- Lead Generation
- Marketing & Communications
In this article, we are going to share how Economic Development Organizations like yours can utilize LinkedIn as a marketing tool to target industry-specific companies in an effort to draw attention to and effectively market your economic region as the next ideal location for business relocation and/or expansion. Most of you are familiar with LinkedIn as a platform for professional networking, but what you might not know is that they also offer businesses, organizations, or people like you and I the opportunity to develop, implement and manage our ad campaigns designed for attributed targeted audiences with specific objectives in mind. The best part? You can set your budget, analyze the results of your campaign and adjust your targets to deliver the best outcomes. Below we outline the five steps in developing your own LinkedIn ad campaign to achieve optimal results and effectively market your region as the ideal place to do business!
1. Choose your objective
Depending on what organization or company you are working with and what industry you are operating in, deciding on an objective for your campaign is a very crucial first step in the ad development process. The LinkedIn campaign manager platform offers various objectives to customize your campaign. These objectives are awareness, consideration, and conversion objectives. The Consideration objective would be most applicable for Economic Development as it is designed to encourage website visits, engagement, and video views. If your goal is to market to businesses in target sectors or locations, with the objective of driving them to your organization’s landing page, then “Consideration” would most likely be the most effective route to go.
2. Select your target criteria
The next step in the design of your campaign is to select your targeting criteria. This is important to ensure that your ad reaches the appropriate audience with the attributes necessary to gauge interest in your respective region. Some of these attributes would include company size, company name, skills, job title, seniority, and many more. It is at this point in the process where it would be useful for your team to develop what are known as “buyer personas.” Buyer Personas are fictional stereotypical profiles of the decision-makers that your ad was designed to target and whose attention to the ad would benefit your organization the most. For example, for an Economic Development Organization with an ad designed to target and recruit companies in a specific region, a buyer persona of the decision-maker targeted might be a C-suite executive of a company within a specific industry interested in expanding operations within a different part of the country or relocating entirely. Titles such as CEO, COO, CFO, and Senior and VP of Finance and Operations are typically involved or aware of expansion and/or relocation plans.
3. Choose the appropriate format for your ad
After selecting the criteria to determined the objective of your ad campaign and specific attributes of the target audience, aka the “why” and the “who”; it is time to design the ad! LinkedIn offers various ad formats, which include sponsored Content, message Ads, dynamic Ads, text ads, or a variation of all four. For ads created within the field of Economic Development, the simplest and most effective option here would be to use Text Ads. Text Ads are easy to create, can include images, and once designed will allow for a campaign launch within minutes! One of the greatest advantages to utilizing text ads is that you will only need to pay for the ads that “work” or in other words, only the ads that are clicked on by the professionals that the ad was designed to target. This is discussed further in the following step.
4. Set the budget and schedule
Now it is time to set the budget and schedule of your ad. Fortunately, LinkedIn provides a lot of flexibility when it comes to budgeting. For ads designed to drive the recipient to take an action, such as clicking on a website or landing page link, opting for the “Cost per click” (CPC) option should be the most effective. This would mean that you would only need to pay for the “clicks” resulting from being shown the ad (impressions) and not the impressions themselves. Along with choosing the right budgeting option, you can also set a daily budget, total budget, and start/end dates so that your ad runs for the optimal amount of time on only up to a set budget!
5. Measure and optimize your campaign
Once your ad has been designed, implemented, displayed to your ideal target audience, and has exhausted your set budget, it is time to review how the ad performed! At this stage, you can analyze the click to impressions ratio and even go so far as to see where the clicks came from in terms of geographic location, industry, and many other demographic metrics. Note that this review stage is crucial if you are planning on running additional ads in the future in order to see what works, what doesn’t, and to ensure that your ads are being implemented in the most effective way possible.
Like everything else, the pandemic has accelerated the use and effectiveness of targeted digital marketing campaigns. In our recent experiences, utilizing LinkedIn on behalf of our clients can serve as a very effective targeted marketing tool, especially when combined with other engagement outreach efforts. We hope that after reviewing the five steps above, you can feel informed and confident enough to begin developing and launching your own marketing campaign customized to fit your region’s needs, on your own time and within your budget.
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