LinkedIn Pay Per Click

This week Robert Brady (@robert_brady) guest hosted to discuss a question set titled “LinkedIn PPC.” The following is the transcribed Streamcap from the live chat:

Q1: Who is doing LinkedIn PPC right now? What has been your experience?

  • I’m doing it – platform WAY behind other platforms, but a good source of B2B leads. – AJ Wilcox (@wilcoxaj)
  • Just started looking into it a couple weeks ago. – Derek Ostler (@DerekOstler)
  • We do LI! More expensive channel for sure and the platform is super simple. – Heather Cooan (@HeatherCooan)
  • Running some campaigns on a small scale. I like the targeting options, but otherwise, not a huge fan of the interface. – Michelle Morgan (@michellemsem)
  • I’ve seen good results in education & B2B. Huge opportunity IMO. – Robert Brady
  • I tried but with poor results. – Steve Cameron (@adventcom)
  • I am doing it. You cant delete old campaigns. Its very clear that is a great opportunity for the higher-ed space. – Ryan Nguyen (@RyanKNguyen)
  • Reporting sucks. CPCs are HIGH. – David Szetela (@Szetela)
    • Have you been able to overcome those shortcomings? – Robert Brady
      • Yes – for high-value lead-gen. – David Szetela
  • We’ve seen some great B2B leads for clients using LinkedIn. Interface can be tedious, but worth it. – Chris Lister (@twistedlister)
  • Had good results w leads but low low conversions. – Pam Williams (@pamwilliams365)
  • I’m doing LinkedIn PPC right now. The CTR is not as good as my other advertising though. – Jonathan Levey (@jlevey)
  • Very limited amount of LI ads. The text ads almost seem like an afterthought on LI. Not integrated well. – Jeremy Brown (@JBGuru)

Q2: What is your favorite targeting option?

  • Industry combined with company position. Allows you to target the right person at the right company. – Chris Lister
  • I’ve seen lower CPC’s and CPL’s using group only targeting. – Ryan Nguyen
  • Also, targeting “Groups” can be an excellent way to get in front of your desired audience. – Chris Lister
  • I really like to target groups…similar to FB targeting in this respect. – Heather Cooan
  • Job title! – David Szetela
  • Don’t really have a specific favorite, but I like being able to make custom combinations. Allows for lots of control. – Michelle Morgan
  • I like the Location and Job Title targeting with LinkedIn PPC. – Jonathan Levey
    • Targeting execs? How does it compare w/ adwords? – Mike Mauer (@Mike_Mauer)
      • It’s ACTUALLY capable of targeting execs. Best of all B2B targeting methods I’ve found. – AJ Wilcox
      • I am targeting executives. I see a higher CTR and more leads from AdWords & retargeting. – Jonathan Levey
  • I’m a big fan of Job Title, Job Function & Seniority (as I’ve blogged before Job Title & Seniority Targeting with LinkedIn Ads). – Robert Brady
  • I love targeting job function + seniority. – AJ Wilcox
  • Seniority targeting seems to work the best for me – never know how much someone lies about skills for CV purposes! –
  • Q2.1: Anyone using Skills targeting? How is it going for you?
    • Skills targeting getting increasingly better now that everyone is endorsing everyone else’s skills. – AJ Wilcox
    • I use skills as a modifier in some campaigns. Helps to create a more relevant audience. Seems to be working fairly well so far. – Michelle Morgan

Q3: On the flip side, what is your least favorite targeting option?

  • I’ve found age and gender targeting to be worthless. – Ryan Nguyen
    • Job title/seniority is more relevant measure IMO. – Robert Brady
    • Our members are not required to input age/gender info, so for a particular age level Seniority targeting is best! – Katerina Ram (@katoplato)
  • I’ve had clients ask for company + title…which is extremely limited in volume. – Heather Cooan
  • Targeting by school. Not had a use for it. – Chris Lister
  • In my opinion, skills are the least favorite targeting option. – Jonathan Levey
  • Not a fan of trying to target individual companies. Audience size is too low, and gets penalized pretty quickly. – AJ Wilcox
  • No they dont know your age or gender (according to rep). not a requirement for filling out profiles. – Ryan Nguyen
  • If you wanted to target a particular title at particular co why wouldn’t you look for a connection for an intro instead? – Julie Bacchini (@NeptuneMoon)
    • Or just use the Signal search tool, which is super robust, and just reach out to h/er the ol fashioned way? – Eric Bryant (@GnosisArts)

Q4: What targeting options would you like to see from LinkedIn in the future?

  • Interests! – David Szetela
    • Wouldn’t we then be straying into Facebook territory? – Niki Grant
      • Yes. – David Szetela
      • Different audiences too. I know lots of people active on LI but not at all on FB. – Rehan Zaidi (@RehanZaidi)
  • I’m on record wanting college major/field of study targeting (LinkedIn Targeting Wishlist – College Major Targeting). – Robert Brady
  • Would love to see targeting based on topics of updates. – AJ Wilcox
  • Targeting by keywords in a user’s stream on LinkedIn. – Jonathan Levey
  • I’d love to be able to target based on user stats like time logged in or active on all ‘social’ ad platforms. – Heather Cooan
  • Not really a targeting option, but I’d love an estimate of impressions based on user activity rather than just # of users. – Michelle Morgan
  • Maybe keyword frequency? – AJ Wilcox
  • Retargeting would be a good one for longer sales cycles or more technical lead gen. Does Bizo get into this inventory? – Heather Cooan
  • By companies you follow. – Ryan Nguyen

Q5: What are you doing to track conversions on LinkedIn traffic?

  • Individual OMTR tracking codes on each new ad. Bring in with pivot table in Excel to pair up. Awkward. – AJ Wilcox
  • GA Campaign Tags. – Heather Cooan
  • I’m using custom URL parameters to track conversions from LinkedIn traffic. – Jonathan Levey
  • Checking goal tracking in GA for LinkedIn referrals and have Lead Collection enabled on LinkedIn. – Niki Grant
  • Custom Rpt. Dimensions=Visits and Goals, Filters=Exclude Campaign (not set), Include Source Regex linkedin, Include medium cpc. – Paul Kragthorpe (@PaulKragthorpe)
  • Sounds like LinkedIn could learn a lot about sophistication of advertiser by looking at how long URL is. – Robert Brady
  • As more ppl use the apps, this tracking becomes increasingly more important. Apps are notorious for stripping params. – Eric Bryant

Q6: How are you handling ad/image freshness?

  • Poorly. I started categorizing tracking codes by image, but statistically difficult to use it to determine effect on CTR. – AJ Wilcox
  • This is a constant battle just like on FB. Clunky interface. LinkedIn needs an editor tool. – Heather Cooan
    • Agree. Takes twice as long to set up campaing in LinkedIn vs. FB. – Chris Lister
  • Resubmitting an ad or giving it a new image can give it new life. – Robert Brady
  • Some images are seasonal; others produce year round. Try to rotate new images in monthly / quarterly depending on CTR & clicks. – Chris Lister
  • I haven’t tested new art/copy yet, but plan to in near future. I think the LinkedIn PPC image size is too small. – Jonathan Levey

Q7: Do you believe LinkedIn’s interface needs improvement? If yes, how would you change it?

  • Interface and ads both need improvement. They need to get serious about ads unless they want to stay jobs-focused. – Jeremy Brown
  • Would add conversion tracking, ability to see all campaigns on one page. – AJ Wilcox
  • See all ads for each campaign on one page; not 3. Bulk editor. – Chris Lister
  • Often thought LI & FB needs an Image Library where you can save and compare historical data for your ads. – James Svoboda (@Realicity)
  • A robust, fully-functional ads API would be nice. I would love to more easily manage LI campaigns in a 3rd party tool. – Jeremy Brown
  • Conversion Tracking & Impression Share would be nice additions to LinkedIn PPC. – Jonathan Levey
  • Ad group levels would be nice. would clean up a lot of campaign clutter. – Ryan Nguyen
  • Sounds like most people want an offline editor or API…so they want to NOT use the interface. – Robert Brady
  • How about a partner deal with a Stock Photo company to find, buy, edit and use stock photos from 1 interface. – James Svoboda
  • Ads displaying above the fold/more prominently would be helpful too. – Jonathan Levey

Q8: Do you feel the $2.00 minimum CPC is hindering LinkedIn PPC? Why or why not?

  • No, same as some YouTube mins. Of course, I would love it to be cheaper. I think this is a quality filter. – Heather Cooan
  • Yes. GoTo/Overture/Yahoo and AdWords use to have minimums. Advertisers started jumping on to try (in part) when those went away. – James Svoboda
  • Yes, since it’s targeting by limited audience, it gets bid up faster anyway. $2 start is rough on a platform for new advertiser. – AJ Wilcox
  • Not for us. We get higher quality leads from LinkedIn traffic. Quality over quantity. – Chris Lister
  • Yes. But LinkedIn should offer a Traffic Estimator like AdWords. – Jonathan Levey
    • At least the audience estimator is slick. – AJ Wilcox


More PPCChats

Don’t forget to stay tuned for the next #PPCchat on Tuesday at 12 noon Eastern, 9 am Pacific and 5pm in the UK. Same Chat time, same Chat channel.


Check out the PPCChat Twitter list to see and connect with all current and prior participants.

• Robert Brady (@robert_brady)
• Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro)
• James Svoboda (@Realicity)
• Paul Kragthorpe (@PaulKragthorpe)
• AJ Wilcox (@wilcoxaj)
• Chris Lister (@twistedlister)
• David Szetela (@Szetela)
• Derek Ostler (@DerekOstler)
• Eric Bryant (@GnosisArts)
• Heather Cooan (@HeatherCooan)
• Jeremy Brown (@JBGuru)
• Jonathan Levey (@jlevey)
• Julie Bacchini (@NeptuneMoon)
• Katerina Ram (@katoplato)
• Michelle Morgan (@michellemsem)
• Mike Mauer (@Mike_Mauer)
• Niki Grant (@TheNikiGrant)
• Pam Williams (@pamwilliams365)
• Rehan Zaidi (@RehanZaidi)
• Ryan Nguyen (@RyanKNguyen)
• Steve Cameron (@adventcom)

LinkedIn Doesn’t Endorse Streamcaps, But I Do It Anyway

This is a guest post by Paul Kragthorpe; WebRanking SEM Manager in Minneapolis, Minnesota, #PPCChat Streamcap Grabber, SEO Blog Author. Connect with me @PaulKragthorpe, and Google Plus.

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