LinkedIn Ads Vs Facebook Ads - What's More Relevant for Your Business?
Social media is a playground for businesses and customers alike. While it empowers businesses to connect with their customers proactively, it also enables customers to voice their opinions and reach out to brands directly.
Whether you are a retailer, a multinational or a startup, you know your customer is out there on some or the other social media platform. The real challenge – finding where they really are.
A lot of brands are stuck at this fork on the road to reaching their customers. Which platform should I engage them on? Especially when it comes to advertising, this fork is quite dominant and the fight is between two key platforms – Meta and LinkedIn. In simpler words, most companies often get stuck on the question – should we run ads on Facebook or LinkedIn?
Well, if you are stuck here too, this article is meant for you. Read on as we compare LinkedIn and Facebook Ads on 4 key factors of advertising.
Spoiler Alert: We are also going to tell you why we strongly recommend LinkedIn over Facebook for B2B brands.
LinkedIn Ads Vs Facebook Ads
Factor 1: User Base
Facebook wins on this one, hands down! Facebook has nearly three times more users than LinkedIn. Speaking strictly in terms of numbers, Facebook has over 2.9 billion monthly active users worldwide as of January 2022. It is the largest social network in the world and is used by people of all ages and backgrounds. Facebook is particularly popular among younger generations, with around 70% of users falling in the 18 to 29 age range. The platform is used for various purposes, such as connecting with friends and family, sharing photos and videos, following news and entertainment, and joining groups and communities. Facebook’s user base is also spread across the globe, with the largest user base in Asia, followed by North America and Europe.
On the other hand, we have LinkedIn with 900 million users. Out of these members, over 350 million are active monthly users who use the platform in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. LinkedIn is particularly popular among working professionals, with over 40% of its users accessing the platform daily. The largest age group on LinkedIn is 25 to 34-year-olds, with around 33% of its users falling in this age range. The platform is used by individuals, businesses, and organizations to create professional profiles, connect with others, search for jobs, and share industry-related news and insights.
However, the comparison for the user base is incomplete without understanding the kind of audiences present on both platforms. While you would definitely be able to reach a larger audience on Facebook, how relevant the audience would be to your brand is a question, especially for B2B. For a B2B brand, you can leverage Facebook for brand visibility and awareness, but it’s quite unlikely that you’ll find more customers there, as the LinkedIn audience is more professional.
Factor 2: Targeting
A quick and dirty comparison of targeting on LinkedIn and Facebook would be that LinkedIn has Professional segment-based targeting while Facebook has Interest-based targeting. Let us explain.
Interest-based targeting on Facebook
Interest-based targeting on Facebook means targeting ads to people based on their demonstrated interests, behaviours, and actions on the platform, indicating their likelihood to engage with specific products or services. In other words, Facebook uses data on how people interact with its platform to infer their interests and predict their future actions.
Facebook offers several targeting options for advertisers to reach people with Interest-based targeting. Here are a few examples:
- Interests: Advertisers can target people based on the interests they’ve indicated on their Facebook profile or through their behaviour on the platform, such as liking certain pages or interacting with certain content.
- Behaviours: Advertisers can target people based on their online and offline behaviours, such as purchasing behaviour, device usage, and travel habits.
- Lookalike audiences: Advertisers can create a “lookalike audience” based on their existing customer list or website visitors, and target people who are similar to their existing customers in terms of interests and behaviours.
- Custom audiences: Advertisers can target ads to people who have already interacted with their business, such as website visitors or email subscribers.
Facebook also uses machine learning algorithms to optimize ad delivery and target people who are most likely to engage with the ad. This means that as people interact with ads, Facebook learns which targeting options work best and adjusts the targeting accordingly.
Professional Segment-based targeting on LinkedIn
Segmented targeting on LinkedIn means targeting ads to specific groups of people based on their professional characteristics and demographics, such as job title, industry, company size, location, and more. This allows advertisers to reach the most relevant audience for their products or services and achieve their advertising goals.
LinkedIn offers a range of targeting options for advertisers to create segmented campaigns. Here are a few examples:
- Job function and title targeting: Advertisers can target people based on their job function or specific job titles, such as “marketing manager” or “CEO”.
- Industry targeting: Advertisers can target people based on the industry they work in, such as “healthcare” or “financial services”.
- Company size targeting: Advertisers can target people based on the size of their company, such as “small business” or “enterprise”.
- Location targeting: Advertisers can target people based on their location, such as country, state, or city.
- Education targeting: Advertisers can target people based on their education level, such as “bachelor’s degree” or “master’s degree”.
- Member groups targeting: Advertisers can target people who are members of specific LinkedIn groups, such as “digital marketing professionals” or “sales managers”.
LinkedIn also offers a feature called “Matched Audiences”, which allows advertisers to target people who have already interacted with their business, such as website visitors or email subscribers. This feature enables advertisers to create more personalized and targeted campaigns and increase the likelihood of conversions.
Essentially, if as a business you have a clear view of which prospects you need to target in the B2B world, LinkedIn will let you filter your audience exactly to match your target. So, you’re able to pinpoint your exact target audience and advertise only to relevant people.
Factor 3: Cost
On the face of it, LinkedIn never wins the cost battle. First of all, LinkedIn has minimum budget commitments that you have to adhere to. To top that, the cost per click (CPC) is much higher on LinkedIn as compared to Facebook.
In fact, LinkedIn median CPC is significantly higher than all the other top social media platforms. Of the four major social networks, the median CPC for LinkedIn Ads is the highest at $5.61 while it is the lowest for Facebook at $0.51.
LinkedIn Ads are generally considered more expensive than other social media advertising platforms like Facebook or Instagram, but that does not necessarily mean they are overpriced. The higher cost per click (CPC) on LinkedIn can actually indicate that the leads generated from those clicks are of higher quality and have a higher potential for conversion.
LinkedIn’s advertising platform is specifically designed for B2B marketing, which means that its user base consists mainly of professionals and decision-makers in various industries. These users are actively seeking information and resources to help them make informed business decisions, which makes them more likely to engage with ads that are relevant to their interests and needs. This level of engagement translates to a higher ROI for advertisers who use LinkedIn Ads.
In fact, a study conducted by HubSpot found that LinkedIn Ads had a 277% higher conversion rate than Facebook Ads and a 500% higher likelihood to generate high-quality leads. This is because LinkedIn’s targeting options allow advertisers to reach specific professional audiences based on job titles, company size, industry, and other factors that are relevant to B2B marketing.
Overall, the higher cost of LinkedIn Ads can be seen as an investment in generating high-quality leads that have a higher potential for conversion and a positive ROI. Advertisers who are targeting a professional audience and are looking for quality leads that are more likely to convert should consider using LinkedIn Ads in their marketing strategy.
Factor 4: Mindset
This is an important distinction between Facebook and LinkedIn that can impact the effectiveness of advertising on each platform. Facebook is primarily a social platform where people go to connect with friends and family, share personal updates, and consume content for entertainment. As a result, users tend to have a consumer mindset when using Facebook. They are more likely to be interested in ads that appeal to their personal interests and needs, such as ads for clothing, food, or travel.
On the other hand, LinkedIn is a professional networking site where people go to connect with colleagues and peers, build their professional reputation, and find job opportunities. Users on LinkedIn have a work mindset and are more interested in content and ads that are relevant to their professional interests and needs. This makes LinkedIn a particularly effective platform for B2B brands, as they can target audiences based on job titles, industries, and other professional criteria that are relevant to their products or services.
The difference in mindset between the two platforms can impact the effectiveness of advertising. A B2B brand that advertises on Facebook may struggle to engage users who are in a consumer mindset and not actively looking for professional solutions. On the other hand, advertising on LinkedIn can be more effective for B2B brands because users are already in a professional mindset and more likely to be receptive to content and ads that are relevant to their work.
It’s important to note that both platforms can be effective for advertising, depending on the goals of the campaign and the target audience. However, understanding the mindset of users on each platform can help advertisers tailor their messaging and targeting strategies for maximum effectiveness.
Summing It Up: LinkedIn For B2B
Any B2B marketing expert would tell you that you don’t need a million leads to generate high ROI in B2B, you just need a thousand high-value, high-quality leads. B2B marketing is all about knowing your target audience, segmenting it well enough and reaching it out with personalized adequate content. LinkedIn offers you to do exactly that. While you can always use Facebook to build a presence and have an online visibility, so that more people know about your company, you would need LinkedIn to generate quality leads and convert them into customers. LinkedIn’s audience is primarily professional, with over 900 million members who use the platform for work-related purposes such as networking, job searching, and industry research. This means that advertisers can target a highly relevant audience based on job title, industry, company size, and other professional criteria. Additionally, LinkedIn offers a range of ad formats and targeting options that are specifically designed for B2B marketing, such as Sponsored Content, Sponsored InMail, and Dynamic Ads. Another factor that makes LinkedIn an effective platform for B2B advertising is the ability to showcase thought leadership and expertise through content marketing.