October 14, 2022

LinkedIn Ads Best Practices: Specs, Targeting, Creative, More

The internet and social media are crowded mediums. So ensuring your advertising campaigns are effective and appealing is vital to successful social media marketing. But with more than 850 million users globally on LinkedIn, it can be challenging to cut through the noise and capture an audience.

The good news is that LinkedIn users are engaged; 40% of its members visit the site daily. Additionally, 65 million business decision-makers are on LinkedIn, with four out of five members helping drive business decisions. With stats like this, companies of all sizes and industries can benefit from using the various LinkedIn advertising tools to generate leads, drive website traffic, make conversions, and promote brand awareness.

The key to successfully using these advertising tools is to ensure they're both tailored to your audience and effective on the platform. In 2022, successful LinkedIn ads are well-targeted, concise, attention-grabbing, beneficial to the viewer, and include a strong CTA (call to action).

This blog will cover best practices for LinkedIn ads, including creative content tips, targeting your audience, and setting an ad budget.

What Makes an Effective LinkedIn Ad?


The first step in creating an effective LinkedIn ad is identifying your target audience. You can start by determining a location (this can be broad or down to specific states or cities), then target further based on more detailed demographics, such as job title, company, education, or interests.

LinkedIn advises against over-targeting your audience. To avoid over-targeting, especially if you are new to targeted ad campaigns, try selecting only two or three target characteristics. You can initially advertise to a larger audience, then analyze performance to narrow your audience for future campaigns.


Know what you want your ad to accomplish in advance. Most advertising campaigns do one of three things: drive awareness, create conversions, or encourage consideration.

After identifying your target audience, create a concise message with a clear CTA (call to action). Try teasing content from your website (such as blogs, white papers, or free trials) in an ad to drive clicks. If you’re sharing timely news, add a personal perspective to get your audience thinking rather than just sharing the news alone.


Using eye-catching visuals, establishing a human connection, and including rich media elements like video are all good tactics to keep in mind for LinkedIn ads. LinkedIn says the ideal image size for sponsored content is 1200 x 627 pixels.

People today are busy, and your ad content should always keep that in mind. LinkedIn suggests keeping ad headlines to less than 150 characters and descriptive copy to less than 70 characters.

In addition to thought-provoking, concise copy, video is a great way to generate compelling advertising content when done correctly. Well-designed video content will promote brand awareness, generate clicks, or drive leads/actions to your website.

Video content should also be kept short. LinkedIn found that keeping video to 30 seconds or less resulted in a 200% higher completion rate. Videos from platforms like YouTube or Vimeo play right in the LinkedIn newsfeed, making it easy for members to watch and engage with them. This is an excellent way to include rich media content in your ad campaigns.

When it comes to how many ads you should plan for, LinkedIn suggests that each campaign should include four to five ads. With more ads, you have a better chance of reaching more of your targeted audience.

Understanding the Types of LinkedIn Ads and How to Use Them Most Effectively

Depending on your intended advertising goal, there are a few different types of LinkedIn ads to choose from. Below are the four main types of LinkedIn ads.

  1. Sponsored content: Ads in members’ newsfeeds and labeled as “promoted” so users know they are looking at sponsored content.
  2. Sponsored messaging: Ads that allow you to advertise one-on-one to LinkedIn users via the messaging feature on the website or mobile app.
  3. Text ads: Brief ads appearing on either the top or right-hand side of a desktop news feed but nowhere on a mobile feed.
  4. Dynamic ads: Ads that run along the right side of the screen and feature personalization options, such as a member’s photo or employer. LinkedIn members can control these personalization options if they’d like to hide some personal information.

To decide what type of LinkedIn ad is right for your campaign, you first need to define the campaign goal.

Sponsored content ads are good for driving awareness. These ads can provide a large number of impressions and promote brand awareness as users see the ads on their newsfeeds. Sponsored content ads can include a single image, a carousel of images, or a video.

Sponsored message ads let advertisers send one-on-one, personalized messages to LinkedIn users while they're active on the platform. There are two types of sponsored messaging ads: conversation ads and message ads. The difference between the two is the call to action within the message. Message ads include one CTA within the targeted message, while conversation ads may include multiple calls to action using a preset conversation tree.

Message ads are appealing because more than one in two LinkedIn users will open them. These ads are an excellent way to deliver a direct message in a less cluttered environment than a regular newsfeed.

Text ads deliver minimal content and often include direct CTAs like “sign up now” or “register here.” If your campaign goal is website traffic, text ads could be a good option, as they help deliver clicks. Coupled with an effective landing page, they can be the first step in an effective conversion campaign.

Dynamic ads also appear on members' newsfeeds, drawing data from LinkedIn users’ profiles to deliver custom-tailored ads with personal information about the member (name, photo, job title, etc.)

Advertisers can use one of LinkedIn’s pre-made templates, making dynamic ads a quick and easy option to get ads running. Dynamic ads can be a quick way to drive engagement or conversion.

How to Set a LinkedIn Ad Budget

Budgets for LinkedIn ads can range from just a few dollars to several hundred. For any of the ad options listed above, the minimum daily spend to get started is $10. The minimum spend for the entirety of a new, inactive campaign is $100, and that money is split among different ad posts throughout the lifetime of the campaign.

LinkedIn helps advertisers by suggesting default budgets within the Campaign Manager tool. LinkedIn suggests a budget of $25 for new advertisers and $50-100 for existing advertisers.

LinkedIn ads follow an objective-based pricing model, meaning the amount you pay depends on the ad auction and how much you plan to pay for that auction.

Below are a few different cost structures for LinkedIn ads.

  • Cost per click (CPC): This is when you only pay when a LinkedIn member clicks on your ad.
  • Cost per impression: This is when you pay a certain amount for every 1,000 impressions on your ad.
  • Cost per send: This structure lets you pay per message sent when using LinkedIn’s sponsored messaging ads.

When setting a budget, decide on the total amount you want to spend on your campaign. Then you can break this total budget down into a daily spend budget or set a maximum amount you want to spend on each click or impression, running the campaign until you've spent your total budget.

LinkedIn Ads Best Practices

General Best Practices

  • Identify your campaign goal to decide what type of LinkedIn ad will work best for you.
  • Ad content should be relevant, short, and authentic.
  • Always include a solid call to action in your ad campaign.

Creative Content Best Practices

  • Keep your copy concise, your headlines short, and your videos brief. Use large, high-quality images.
  • Put yourself in your audience's shoes to create a compelling message for your content.
  • Repurpose content from your website to use in your LinkedIn ads.

Ad Targeting Best Practices

  • Identify the location you wish to target. Then target via other demographics.
  • Avoid over-targeting your audience.
  • If you are new to LinkedIn ad targeting, utilize the Audience Expansion tools LinkedIn offers.
  • Keep sponsored content and text ad audiences over 50,000 and keep message ad audiences to 15,000.

Working With LinkedIn Campaign Experts

Thankfully, there are resources to help you make the most of the opportunities LinkedIn advertising offers. Using data from thousands of B2B advertising campaigns, Cleverly can help get you relevant leads from engaged professionals on LinkedIn.

Businesses like Uber, Amazon, Hulu, and PayPal have trusted Cleverly with LinkedIn lead generation and other paid advertising resources. So, if you’re ready to take the next step with your LinkedIn campaigns, are after more leads for your business, or want to delegate some of the social media advertising heavy lifting, check out the results Cleverly can produce for your business.