LinkedIn to offer retargeting, email targeting later this year

B2B marketers will soon have a new best friend in LinkedIn, as the professional social network is set to launch a number of powerful new ad targeting options later this year.

A presentation obtained by Marketing Land indicates that in November, the company plans to unveil an offering, Matched Audiences, that will give marketers the ability to target Sponsored Content ads and Sponsored InMail campaigns to LinkedIn users who have visited their website.

Additionally, they will be able to target users by email.

According to Marketing Land:

LinkedIn’s website retargeting option appears to work the same as other platforms’ web retargeting options. Businesses can combine multiple URLs or URL fragments to retarget against, so that they can aim their ads at anyone who visits any page on their sites, anyone who visits certain categories of pages or anyone who visits a single page.

For example, an advertiser might want to show one general ad to people who visit its home page, a more tailored one to people who visit its product pages and one aimed only at people who checked out its contact page. To make these retargeted ads less creepy, they will not run until at least 300 people with LinkedIn accounts have visited the specified pages on the advertiser’s site.

LinkedIn’s new offerings can be combined with its existing targeting features, which allow marketers to deliver ads and messages to specific groups of users based on options like location and job title.

The retargeting capabilities will use LinkedIn’s Insight Tag, which initially gave marketers the ability to track conversions. Email targeting will first be available to marketers using partner marketing platforms like Eloqua and Marketo, but LinkedIn eventually plans to allow marketers to upload email addresses directly.

As with the email targeting features of other platforms, email addresses will be hashed before they are uploaded to LinkedIn to ensure privacy.

Consumer targeting options come to B2B

If LinkedIn’s Matched Audiences offering sounds familiar, or even outright mundane, that’s because it is. For years, the world’s biggest consumer social network, Facebook, has offered website retargeting and email targeting through its Custom Audiences product. Google, Twitter and Snapchat also have similar offerings.

While some B2B marketers are successfully using consumer-centric platforms like Facebook and Twitter to reach their audiences, LinkedIn’s professional focus has made it one of the most attractive platforms for B2B marketers.

Given that on Facebook, use of Custom Audiences has proven to be one of the best ways to maximize the ROI of campaigns, there’s no reason to believe that B2B marketers won’t be able to increase the efficacy of their campaigns on LinkedIn by taking advantage of Matched Audiences when it launches later this year.

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