Mobile // Mobile Applications
News
1/27/2011
11:59 AM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%
Repost This

LinkedIn Launches Targeted Ad Service

Pay-per-click service can select users based on job title, company, LinkedIn group.

Flock Browses All Your Social Connections
(click image for larger view)
Slideshow: Flock Browses All Your Social Connections

After a two-year beta test, LinkedIn on Wednesday launched LinkedIn Ads, a self-service pay-per-click product that allows advertisers to target participants by job title, company name, or LinkedIn group.

These capabilities are in addition to those made available when LinkedIn originally rolled out the program, then called LinkedIn Direct Ads, in 2008. At that time, businesses could target their ads by geography, industry, company size, job function, age, seniority, and gender.

The social media site, which has more than 90 million members, said it only lets ads appear to members who are most likely to purchase a company's products or services. These targeted ads have increased click-through rates up to fourfold for some advertisers, LinkedIn said.

"We achieved a conversion rate for our client that was almost 3x that of the overall website average by targeting the professional audience on LinkedIn," said Danielle Leitch, executive VP of client strategy at MoreVisibility, on LinkedIn's Web site.

The business-oriented site accounted for 1% of all online display ads in the United States last month, according to ComScore. By comparison, Facebook represented more than one-fourth of the total online display ad market, the research and tracking firm determined. But LinkedIn members are clearly defined, often using the site as a business-networking and career-promotion tool.

Matt Johnston, VP of marketing at uTest, said, "50% of our paid inbound leads come from LinkedIn. LinkedIn is our most cost-effective online marketing channel," in a statement on LinkedIn's Web site.

LinkedIn generates about one-third of its revenue from advertising from companies such as HP and American Express, with the remainder coming from subscription services and recruiting tools, according to reports. Combined, this income has made LinkedIn worth almost $3 billion, Bloomberg said.

Rumors also are circulating -- and getting louder -- that LinkedIn soon plans to file an initial public offering. Morgan Stanley, Bank of America, and JPMorgan are the three main contenders to be the financial underwriters of the IPO, expected to occur in 2011 -- before Facebook's anticipated 2012 IPO, according to Reuters.

"If Facebook went public before LinkedIn, do you think anyone would pay that much attention to LinkedIn? You might want to surpass the beast," an unnamed source told Reuters earlier this month.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Building A Mobile Business Mindset
Building A Mobile Business Mindset
Among 688 respondents, 46% have deployed mobile apps, with an additional 24% planning to in the next year. Soon all apps will look like mobile apps and it's past time for those with no plans to get cracking.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Elite 100 - 2014
Our InformationWeek Elite 100 issue -- our 26th ranking of technology innovators -- shines a spotlight on businesses that are succeeding because of their digital strategies. We take a close at look at the top five companies in this year's ranking and the eight winners of our Business Innovation awards, and offer 20 great ideas that you can use in your company. We also provide a ranked list of our Elite 100 innovators.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Audio Interviews
Archived Audio Interviews
GE is a leader in combining connected devices and advanced analytics in pursuit of practical goals like less downtime, lower operating costs, and higher throughput. At GIO Power & Water, CIO Jim Fowler is part of the team exploring how to apply these techniques to some of the world's essential infrastructure, from power plants to water treatment systems. Join us, and bring your questions, as we talk about what's ahead.