There is no doubt that LinkedIn continues to be an essential resource for recruiters and recruitment agencies to publish job ads, content, and promote brand awareness, as well connecting with potential candidates and professional networking.
Over the past number of years LinkedIn has developed its product range by releasing new offerings to the market, one of these in particular being LinkedIn Ads. With 2018 on the horizon and budgets being reviewed, in this blog we’ll explain what the LinkedIn Ads product is and how it works, so you can decide if it is the right social marketing product for your recruitment agency.
What Are LinkedIn Ads?
The LinkedIn Ads product is a form of paid social advertising which appears in the news feed or sidebar to promote your agency’s updates and content to targeted audiences. LinkedIn Ads are used to reach a larger audience and gain more attention than a native post, and are particularly useful to recruiters and recruitment agencies due to the ability to target specific types of LinkedIn users.
LinkedIn Ads: What Are Your Options?
There are three different types of ad you can use in LinkedIn’s Campaign Manager – Sponsored Content, Text Ads, and Sponsored InMail – all with varying purposes.
Sponsored Content allows you to extend the reach of a particular piece of content on both desktop and mobile versions of LinkedIn. It looks like a regular update in the feed. There is also the option of using their Lead Generation Forms, which, for example, pre-populates forms so that potential candidates can instantly send you their information without having to fill anything out themselves.
Text Ads will only show up on the desktop version of LinkedIn, and are comprised of just a headline and a link to your company page or resource. They usually show up in the ‘Ads You May Be Interested In’ section, and are a quick and easy way to get started with Linkedin Advertising.
Sponsored InMail lets you send targeted messages to specific users via LinkedIn Messenger, which is useful if you’re looking for a more personal approach. Plus, they will only appear in the user’s inbox at a time when they are actually active, to help ensure that the message doesn’t get missed.
How Do LinkedIn Ads Work?
LinkedIn ads are sold through an auction process. When you run ads, you compete with other advertisers who want to reach a similar target audience.
- Set up a total budget, so your spend will never exceed that amount for as long as the ad is running.
- Set a daily budget, so you can only spend a certain amount a day.
- Create a maximum bid, so that you won’t go over a certain price when competing with other agencies targeting the same audience.
There are also three different ways that you can pay for ads, which will depend on the kind of content you are promoting and what your marketing goals are.
- CPC (Cost Per Click) – pay each time someone clicks on your ad.
- CPM (Cost Per Impressions) – pay each time someone sees your ad.
- CPS (Cost Per Send) – pay each time a Sponsored InMail is delivered.
Due to the ability to target specific candidates and clients with promoted content, recruitment agencies can certainly benefit from LinkedIn ads. However, a drawback is that it is more expensive than other types of social advertising.
LinkedIn Ads Best Practices
If you are considering investing in LinkedIn Ads, or even testing to see how effective they are, here are 5 best practices that should ensure you are optimising your ad spend.
- BUDGET. Decide what your maximum ad spend will be. LinkedIn ads tend to be more expensive than other social media ads, but arguably, for recruitment agencies, it is the most lucrative platform.
- TARGET THE RIGHT AUDIENCE. Spend some time really analysing what kind of candidates or clients you want to attract with you ad campaign. You want to be specific enough to attract high quality traffic but also keep the net wide enough to attract enough attention.
- WRITE EXCELLENT COPY. As with any ad campaign, you can put all the money behind it in the world but people are only going to engage if you can give them a compelling reason to do so.
- A/B TEST. This is a form of testing which allows you to try out different versions of an ad, so you can try out the efficacy of different colours, copy, images etc. You can A/B test within the Campaign Manager. By discovering what’s working and what isn’t, going forward you will only spend money on the kinds of ads that you know resonate with your ideal candidates.
- MEASURE ROI. The LinkedIn Campaign Manager allows you to track performance by monitoring impressions, clicks, and costs, giving you the power to ascertain whether it is a worthwhile investment.
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