Pink is the New Black, and LinkedIn’s Sponsored Updates are the New Facebook Ads
August 14, 2013 - Posted by Angela von Weber-Hahnsberg
You know how LinkedIn has always been totally awesome for networking? For reaching out to others in your industry, giving and receiving advice, and putting your best foot forward in your profile?
Well, now it’s just as awesome for targeted advertising. Seriously.
And in some marketing situations, it may even be more awesome than using Facebook ads.
Here’s the thing. When people get on Facebook, they’re there for fun. They want to catch up with their friends, upload a few pictures, have a few laughs. They’ll interact with business pages if the posts there strike them as interesting or funny, or if there’s a really good deal on offer. And they’ll click on those targeted ads if they really resonate with them. But that’s not the primary reason they’re on Facebook.
When people log on to LinkedIn, however, it’s all about business. They are there as businesspeople, interacting with other businesspeople, for the purpose of expanding their businesses. Every single thing they do on LinkedIn is done with their business in mind, whether it’s discussing a hot topic in a Group or posting an update to their connections. So it makes sense that aiming targeted ads at people on LinkedIn would be a smart move – they’re already in the business mindset.
For B2B marketing especially, LinkedIn has provided the ideal solution with their new Sponsored Updates. People already expect LinkedIn updates to contain helpful tidbits from industry thought leaders – so when they see an update tailored specifically to their field, describing a product or company that can help them grow their business, they’ll approach it with a different mindset than they would a similar ad on Facebook. They’ll see it as helpful advice, as relevant information, rather than simply as a blatant ad. And that is a very good thing – because who likes blatant ads, anyway? Not us!
So what exactly do these new Sponsored Updates look like? First of all, they allow companies to share articles, slideshows, videos, whitepapers – any content, really – on the newsfeeds of targeted professionals, whether or not they are already connections. And not only that – those professionals will also have the ability to comment, like, or share the update, or even follow your business.
And how do you find the perfect professionals to target? You can narrow the recipients of your update down by geographic location, skills, schools, LinkedIn Groups, gender, and even age. You can include or exclude certain companies or certain job titles, or specify company size or industry, job function or seniority.
Of course, no targeted ad strategy would be complete without the ability to track results, and LinkedIn provides that as well, so that you can monitor how things are going and adjust as needed.
So, pink is the new black, and LinkedIn’s Sponsored Updates are the new Facebook ads, especially when it comes to B2B marketing. Are you planning to be fashion-forward and try them out? Let us know about your foray into LinkedIn haute couture in the comments section below!