If you are running Linkedin ads or thinking about it, please read this article first. Linkedin is one of our favourite ad platforms when targeting niche audiences such as CEO’s of medium-sized companies, CTO’s, HR Directors, or any decision-maker for that matter, as Linkedin is the predominate champion when it comes to b2b lead generation. In fact, the most recent studies show that 80% of all social marketing leads for b2b came from the platform. One of the most incredible factors of Linkedin is that it is really easy to target ultra-niche prospects, so you know each penny is going towards your exact persona. The problem with Linkedin is that it is incredibly expensive as an ad platform at 3-8 times more for a click (Cost Per Click) than Facebook. With it’s 630 million users, boasting 90 million senior-level decision-makers and it’s 10 million c-level executives actively utilising the platform, Linkedin is an abundant source of high value leads for your business.
As mentioned, the issue of why more people do not utilise this golden inventory of potential clients is because it comes with a hefty price tag. The average cost per click is roughly 6-9 dollars compared to Facebooks 1-4 dollars. This is a substantial difference and the reason why most people still shy away from spending their marketing budget on the platform. Yet to make matter worse, Linkedin nearly tricks people into spending even more than they need to. Let me show you the one thing you must know before you launch a Linkedin campaign.
Once you have created an ad account, defined your audience and got down to the ‘budget and schedule’ section this is what you must pay attention to.
As you can see in the image, if you click on the bid amount, and input anything below 4 pounds, then Linkedin will show you the minimum bid, which in this case is £5.14. This is the minimum amount Linkedin will allow you to bid. But if you look more closely, it’s recommended bid is £11.43. Ignore this completely, this is literally complete nonsense. A lot of people start bidding at this minimum, as it suggests other advertisers are spending between £8.69 - £17.50, but the lower end of this spectrum is about the maximum I would I expect to pay for my CPC.
So to get this right, firstly use the Maximum CPC bid optimisation and input the lowest bid Linkedin allows. In this case, it is £5.14. Then bring your daily budget up to a figure you are a little uncomfortable with, although where you wouldn’t be crying if Linkedin spent it. What happens is that Linkedin will only put your ad in front of people where there are not any higher bidders, which means you ad will get shown fewer times at the lowest bid, and spend less (depending on your budget). The idea is to start at the lowest bid with a higher daily budget and see how much of the budget spends. If only 50% spends of what you want it to spend, then increase the bid by 20-30 cents after a couple of days. Keep doing this until Linkedin starts to spend the amount you want it to spend. This is the lowest bid you can get for the amount you want to spend on a daily basis.
One further hack... which could bring your CPC way down below even the Linkedin minimum.
The average Click Through Rate for Linkedin Sponsored Content is 0.3% - 0.5%. If you make an ad which is way above this average and you have people clicking through at a 1% rate or more, your ad is performing incredibly well. At this point switch your optimisation to CPM and push up your bid price to the upper recommended region. You want your ad to be shown as many times as possible in the top spot, and because you already know the CTR is high, you will be getting CPC’s at way below the £5.15 minimums Linkedin officially allows. When you are in this position you can literally bring your advertising costs in relation to your traffic quantity way down.
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