Social Media Advertising isn’t just a buzzword anymore. It’s a real, tangible driver of leads and sales, and companies are increasing their social ad spend across the board in response. Social networks are filled with hundreds of millions of consumers. Why wouldn’t you want to take advantage?
As we continue our look at each of the top 5 Social Media channels and the advantages each has to offer, this month our discussion focuses on one of the oldest social networks.
LinkedIn is the most prominent social platform for business professionals. Founded in 2002, it is one of the oldest social platforms and one of the few social pioneers still actively working today. Active members include top executives and upper level management from every Fortune 500 company, as well as those who aspire to get there. It is the social media choice of professionals.
LinkedIn Profiles are designed to look sort of like extremely detailed resumes, with sections for work experience, education, volunteer work, certifications, awards and all sorts of other relevant work-related information. Most users do not keep their personal information current on social networks, however LinkedIn is the exception. It is where most individuals keep their professional profiles up to date.
LinkedIn is today’s version of old-fashioned face to face networking, and is used as an avenue to connect colleagues, as well as potential business leads and referral partners. Because of this it is often seen as a media for just business to business marketing. However, if you want to reach an up-scale professional audience, LinkedIn is also ideal for business to consumer marketing.
Targeting – LinkedIn provides extremely limited targeting options. There are no psychographic data to target and the demographic information is very limited. In fact, geographic location and gender may be the only targeting options you use.
However, because LinkedIn is a smaller niche network of professionals it already is a well-defined target market in and of itself. Advertising to everyone on LinkedIn in your geographic area is a precise target of business executives and management professionals.
By adding gender to your target audience, you can create very specific ads for your products and services. For example, targeting all the women on LinkedIn in your area for self-purchases of jewelry. Tell them to ‘Go ahead and indulge a little, you deserve it!’ Appeal to their sense of accomplishment and that they are entitled to a reward for all they have done.
Large diamond upgrades are the perfect example of ads you can run to all the men in your area on LinkedIn. Ask them, ‘Does your daughter have a larger diamond than your wife?’ Tell them that you can fix that!
Appeal to their sense of accomplishment as well. Let them know that you understand that when they first got married they could not afford the diamond they wanted to give, the diamond she deserved. But things are different now. Their wife could be the envy of all the women at the next company function with a purchase from your store.
In addition to geographic location and gender there are some job related demographic data available for targeting. If your city has a large company, you can target your ad to just employees of that one company. There are also options to target specific industries or job titles.
Budgeting – LinkedIn Ads are among the most expensive online advertising media. However, with the upscale professional target audience LinkedIn provides, the cost can be well worth the cost for the right ads, marketing the right products and services.
While Facebook allows you to advertise for as little as $1 per day, LinkedIn’s minimum daily ad spend is ten times that amount at $10 per day. Their cost per click is also high. LinkedIn states that $2 per click is the minimum amount charged on ads. However, if you do any targeting at all (such as your geographical area) you will find minimum bids at $4 to $5 per click, and typically rates are ever higher.
What You Need to Know – You must have a business page on LinkedIn for your store before you can run any paid advertising. Setting up a business page from your personal profile is easy. However, you must be an employee of the company with a company e-mail address (The company’s URL in the address). Other employees can be added as admins to work on the page and create ads. They also must have a company e-mail address, and all page admins are listed as employees on the page along with their job titles.
LinkedIn’s strict requirements for page admins limits companies from hiring outside agencies to create and manage advertising campaigns for them. This tends to favor large corporations that can afford to have in-house advertising departments. However, the ease of setting up and running campaigns allows small business owners to do it themselves.
Recommended picture size is 1200 pixels wide by 627 pixels tall, the same as Facebook and Instagram. This makes it easy to add LinkedIn to your social media advertising as you do not have to create additional images.
LinkedIn does NOT place a text restriction on your images. This is a huge advantage as Facebook’s requirements can be very frustrating to comply with. However, when creating images for LinkedIn ads remember your target audience. Because of the professional nature of LinkedIn, images that are primarily bright, bold, and colorful text will not fit in. Rather than draw attention to your ad, people will scroll past and avoid it because it is obviously out of place in the business culture of LinkedIn.
Videos cannot be uploaded directly to LinkedIn. To create a video ad, you must first upload your video to YouTube and then embed the video in your LinkedIn post or ad. This is less than ideal. When you create the embed code on YouTube, be sure to unselect the ‘Show Related Videos’ box. You certainly do not want to show videos from your competitors at the end of yours in your paid advertising!
Next month we will continue our look at the top 5 Social Media Networks with a look at the 4th largest Social Media platform, Twitter. For more information on paid social media advertising campaigns, step-by-step directions, and templates for your ads visit FeetThruTheDoorMarketing.com.
Brad Simon is co-owner of Internet 4 Jewelers and Feet Thru The Door Marketing. They provide affordable full-service social media management and social ad campaign management exclusively for retail jewelry stores as well as online educational programs for local retail stores. For more information you can contact Brad at 864-680-4416 or Brad@Internet4Jewelers.com.