Can B2C Marketing Succeed on LinkedIn?
LinkedIn has traditionally been a place for B2B marketing. The unique user base of professionals and students makes the social networking service a hub for companies and networks. Plus, four out of five LinkedIn users hold decision-making positions in their company.
A professional audience is of course an excellent match for B2B marketing.
Recently, however, LinkedIn has also been home to B2C marketing.
Every morning when I sign up for LinkedIn, I’m greeted with a mix of company types promoting their brands and offerings. Let’s talk about how – and why – B2C marketing fits in LinkedIn, and for other reasons why the channel is usually known as a place for B2B marketing.
For example, I spend a lot of time in marketing groups on LinkedIn and I am more concerned with content related to marketing topics. Before I found an ad for a video marketing company:
With LinkedIn’s native and video ads like the ones above, advertisers can reach a large audience by including them in their preferred target segment’s news feed.
I would expect an ad like this based on my LinkedIn behavior. Since I am actively dealing with content and video marketing posts in my feed, I was shown an ad that targets these interests and my behavior on the platform. Using LinkedIn for B2B marketing is a popular choice due to the platform’s unique reach.
“The sponsored content from LinkedIn helps to find relevant content for quality prospects in our B2B market and effectively combine our inbound strategy with cost-effective lead generation,” said Kipp Bodnar, Chief Marketing Officer of HubSpot.
B2B marketers can achieve their goals with a bespoke content strategy using LinkedIn offerings – like a sponsored main feed post. At every stage of the sales lifecycle, LinkedIn offers a way to promote professional leads.
Can B2C marketers target the LinkedIn audience?
LinkedIn is a great platform for B2B marketing, but is also becoming increasingly popular with B2C marketers. For example, the unique audience can be used for stylized campaigns that work for the professional when he is not working.
To illustrate, it is likely that professionals have purchasing power in their homes. If your primary audience is children, a secondary audience like their parents can be reached on LinkedIn.
In addition, promoted and sponsored content on LinkedIn is less easy to identify in main feeds. The articles are noted, but inserted into news feeds so that they do not distract. An imbalance in the B2C material on the website also offers the possibility of having an impact on users.
In general, there is an audience for almost every industry on LinkedIn. Not just customers straight Customers – they are also professionals. There is a good chance that part of this audience will be found and taken to the next stage of their journey.
Tips for B2C marketers on LinkedIn
- Relate to the interests of your audience outside of work.
- Increase engagement for content that promotes brand awareness.
- Use the LinkedIn Audience Network to determine your reach.
- Know the ad options and how to use them.
- Budget yourself for success.
- Use the key feed posts to market a limited budget.
- Save money with one brand page.
1. Relate to the interests of your audience outside of work.
The content on LinkedIn usually focuses on a professional environment. B2Cs can either emphasize this atmosphere or take advantage of the lack of non-professional content when considering a marketing strategy.
If you create marketing messages outside of LinkedIn’s traditional “work” landscape, your content will stand out because it is different. Your content could be that your audience breaks your audience’s needs when it takes a break from the day and surfs social media.
Let’s take a look at the entertainment company HBO. The corresponding LinkedIn account contains posts that have little to do with the work but support their brand. For example, for Mental Health Awareness Month, the company has released a number of shows and films featuring characters with mental illnesses:
HBO uses content they already need to create marketing messages that relate to the interests of their professional audience. However, they do so by taking other interests into account, such as causes that are important to the brand and its users. They publish trailers and release schedules so segmented customers can stay up to date.
You don’t have to stick to the business atmosphere on LinkedIn – play with different sources of content. You can make a big impression on the channel simply by using what makes your brand special.
2. Encourage engagement for content that promotes brand awareness.
What distinguishes your brand from competitors? Whatever it is, use it to your advantage on LinkedIn.
Many B2C company profiles on LinkedIn use the site to highlight business success and personal messages. In this way, customers can see who is behind the companies that they want to support and receive information about what is important for this company.
Lululemon is a sports company with a LinkedIn page dedicated to supporting team members. The content is work-related, but gives a brand-related touch. Take this video that illustrates the lives of employees around the world in the company:
This is a path to take if you don’t want to get too far from the professional emphasis on LinkedIn, but if you want to develop an approach based on corporate culture. When you congratulate employees on a webinar where they were introduced, or when they share a business point of view on current issues, you can understand what is important for your brand.
These types of posts can appear anywhere on your LinkedIn profile, and can tell customers more about your business beyond the product. It’s a great mid-cycle tactic to realign leads.
3. Use the LinkedIn Audience Network to determine your potential reach.
The LinkedIn Audience Network is part of the Marketing Solutions tool set. Here you can determine the potential reach and determine who of your ideal audience uses LinkedIn. To use the Audience Network, you only need a sponsored campaign.
When you open the audience network, you can choose different categories of potential audiences, such as B. Arts and Entertainment and Education to include or exclude your campaign. You may find that some categories such as “Family and Parents” are great for B2C markets.
The Audience Network also provides you with details on campaign performance. There you will find out how well your campaign is doing with the target groups. In addition to conversion rates, metrics such as impressions, clicks, and views are displayed.
If you’re not ready to start a LinkedIn campaign or want more information about who uses LinkedIn in your industry, read the following resources:
4. Budget yourself for success.
If you use LinkedIn ads, please indicate your budget. Ultimately, the amount you spend is up to you. However, remember that you are participating in an auction system with a cost per click.
You and advertisers with similar target groups bid on an advertising space to be shown. Choose between the bid types That brings you the results you need. For example, if you want to increase brand awareness, the maximum pay-per-1,000 impressions type will most likely be your winner.
In addition to bids, advertisers can set a daily and total budget. The total budget is the absolute maximum you want to spend, while the daily budget is a bit more flexible. They allow the campaign to run until you stop it.
LinkedIn ads can range from $ 2- $ 15, depending on your ad, bid, and campaign settings. Some types of ads and bids are cheaper than others. So explore all of your options.
Set aside enough to run a full campaign. For example, how much will you spend on a day versus a month? For example, suppose you use CPM ads and pay $ 5 for every 1,000 impressions a post receives for 30 days. Would you have the estimated $ 6,000 in ad spend for 30,000 impressions?
If you don’t have the budget to advertise on LinkedIn, don’t be discouraged. There are many other ways to get your messages seen by the right people. For example, really bursting the main post feeds – we’ll cover that next.
5. Use the key feed posts to market a limited budget.
Use the most important feed posts to your advantage. This is a particularly big step if your company has a site and a growing network in the channel.
If your business is followed by several thought leaders, what you post on your page will appear in the top feeds. If they interact with the post, e.g. If you share or leave a comment, this interaction will be shown to your network. If this pioneer is active in your industry, your contribution will be made accessible to a large, ideal audience.
Videos, photos that show corporate culture, and offers are great for LinkedIn marketing. An e-book offer, for example, offers something valuable and interesting for target customers.
This thought leader in digital marketing used a main survey to expand its network and gain followers:
A poll like this is just one way to use feeds to attract audiences who are concerned with your content. If you post about their interests like social media for marketers, you’ll likely increase engagement.
Main feed posts can be treated as basic social media posts – part of a larger goal. Perhaps this goal is to expand your company’s reach or convert more leads. Build your content strategy on this goal and you have a good start.
6. Save money by having a company page.
If you have a company profile for a social media channel, such as Facebook for business or Twitter business, Company pages on LinkedIn are similar. They offer companies the opportunity to create their own profile with personalization offers for branding and networking.
For example, if you work in the healthcare industry, you can build a community of patients and other professionals on your company page. You can interact with the members you are following, post to activate your network, and use the CTA link for your website.
You have customizable options to expand a network and audience. You can also get in touch with employees and share contributions that are directly related to your company.
Unique features of a company page include the option to update the community with news, improved search engine recognition and, if you wish, a career page where you can post new jobs and opportunities.
Career sites are a separate entity only for company recruitment and branding. However, they can be linked to your company page. You can also add a tab that shows and configures the corporate culture to show what it’s like to work in your company:
LinkedIn users who view company pages can get a feel for what a company is about, what offers it offers and what possibilities it offers. look at that ultimate guide to get started.
In the meantime, let’s take a look at how some B2C brands use their LinkedIn accounts for marketing purposes.
Examples of B2C brands on LinkedIn
- Well done
- Warby Parker
At New York-based retailer Madewell, LinkedIn is all about branding and culture. The report focuses on what defines the Madewell brand and the culture of its community.
For example, to support Mental Health Awareness Month, Madwell’s account includes a post on how company employees are responsible for their mental health and encourages followers to invest in what makes them happy:
When I came across this post, I saw that Madewell supports mental health as a company. Other causes I’ve seen in photos and captions have shown me how Madewell is taking steps to reduce its environmental footprint.
By looking at content that works for working mothers and local businesses run by women, I got an idea of the company’s ideal audience. Women who see themselves in the culture that Madewell has cultivated with their LinkedIn account will be interested in what the brand has to offer.
Looking at Madewell’s LinkedIn presence, I was able to get an overview of how the channel fits perfectly with brand awareness. As a professional, I felt connected to the interaction with content that was created to introduce myself to the corporate atmosphere, like the “Zen playlist”.
Spotify has two company pages: One specifically for companies Spotify brandsand one for customers that is the main page. If you are part of a larger B2C company that also has a large business customer base, you should imagine a page only for B2B activities.
Spotify does an excellent job of updating customers and introducing leads from an employee perspective. For example, until recently the streaming service had a limit of 10,000 songs that an account holder can “like”. When the limit was lifted, the company published a blog written by a Spotify engineer, stating that this was not an easy task:
This post informs the network of one from Spotify that explains a company-wide decision. Members learn more about industry news on LinkedIn. So it was a good choice to promote them to the blog. It combined professionalism and brand awareness with content.
For the B2C market, it is important for Spotify to connect the network with the corporate culture. They also run a series called “Quickfire Questions” in which employees are tracked in their respective offices to answer questions about themselves. They also host “How It’s Made,” a series in which engineers explain to players the introduction of a product or feature like Spotify’s Mobile Web.
When I, as a consumer, feel that I know how a company’s products and services are developed and the people behind the business are related, I feel a sense of community. I will visit the website and the site regularly for updates.
Microsoft’s LinkedIn presence is based on how their products foster a community of collaboration and education. These topics connect most of the Microsoft content on LinkedIn.
Let’s take a look at the video on the company page as an example. The video shows Microsoft employees based in France on Mother’s Day. It highlights women who work with their children from home and sends a message that they are a company that takes care of their teams.
In a repost of Microsoft EducationThe content introduced a team update that focuses on the success of students and teachers. A focus on education and cooperation informs the community and integrates it into a scenario that many experience: the challenge of creating a school atmosphere at home.
Microsoft’s ads share actionable offerings such as a number of free online courses, AI summits, webinars, and certifications. They inspire both potential customers and existing customers to act. Target groups who want to know how valuable Microsoft products are to them or who want to explore additional training opportunities learn what the company can do to help.
FabFitFun is a seasonal subscription box service that enables customers to live a happier and healthier life through brand discovery. However, the corresponding LinkedIn page focuses less on the product than on the success and culture of the employees.
This company shows how it is possible to get involved as a B2C on the professional side of LinkedIn. FabFitFun’s contributions consist largely of employee reposts and organic content about employee performance.
For example, one of their contributions congratulates an employee on the design of the Summer 2020 box. The article talks about the inspiration of the design and contains a photo.
The article gives an overview of the FabFitFun product and tells the story behind the conception of designs. Another article publishes an article interviewing the company’s head of influencer marketing about reality TV influencers. Another post is promoting a VP of Marketing article on how Los Angeles Tech Companies support their local communities.
FabFitFun’s approach to using LinkedIn includes building a network and sharing company stories. Networks are built by rebooking external sources when employees are mentioned, and company stories are shown that characterize the brand.
If someone came across a contribution from FabFitFun, like someone who received an award for the “Best Subscription Box 2019 for women”, they would immediately know that the company is considered one of the best by its audience. Although the company has not run any ads lately, they use their main feed posts to introduce leads to the business.
The consumer goods brand YETI takes a totally committed approach to their contributions. Scrolling through the LinkedIn content brings the topic of exploration to life with visually appealing multimedia content.
Her current video about the crease announces a collection inspired and forged by minerals from the earth, and shows how YETI makes products and how their products work. Someone unfamiliar with the brand could watch the 15-second clip and learn that it sells a range of outdoor lifestyle products such as mugs.
Contributions like this quickly catch the eye of consumers and inform them about the brand. The language implies that the product is inspired by how “Mother Nature works best” and fits into the professional culture on LinkedIn.
YETI also publishes offers such as a free streaming service for a limited time Here you can watch 10-minute videos of scenic locations like Colorado, Big Island and Oregon. It’s perfect content for someone browsing through LinkedIn and looking for distraction during their workday. For YETI, this is an intelligent way to increase data traffic.
6. Warby Parker
The eyewear company Warby Parker publishes LinkedIn content, which is mainly about brand discovery. For example, the headline tells customers how much their products cost, and some page posts are dedicated to product announcement videos.
In addition to these features, the brand also offers a 15-slide presentation on optometry. It contains information about the company, its values and products, and some information about how to work as an optician for Warby Parker.
Such a recruitment document also offers potential customers a compact document that they can review to get a feel for Warby Parker. On three slides, someone can learn something about the company’s history, values and products.
The company also has its own hashtag, #teamwarby, which is used by employees and fans. Hashtags are a way to build a community between social media sites and their followers and to see help sites from an audience.
For example, if I was an optician who followed the hashtag #optometrist on LinkedIn, I would probably come across a few posts from Warby Parker and learn what it means to be part of #teamwarby. As a consumer, the photos and videos posted by Warby Parker highlight a company that prioritizes employees and customers.
Away is a retailer that sells luggage, backpacks and other travel accessories. The LinkedIn company page is a great example of how to lead a stranger.
After knowing nothing about the company, clicking the “About” section told me a lot: the company’s history, why it was founded, and its values. After reading that Away was recognized by Forbes, Fast Company, TIME and even LinkedIn, I noticed a cool, shiny badge that reads “Recognized by LinkedIn’s Top Startups” that is linked to the official article.
Away has no ads or videos on their site, but they do have engaging content from the announcement of collections and partnerships (like one with tennis champion Serena Williams). As I flipped through, I saw beautiful, modern collections that follow unique themes.
For example, this little luggage line was inspired by Pantone’s Color of the Year:
I don’t know much about choosing the right luggage, but I do know a lot about color theory, so this post attracted me almost immediately. The content of Away does an excellent job of connecting well-known names to their product so that the public can follow this example.
Take, for example, the partnership with Serena Williams. Some may not know anything about away, but their cover story includes one of the following Top scorer in women’s tennis, someone more people know.
Before visiting the Away site, I was a stranger to their brand, but after interacting with just a few elements of their corporate site, I felt more comfortable with the idea of shopping with the company. I learned from their content how your company fits into my lifestyle.
Fenty is a global fashion brand that uses fascinating multimedia content to tell its story and portray the brand. For example, the current video above the fold provides an overview of the styles of the 6-20 collection, with the label sharing the inspiration for the collection.
The interesting thing about almost every Fenty post is that they each contain a hashtag or link. These elements inspire action. In the product launch video, for example, the labeling ended with a link to the website. Another post had an exclusive half-price deal and a link to the landing page.
I love the idea of adding a linkable word or phrase to each post, like the sales offer. Buyers who are ready to make a purchase do not have to search to find the website. This means that they are less likely to lose interest during this trip.
I also immediately get an idea of who your target customer is. The content reflects young adults in high fashion who like clothes in neutral colors. Multimedia shows the talent of young creative people, be it in models, photographers or videographers, and shows how their creations appeal to customers.
Fenty uses unique branding techniques to design the content. Almost every picture is watermarked in the middle, and in each video there is an endless scroll of the logo at the bottom of the screen. If you want to be inspired to innovate how to market your brand, Fenty’s LinkedIn breaks the norm and tries new strategies.
Streaming service Netflix also has an interesting approach to LinkedIn marketing. Your company image on LinkedIn is “Doing the Best Work of Your Life” with content based on community engagement.
For example, one of their posts is a poll:
The Netflix corporate site fans recently voted who they want in their interview panel and added characters from Netflix Originals. The company also asks its followers questions such as “Which company buzzword has to be retired forever?” (This question has received over 2,000 answers).
Netflix’s LinkedIn presence is fun and stimulates lively discussions. Hosting Q&A formats such as surveys and open questions is a tactic that promotes a sense of belonging when you visit the site.
Netflix also notifies the LinkedIn community of upcoming Netflix publications and partnerships (such as the announcement of a multi-year contract with Nickelodeon). This way, current customers reviewing their feeds get an indication of what’s going on and leads can find something related to their interests.
Netflix creates content on LinkedIn that corresponds to the work-life balance. It triggers workplace conversations that may lead to a water cooler or virtual happy hour, but also includes entertaining entertainment messages about upcoming projects and events that take place as part of the service.
At first glance, I was confused as to why B2C brands appear on LinkedIn. But if you think about it, professionals aren’t straight Professionals – they are also parents, siblings, people with a life outside of work. For this reason, it is entirely possible to use these interests outside of work on a platform that is intended for sharing and connecting. When building these connections, focus on how and who.
Originally published June 23, 2020, 4:00 a.m., updated June 23, 2020