Olivier Legrand is Senior Director, Marketing Solutions, APAC, at LinkedIn. Here he discusses Linkedin’s B2B marketing and audience targeting proposition in the Australian market, data-driven media buying and Linkedin’s strategy across the rest of the APAC market.
What ad opportunities currently exist on LinkedIn AU?
LinkedIn’s advertisers have marketing objectives that range from increasing awareness to driving sales, and we have products that deliver against each of these objectives. LinkedIn Marketing Solutions’ offerings fall under four key pillars – media, data, integration and social. Under the media umbrella, we offer traditional targeted ads such as LinkedIn Ads, which include display, polls/content and social ads. Our data solutions include robust targeting capabilities and analytics capabilities as well as access to proprietary research, and rich insights gathered from our user base.
For marketers who are looking to build a more engaged brand presence, LinkedIn has social solutions, including LinkedIn Company Pages and Custom LinkedIn Groups, that can be used to help brands develop long –lasting relationships with their target audiences on the platform, and our integration offering also allows brands to use our API and plugins enable marketers to transport some of LinkedIn’s experience and value proposition onto their sites.
What levels of data can and are utilised for targeting purposes?
As a professional network of more than 161 million members globally and more than three million in Australia, we are able to gather rich insights for marketers to ensure that their messages get to the right audience. Our data can be used to target professionals based on their job function, seniority, location, industry, the size of the company they work in, which LinkedIn Groups they are members of, and their professional interests.
What % is B2B versus B2C?
Since LinkedIn is a professional network, we are uniquely able to target both consumers and prosumers, i.e., professionals who make purchases on behalf of their company. Given that, LinkedIn is the natural choice for B2B marketers, but we are also the platform for brands who want to target affluent consumers. Unfortunately, however, we aren’t able to break the numbers down, but we do see interest from marketers looking to target both sides of the fence.
Have you seen an increase in demand for data-driven campaigns versus simply buying cheap reach?
Brands come to LinkedIn because we provide data-driven insights, which can allow them to better target a professional audience, and not because of cheap reach. Australian businesses clearly see the benefits of using LinkedIn. Independent research conducted by Green Hat shows that LinkedIn is the dominant social media platform for B2B marketers at 75%. Advertisers use LinkedIn to target the world’s largest professional network of affluent, influential, and successful people in key markets and industries such as automotive, financial services, and education. LinkedIn has a tremendous foundation of professional data upon which to build meaningful, relevant marketing activities, allowing marketers to be even more precise with their advertising dollars, encouraging a much stronger ROI.
What sort of trends are you seeing across the whole of APAC? What are you seeing from South East Asia?
There is definitely change in the way brands are looking at their marketing in APAC. Internet usage is skyrocketing throughout APAC, obviously making the growth of social media the fastest in the world, and making people in Asia one of the most social, if not the most social. For LinkedIn, Asia is a very important region – we launched LinkedIn in Bahasa Indonesia, Bahasa Malaysia, Japanese, and Korean, and there has been a resulting surge in platform usage in all of these markets.
Marketers are certainly getting savvier in APAC, tapping on this highly social, highly engaged audience, by using the social side of our offering, such as LinkedIn Company Pages and LinkedIn Groups to grow their brands.
LinkedIn has its own ‘native’ ad formats. What are your thoughts on native versus standard? Do you think the demand / buy side will struggle to scale the native ad format?
All of LinkedIn’s ad formats are standard formats approved by the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB), as we want to make it easier for marketers to use our platform.
Given the wealth of consumer data LinkedIn possesses, is there an opportunity for LinkedIn to take to market its own publisher trading desk and supplement its reach off site across the exchanges?
We already have the ‘LinkedIn Audience Network’, which was launched in 2008. It allows our partner publishers to identify and target LinkedIn users across other sites. Targeting could be based on the type of industry, the level of seniority, size of company or the gender of users, although individuals will not be identified and can opt out.