Text ads have been a part of LinkedIn since they began selling ads, yet since the debut of more visual sponsored content ads, they’ve been frequently under-utilized by most advertisers. In this overview, we will cover the do’s and don’ts of text ads so you can learn how to effectively incorporate them into your LinkedIn Ads strategy.

What Are Text Ads, And When Should You Use Them?

Text ads are an ad placement on LinkedIn where you are limited to a short headline and description. Using those inputs, LinkedIn places the ads in a few different locations on the homepage for desktop users. The ads are quite different from sponsored content ads in that they are desktop only, cheaper in terms of CPCs, and your reach is much larger.

LinkedIn’s Sponsored Content Ads are top priority if you are trying to drive conversions efficiently and have a more limited budget. We typically recommend introducing text ads to your LinkedIn strategy as a way of getting additional volume from an audience that does incredibly well for sponsored content. We would not recommend text ads if you have never run LinkedIn before, as there are fewer levers to pull for optimizations. This is especially true if you haven’t yet found an audience that does really well in sponsored content.

Sponsored Content Example
Promoted LinkedIn Content
LinkedIn Banner Ad

Bid Type

For a text ads campaign, you can choose to bid maximum CPC or maximum CPM. Unlike sponsored content campaigns, you cannot optimize for conversions. Typically, we recommend maximum CPC over CPM because the click-through-rate is so low for text ads that you will only want to be charged for the click. CPCs can vary for text ads – from $2 all the way up to $8. This is really dependent on the audience.


Similar to sponsored content campaigns, you can choose between setting a daily budget or a target lifetime budget. Our recommendation is to start with a low daily budget compared to the campaign you are testing alongside. Around 10-20% of your total daily budget is a good place to start here.

Conversion Tracking

If you have conversion tracking already set up for your sponsored content campaigns, you can use it directly for your text ads as well. One of the major things we recommend is having your attribution settings set to 30 day click and 1 day view. The reason being is that for text ads, you will have a significant amount of impressions compared to sponsored content, and if you have a larger view window, you will have a much larger amount of view conversions just from the increase in impressions alone.

Copy and Imagery

There are two different sections of copy for a text ad: the headline and the ad description. The ad headline limit is 25 characters and the description limit is 75 characters. For the headline, try to come up with something that helps the viewer immediately understand what they are getting into. For example if you are pushing a Gartner report for a contact center as a service, your headline could be “Gartner CCaaS Report 2020.” That headline quickly shows what the user will be getting if they click on the ad. For the description, you can describe the content of the landing page in more depth than in the headline.

Our image recommendation is to use your company logo, as the creative size is small at only 100×100. The creative will only show on the right hand side placement for the text ads and will not show up on the text ads at the top of the page.

Audience Recommendation

Just like with any additional ad unit, our testing methodology remains the same. We recommend starting with testing your highest performing audiences first to compare them to your other current best performing ad unit. This works particularly well if you have an audience where you are currently capped.

For More on LinkedIn Ads

If you’re interested in more detailed LinkedIn Ads strategy, check out our Ultimate Guide to LinkedIn Ads. For more hands-on assistance and strategy, contact us to learn more about fine tuning and expanding your LinkedIn advertising efforts.