Spotlight on LinkedIn Display Ads

LinkedIn, the largest professional networking website, went through big change recently revolutionizing its advertising setup and opening up banner ad space to advertisers. Through programmatic bidding, display marketers can now showcase ads to a wide array of professionals from every industry.

According to recent figures, LinkedIn boasts 467 million users worldwide, making it a powerful marketing platform. Current audience targeting capability on LinkedIn adds further benefit to marketers and they’re just getting started. LinkedIn isn’t done changing up its advertising model. Russel Glass, LinkedIn’s head of products, has said the roll-out of programmatic display is only one step in a three-year plan of changes. Looking ahead, LinkedIn wants to make its advertising services simpler to use and add more tools to create effective ad campaigns. More updates to LinkedIn advertising are on the horizon, meaning marketers need to have a handle on the professional network’s new banner ad services right now.


LinkedIn Display Ads Vs. Other Marketing Channels

As obvious as it may be, it’s important to mention what truly sets LinkedIn apart from other digital networks. Unlike Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, LinkedIn is a “professional” network, not a “social” network. If you’re on LinkedIn, you either have a professional occupation or are looking for one. That makes LinkedIn’s user group inherently unique, since professionals have different wants and needs than the average social media user.

That simple distinction can mean big things for advertisers. People on LinkedIn are business-minded. Depending on your business, service, or product, the millions of professionals on LinkedIn may be the ideal audience for your banner ads. Hello B2B Marketers (insert cat with heart eyes emoji here)!

Getting into the finer details of display advertising on LinkedIn, the professional network offers some useful tools. Display advertisers can use their own or third-party data to programatically reach users. Audience segments can also be used to target ads, based on factors like a specific profession or the size of a company. And through programmatic buying, you can purchase display ad space and optimize your campaigns using whatever display programmatic buying platform (DSP) you choose.

Tools for LinkedIn Ads

If you’re new to display marketing and looking to just test the waters with LinkedIn, an all-in-one marketing tool for cross-channel optimization wouldn’t necessarily make sense for you. However tools for managing paid media become critical as soon as you’re managing many display campaigns or campaigns across different marketing channels.

Having a one-stop-shop for paid campaigns on social media and display gives marketers cross-channel oversight and a management advantage. Even more is the ability to carry over the optimization and reporting you’ve applied to social or display to your new LinkedIn display campaigns.

Acquisio offers an all-in-one tool for paid media marketers managing many campaigns. The Acquisio Trading Desk (ATD) was highly rated and ranked as a high performer by over 1,500 industry professionals on one of the world’s leading business software review platforms. Scalable across more than 150 countries, the ATD can manage video, display, social and…the fusion of display and social on channels like LinkedIn! Regardless of the programmatic platform you choose to manage your paid media campaigns, the real take-away here is the power of LinkedIn as a display advertising channel.

Case Study: Voya Financial

As great as LinkedIn display banner ads sound on paper, do they work? In the case of Voya Financial, the answer is an astounding yes. Before being known as Voya Financial, the company was called ING U.S. After the rebrand, the company needed to let people know of its new name and aesthetic, from employees, to customers, to professionals in the finance sector. That’s where LinkedIn came in.

Screenshot of Voya Financial Banner Ad on LinkedIn

Setting up a homepage roadblock right after the rebrand, Voya was able to be the only advertiser on LinkedIn member home pages. And by targeting their demographic to high-income professionals and financial advisers, Voya ensured their ads were seen by the right users.

In doing so, Voya saw an impressive 1.76% click-through rate for their display ads. The campaign also created a two-fold increase in brand consideration within their target demographic. Brand awareness increased by 12 points and the Voya company page experienced a 2x increase in follower growth, too.

The VP of advertising and brand strategy for Voya, Jim Coswert, was pretty happy with how LinkedIn display ads performed. “Display Ads helped us quickly build awareness of our new brand’s visual identity” said Coswert.  He also commented on the professional network’s audience targeting tool, saying “LinkedIn’s tight targeting combined with [its] reach made it a platform that we needed to be on.”

Final Thoughts

LinkedIn offers a unique opportunity for display marketers, especially those targeting other businesses. Get a DSP that allows you to manage, optimize and report on all of your display campaigns from the same centralized interface… and then get familiar with the professional network as a marketing platform because LinkedIn definitely isn’t done rolling out new ways to advertise.


Image Credits

Feature Image: Unsplash/Daria Shevtsova

Image 1: Pixabay

Image 2: LinkedIn

Stewart Sullivan

Stewart Sullivan

Acquisio Trading Desk's Director, Stewart has over 6 years of experience in the Display Advertising space, specifically in Sales and Campaign Management. Prior to working for Acquisio he worked for Mindgeek.

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