Choosing the Best Objective for Your LinkedIn Ad Campaign

July 26, 2019

How to Select Your Campaign Objectives on LinkedIn

Churchill once said, “Plans are of little importance but planning is essential.”

Eisenhower had a similar thought on the matter: “Planning is everything. The plan is nothing.”

Both quotes, each a bit befuddling on the surface (perhaps by design), mean the same thing: The act of creating the plan is more important than the plan itself because plans are destined to go awry. When our campaign numbers don’t resemble our hopes, or a top competitor counters, it’s the planning we’ve done – specifying our objective and plotting the course to the best of our ability – that keeps the path to success somewhat illuminated and navigable. The more we know about our course and where it’s supposed to lead us, the better we are able to course-correct when the unpredictable predictably transpires.

Objective-based advertising, our complete reconfiguration of Campaign Manager, makes planning a natural and seamless part of every campaign you run on LinkedIn. 

It all starts when you choose the top objective for your campaign. Then, knowing what you’re trying to accomplish, we surface the ad formats and features that best support your objective. Additional enhancements – objective-based advertising makes audience targeting easier as well – help you through each step of the campaign process, and we’re happy to report a 67% lift in satisfaction over the legacy Campaign Manager experience. Knowing your objective helps us to deliver better results  by optimizing against your end goals, which enables us to show your ads to members more likely to take the action (fill out a lead gen from, click on a website, download an asset) based on your unique objective.  

But how can you feel confident you’ve selected the best objective for your campaign? Watch the video below to learn how objective-based advertising lets you market to the full funnel, from awareness to consideration to conversion, and how to select the best objective for your new campaign.

Breaking Down LinkedIn’s Advertising Objectives: What Each Objective Means and When to Choose It

The image below shows the available advertising objectives to choose from. Here’s the skinny on each of them. 

First, as you can see, the objectives span the full funnel and are broken into three categories: awareness, consideration, and conversions. 

Awareness campaigns seek to maximize your brand’s share of voice. 

Consideration campaigns encourage your target audience to engage with your brand and gain a better understanding of what you’re all about.

Conversion campaigns focus on generating leads and using conversion tracking to measure the true impact of your ads so you can optimize for even better performance. 

Now let’s explore all of the objectives to choose from when kicking off your LinkedIn advertising campaign. 

Brand Awareness

Choose brand awareness as your objective when you want to build your brand and fill the top of your funnel. Because the goal of awareness campaigns is to get as many of your target audience members to recognize your brand and what you’re known for (or want to be known for), campaigns with this objective will charge by impressions using CPM (cost per thousand impressions). 

Website Visits

When you want your audience to click through your ad to arrive at a landing page on your website, this is the objective to select (unless you want to further track conversions, in which case, you’ll want to choose website conversions as your objective). 


This is all about getting your audience to interact with your ad. If you want people to like your ad, share it (perhaps with a specific hashtag), comment on it, or follow your company, engagement is generally the best objective to select. 

Video Views

You guessed it; If you want your audience to view your video ad, video views is the objective to choose. Video is still available as an ad format when you select other objectives, however video views is the only objective which gives you the option to bid based on how many people actually watch your video (cost per view). 

Lead Generation

Choose lead generation when your goal is to cultivate potential customers for your offering. Lead gen campaigns tend to work even better when performed in concert with campaigns focused on brand awareness and engagement, because the engagement data from those campaigns helps you target your conversion-focused messages with greater precision. 

These campaigns use LinkedIn’s Lead Gen Forms, which are pre-filled with LinkedIn members’ profile data, making it easier than ever to get high-quality leads with accurate data. 

Website Conversions

This objective goes hand-in-hand with conversion tracking. In fact, you must use conversion tracking for website conversion campaigns because that’s how you’ll track – and accurately attribute – downloads and form fills. The main difference between lead form fills with the lead generation objective vs. the website conversions objective, is that lead generation form fills occur on LinkedIn (using LinkedIn’s Lead Gen Forms), while website conversion form fills occur on your website. 

Job Applicants

Did you know that LinkedIn Talent Solutions customers can create ads using Campaign Manager? If generating applicants is your goal, this is your objective. 

Achieve Your Campaign Objectives on LinkedIn

Once you’ve chosen your objective and launched your campaign, try to outperform your plans using LinkedIn’s redesigned ad reporting interface, which works seamlessly with the new campaign creation flow. 

Ready to embark? Click into Campaign Manager and build your next objective-driven campaign.