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10 Ways to Drive Killer ROI with your LinkedIn Sponsored Updates

You know how important content marketing is—98% of your fellow B2B marketers say it’s core to their marketing strategy and more than half of them plan to increase their content marketing budget this year.

And, if you’re like your peers, you’re looking to drive a higher return on investment for all your content marketing efforts. We get it and we can help.

Join LinkedIn product marketing manager Selin Tyler and content marketing evangelist Jaime Pham as they show you how to drive killer results using Sponsored Updates. They’ll bring their winning content strategies to life by showcasing real campaigns from top-performing B2B brands.

Learn how to leverage your best content to appeal to and engage more of the right people.

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10 Ways to Drive Killer ROI with your LinkedIn Sponsored Updates

  1. 1. WEBINAR Selin Tyler (@selingt) Senior Product Marketing Manager, LinkedIn Jaime Pham (@jaimelynn09) Content Marketing Evangelist, LinkedIn
  2. 2. Questions? Send them via Webex Q&A Feature Recorded? Of course! Before we get started… Shout outs? Tweet them via #LinkedInContent Feedback? Survey will be available at the end of the Webinar
  3. 3. Today’s Agenda ONE TWO THREE Content Management Best Practices Campaign Set up Tips & Tricks Top Sponsored Updates of 2015 (so far)
  4. 4. Content Through the Buyer’s Journey 4
  5. 5. B2B Buyers are consuming an average of 10.4 pieces of content on their way to a purchase decision. Source: Zero Moment of Truth Study, Google
  6. 6. Where are they finding it? 6
  7. 7. Nearly half of B2B buyers start their solution research with a web search, and 72% of buyers will use Google at some point in the research stage Source: 2014 B2B Buyer Landscape, Demand Gen, Pardot
  8. 8. That same percentage of buyers using search will also use social media Asked for suggestions/ recommendations from users Connected directly with potential vendors Connected with individual thought leaders for opinions Did not use social Browsed existing discussions
  9. 9. “How do you take your Sponsored Updates from Great to Outstanding?” 9 ONE Content Management Best Practices
  10. 10. 1 Source: LinkedIn Internal Study May 2015 Followers and target audiences want different things: Here’s what followers want to hear, tailor your content accordingly Provide a steady stream of content for your followers: Best in class marketers post one to three updates per day on their Company or Showcase Pages.
  11. 11. • Sponsor two to four updates at any time to maximize your reach to your target audience. • Proactively optimize or cycle out the updates that aren’t achieving your key performance indicators (KPIs). 1 Followers and target audiences want different things: Here are topics some of the popular target segments consume on LinkedIn
  12. 12. Shape Perception Establish Trust Drive Traffic for Nurturing Nurture to Convince and Convert Earn New Leads 2 Pick content for the full marketing funnel: Build trust first, then ask for contact information Infographics, blog posts, industry trends, influencer content, “behind the scenes” and exclusive content Best practice guides, case studies, product reviews, analyst reports, webinars, blog posts White papers, research briefs, product demos, trials, product reviews and comparisons, analyst reports Newsletters, recommendations, case studies, product news, tutorials You have 10+ opportunities to publish Sponsored Updates that effectively introduce your brand, build trust, provide helpful information, and ultimately inform a purchase decision. Deliver relevant content at every step of the buyer’s journey.
  13. 13. 2 Pro Tip: Clear calls to action will maximize your clicks and conversions to gated content This CTA from Hortonworks for a whitepaper download couldn’t be more direct:
  14. 14. Make the most out of your gated content by repurposing it in a variety of full funnel pieces such as blogs, infographics, webinars and SlideShare presentations 3 Boost your content ROI through repurposing Make the most of your gated content by repurposing it in a variety of full funnel pieces such as blogs, infographics, webinars and SlideShare presentations.
  15. 15. 4 Leverage your employee network to scale up your reach Employees are a valuable secret weapon in scaling your Sponsored Updates campaign. In a recent Sponsored Updates case study, Dutch Bank ABN AMRO revealed that their “secret weapon” for scaling always-on content is their people. The Bank’s social media team distributes a content calendar to all employees every week, explaining what they’ll be posting to their Company Page and when. Now they have 600 people who can share ABN AMRO’s content with their connections. Results: Engagement rates as high as 3.25% on their content. Over 28,000 visits to ABN Amro Insights site in one month.
  16. 16. The Helpful Advisor The Conversationalist The Cliffhanger Start by explaining how your piece of content will help your target achieve professional success. Make a bold statement or ask a question to spark a conversation and get your audience to react. Tell your audience just enough to pique their interest but not so much that they aren’t compelled to learn more. 5 Create content that is helpful, informative and/or entertaining Try writing from these perspectives:
  17. 17. 6 Optimize your content for mobile For best mobile performance make sure:  Your intro copy is fewer than 150 character or eliminate it all together  Your CTA is clear  Your landing page is optimized for the small screen
  18. 18. 7 Use images to drive engagement Let your images stand out in the feed • Adhere to published specifications to ensure your image is the proper resolution. • Use the image to expand on the content or emphasize the CTA. • Make sure you choose an image that accurately reflects your content. Consistency between image and story conveys the topic before the member even reads a word.
  19. 19. 8 Test and improve performance with Direct Sponsored Content At any time, test 2 to 3 versions of your content to continuously improve performance. Think Simple: Consider testing personalization or variations of your CTA.
  20. 20. Never miss an opportunity to reach your target audience—no matter where they are or how and when they choose to consume content. 9 Adopt an always on mindset… …as professionals catch up on content at home
  21. 21. of decision makers use social media to research the solution purchase. of B2B purchase decision makers said that winning content had a significant impact on their decision.* 9 Pro Tip: For content, think always on content strategy Don’t miss out on the opportunity to impact your prospects’ buying decision Make sure your solutions are always in the consideration set of your target audience by adopting an always-on Sponsored Updates strategy. *The 2014 B2B Buyer Behavior Study, Demand Gen, January 29, 2014
  22. 22. 10 Expand your reach to similar audiences Use Audience Expansion to discover audiences similar to your target Make your content last longer: Before you retire a campaign that’s showing fatigue, consider enabling the Audience Expansion function. It’s a great way to reach new audiences similar to your target audience, and expose them to your brand message. Remember, these audiences haven’t seen your content, so it’s new to them.
  23. 23. Best Practices Cheat Sheet Optimizing content • Always ask, “why would my audience read this?” • Use concise and compelling intros and headlines • Ask compelling questions to involve the target audience • Include a clear call to action, regardless of the objective • Make sure your landing pages are optimized for mobile traffic Managing updates • Plan your editorial calendar, but also react to timely events • Respond to comments regularly • Consider keeping updates running through the weekend • Test to see what works with your audience and then refine Optimizing visuals • Always include an image, presentation, or video • Ensure your image is relevant to your content 1 2 3
  24. 24. 2 4 TWO Campaign Set up Tips & Tricks
  25. 25. You have 4 levers to optimize your campaigns CONTENT AUDIENCE BUDGET BID TARGETING
  26. 26. RELEVANCE MATTERS Test your content to boost your CTR and lower your CPC CONTENT
  27. 27. BID ONLY AS MUCH AS YOUR WILLINGNESS TO PAYBID Pricing model options: CPM (cost per thousand impressions) CPC (cost per click) In both cases, you only pay enough to beat the next highest bidder in the 2nd price auction $
  28. 28. . Shift your budget based on performanceAUDIENCE
  29. 29. START BROAD, CHISEL DOWNTARGETING Chisel, don’t piece-together Run-of-professionals (ROP) doesn’t mean “no targeting” it means “all targeting” Pay for your target audience at ROP rate! Let the robots work their magic While marketers are great at understanding “who” their audience is, optimization algorithms “know” who clicks and optimize accordingly
  30. 30. 3 0 THREE Top Sponsored Updates of Q2 2015
  31. 31. Top Updates- Q2 2015 • Stands out from the rest of the news feed by using a casual tone and incorporating a meme • Uses a short-form article format for easy engagement • Uses the intro copy to deliver an upbeat message as a hook 3 1
  32. 32. Top Updates- Q2 2015 • Provides a lot of upfront value with the use of statistics in the intro copy and an infographic for visual engagement • These tactics are effective ways to tease out longer content like survey results or a research report 3 2
  33. 33. Top Updates- Q2 2015 • The post optimizes mobile engagement by eliminating the intro copy • Taps into a very broad desire to be more successful: the main reason professionals use LinkedIn. The message is appropriate to the platform 3 3
  34. 34. Top Updates- Q2 2015 • Niche content finds a place on LinkedIn with the use of an effective targeting strategy • The image adds context to the post 3 4
  35. 35. Top Updates- Q2 2015 • What makes it engaging? • It keeps content social by using human stories and peer learning • The intro copy is concise and clear and adds to the image and title 3 5
  36. 36. 36 marketing.linkedin.com
  37. 37. ©2014 LinkedIn Corporation. All Rights Reserved. 3 7 Questions? Selin Tyler (@selingt) Senior Product Marketing Manager, LinkedIn Jaime Pham (@jaimelynn09) Content Marketing Evangelist, LinkedIn