By Laura Holland
You may have read the news over the last few weeks that LinkedIn will be removing their ‘Lookalike Audiences’ as an ad targeting option. It’s left many marketers re-evaluating their paid strategies for 2024.
The LinkedIn Lookalike Audience function allowed you to pop in customer info from your own database and then LinkedIn’s system would scan for traits and match that audience to your ad campaign. It was an incredibly effective tool when used in conjunction with the LinkedIn Insight Tag especially for B2B marketing.
But not all is lost, instead you can utilise the new LinkedIn audience targeting options ‘Predictive Audiences’ and ‘Audience Expansion’. What are those you ask?
What are LinkedIn Predictive Audiences?
LinkedIn’s Predictive Audiences is the closest to LinkedIn’s ‘Lookalike Audience’ but uses fewer data points to generate the audience. To use this option you can use data gathered from the below:
Although it seems like you are feeding in less data, this has the potential to be a lot more targeted than the ‘Lookalike Audience’ as it is purely based on data within the LinkedIn database, they are able to predict audiences who will have a greater chance of engaging with your paid promotions.
What is LinkedIn’s Audience Expansion?
The LinkedIn Audience Expansion is a little like their Predictive Audiences, but it doesn’t use the data points listed above.
It will show your ad to audiences with similar attributes to your target audience, the example that LinkedIn gives is the below:
“If your campaign targets members with the skill Online Advertising, Audience Expansion might expand your audience to members who list the skill Interactive Marketing on their profile. This means you can discover new quality prospects and automatically drive them into your marketing funnel.”
If you don’t want the audience expansion to include certain audiences you can exclude these and it will go out to others plus your target audience - this means you can refine down the audiences you want to reach without having to do too much audience segmentation or upload data like you do in ‘Predictive Audiences’.
So What Does This Mean For LinkedIn Sponsored Content?
Overall we think this is going to be a positive shift for LinkedIn ad advertising, allowing you to really define your target audience with more precision using Predictive audiences with data points, and allowing you to cast the net a little further with Audience Expansion - because this will be using LinkedIn data you may well see better campaign results.
Lastly, please remember that although you won’t be able to create any new Lookalike Audiences after February 29th any campaigns set up prior and use Lookalike audiences and will no longer refresh after this date and will run with a static Lookalike audience.
If you want to discuss how this could affect your current and future social paid campaigns please do not hesitate to get in touch, we’re happy to guide you through. Either email us at email@example.com or ring us on +44 203357 9740