What makes one ad bring in sales better than another? We’ve all seen ads that grab our attention and we can’t wait to learn more.

We’ve also seen ads that leave us speechless, wondering what the heck the advertiser was trying to accomplish.

Are You Visibly Trying To Sell Something

Go back and read that last paragraph again. What is the difference between an ad that makes us want to learn more and an ad that leaves us confused?

It’s simple. Ads that grab our attention aren’t visibly trying to sell us anything. Nothing turns us off more than someone giving us the hard sell like a used-car salesman.

We like ads that grab our attention and teach us something or entertain us. Those ads turn off our noise filter, so the advertiser can build a trusting relationship with us.

Make A Connection

When creating online ads for LinkedIn, you don’t want to sell. You want to make a connection with the reader and build a long-term relationship.

If you are selling business-to-consumer (B2C) products like you see on sites such as Amazon or Target, it’s okay to sell in your advertising because you can entice people to make impulse purchases.

The price point for B2C products is much lower and the buying cycle can be seconds or minutes.

LinkedIn isn’t a great place to advertise B2C products, so you won’t see ads for consumer products.

Business-to-Business (B2B) products and services have a much higher price point and a longer buying cycle—sometimes up to a year—so you have to build a long-term relationship with the buyer.

On LinkedIn, you may be running ads for many reasons including:

  • Lead generation so your sales reps can follow up with the prospects
  • Inviting people to follow your company or join your group on LinkedIn
  • Recruitment of new employees for your company
  • B2B products or services promotions
  • Client case studies or success stories promotion
  • LinkedIn polls promotions to gather business intelligence
  • Brand promotions so people will become familiar with your company

Linkedin advertising can be a very powerful tool if used correctly. As with any advertising campaign, whether it’s on LinkedIn or not, you need to create a plan and an objective for your ad campaign. A well-executed advertising campaign will return huge dividends for your company.

Create Laser-Focused Campaigns

If you are creating an ad campaign to generate leads, focus on generating leads.

If you are running a branding campaign to publicize your company name, focus on the branding campaign.

Do not try to kill two birds with one stone by combining a lead-gen campaign with a branding campaign. You will send a mixed message that will yield horrible results.

 The Intent Of Your Ad

When you see an online ad, you should be able to tell if the campaign is designed to promote a brand, advertise a product, generate leads, gather information, recruit new employees, or build relationships.

If the intent of the ad isn’t obvious to you, the ad is probably a failure because it isn’t conveying a crystal-clear message.

Remember, people decide in a split second if an ad is relevant and move on if it’s not.

Carefully Plan

Everyone sees thousands of advertisements every day, so it’s hard to break through the clutter and grab someone’s attention.

You need to interrupt a viewer’s thought pattern without being annoying.

If you grab her attention and pique her interest, she’ll click on your ad to learn more.

If you don’t grab her attention in a second or two, she moves on and can subconsciously block them in the future.

This is why you need to carefully plan your advertising campaigns to get the most from your advertising dollar.

A Well-Planned Campaign

LinkedIn advertising has some of the most advanced targeting capabilities of any online advertising platform.

You can display specific ads to specific job titles, companies, or LinkedIn Groups.

A well-planned LinkedIn advertising campaign includes tracking your results, so you know which ads and targeting demographics, work best for your products and services.

If you are a web content management software company, you can create ad campaigns to target web developers, IT managers, marketing executives, project managers, and CEOs.

You can display technical ads to the developers and IT managers; marketing-focused campaigns to the marketing executives; project-management-related ads to the project managers; and financial-related ads to the CFO and CEO.

Targeting Capabilities

Many advertisers don’t take advantage of the targeting capabilities and they display all ads, to all job titles.

The web developers will see ads designed for the CEO and the CEO may see technical ads, which will result in a lower conversion rate.

Creating relevant ads and displaying those ads to the appropriate target audience, will improve your conversion rate significantly,
while reducing your advertising costs.


The key to writing successful online ads is to put yourself in the shoes of the person who is reading your ad. Imagine how they are feeling. Feel their pain points.

Understand why they are frustrated. Once you get into their heads, you can write ads that will grab their attention instantly and make them feel comfortable with you and your products.

About the author 

Ted Prodromou

Would you like me to help you?

I'm the #1 best-selling author of Ultimate Guide to LinkedIn for Business and Ultimate Guide to Twitter for Business. People call me America's Leading LinkedIn Coach.

I'm the founder of Search Marketing Simplified, LLC, a full service online marketing agency. The SMS team designs and implements advanced LinkedIn and social media lead-generation strategies for small to medium-sized businesses. SMS will set up and manage your marketing funnels using organic, social and paid traffic.

Did you know I've been working with the internet since 1991, long before Al Gore invented it?

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