Online Marketing. LinkedIn lead generation strategies. How to use LinkedIn to generate leads

Academic Paper, 2017

30 Pages, Grade: 1,5


Table of Content

Management Summary
1 Introduction
1.1 Problem / Status Quo
1.2 Goals
1.3 Delimitation
1.4 Methodology
2 Research and Analysis
2.1 Are the professional social networks in Switzerland underestimated?
2.2 LinkedIn Marketing Solutions
2.2.1 Sponsored Content
2.2.2 Sponsored InMail
2.2.3 Text Ads
2.2.4 LinkedIn Sales Solution
2.3 Social Selling
2.3.1 Strategy of Social Selling
2.3.2 Building a Network
2.3.3 Summary
3 Conclusions
3.1 LinkedIn Marketing Solutions
3.2 Social Selling
3.3 LinkedIn Guide
4 Recommendations

List of References

List of Figures.

Management Summary

In today's world, the personal network plays an important role, LinkedIn meets the current zeitgeist. More and more people are networking and informing themselves among their contacts in order to get an honest recommendation from a credible person.

The aim of this paper is to elaborate on whether it is worthwhile to invest time and money in the world's largest professional social network LinkedIn. In addition, the possibilities LinkedIn offers are shown and explained. Strategies in the social selling area are illustrated and principles are revealed which should be observed. Another goal of this paper is to create a guide to help you when you want to advertise on LinkedIn.

Based on this paper, the author recommends to begin with a marketing strategy comprising LinkedIn as an important channel. As the number of advertisers is rising, this indicates that there is potential to create a competitive advantage by stepping in early. Providing interesting and valuable information about your company and your products, one can create brand-awareness and potentially increasing sales.

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Figure 1: Continuous growth through contribution

1 Introduction

1.1 Problem / Status Quo

With more than 530 million users, LinkedIn embodies the largest professional social network worldwide. Its mission is: «connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful». (LinkedIn Inc., 2017a) In 2016, LinkedIn has announced that they will be acquired by Microsoft for 26,2 billion USD. LinkedIn provides a variety of services, from Marketing Solutions over Talent Solutions to Premium Subscription products. Microsoft announced that LinkedIn contributed a revenue of 975 million USD to fiscal year 2017 in Q3. Although LinkedIn shows a continuous growth, the competition is active. Viadeo reports 65 million members according to their own numbers and XING which is strongly represented in the DACH region reports 12 million members. (Capital, 2014; LinkedIn Inc., 2017a;, 2015; Microsoft Corp., 2017; Weiner, 2016; XING SE, 2017)

1.2 Goals

The general objective of this paper is to show how LinkedIn can be used to increase the lead generation. Additionally, it helps advertisers to understand the opportunities which LinkedIn Advertising provides. This paper will elaborate on the following points:

- LinkedIn marketing solutions
- Compensation methods
- Target a unique audience
- Risks of marketing in a professional network
- Build and use a professional network
- Best practices

An additional goal is to provide a guide for advertisers who are interested in LinkedIn Advertising.


The focus of this paper is on LinkedIn Advertising and does not include the following points:

- Comparison to other social network sites such as Facebook or Twitter
- Comparison to other marketing platform such as TV spots or posters

In addition the author may use terms which are originated from the social media, marketing and computer science field. A basic knowledge in the mentioned fields is recommended for a better understanding of this paper. Furthermore, this paper will not describe common online advertising functions, a basic knowledge of online marketing is a prerequisite to maximize the benefit of this paper.


The following figure shows on which methodology base the paper was written.

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Figure 2: Methodology

The first part of this paper will focus on research and analysis. It will include statistics of existing campaigns. An analysis of the different advertising methods will be conducted. The author will also look for companies that have successfully implemented the advertising measures. In addition to the advertising methods offered by LinkedIn, the author will also investigate on the network itself and how it can be used for lead generation. Furthermore, strategies that enable successful networking will be investigated.

The second part will focus on the goals which were defined in this paper. Based on the analysis of the second part, a conclusion will show risks and potential on marketing solutions which are offered by LinkedIn. The author will also describe which indicators point to an opportunity or to a risk.

The last part is dedicated to a recommendation for advertisers. It describes the advantages and disadvantages of LinkedIn advertising. The recommendation will also contain principles which should be followed in order to ensure effective marketing.

2Research and Analysis

2.1Are the professional social networks in Switzerland underestimated?

In 2016, Facebook generated more than 23 billion euros in revenue. Thus, it has already been proven that social networks have the potential to generate a significant profit. With more than 530 million users, LinkedIn is the largest professional network in the world according their own numbers. (Facebook Inc., 2017, p. 31; LinkedIn Inc., 2017a)

Large Swiss companies such as the Swatch Group or Galenica have only created the company page on LinkedIn. None of the two companies have posted a contribution or actively searched for employees. In the USA, LinkedIn has already established itself with more than 133 million users. The companies use LinkedIn to recruit talents and communicate with the public. By publishing their news in a social network, the message is seen and can be shared by the people who follow the company. (LinkedIn Inc., 2017c, 2017h)

Marketing companies such as HubSpot or HootSuite are already successfully using LinkedIn for their customers. According to research by HubSpot, LinkedIn generates 400% more leads within their target audience compared to other platforms. Similar results were also published by HootSuite, they saw an improvement of 15% at the conversation rate and 32% lower cost per form-fill. (LinkedIn Inc., 2016)

2.2LinkedIn Marketing Solutions

LinkedIn Marketing Solutions allow marketers to reach their target audience on a professional ground. According to LinkedIn, four out of five members drive business decisions and according to comScore’s 2013 Buying Power Index they have twice as much buying power than the average web audience. In addition, the Content Marketing Institute's North America report claims that 77% of B2C companies now have a content marketing strategy. (LinkedIn Inc., 2015, 2017e)

Salesforce published back in 2016 five recommendations for a successful B2C Brand advertising on LinkedIn. (Givens, 2016)

- «Use rich targeting capabilities» based on educational institutions, seniority within a company and different LinkedIn groups. The UQ Business School, an Australian business school known for its top MBA program, used LinkedIn to deepen its collaboration with business people and strengthen its position as a business school.
- «But do not get too granular in targeting» when it comes to missing out on a large population of potential new supporters. For example, a global banking and financial services provider has recruited to help attract new, highly influential and wealthy LinkedIn followers. The bank was targeting their audience by job title seniority (Senior, Manager and Director) across all countries.
- «Take advantage of the highly affluent and educated user base.» LinkedIn is known for attracting highly qualified and educated professionals. B2C brands whose target consumer meets these criteria should be particularly interested in advertising on LinkedIn. Luxury and lifestyle brands or brands with high-end products are able to address these customers on one platform. For example, Callaway, a high-end golf brand, launched a LinkedIn advertising campaign prior to the 2013 U.S. Open. Its aim was to strengthen its brand presence among the digitally networked professionals who play golf.
- «That goes for automotive advertisers too!» A study has shown that people who use LinkedIn are more prosperous than those who do not use LinkedIn. With a large probability, household income is more than USD 100,000 per year. This, of course, also makes the users interesting for vehicle manufacturers. Purchasing power is sufficient to make major investments, such as for a new car. According to Crowdtap, 80% of buyers are more likely to contact their network than a seller.
- «Do not forget the top motives driving users to LinkedIn» in the first place. The majority of LinkedIn users use the platform for professional development and job searches, hence, it is highly recommended to integrate this aspect in your advertisement. Holiday Inn Express wanted to set itself apart from the competition by increasing brand awareness. They started a campaign intended for business people from management consultancies because they are likely to be traveling for business.

(Givens, 2016)

2.2.1Sponsored Content

LinkedIn offers sponsored content to its advertisers. A sponsored Content is a post that shows up in your newsfeed. With an integrated advertisement in news feeds you will get the attention right there where you want it. This will lead to traffic from highly engaged people.

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Figure 3: LinkedIn Newsfeed with Sponsored Content


Excerpt out of 30 pages


Online Marketing. LinkedIn lead generation strategies. How to use LinkedIn to generate leads
University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
ISBN (Book)
File size
1398 KB
Linkedin, Social Media, Marketing
Quote paper
Richard Künzi (Author), 2017, Online Marketing. LinkedIn lead generation strategies. How to use LinkedIn to generate leads, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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