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LinkedIn retargeting, LinkedIn matched audiences, With its new retargeting options, LinkedIn may become the preferred social media advertising platform for B2B marketers. LinkedIn may be late to the retargeting game. Facebook, Twitter and Google have long offered the feature. But LinkedIn’s retargeting, called Matched Audiences, offer a superior opportunity for B2B marketers. Retargeted ads get 10 times more clicks than standard display ads, and users who visit a site through retargeted ads are 70 percent more likely to convert, according to LinkedIn.

Matched Audiences Tools

LinkedIn’s new Matched Audiences include three tools:

  • Website Retargeting — Remarket to your website visitors by building lists of target audiences from code placed on the site.
  • Contact Targeting —Upload a CSV file of email addresses to directly target existing contacts on the platform.
  • Account Targeting — Upload a CSV list of company names to reach decision-makers at your target companies.

“For advertisers on the world’s premier business to business social network, campaign ROI potential just grew exponentially,” says Ted Vrountas at Instapage.

The first step to website retargeting, Vrountas says, is to add the LinkedIn Insight Tag, a bit of JavaScript code, to your website. When the code is added, sign in to Campaign Manager, click on Tools, and choose Insight Tag. Your website will be listed as Verified if your tag is added properly.

B2B firms often sell high-value items. Potential customers may take months to reach a purchase decision and rarely make a purchase after a single website visit, notes Laura Collins, paid social director at Merkle|Periscopixin, in a Marketing Land article. That’s why it’s important to maintain contact with sales leads over longer sales cycles.

LinkedIn advertising is ideal for high-value B2B products and services like SaaS (software as a service) or cloud hosting. Although cost per click (CPC) may be higher on LinkedIn than many other platforms, the revenue from a single deal can easily cover advertising costs.

Blows Facebook out of the Water

LinkedIn’s contact retargeting capabilities “blew Facebook Custom Audiences out of the water,” writes AJ Wilcox, founder of B2Linked.com, in a Marketing Land article.

B2B marketers often find that Facebook and Twitter produce low match rates when they upload prospects’ email addresses to advertise to them. That’s because professionals often don’t provide work email addresses to Facebook or Twitter. LinkedIn most likely has both personal and work emails.

Some strategies that Wilcox suggests include:

  • Upload a list of sales leads to advertise to them. Upload emails of current customers to exclude them from advertising lists.
  • Upload current customers’ email addresses and segment the group to send product updates.
  • Create a PR list. If you have a large media list, you can upload it and send targeted messages to journalists. “Stories written about your company result in free leads and links that help your company’s SEO efforts,” Wilcox says.

Run separate campaigns to new and retargeted audiences, advises David Christopher, director of marketing at Tailwind, in a Social Media Examiner article. That will allow you to better gauge the impact of your ad.

Bottom Line: LinkedIn’s new retargeting features offer B2B marketers potent advertising tools. While other networks have offered retargeting capabilities for years, LinkedIn offers unique advantages in the B2B realm where nurturing sales leads can be more time-consuming.

William J. Comcowich founded and served as CEO of CyberAlert LLC, the predecessor of Glean.info. He is currently serving as Interim CEO and member of the Board of Directors. Glean.info provides customized media monitoring, measurement and analytics solutions across all types of traditional and social media.