my business needed a reboot. So I'm spending way more time on my business right now. Because I have more free time that used to be taken up with coaching, building the business. And I think that's really why I'm doing all this video right now. I'm so energized in that. I said no to all podcast guest invitations for years. Because that's just one more thing that takes up my time that I didn't have time for. So it's these kinds of things like, you know, building these relationships and having these experiences I'm really excited about. AJ Wilcox I'm so grateful that you accepted this one. This is awesome. Like I will have mentioned in the intro, you've been a huge inspiration to me so thanks so much for coming on. Jon Loomer Thanks so much. AJ Wilcox I'm curious because you've dedicated so much time to coaching in baseball. Yeah, you've got some sons in college. Do you have any future MLB players? Or are they on scholarship? Or have they kind of left it behind? Jon Loomer No. So I feel really lucky for this. I mean, first of all, my oldest, he'll agree with this, the least skilled of the three. He played through varsity, which is no easy feat. 2500 kids in the school to play all the way through senior year. But he had a specific goal, like he's, he's a senior at Texas Tech right now. He's gonna go to med school next year. He's going to be an orthopedic surgeon is what he's planning on. And then my middle son, it's funny because like, he's one we're like, we kind of wanted him to keep playing. Because he's got that ability. I'm not gonna go MLB be or anything. But he's got that ability to play. But actually, it's probably a good thing that he's decided that's it, I'm ready to focus on school. Because that's what they are worried about with these kids, like in this environment that I'm in with baseball, it's so crazy, and so much pressure. It's constantly about getting to that next level. Like when you have that focus, are they prepared for when that's not an option anymore? Like, what are you going to do? And so he's actually planning on doing something in sports, he's looking to go into sports journalism, and he's super busy and active in college and I'm really proud of them. And our youngest son not gonna make any predictions on him. He's still living the dream play baseball in high school, but I think just as a parent, it's just a reminder that there's always something after and to make sure they're ready for that. That baseball sports really, unless, maybe not even unless, you can't make it the number one priority because eventually you're not going to have it. So yeah, that's one of those tough parenting lessons. AJ Wilcox Well, that is nice, because you see Olympians who go and get a gold medal and retire from their sport, and then they have a crash. They have a hard time figuring out what do I do with my life? I'm really glad that the sport takes them so far, but then they're willing to become well rounded and jump into school. I think that's a nod to your parenting that you're probably doing things right. Jon Loomer Really thinking largely my wife, Lisa, too. She's so deeply involved in your school and on top of what are you doing? Are you doing your homework? And whatnot, it's a lot of credit to her. AJ Wilcox Oh, it's fantastic. Shout out to Lisa. Well, John, anything else you want to share with us about anything you're working on? Or anything you feel like it'd be helpful to us as LinkedIn marketers? Jon Loomer No, I think just to stick with a theme, you know, be re to constantly evolve. And whether this is about LinkedIn marketing, or about your brand and your business. I think I have a unique perspective of having been in this was my business for 11 years and was at a very high point. And then I stopped evolving, thinking I could just keep going with these same approaches forever. It'll always work for me. And you have to understand that the way people consume the way people buy, the needs people have, how you do things on what platforms and what for, like, all those things have to constantly be evaluated. There is no new universal, this is always going to work. So be open to change, I think is my best advice for any marketer or any business owner. AJ Wilcox That's fantastic advice. Jonn, thanks again for accepting the invitation to come on here, sharing all this value. Where do you want people to follow you, find you, any of that? Jon Loomer I guess that depends on where you consume content, but jonloomer.com is my home base. So if you still use websites, go there. Otherwise, you can easily find me on TikTok at Jon Loomer Instagram at Jon Loomer. Listen to a podcast now. I mean, The Podcast with Jon Loomer as well. Actually a lot of those episodes these days are repurposed TikTok videos. They're nice, short, quick and to the point. Oh, that's cool. We could have a whole other topic about that too sometime! AJ Wilcox We can and we and we probably awesome. Thanks so much, John. Jon Loomer Awesome. Thanks so much, AJ. AJ Wilcox All right, I've got the episode resources for you coming right up, so stick around. Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away. AJ Wilcox If you look down in the shownotes, you'll see links to jonloomer.com, his TikTok, his podcast, and the link to follow him on LinkedIn. So definitely check those out. Also, if you or anyone else is looking to learn more about LinkedIn Ads, check out the link in the show notes for the course that I did on LinkedIn Learning all about LinkedIn Ads. It's by far the highest quality and the lowest cost course out there. If this is your first time listening, welcome, we're excited to have you here. Hit that subscribe button. We'd absolutely love to have you around next episode. But if this is not your first time listening, a terrific zero cost way that you can support us is to look down, hit the rate and leave us a review in whatever podcast player you listen on. You probably hear this from a lot of podcasters, but it really makes a big difference to leave us reviews. So please help us get the word out. Also with any questions, suggestions, feedback, corrections, anything you want to give us around the show, email us at [email protected] And with that being said, we'll see you back here next week. Cheering you on in your LinkedIn ads initiatives.
Should Startups Invest in LinkedIn Ads? - Ep 80
14:14Show Resources Here were the resources we covered in the episode: Low Budget Strategies Episode Offers Episode Who Should and Shouldn't Advertise on LinkedIn Episode NEW LinkedIn Learning course about LinkedIn Ads by AJ Wilcox Youtube Channel Contact us at [email protected] with ideas for what you'd like AJ to cover. A great no-cost way to support us: Rate/Review! Show Transcript Should small businesses run LinkedIn Ads? We're digging into why or why not on this week's episode of the LinkedIn Ads Show. Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here's your host, AJ Wilcox. Hey there, LinkedIn Ads fanatics! We all know that LinkedIn Ads are expensive. So should small businesses even invest in them? It's not a straightforward question. So let's discuss what the requirements are for success on LinkedIn Ads, as well as the limitations that are present for small businesses, especially compared to large ones. If you remember all the way back to Episode One, we talked quite a bit about who should and shouldn't invest in LinkedIn Ads. We mentioned how the targeting is exquisite. Because when you need the targeting that LinkedIn has, there just is no substitute out there. But boy, do we pay dearly for that targeting. The cost per click, and the cost per impression on LinkedIn ads are quite high compared to the other platforms. So because the costs are high, you need to make sure that your company has a large enough lifetime value when you close a deal so that you can still realize a return on your investment. So for instance, if you have a really low cost product, say it's a SAS software, that you charge, maybe $50 or $100 per month, just the fact that your lifetime value is lower, is probably not going to allow you to get a return on your investment unless you have incredible customer retention. So I tell people, if you have a lifetime value of $10,000, or $15,000, or even higher, it's pretty much a no brainer to run LinkedIn Ads. But also because those costs per click and per impression are high. That also means that you need a higher budget for advertising. Higher budgets mean that you can get more clicks and more leads. And more volume is usually good for growth. Higher budgets also mean that you can learn faster from your tests and your experiments. So assuming you have the budget and the lifetime value, there are three things that are requirements for advertising on a social platform. I call this acronym amo, A-M-O, and it stands for your audience, your message and your offer. The audience is who you're targeting. And this is why we pay a premium to LinkedIn is this access to a very specific audience, the M you for your message, this is what your customer sees. And this is a combination of the ad copy you choose and the visuals, either imagery or video. Even the ad format that you choose. That's all part of the message. And then the O this is by far the most important part. This is what are you offering your prospect in exchange for their attention? Offers can be anything from come read this blog post to buy something now or everything in between? And this is funny, I just realized that the requirements for running LinkedIn Ads, spells blammo budget, lifetime value, audience message and offer. All right, so if you need help remembering this blammo, it's like one of those old 60s Batman blurbs that pops up when someone gets hit in the face - blammo! So when I get the question about whether small businesses should be advertising on LinkedIn, I think the inherent question inside of that is really should small budgets be spending on LinkedIn? I think there's this misconception that a small business automatically has a small budget, which is certainly not the case. We've worked with many clients who are very small companies with very large budgets. But I will admit, oftentimes these go together, we actually have a whole episode, it was back to Episode 14, all about how to advertise on really insanely small budgets. So go listen to that one if you haven't already. But what you should realize on LinkedIn is that with a smaller budget, you're either gonna have to sacrifice volume of your campaign by having a small budget, or you might sacrifice being able to segment your audiences or reach as many people from the audience that you want. So this could make you lose out on some audience insights, but it's definitely still doable. You'll also sacrifice speed, speed to learning. So if you're running an experiment to find out, is my audience going to care about this new topic or this new offer? The more budget you have, the faster you're going to learn. Another misconception is that small businesses automatically have small lifetime values. What I want you to understand is the size of the company doesn't dictate the stuff that really matters. A small company could have good budget, good offers and a high lifetime value. So as you're asking yourself this question, be specific about what elements of a small business make you worried about running LinkedIn Ads? Okay, here's a quick sponsor break, and then we'll dive into the specific challenges as well as the recommendations for small businesses advertising on LinkedIn. The LinkedIn Ads Show is proudly brought to by B2Linked.com, the LinkedIn Ads experts 5:07 If you're a B2B company and care about getting more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, then chances are LinkedIn Ads are for you. But the platform isn't easy to use, and can be painfully expensive on the front end. At B2Linked, we've cracked the code to maximizing ROI while minimizing costs. Our methodology includes building and executing LinkedIn Ads strategies that are customized to your unique needs, and tailored to the way that your B2B consumers buy today. Over the last 11 years, we've worked with some of the largest LinkedIn advertisers in the world, we've spent over $150 million on the platform, and we're official LinkedIn partners. If you want to generate more sales opportunities with your ideal prospects, book a discovery call at B2linkedin.com/apply. We'd absolutely love to get to work with you. Alright, let's jump into some small business challenges. Obviously, if your business is small, it means you're going to be limited on headcount. And also some other things as well. Oftentimes, when a company is small, they don't have as many people working on projects, there could be a lack of understanding of strategy or vision for pushing the LinkedIn marketing forward. So you definitely want to give some thought into what are the growth strategies that you could use on LinkedIn Ads to grow quickly? What are the types of things that you want to be promoting in your ads? Do you have existing content like a newsletter or a podcast? What really matters is that you're solving a pain point for that audience member. The format of your offer doesn't matter nearly as much as the promise of what this offer is going to solve for someone. If you're looking for followers for your page, what is the reason to want to follow you? What are you providing them with? Is there going to be daily or weekly content? Are you meeting their pain points or their needs. We have Episode 10, all about offers so if you want to go super deep into that, go back and listen to that. But it doesn't matter what you're promoting, even if you're going right for the kill, and you're promoting your products or services directly to cold audiences, which doesn't oftentimes work. But it can. Make sure you understand the audience well enough so that you can call out their solution to their pain points. Another challenge for small businesses is small budgets. Sometimes the solution for having small budgets is just setting the expectation with your higher ups that you need a certain amount of budget to move forward. If you're running ads in North America, I found that $5,000 a month is a really good starting spot. If you're spending much less than that, it can be hard to be driving enough value out of it or enough volume to even care about or notice whether or not it's working. So if you're in a small company or a startup, you may have some inexperienced leadership and their expectations of what marketing should be may have to be either set or reset. For instance, you might have to let them know, if they're expecting to just start running ads today, and then get a return tomorrow, and then reinvest those funds, you may have to reset their expectations that it doesn't really work like that, we have a certain amount of time that we have to show ads. And then once we've captured them, then we have our own sales cycle that can take 6, 8, 12, 20 months. So don't be afraid to go help your higher ups understand and set those expectations with them of what they can expect from their LinkedIn marketing program. If you are stuck with a really small budget, we found that front loading that budget can be a good thing to do. So for instance, I mentioned that we like to start people around $5,000 a month in ad spend. Well, if you only have let's say $2,000 a month to spend on ads, you may be able to ask the company upfront for hey, let's take two and a half months worth of budget. And we're going to spend that all front loaded in a single month. This is going to help us learn very quickly, so that we can then decide what to do with our future advertising dollars. I mentioned that small companies can have small headcount. So if you do represent a small company, chances are you're wearing a lot of hats. You might be responsible for running the LinkedIn Ads, and the Google Ads, oh, and the email platform and managing and cleaning up Google Tag Manager. So sometimes when you don't have very many people to do things, you need outside help. You're not going to hire someone full time just because you want to run an email campaign. But you can hire a freelancer or a contractor or an agency for the stuff and the expertise that you don't have the headcount or time to dedicate to it. Sometimes small businesses are constrained for resources. You really wish you could create more content offers, more ebooks, more guides, more webinars, all of that. But you can't move forward because you don't have an in house designer. Well, there are some great services out there that you can outsource design to. There are great agencies who will write content offers up for you Oh, there's at least one great agency who will run your LinkedIn Ads, shameless plug. So don't be afraid to look outside of your own constrained resources for contractors and freelancers and agencies who can help plug those gaps that you might have. Going back to setting expectations with your higher ups. One tool that we found to be successful is, you could share the first episode of this podcast with them, because that's all about who should and shouldn't advertise on LinkedIn Ads, and what to expect from it. So if you sent them this podcast, I may be able to help explain to them and get them on your side. And I would be remiss if I didn't mention that sometimes small businesses or startups, they may not be certain about their product market fit. And if you don't have a good business to begin with, running ads, isn't really going to be your answer. My friend Dennis Yu mentions sometimes that ads are like adding fuel that amplifies an existing fire. So if your company is the equivalent of a tiny little flame, or no flame at all, when you dump adds fuel on top of it, you may smother that flame, or it may just not grow very big. To put it another way, advertising is kind of like amplifying. And so if you have a great business and you amplify it, more people find out about that great business. But if you don't have a great business, you're just going to be amplifying something that others aren't interested in. And there's not a lot you can really do if your company doesn't have product market fit. You can of course make recommendations to the higher ups. You can actually use LinkedIn Ads to test for product market fit. Years and years ago, I remember reading the Tim Ferriss boo, Four Hour Workweek. And he talks about how he actually put his book titles in Google Ads and based off of the click through rate or the volume of the clicks that came through, that was how he decided what to name his books. You can do the same thing with LinkedIn Ads. You can put some ads up to a specific audience testing a certain kind of offer that maybe it's something light, maybe it's just a blog post, but you're looking to see, does this audience actually care about this? And it can be actually pretty cheap market research, and it can be very fast as well. All right. I hope that was really helpful for you and understanding what small businesses can do on LinkedIn Ads. Now I've got the episode resources for you coming right up. So stick around. Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away. 12:44 All right, like we mentioned in the episode, if you're interested in listening to the episode all about low budget strategies, that's Episode 14. And you'll see the link for that down in the show notes. We also mentioned the episode all about offers what you can actually use to get people's attention on LinkedIn. And that's Episode 10. And we also mentioned Episode One all about who should and shouldn't advertise on LinkedIn, and what expectations you should have about the platform. Now, if you or anyone you know, is looking to learn more about LinkedIn Ads, send them the link there in the show notes below for the course all about LinkedIn Ads that I did with LinkedIn Learning. It's by far the least expensive and the highest quality course out there. If this is your first time listening, welcome. I'm excited to have you here. Definitely hit that subscribe button. I'd love to have you back around next episode. But if this is not your first rodeo, I would encourage you to please rate and review us in whatever podcast player you're listening in right now. It's not just something I say, it really helps us get the word out. It's a terrific zero cost way that you can support us. With any questions, suggestions, corrections, anything you want to send us, send us at [email protected] And with that being said, we'll see you back here next week. We're cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives.