LinkedIn has announced much-anticipated targeting for its ads: engagement retargeting options.
This new functionality allows advertisers to create retargeting audiences of users who have Video Ads or interacted with Lead Gen Forms. It will be rolling out into accounts over the next month.
Why Engagement Retargeting Was Needed for LinkedIn
One of the harder parts of buying media in paid social is that the vast majority of users prefer to not leave the platform.
Without on-site behavior to rely on for retargeting, advertisers can be left sending top-of-funnel ads to the same users over and over, without the insight that they may have taken on-platform actions already.
More and more, social platforms have pushed to try and recreate remarketing possibilites based around a user’s on-platform behavior.
Facebook developed this steadily over the years, with the ability to target users who engaged with posts, contacted a Page via Messenger, watched a certain percentage of a video, and many other options.
With the cost of LinkedIn, many advertisers can struggle to drive enough traffic to build a remarketing audience worth the cost to get users to their website.
Because LinkedIn is heavily business to business, the product life cycles tend to be long, with many interactions along the way to a purchase or conversion.
How Lack of Engagement Retargeting Impacted Advertisers
The lack of insight or ability to retarget on-platform behaviors like users who watched a video or interacted with a lead form was a hindrance.
“There’s so much value in being able to keep top-of-mind for all platform interactions, rather than just the portion that makes it to the website,”said AJ Wilcox. Wilcox is the founder of B2Linked, an internationally recognized expert agency in LinkedIn Ads, and the host of the LinkedIn Ads Show Podcast.
This was also creating looming angst around the demise of third-party cookie reliance in ads.
“Engagement retargeting on LinkedIn is something we’ve been waiting on for a long time. The platform’s existing retargeting solution is fully reliant on cookies, so half of your traffic doesn’t qualify (iOS devices) and the other half will be gone in 2 years. It requires someone to visit your website,” – AJ Wilcox
Lead Gen Form Retargeting
Audience creation is done in the Account Assets section by choosing the Matched Audiences option. It will work with awareness, engagement, and conversion objectives.
Audiences can be created based on members who opened or submitted the lead forms you run on LinkedIn.
The window for engagement can be from 30-365 days in the past.
The audience will have a minimum size requirement of 300 to be used in a target.
Audiences for video retargeting are also in Account Assets section by choosing the Matched Audiences option. It will also work with awareness, engagement, and conversion objectives.
You can create audiences based on how much of your video audiences watched:
Like Lead Gen Form audiences, you can choose a time period of 30-365 days in the past.
You also specify which video ad campaigns you are looking to focus on. It will list the number of video views per campaign, completion rates and time periods.
The Video Views option also extends to users who viewed on the Audience Network.
Future Iterations of Engagement Targeting
While LinkedIn hasn’t announced anything further, Wilcox notes this is a great first step to opening the door further.
“My hope is that this will be a platform that continues to get access to new audiences. I’d love to see the ability to retarget those who clicked on an ad (not just those who made it to the landing page), and even visitors to personal Profiles and company Pages in the future,” he commented.
LinkedIn’s announcement is here, and they have updated their retargeting documentation to include these new features.
Images courtesy of AJ Wilcox