Bringing new qualified leads into your marketing funnel is a constant challenge, but with the help of LinkedIn’s advertising tools it’s easier to reach the right prospects with relevant messaging.
Your Lead generation efforts should aim to collect a large number of high quality leads from a variety of channels and sources.
With 500 million members, Linkedin is the largest network for businesses to access accurate data on professionals across industries who are active there.
If your organization is trying to reach other businesses, then LinkedIn should be a leading asset in acquiring leads and customers.
Here’s how to integrate LinkedIn ads amongst your existing lead generation strategy to build a larger database of qualified leads.
One Part of a Larger Strategy
From the start, it’s important to note that your business shouldn’t rely solely on LinkedIn or any one channel for driving leads.
LinkedIn’s vast audience is undoubtedly a valuable asset for your organization, but the best approach to success with lead generation is diversification.
To diversify, balance your efforts with lead generation across multiple channels at once to continue to learn what tactics are effective.
The speed at which any marketing channel evolves today makes it difficult to predict which strategies will continue to produce leads for the long-term.
To reduce the impact of any source of leads plateauing significantly, continue to experiment with two to three different channels at a time.
Advanced Professional Targeting
One of the most powerful features of advertising on LinkedIn is the ability to target a professional based on their job title, job seniority, industry, company, education level and more.
Use this LinkedIn feature to your advantage to reach specific prospects based on their job title or expertise that you’re not able to target in the same capacity elsewhere.
For example, using Google AdWords or Facebook advertising to generate leads is effective, but less so when trying to reach a particular segment of a more professional audience.
The specificity of LinkedIn’s targeting features and the mindset of a user on the network is more business oriented, which benefits organizations that are business-to-business focused.
Review your existing buyer personas and create a shortlist of the positions they hold to inform how you’ll target your ads on LinkedIn.
Choose Role-Specific Lead Magnets
A Lead Magnet like a white paper, eBook or case study is an effective asset to feature in your LinkedIn ad campaigns, since it’s not salesy or promotional but instead focused on providing value.
With a list of roles you’d like to target on LinkedIn, develop lead magnets that are catered to solve the problems associated with professionals in particular positions.
This doesn’t mean your company needs to create ten different kinds of lead magnets as this would spread your resources too thinly. Instead, create a few lead magnets that cater to the interests and challenges of the most important segments of your audience.
For example, if your organization offers services for marketing professionals you might be targeting both Marketing Directors and Marketing Managers. Both prospects benefit from your offerings, but for different reasons as they have unique concerns that need to be addressed in your messaging.
When possible, try altering the information included in an existing lead magnet to create different versions of the same resource catered to different types of prospects. This personalizes the information provided to potential leads, while saving time and resources.
Remember that lead magnets are likely the first interaction a prospect has with your business, which is why it’s so important to personalize your lead magnets as much as possible.
According to Eric Siu, the CEO of Single Grain, ensure any lead magnet you’re developing sets the tone for the rest of the relationship with a lead. “Even if your opt-in copy is great, you’ll start the relationship off on the wrong foot if you don’t actually deliver on what you’re promising. Or if your content isn’t genuinely helpful,” said Siu.
For instance, Adobe is advertising an upcoming webinar on LinkedIn as a way to generate leads from people interested in their product offerings as seen above.
The messaging is catered to professionals working in tech broadly, which will certainly drive leads, but could be personalized to a more specific audience.
The company could have offered multiple versions of this same webinar and advertised each uniquely to support the different audiences they’re trying to reach.
The ad copy and the content of the actual webinar would have to be changed to adapt to the various needs of each audience, but the overall message could remain the same.
Experiment with Frictionless Lead Forms
After understanding who you’d like to target on LinkedIn and creating the appropriate lead magnet to feature, try two distinct approaches to generating leads on the network.
Start by featuring your lead magnet within the LinkedIn newsfeed as a sponsored update. This ad unit allows your company to include copy and an image to describe your lead magnet and why it’s useful. LinkedIn users can click on the update to be sent to your website to learn more and sign-up to access the resource as seen above.
Secondly, experiment with LinkedIn’s lead gen forms which are similar to sponsored updates except they allow a user to fill out a signup form directly from LinkedIn.
After a user clicks on the button on the ad itself, they are taken to a signup form where they can have their information automatically pulled from their profile to fill it out and access the lead magnet.
Experiment with this feature to make it easier to collect high quality leads at scale, while removing the friction for users who aren’t interested in filling out too many fields.
These lead gen forms remove friction from the signup process because it allows users to stay on LinkedIn and avoid having to visit a landing page on your website and it doesn’t require them to fill out the form as it populates automatically with their permission.
LinkedIn allows your business to include up to seven fields to be added to any form. The fewer number of fields added, the more leads you’ll likely attract as it appears simpler to complete.
However, that doesn’t mean the leads will necessarily be qualified since the amount of information collected from a shorter lead form is limited.
Test a few different lead forms with different amount of fields included to achieve the right balance between the number and the quality of the leads you’re attracting.
Has your company used LinkedIn to drive qualified leads for your marketing programs? Share your experiences using the network for lead generation in the comments below.
Images: Sprout Social Presentation magazine