If you’ve been in the B2B marketing space for a while, chances are you’ve tried quite a few tools to help improve your lead generation.
In the space, there are so many tools, that it can sometimes be overwhelming to choose between them.
This article outlines the most effective B2B sales platform, LinkedIn, and a few ways you can use it to help improve your lead generation and increase your B2B sales.
Some Key Statistics About LinkedIn for B2B
Before we dive into ways you can use LinkedIn to improve your B2B lead generation, let’s take a minute to highlight some key statistics that show the value of LinkedIn’s platform in the B2B space.
80% of B2B leads come from LinkedIn.
Yes, you read that correctly. 80%. Put simply, the platform is the most professional of the social networks, and this statistic proves that.
94% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to distribute their content.
Given the previous statistic, this shouldn’t come as a surprise. B2B marketers will obviously flock towards the most effective platform to convert their target audience.
92% of B2B marketers choose LinkedIn over all other social media platforms.
Again, this polarization should come as no surprise. However, this is still quite an impressive statistic that highlights the need to use LinkedIn as a B2B marketing platform.
More than 50% of all social traffic to B2B sites comes from LinkedIn.
Now that you have a better idea of just how powerful LinkedIn is for B2B, let’s dive into some tools and techniques you can use in order to improve your B2B marketing strategy.
Tool #1: Sales Navigator
This tool might be the single most powerful and cost-effective B2B lead generation tool on the internet.
With over 300 million active users, you can rest assured that LinkedIn has the leads you are looking for.
What sales Navigator allows you to do is find highly qualified leads by utilizing LinkedIn’s advanced search features.
For just $79 a month, you can create a fully customizable sales funnel for you and your team that identifies certain profiles as leads based on hundreds of different profile identifiers.
Sort through and identify B2B leads for your business based on location, job title, company, industry, company size, etc…
Tool #2 InMail
Email is a paid form of Outreach on LinkedIn to people outside of your network.
If you have one of the various types of Premium Accounts on LinkedIn, you receive 30 inmail credits each month.
If not, you can spend $10 for each InMail credit you use.
The real power of utilizing InMail on LinkedIn lies in the fact that notifications are sent directly to the user’s email.
This strengthens your chances of speaking with qualified leads, because it completely bypasses the fact that they may not be on LinkedIn on a regular basis.
On top of this, you are able to see if your email was opened, and if it was declined or accepted.
Lastly, another large strength of utilizing InMail is that people do not have to be within your network in order to reach out to them.
With the right customer profile, and a little bit of tweaking to your pitch, InMail can be a very powerful tool for making personal connections with high level individuals at businesses you are trying to solicit your services to.
Tool #3 LinkedIn Groups
Groups are a great place to boost your content marketing strategy using LinkedIn.
Depending on your industry, there are probably dozens of groups that you can join on LinkedIn that have members who fit the profile of potential B2B leads for your company.
Once in a group, you can post quality content that is relevant to the overall theme of the group in order to generate more social traffic to your website.
You can also comment on other people’s posts, and interact with members in order to build relationships with potential B2B leads.
On top of this, actively participating in LinkedIn groups is a great way to build your brand.
Just be sure to not go overboard, and be too salesy as you can get kicked from these groups and it can come off as bad branding.
You want to make sure as always to keep your content relevant, your posts on a regular basis, and your captions as informational as possible, in order to not give your audience the wrong idea.
Tool #4 LinkedIn Sponsored Content
There’s a running myth out there that using LinkedIn for sponsored content only helps to boost top of the funnel awareness and not necessarily drive leads and convert them into customers.
A recent case study by HubSpot showed that this is actually not true. In fact, LinkedIn sponsored content on average drove a 6.1% conversion rate from LinkedIn Ads.
When compared with other platforms like Google AdWords coming in at 2.58%, this is a viable option for promoting content in the B2B space in order to generate leads.
While Facebook still takes the cake, hailing an average conversion rate for B2B sponsored content of 10.63%, it is good to have a healthy distribution of your ad spend among these top B2B platforms.
One thing to note about LinkedIn ads, is a slightly higher cost per click for B2B leads. On average, a click to your site from a LinkedIn ad will run you anywhere between $5 – $10.
Tips for Running a Successful LinkedIn Ad Campaign
1. Keep Your Advertisements Fresh
Because LinkedIn is a display ad Network, more often than not your ad will be displayed multiple times within the same persons feed over a period of time.
Over time, after seeing your ad multiple times, it may lose its ability to establish brand recognition within the eyes of your target market, and also lose some of its clickability.
In order to combat this, you want to keep your ads fresh by mixing up the visuals, text, calls to action, and individual pieces of content which you are linking to your LinkedIn Ads.
You want to be sure when doing this to not make changes too quickly, but also not wait too long either. On a new content marketing campaign, give it a few weeks to blossom before making any major changes.
2. Be Very Specific With Your Audience
With such a high CPC, and the ability to have very highly targeted campaigns, it would be very foolish not to try to put your content in front of those most likely to click through.
Take the time to establish a customer profile that really rings true to the type of client you are trying to turn into a lead.
Targeting leads based on location, job title, skill set, groups, company, company size, and other very specific demographics is a great way to ensure that you maximize the ROI of your LinkedIn ad campaign.
3. Make Sure You Are Utilizing the Right Type of Content
You can pretty much be positive that most people on LinkedIn are there to benefit themselves on some professional level.
Having established this, it is essential that you do not try to immediately market what can be considered “hard sell” pieces of content to your target market.
It is not going to be profitable if you run a LinkedIn ad that is immediately trying to sell a potential lead on the services you provide.
Instead, you should try to use content closer to the top of the funnel in order to generate leads by informing them on your area of expertise in quality pieces of content that you have produced.
Once you have established brand recognition within the minds of your target audience, then it may prove more profitable to begin marketing middle and bottom of the funnel content on LinkedIn.
4. A/B Test Your Ad Campaigns
Just like with any other marketing efforts, you want to be sure that you are being as effective as possible with the content you are putting in front of your target audience.
To do this, it is important to run multiple versions of your ad campaign with different wording, pictures, content, and customer profiles in order to determine what is the most effective ad campaign to generate leads.
Over time, you will develop better understanding of what works and what doesn’t. This will help to improve your ROI, CTR, and CVR for your LinkedIn ad campaigns.
LinkedIn makes this very easy, with their intuitive and simple to navigate ad manager.
5. Run Retargeting for Your Ad Campaigns
Studies show that it takes an average of 7 to 10 touch points with a lead before they turn into a customer.
A great way to boost your touch points on LinkedIn ads is by utilizing retargeting campaigns.
This sounds complicated, but by utilizing a pixel within your website, it is very easy to track people who have visited your site and then retarget them with future ads.
Retargeting helps to strengthen the brand awareness within your target audience, and solidify your company’s value and legitimacy within their minds.
Using LinkedIn With Your Content Marketing Strategies
LinkedIn is one of, if not THE BEST B2B marketing and lead generation platforms.
Over 94% of B2B marketers utilize it as a marketing platform, and over 80% of B2B leads are generated on LinkedIn.
If you offer B2B services in the United States, you should absolutely be utilizing LinkedIn in some form in order to generate leads, develop brand awareness, and drive qualified traffic to your website.
With a healthy content marketing strategy, a little creativity, and a good eye for analytics, you can utilize LinkedIn to grow your business dramatically on a relatively low budget, seeing very high ROI on your marketing efforts.
If you are looking for ways to generate more B2B clients and leads through the power of content marketing, reach out to us. We offer free content marketing analysis and expert consultation. Schedule a call with an expert and get started working towards new leads today!