LinkedIn has objectives just like Facebook, but which objective you choose may not be as straightforward as you think. Today, we’ll decode each LinkedIn ads objective to make sure you get the most from your ad spend!

First off, if you’re used to advertising on Facebook, you’ll notice that when you go to create a campaign in LinkedIn the objectives look very similar. This is because LinkedIn wanted to enable Facebook advertisers to have a similar experience on LinkedIn. LinkedIn has had objectives for quite some time, but they were essentially checkboxes and bid types. Now it’s very defined with lots of different objectives. We’re gonna concentrate on a few of the main ones because some blend together or are very similar. We’ll dive in and figure all of that out, and make sure to stick around to the end because we’re gonna share our recommendation for the right ad format and objective if you’re just wanting to get started and want the least amount of risk!

Engagement Objective

The first objective we’re gonna cover is engagements. Now this is one you can pay either by the click or by the impression, and I would almost always recommend bidding by the click because it’s the least risky. This objective is going to optimise towards any sort of action on your ad. That means a social action like a like, a comment, or a share, a follow to your company page, visiting your company page, and even clicking your call-to-action link. This is the lowest cost objective, which can be really nice, and it’s really the objective you’re going to select if you want to get more company page followers along the way.

Website Visit Objective

The next objective we want to cover is website visits. This is the one you’re going to want to select if your goal is just to get people to your landing page so that they can convert there, but again, I would almost always bid by the click, and as a little hack here, you can actually bid by the click for a video view, which can get you the cheapest video traffic possible through this objective as well.

Video Views Objective

The third objective we want to talk about are video views. This obviously applies only to video creatives, but this is helpful to understand. By using the objective, you can bid by the impression or by the view. A view on LinkedIn’s video ads is two seconds. In general, on LinkedIn, you can expect to pay between about six to 14 cents per two second view. Which is obviously much more expensive than Facebook, but again, we’re reaching a very specific, hyper-targeted audience here. So we would recommend using whichever bid type, cost per view or cost per impression that gets you the cheapest costs.

But there is another way to potentially optimise this as well. You can run video creative as website visits and pay only by the click. We would recommend running all three side-by-side in separate campaigns so you can find out which one actually gets you the lowest cost per click or the cheapest cost per conversion.

Lead Generation Objective

If you want to use LinkedIn’s lead gen form ads, you have to select your objective as lead generation. These will allow you to have a form directly within the ad itself so you can skip the landing page experience entirely. With the lead generation objective, you can use this on any type of sponsored content or any type of sponsored messaging ad. You can pay by the cost per click or cost per impression, and we recommend paying by cost per click because it’s the least amount of risk to you upfront. You can always change later. 

Website Conversions Objective

And our last objective is website conversions. Now this is really similar to website visits except LinkedIn is now starting to make decisions about who they want to show your ads to because they have some data about who tends to convert and who doesn’t. As time goes on and LinkedIn gets more data about their users, this will become more and more useful.

Brand Awareness and Job Applicants Objective

And you might be wondering about other objectives we haven’t mentioned like brand awareness and job applicants. Brand awareness really isn’t any different from engagement. They just take away the option of being able to pay by the click, and job applicants are really a specific use case that you’d only use if you were recruiting.

Tips to Get Started

And as promised, we’re going to give you our recommendation for the right ad format and objective you should use when you’re just testing things out. 

So anything that you do on LinkedIn ads, my recommendation is to always start by paying cost per click. If you’re paying by the impression and you have a bad ad no one clicks on, you’re gonna keep spending money and not have anything to show for it. But if you’re bidding by the click and you have a bad ad, you’re only going to pay for the traffic that you get. 

We also recommend using the ad format of sponsored content first. It’s by far the most versatile, and it’s a good idea to start with the single image version, just because it’s a static image. It’s easy to create, easy to change, and easy to troubleshoot. If you’re sending traffic to your website, go with website visits. And if you want to keep that traffic on LinkedIn and use LinkedIn’s lead gen forms, then use the lead generation objective. 

And chances are, LinkedIn is only a piece of your whole marketing mix, so make sure to check out more of our posts for marketing across different social media platforms!