Here were the resources we covered in the episode:
What are zero click experiences and how can you leverage them in your LinkedIn advertising? I’ll explain that and more on this week’s episode of The LinkedIn Ads Show.
Welcome to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Here’s your host, AJ Wilcox.
Hey, they’re LinkedIn Ads fanatics. I’m AJ wilcox and I’m the host of the weekly podcast, The LinkedIn Ads Show. I’m thrilled to welcome you to the show for advanced B2B marketers to evolve through mastering LinkedIn Ads and achieving true pro status. Zero click experiences are becoming so much more common in our marketing efforts. And it’s going to be so important to know how to spot them and how to leverage them through your own marketing, both on and off LinkedIn. So we’ll do that today. But first, last week’s episode was about getting the best match rates on your list uploads. If you haven’t listened yet, be sure to check it out. But we got such an awesome comment, and it gave me a whole idea of something else, another angle I wanted to cover of this. So even though this is a separate episode, I want to give this to you that probably should be added into the previous episode.
So Christian Lipp commented, and he said, "Thanks for the tips. I’m using company name and LinkedIn company page URL and website domain. All of these are exact match but still, LinkedIn is only showing 90 percent match rates. And when I check on the small ABM lists, all the companies are listed there. There’s nothing listed under unlisted or unmatched. He went on to say, sometimes he likes to create a saved audience. With all of his companies that were being targeted in the company’s targeting and not leaving it up to a list upload. He went on to mention how you get 100 percent match rate and you don’t have to wait. And that made me realize the part that I forgot to mention in last week’s episode is that when you upload a list of any kind, whether company or individual, LinkedIn is never going to show you a 100 percent match rate, even if you got it. So don’t be worried if it just shows 90 percent plus, if you look and see in the unmatched tab and you see zero company names there, you know, you actually got a hundred percent. So congratulations on that. And I definitely agree with Christian here that if you have fewer than 200 companies that you’re targeting, you definitely can go and specify those company names right in your targeting and then reuse that campaign either by duplicating it to then create a different campaign that still has that list of, you know, up to 200 companies, or you can save your audience and then use that saved audience when you create other campaigns. This is, of course, only valid if you’re targeting has fewer than 200 companies that you want to go after. But if you do, I absolutely love the idea of an instant list. There’s no building time that LinkedIn needs, and you know you got a 100 percent match rate.
Also, this week I noticed LinkedIn quietly released the ability to sponsor LinkedIn articles from a campaign. While I was in a campaign in the ad section, where I was just getting ready to upload an ad, I saw this pop up. It said, Sponsor LinkedIn articles published by your company page. Look for the article tag associated with each post.
Now, many of you may be saying, oh, LinkedIn articles, those were from five years ago. And yeah, I hear you there, but I’m reading between the lines here. It looks like this might actually be the best way to sponsor LinkedIn newsletters. So if from your brand, you’re publishing a weekly or a monthly or daily LinkedIn newsletter, each of those newsletter posts actually shows up as an article. So, now, let’s say if you’re trying to get more followers or more readers to what you’re putting out in your newsletter, you may be able to start sponsoring these newsletter posts right to your ideal target audience. So it looks like you can do this by clicking on the use existing content and then look for posts on your company page that are under the tag article.
Alright, do you have a question, review, or feedback for the show? Message me on LinkedIn, or you can email us at email@example.com, and I’ll play your audio file here right on the show. I’m happy to keep you anonymous or share your details as well to shout you out, so record yourself asking a question, commenting on something from a past episode, and I’ll aim to include you right here in the show.
Alright, on to today’s topic. Let’s hit it. What is a zero click experience? This really comes from the concept of search engine marketing, and it’s when someone is searching and they find the answer before they actually click to your page. And as you can imagine, this isn’t that great when it happens, and it’s for several reasons. Number one, it’s not trackable by you. Because if the traffic never landed on your website, then analytics isn’t ever going to tell you anything about it. Number two, Google gets the traffic, but you don’t, so they’re the ones getting the value. And then number three, Google may credit you as the source, but did someone leave with a better view of your brand? Or did they just leave thinking, oh, Google is so smart. I love using Google because that’s what answers all my questions. Because of this, I’ve seen so many sites purposely trying to leave specific answers out of their meta descriptions so that it doesn’t show up in the search results page. If you have a page that lists maybe the average temperatures in the summer in a certain continent, if that’s in your meta description, someone could search, what’s the average temperature on this continent in this season? And right from the page, they got the answer, so they didn’t even have to click to your website. And Google and Bing both have knowledge graphs. This is where they take specific data and pop it off to the side of the search engine results page. And they will credit you if you’re the one featured there in that knowledge graph, so at least there’s that. But the search engine is always going to serve up what they think is the result that the searcher is looking for. So it’s pretty unreliable actually for you.
Well, this same type of principle is actually at play in your LinkedIn Ads and your LinkedIn organic content. I think this is something that can actually be a really good thing for you. How often does someone see an ad from your brand and instead of clicking on the ad where you get charged, They actually go and just Google your brand name because they’re interested to find out more about you and what you do. We don’t know how often this happens, but we know it does happen. You can test this by measuring your average search traffic over a period of time and then see what happens with a drop or a lift when you shut your ads off and then turn them back on again. You can do the same thing with your direct traffic because a lot of people will just try typing in your brand name if they see it. You can also see evidence of this happening when leads come in and let’s say they have UTM tracking codes showing that the traffic in the lead came from Google search, but when you ask them the question, where did you hear about us? They say LinkedIn. That disagreement in where the traffic came from happens because they know that they heard about you on LinkedIn and then they went to Google to, to Google you. So it’s so important to not rely 100 percent on just the data from your tracking codes.
And zero click experiences are everywhere. Think about this, you could have an ad that gives an interesting stat. And the prospect may kind of log that away in their memory, but not actually click on the ad. And then they may even reference you later. You could have an ad that gives a point of differentiation about your product. Or maybe a product update, something that your product or company did. And maybe the prospect doesn’t click, but they remember that. Maybe you have an ad for a webinar that gives the takeaways and the topics that the webinar discussed. Someone doesn’t actually have to attend that webinar, but they still get the gist of it and maybe they credit your brand for teaching them something.
When a document post isn’t gated and someone can scan through the document without downloading it. You’re going to see clicks and interactions on that document post, but you won’t really know if those were meaningful or not, but when your content is valuable and people are perusing it, yeah, it’s going to have value.
What about if your ads point prospects to a podcast episode, if you’ve got a podcast, but instead of clicking any of the links, they open up their smartphone and they go to search on their favorite podcast player, the name of your show, and then they subscribe there. These kinds of experiences happen all the time, and because it’s not reflected in our data necessarily, a lot of times we look past it, and we’re not paying attention to it.
Alright, here’s a quick sponsor break, and then we’ll dive into how to invest in these zero click experiences on LinkedIn.
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Alright, let’s jump into how you can create zero click experiences. The inspiration for this episode came from the comment thread of one of my LinkedIn posts here recently. And specifically one of the commenters is Dan Epstein. His LinkedIn profile says that he’s a PPC account manager at Angora Media Group. He mentioned how he agrees with SparkToro, a brand that I’ve actually linked to an article in the show notes below, so you can read all about how they think about zero click experiences. So he said he agrees with their thoughts here on delivering zero click experiences, he said, even in the advanced stages of my funnel. He said he gets fewer leads, but the ones that get through, get me the wow and dang feedback from the sales team. He goes on to say, with zero click objectives like video views and document ads my aim is reach. For $.10 per video view. I don’t mind if I get to see and beyond the buying committee in a company of 10,000 people. So that post got me going down a rabbit hole and investigating everything I could find about zero click experiences. But I think this really strengthens the concept of you need branding. You need strong touches with your brand. He then shared a story that I loved so much. So I just want to read you this story. He said, “I once had a potential client that only wanted to spend about 300 on Google Ads. She was just beginning. I helped her instead to select a used DSLR camera. She grew a community of engaged viewers and eventually sales. I lost a client, but gained a lifelong recommendation. She invested in her brand.” And I love this story because in this case, the opportunity to grow her brand was way more impactful than the maybe couple of paid leads per month that she could have gotten from an ad platform. So we kind of understand now what zero click experiences are. Well, how do we invest in those on our LinkedIn Ads specifically? LinkedIn actually makes this really easy for us in a lot of ways because of their event based retargeting.
So I’m going to run you through some of these scenarios that can be really valuable for you to invest in these zero click experiences. The first is, you can send traffic to your company page and then retarget the company page visitors in another campaign. This could be with ads, it could be organic, or a combination of both. If someone visits your company page, they’re probably a really good audience to say, hey, we’ve had a meaningful interaction here. Let’s have additional meaningful interactions.
Something else you can do here, you can run document ads. And I’m specifically thinking ungated document ads, where you put the whole document there so someone can peruse through and get the value out of it without having to fill out a form. And then what you can do is retarget viewers of the document in a different campaign. They’re going to think better of your brand because you gave them free value without asking for anything in return. So then when you retarget, you’re going to have better interactions with them in the future.
You can also run video ads with no call to action. This is specifically to educate or to get an idea out there, and then you don’t ask for anything. You can then retarget those who watch at least 25 percent of the video ads. My preference is retargeting 50 percent viewers. Another way that you can invest in these zero click experiences is by running LinkedIn’s new Thought Leader Ads. We talked about this in episode 119 of the podcast. So if you haven’t listened to that, I think it was two episodes ago, definitely worth checking out. But you can actually retarget the interactions with those Thought Leader Ads. So that creates nice warm audiences that you can follow up with in the future. But you’re also investing in your employees. They’re going to get things like additional connection requests and more followers, more interactions, more views on their content, which is great. And then your brand gets great exposure too. All of this is at super low costs, especially if you compare with any other objective or ad type on LinkedIn.
So if we know so many interactions are zero click, should we just simply bid for reach? Should we run all of our campaigns as brand awareness with super high bids and hit prospects as often as possible? Should we assume that any ad impression is a positive one? No, I definitely don’t think that this is the case. I think that this represents a mindset shift. Providing value constantly and not holding anything of value back. Yes, you could throw caution to the wind and spend extremely inefficiently under this guise of, hey, I’m just racking up zero click experiences. I’m in the camp of strategically selecting experiences that will make for more meaningful interactions. Whether it’s a zero click experience, or if someone is going to click, it’s going to be a more meaningful experience, and you’ve designed this, you’ve engineered it.
I’ve shared the Gartner stat before, that the average B2B deal happens after 17 touches with a brand, and I would argue that if those touches are meaningful, That it’s going to probably take fewer than 17 interactions, or the deal’s going to close a lot faster than it would have otherwise. I especially love the concept of zero click experiences because LinkedIn allows us to retarget so many of them.I can create quick re targeting audiences on LinkedIn for our clients of the audiences that I know that have had at least one meaningful interaction. So you’re bought in, you understand the value here, but if you’re not in leadership, how do you go and actually convince leadership that you should be investing in these experiences? Especially if you’re not expecting an immediate return from the dollars spent. As marketers, we understand that there’s a lot of value in these zero click experiences. But if your boss or your boss’s boss is the type that needs to see exactly 312 MQLs this quarter from your efforts, that might be a lot more difficult to make the case for. I think education is very important here. You need to step in and educate your leadership on these initiatives. If you haven’t spoken up, They’re going to create the budget alone with the CFO and hand you down something that you can’t change. But if you’re proactively educating them on the importance of brand building and making yourself a seat at the table, you’ll be part of that discussion next time. Sometimes leadership won’t listen to you, or you don’t have a direct line of communication to them to educate them. That’s not optimal, but you can still do your very best to make changes in the best direction from where you sit.
I’ve got the episode resources right now
Thank you for listening to the LinkedIn Ads Show. Hungry for more? AJ Wilcox, take it away.
Alright Like we talked about in the episode, the Sparktoro post about zero click experiences, we’ve linked to that in the show notes below. I’ve also conveniently linked to the Thought Leader Ads episode, episode 119, so you can go listen to that if you haven’t heard it yet. You’ll also see the post that inspired this episode with all the interactions there, so definitely go give that a read and see what you think. You’re welcome to even share what your thoughts are. If you’re not already a member of the LinkedIn Ads fanatics community, what are you waiting for? For a very low monthly fee, you get access to the top minds in LinkedIn Ads who are all sharing their experiences. You can bounce ideas off each other. Plus you get access to all four of our courses that take you from absolute beginner to total LinkedIn Ads expert. You can get there by going to fanatics.b2Linked.com, and you’ll see that in the show notes as well for an easy link, just in case you can’t spell the word fanatics. If this is your first time listening, welcome, we’re excited to have you here. Make sure to hit that subscribe button. But if this is not your first time, you’re a loyal listener, of course, we’re excited to have you back as well. Would you do me the favor and the honor of going to leave us a review on Apple Podcasts? I think there’s even some review that you can leave on Spotify, but wherever you listen, that would be by far the best way that you can say thanks for us putting this content together week after week. With any questions, suggestions, or corrections on anything that we’ve talked about, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. And with that being said, we’ll see you back here next week. I’m cheering you on in your LinkedIn Ads initiatives.