LinkedIn brings lookalike audiences to B2B marketing

LinkedIn adds lookalikes to its ad offering

LinkedIn has added lookalike audiences to its ad offerings after beta testing the tool over the last year.

Lookalike audiences are nothing new, as Facebook has shown. LinkedIn's director of product, Abhishek Shrivastava, said it "took us some time" to build the tool.

Marketers could already go to a platform like Facebook to discover new audiences using existing customer data. LinkedIn is now offering that for B2B marketers by making it easier to find company names or job titles.

Audience templates, another new offering, streamline the process of finding audiences. According to Shrivastava, it's a one-step process that separates audiences job titles and functions into 20-plus templates.

LinkedIn has over 610m users and, according to Shrivastava, it has seen over 30% growth in the number of sessions per user over the last year.

"Because of all this activity happening on the platform by our members on an increasing basis...it allowed us to tap into a lot of the signals that have allowed us to create the lookalike product, which requires a lot of signals to do the modeling of who are users," said Shrivastava.

LinkedIn also announced it will integrate Bing data for the first time into its ad products. Marketers can now leverage Bing data with LinkedIn's interest-based targeting tool it launched in January.

"If someone searched for an article on digital marketing trends, that would map them to a category of being interested in marketing," explained Shrivastava. "That list of categories is what we are exposing within our campaign manager on LinkedIn, to allow our customers to create campaigns to reach people who are interested in that particular topic."

Shrivastava said connecting Bing and LinkedIn data "gives marketers the best of both worlds".

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