5 Examples of Striking the Right Balance Between Brand and Demand

September 9, 2021

Mom on laptop, sitting next to two toddlers on tablets

A while back we delved into how LinkedIn’s tools help marketers address the full funnel. As part of this exploration, we touched on LinkedIn Ad combinations proven to work in the awareness, consideration, and conversion stages of the marketing funnel. 

In this post, we show what those suggestions look like in the real world. Below you’ll find best-in-class examples from companies incorporating both brand and demand on LinkedIn for a fully effective full-funnel strategy. 

Mercedes-Benz Successfully Introduces Luxury Vehicle to Key Demographic

When it comes to luxury vehicle brands, Mercedes-Benz is among the first to come to mind. Their reputation is such that many never even consider the purchase as a practicality, or even a possibility. But as they prepared to launch their new, three-row GLB SUV at an affordable price for young families, Mercedes-Benz wanted to drive awareness and pique interest without diluting their prestigious brand.

Understanding the need to meet prospective customers where they are online most, the Mercedes-Benz marketing team and their agency identified LinkedIn as a brand-safe yet highly engaging space for professionals on the rise. 

With bright, colorful content that stood out on the platform, the campaign achieved top-, mid-, and bottom-of-funnel results. The Mercedes-Benz team was pleased to see clickthrough rates 54% higher than benchmark , and twice the engagement rates of other luxury automobile benchmarks — at 3x lower cost-per-conversion rates. In the end, over 10,000 LinkedIn members visited the campaign landing page, CPCs were 35% more efficient than similar advertisers, and more than 80% of clicks came from members with senior+ job titles. 

“LinkedIn gave us an opportunity to experiment and allowed us to dive into a new platform with new audiences. The results were fantastic. It was great to see LinkedIn can play a role in our full-funnel campaigns in the future. We look forward to creating custom content specifically for LinkedIn’s highly engaged audience.” —Jordan Lalor, Social Media Lead, Mercedes-Benz USA

Cenareo Gets Results From a Brand to Demand Strategy 

Cenareo is in the business of providing digital signage solutions to help companies tell their stories across an unlimited number of screens and connect to customers with ease. But when the pandemic threw everyone for a loop and essentially shut down business as we all know it, Cenareo shifted its focus to helping Corporate Communications and HR Departments keep their employees protected and well informed. 

But that meant Cenareo had to suddenly spark awareness with a brand new audience, educating and nurturing them while still ultimately generating leads.

Implementing a dual-pronged approach, Cenareo used Conversation Ads to connect on a personal level, while learning more about this new audience’s intentions and behaviors. Each message had two CTAs: 1) helping prospects get pertinent information that they needed at their stage of the buyer’s journey, and 2) offering a case study and solution guide, as well as a product demo. 

On a parallel track, Cenareo also ran Single Image Video Ads designed to continue nurturing the audience while building brand awareness and loyalty. 

As a result, this full-funnel approach beat all LinkedIn benchmarks with over 500 leads in just one month, many of them proving to be high-quality and helping drive an estimated pipeline upwards of 180,000€. 

“We decided to use a multi-product approach, activating awareness conversion campaigns to help accelerate the customer’s  journey. This created a great experience for our target audience, and helped us spread the right message to the right person at the right time.” —Lucie Victor, Lead Gen & CRM Manager

VMware Goes Full-Funnel, Blasts Past Benchmarks 

As you might imagine, companies looking to purchase cloud computing or virtualization software and services tend to rely heavily on expert guidance as part of their purchasing journey. A global leader in these areas, VMware wanted to provide decision makers and influencers with relevant, personalized content designed to enhance that journey. 

So, the company went big, using multiple channels, data points, targeting segments and offerings to make sure the right people were getting the most relevant or helpful content at the most opportune times. As part of this, VMware’s marketing team created a series of campaigns targeting named accounts. More specifically, they focused on website activities, seniority, job titles, member interests, and geography. 

The team leveraged a mix of Single Image, Carousel, and Video Ads on LinkedIn to bring their messaging to life. And to ensure relevance, the strategy was based on funnel stage and previous engagement. For instance, one campaign retargeted those who watched more than 25% of a Video Ad. Another used a sophisticated retargeting strategy to reach targeted prospects in a variety of ways. One campaign saw 3x higher clickthrough-rates and a 50% lower cost-per-lead compared to LinkedIn industry benchmarks.

“Engaging with VMware customers and prospects across digital channels with relevant and personalized experiences is essential to our omni-channel marketing strategy. Aligning campaign creative and tone to the mindset of the buyer and where they may be in the customer journey have resulted in successful outcomes.” —Cindy Phan, Senior Manager of Global Digital Strategy at VMware. 

BambooHR Leans on Website Retargeting, Matched Audiences, and Multiple Ad Formats to Drive Higher Engagement and Conversions

With remote work trending in the small- and mid-sized business sectors, BambooHR wanted to increase awareness for its human resources software. To achieve this objective, the team took advantage of Matched Audiences, uploading a list of target companies. They then crafted a targeting strategy based on website activity, job seniority, job title, and member interests related to HR. 

After uploading a list of targeted accounts, the BambooHR team was able to build brand awareness through thought leadership. The content centered on key topics of interest to their target audience, such as remote work and culture.  For the thought leadership content, Single Image Ads provided high-engagement touchpoints in the LinkedIn feed. Then, to generate leads, the team promoted Message Ads with a single call-to-action. This combination led to higher engagement and conversions from key audiences.

Multiple Ad Formats Add up to One Stellar Brand and Demand Campaign for London Business School

With its steep price tag, graduate management education is one of those purchases that people tend to make after much research and consideration. For business schools, being with prospective students throughout their journey – versus just the end of it – can bring with it a massive advantage.

Knowing the importance of salience and Share of Voice within this competitive market, London Business School aimed to increase brand awareness and preference for its institution. At the same time, it sought to build a pipeline of high-quality leads for its Masters in Financial Analysis program.

To make this happen, London Business School decided to adopt a multi-format approach on LinkedIn. The team used Text Ads to invite prospects to “Fuel your future” and “Kick-start your career.” They combined this with Sponsored Content that offered a glimpse into the course experience and introduced successful alumni. 

All of this helped lay the groundwork for a personalized Message Ads campaign. The Message Ads invited the prospective students to take action, and take action they did. 

“Combining Text Ads, Sponsored Content Activity, and Message Ads within a single integrated campaign significantly increased our frequency and joined the dots between brand and direct response messaging in our audience members’ minds. The results have been incredibly positive and it’s an approach that we’ll be continuing as we look at new opportunities on LinkedIn.” —Stuart Aplin, London Business School Head of Acquisition Marketing. 

The results Aplin speaks of include a 10x increase in ad exposure frequency, along with 17% higher Lead Gen Form completion rates. Consequently, cost-per-lead also dropped by 9% (putting it 60% below benchmark averages). 

For more winning examples from real-world companies, plus a smorgasbord of insight and advice designed to help your team achieve similar results, be sure to check out LinkedIn’s Brand and Demand Playbook.

 

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