Cannon Casey

by Cannon Casey | Social Advertising

What are LinkedIn Conversation Ads?

LinkedIn Conversation Ads are a newer LinkedIn ad type designed to allow instant engagement to your audience with a pre-set conversation flow. It’s a choose-your-own adventure advertising style. To allow for instant engagement, Conversation Ads are only sent when a user is active on LinkedIn. The platform claims this format results in higher engagement volume and higher engagement quality.

These timely ads come at a time when users crave authenticity and personalization. LinkedIn states, “More than 2.5 billion people (35%) in the world use mobile messaging apps, and that number is expected to grow to nearly 40% by 2023.”

LinkedIn is “also seeing a shift to more personal one-to-one conversations on our platform, where messages sent have quadrupled in the last five years.”

When to Use LinkedIn Conversation Ads

Conversation Ads should be used for asset-focused content. Think webinar promotion, eBooks, white papers, etc. These ads can also be used to target a very specific audience that you might not be getting in front of in any other way. Along that line, Conversation Ads can be a great format for your next ABM campaign.

By taking your audience through the conversation flow, you can take users from high level prospecting messaging all the way down to a webinar registration or demo request. The conversation could start with, “Hi {Name], we’re hosting a webinar on [date] about [topic]. Would you like to learn more about what we’ll cover, or register now?” After the user learns more about the webinar, you could ask for that registration again.

Taking it one step further, you could continue the conversation flow by saying, “Thanks for registering! We’re looking forward to having you there. Would you like to learn more about [company]?” If the user wishes to learn more, the ultimate CTA could be a Demo Request.

In the above example, you’ve taken a user from prospect, to converter, to demo requester all in one conversation.

The higher in the funnel your audience is, the lower intent your assets should be. Use a white paper or eBook at the top of the funnel. As your audience moves further down-funnel, hit them with a higher value asset such as a product demo.

LinkedIn Conversation Ads Best Practices

1) Choose a relevant sender.

LinkedIn stats show that ads sent from an actual member of the company outperform those sent by the company name. Think about it: is a user more likely to answer a message from me, an Account Manager, or Ken Baker, Metric Theory’s CEO? Along these lines, consider using your Director of Sales or Product to drive product demos. Finally, make sure the sender has a high quality LinkedIn profile.

2) Leverage a strong image in your conversation ad.

This can be a company logo or content similar to what you’d use for a single image ad. Using a banner image helps the message stick in the user’s mind. It’s important to note that banner images only appear on desktop.

3) Keep the messaging short, friendly, and conversational.

Try not to inundate the user with an essay of text or complex vocabulary. Ask questions to keep the user engaged in the conversation flow to continue to push them to the asset download.

4) Steer away from easy exit routes.

Do not include CTAs that allow the user to exit the ad in the first layer of conversation. Examples here include “No thank you” or “Not interested.”

How to Set up LinkedIn Conversation Ads

Start off by choosing your campaign objective. Conversation Ads can be used in Brand Awareness, Website Visits, Engagement, Lead Generation, and Website Conversion campaign objectives.

After creating your audience, adjusting your budget, and adding conversions, you’re onto creating a Conversation Ad.

Here, you start by adding a sender and a banner image.

After adding a relevant sender and engaging banner image, select a template. There is a vast list of templates from LinkedIn from “Drive trials and demos” to “Survey or poll your audience.” There is, of course, the option to use a blank template to allow for complete customization.

Now, we’re onto the last step: building the ad. You have the option to update the intro message (complete with dynamic text for the user’s name), add an image, and add CTA buttons. The max number of CTA buttons per message is five buttons.

From there, you edit the conversation flow. Remember, keep the messaging short, friendly, and conversational. From each CTA, you create a personalized response that sends with a CTA. So, the conversation flow could look like this: Initial message, response gaining clarity, response with CTA to download the asset.

The amount of pathways in Conversation Ads can seem daunting to create, but start simple, then create more complex flows with time. As always, remember to review reporting and use data-driven insights to optimize your ads.

LinkedIn Conversation Ad Examples

In the following example, you’ll see a data set of a client’s results of a Conversation Ads campaign vs. InMail Ads. Although these two campaigns had relatively limited spend, the Conversation Ads campaign drove a slightly higher open rate, a higher conversion rate, and a much lower cost per conversion. The data below provides evidence to LinkedIn’s claim of higher engagement quality through Conversation Ads.

LinkedIn Conversation Ads Specs

CTA buttons: 25 characters

Message text: 500 characters

Max CTA buttons per message: 5 buttons

Banner image: Desktop only

Banner image size: 300 x 250px

Banner image file type: jpg or png

To sum it all up, LinkedIn Conversation Ads are an exciting new ad type that are definitely worth a test. Contact us if you’re interested in learning about more ways to expand your LinkedIn strategy and to drive more qualified leads.