Facebook versus Linked In: What platform should I use to advertise?

Many corporations and small businesses alike find themselves wondering which is better for their business: LinkedIn vs. Facebook. You might assume Facebook simply because it has more users – but is size the only thing that matters. No, of course not.

LinkedIn and Facebook share some similarities, but each boasts different functionalities and potential to reach unique audiences.

Our goal here isn’t to tell you what platform is “better” because there isn’t a straightforward answer. Selecting which platform is best for your campaigns depends on your brand and overall marketing strategy. It’s also important to know what each platform offers regarding their main audience, ad types, targeting, cost, and analytics capabilities.

Advertising Audience

Facebook Ads tend to cater to audiences in a personal nature, since the platform is typically used as a way to connect and communicate with friends and family. Meanwhile, LinkedIn is recognized as a more professional target audience, since those users are more interested in professional networking, getting advice on career-related topics, and collaborating with like-minded people.

LinkedIn Ads are traditionally better for reaching B2B markets because of the platform’s professional nature, while Facebook Ads are better for B2C brands.

Both social networks provide retargeting capabilities and features to target audiences that are similar to a specified base audience. On Facebook, “Lookalike Audiences” uses a base audience (current email database, a list of leads, people that already consume your content, etc.) to find users with similar interests, demographics, and behaviors. Facebook has several other advantages over LinkedIn. It enables marketers to use combinations of real data (i.e., demographics, geolocation, etc.) to match ad creative to a hyper-targeted audience. Facebook Ads also have advanced intelligence capabilities, as your campaign can self-optimize for better results. Once the ad is published, Facebook analyzes your criteria and makes display decisions based on the data trends of users seeing and clicking your ads. For instance, if a particular group is converting most within your target audience, Facebook will self-optimize your ad so it continues to show for that group and other similar ones. Cost per click is much cheaper on Facebook compared to LinkedIn.

LinkedIn Ads are not necessarily overpriced. That data simply shows how extremely valued those clicks are — because more expensive leads on LinkedIn typically means higher-quality leads and higher ROI for those leads.

The best solution depends on the audience you’re targeting and what platform they engage on. Whether you’re promoting a webinar, a new tech solution, or a seasonal clothing line, both LinkedIn and Facebook Ads allow advertisers to reach people in a way that’s never been possible before.

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