The Campainless Blog

How to Ace LinkedIn Targeting: 10 Top Tips
BySophie Gosman
Laughing businesspeople working together at an office table

The ability to get your ads in front of exactly the right eyeballs is the cornerstone of LinkedIn’s brilliance. Whether you’re wanting to connect with tech CEOs, marketing managers or software engineers – there’s a way to reach them through LinkedIn Ads. But, how do you ensure your targeting is geared for success? You need to check out our top 10 LinkedIn targeting tips.

1. Stay within the recommended size range

The first step in creating an effective audience on LinkedIn is to ensure it fits within the ideal size range. While the exact number will vary, we’d typically recommend landing somewhere between 40,000 and 400,000. If your goal is brand awareness, we’d suggest opting for the higher end of the spectrum. If you’re looking to generate leads from a very niche audience or for the purposes of remarketing, stick to the lower end.

2. Layer like a pro

Learning how to layer your audience filters effectively is the key to appearing in front of the right people. We generally recommend applying location (city, country or continent), job function, seniority and company size as a starting point. While the exact filters you select will ultimately depend on your objectives, the nature of your company, the industry & more: layering is simply a must-do.

3. Steer clear of the job title filter

While it may sound great to be able to target specific job titles with your LinkedIn Ads, we’ve generally found this approach to be quite restrictive and limiting. Unless you’re picking very common job titles (and many of them), it’s hard to generate the audience size necessary to achieve a certain level of reach and ultimately, see results. Hence, we typically recommend a combination of job function + seniority (and the exclusion of any job titles that are irrelevant). This way you can stay targeted without hampering your reach.

4. Test skills, interests & groups

We’ve covered our go-to filters for layering above but there’s also a host that are less commonly used and worth experimenting with. For us, this includes member skills, interests and groups. When it comes to expanding your reach (by adding “OR”) or adversely, making your audience more specific (by adding “AND”), they can be very helpful.

For example, if your target audience is “network engineers” you might choose “engineering” and “IT” as job functions to keep your potential for reach, but also add in an “AND” filter with skills like Cisco, AWS etc. to ensure your audience is still as relevant as possible.

5. Experiment with custom lists

While layered demographic audiences are generally our go-to for this platform, it’s also important to test other audience types. A particular favourite of ours is a custom list audience. Whether it’s a customer list from your CRM, a targeted prospect list created by your sales team or from an intelligence platform like Bombora – introducing a hyper-targeted, carefully curated custom list can really help to elevate your LinkedIn activity. Note – the key to a successful custom audience is a quality list. If you don’t have one, this approach isn’t for you.

6. Leverage lookalikes

If you have a valuable list at your disposal – we’d suggest also leveraging it to make a lookalike. Simply upload your list, click “Create Lookalike” and LinkedIn will find a fresh bunch of thousands of people just like those in your list for you to target. Volia! A whole new market waiting to be tapped. Again, if you have the budget – a lookalike is something we’d highly recommend bringing into the mix.

7. Be strategic, use exclusions

Who you include in your audience is important. But, who you choose to exclude is equally important. When setting up your campaign, if there are specific people you’re worried may see your ads with the parameters you’ve set (and you don’t want them to), no need to reconfigure your audience! Simply exclude them. For example, if you’re targeting universities but don’t want students to come through, exclude them from the get-go. Issue solved.

8. Review your demographic data (and optimise)

Once your dazzling audience is running, we’d recommend regularly checking in with LinkedIn’s demographic data tool. Simply select the campaign you’d like to examine, and click “Demographics.” Once here you can view the performance of various demographic groups against each other and draw key insights which you can use to refine your audience.

Are there a whole bunch of marketing interns clicking on your ads and spending your budget, but aren’t a key target? Exclude them. Does one vertical e.g. Pharmaceuticals have a much higher conversion rate? Consider segmenting them out into their own audience with tailored messaging. This is just the tip of the iceberg. When it comes to demographic data and optimisation for your LinkedIn Campaign management – the possibilities are endless.

9. Talk to sales

As well as reviewing your demographic data – it’s crucial that you consistently check in with your sales team. Why sink time, energy and money into generating 1000s of leads at a decent cost, if none of these leads are progressing with your sales reps? Set up a frequent meeting with your team (for example, monthly) and use it to sound out their feedback. Then use this feedback to improve your targeting.

10. Continue to improve & refine

Ultimately a great Linkedin audience is never static. If you’re not continually acting on data to update or refine your audience based on data or sales feedback – it’s never going to reach peak effectiveness. Say your sales team tells you the quality of your leads is sub-par, that you’re getting too many Marketing Assistants as opposed to Marketing Managers, you need to update your audience based on these observations. If your sales team is telling you nothing – it’s your responsibility to check in!

There you have it! 10 quick, easy tips you can implement for LinkedIn targeting success. Have more questions about LinkedIn targeting or need a helping hand in building your LinkedIn audiences & campaigns? Get in touch with us today.

Share this article
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on whatsapp
Share on email
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on whatsapp
Share on email