LinkedIn has a relatively small number of subscribers compared to Facebook and Twitter, but a very compelling audience for B2B marketers. That’s because more than 80% of LinkedIn users are early adopters, making it an attractive place to market new products or services.
A recent survey by online advertising company AdParlor found that 30% of respondents already had experienced buying or selling on LinkedIn. 61% were open to the idea. The goal is to get them clicking. Here are some best practices for designing winning LinkedIn banner ads.
1. Set up your landing page before you start designing your ad.
This is probably common sense, but having all your information clear before jumping into making your LinkedIn banner design will save you some time. Figure out who your intended audience is, whether it’s B2B marketers or C-level executives in specific verticals. You don’t want to create an ad that will turn away the people you are targeting.
After that, figure out what the keywords are that they would search for when looking for your services. Having this information in front of you while designing your banner will help ensure successful outcomes with your campaign.
2. Keep it short and sweet.
LinkedIn has some pretty strict limitations on how long ads can be, so make sure to keep everything relevant and concise. Because LinkedIn uses a text-based image format (JPG), the text of the ad is formatted into “blocks” that fit into its display space; these blocks can be rearranged by dragging and dropping.
That said, the space is limited – about 35 characters for a headline – so choose your words wisely. Keep in mind, LinkedIn users tend to be more business-oriented with less time on their hands, so they will appreciate a clean and straightforward message with minimal jargon.
3. Make it visual.
Again, because most of what people encounter on LinkedIn is text-based image format (JPG), design counts. In fact, LinkedIn places its highest value on visual content that is informative or interesting but not overly promotional.
Whether you decide to add stock photography or custom images to your LinkedIn banner template, make sure the subject matter relates directly to your brand and is compelling enough to make people want to click through to read more about your services.
4. Use color.
Just like with Facebook and Twitter, you’ll want to use a background color that will stand out against the white space of LinkedIn’s layout. Think about the colors you would typically consider using for your brand as well as those that elicit positive emotion such as excitement or warmth.
Avoid colors that are too bright or garish. Instead, stick with something professional and businesslike. You can also try experimenting with different shades or tints of these colors to see what works best.
Venngage can help you out with this. The platform offers so many creative LinkedIn banner templates you can tweak to reflect your business. You can even use it to make your Twitter header.
5. Include a call to action.
As a B2B marketing platform, LinkedIn asks all advertisers to include a specific call-to-action at the end of each ad, whether it is Apply now, Engage or something else.
This is a good thing because including a call to action in your advertising will help you achieve a goal – in this case, getting LinkedIn users to check out what you have to offer. Make sure that the text matches up with the message of the ad and that it speaks directly to what people would want from your business.
6. Leverage LinkedIn’s tools.
In addition to loading up on recommendations from colleagues and sharing updates regularly, you can also automate certain functions within LinkedIn by creating an app.
For example, if you are running banner ads for external clients, these clients might appreciate knowing when their ad has been viewed by interested parties (called lead generation). So why not create a campaign where your banner ads automatically send an email to the client once someone clicks on it? This is just one of many options that are available to LinkedIn marketers via apps.
7. Look at the metrics.
Once you have gone live with your banner ad campaign, look at the analytics that LinkedIn provides in order to get a better idea of what’s working and what isn’t. Note which ads get more views (and who they’re coming from), as well as how many leads each ad has generated. Make sure to also track any engagement such as follow actions like clicking on author bios or viewing articles & groups, and messaging activity like messages sent via InMail or messages received through Intro.
With this information, it will be easier for you and your team to hone in on successful marketing practices and create more targeted campaigns going forward.
8. Test out images.
Just like with most social media platforms and search engines (such as Twitter and Google image search), the platform has its own set of best practices for LinkedIn banner images.
First off, make sure your images aren’t too large. If they aren’t within the proper LinkedIn banner size recommendations, they won’t upload properly. Make sure your custom content matches up with what the ad says (and vice versa).
Feeling excited to get started? Head on to Venngage today to see awesome LinkedIn banner ideas. Make that perfect LinkedIn banner ad today!