How Cognism Increased Engagement on LinkedIn Ads by 200%

How Cognism increased LinkedIn engagement

By switching from targeting by job titles to targeting by job functions and seniority on LinkedIn ads, Cognism increased engagement rate by 200%.

Here’s exactly how they did it.

The goal: Increase reach and engagement rate for LinkedIn ads

Cognism’s demand generation campaigns focus on market penetration and brand building. To achieve this goal, they were looking to increase reach and engagement within their ICP (ideal customer profile), specifically via LinkedIn ads.

The marketing tactic: Switch to targeting by job functions and seniority

Cognism analyzed data from their leads pipeline and saw 80+ different job titles. This was more than the ones from their LinkedIn ads pipeline. It meant that their targeting on LinkedIn was narrow, and did not fully cover their ICP.

They therefore switched from using LinkedIn’s job title targeting capabilities to using a combination of job functions and seniorities.

This allowed them to reach decision makers with specific expertise: for example, sales functions with a seniority targeting of Manager, Director, and VP.

The team also tracked the change in ad engagement rate across different functions and seniorities. They then used this data to exclude irrelevant job titles that didn’t provide a high engagement rate, like branch managers or telemarketers.

The result: 200% increase in engagement rate

The Cognism team applied this tactic in August 2022. With a similar ad spend, they achieved:

  • 200% increase in engagement rate
  • 120% increase in reach

Why does it work?

Job functions are groupings of several job titles. Using them in your targeting allows you to broaden your reach by covering a wider variety of job titles.

Note that this might not work in all cases: Some complex positions (e.g., Revenue Ops) might be impossible to target precisely because the job functions offered by LinkedIn (e.g., “operations”) can be too broad. In those cases, job title targeting is still the best option.

How to implement this tactic yourself

  1. Analyze your pipeline data to understand the variety of job titles within your target audience. Compare the job titles from the pipeline with your LinkedIn ads targeting to determine whether your targeting is too narrow.
  2. Switch from job title to job function targeting. Make sure you include the functions and seniorities that align with your target audience.
  3. Track the changes in engagement rate and measure which job functions deliver the lowest performance. Use this data to exclude irrelevant job functions and optimize your targeting strategy.

Meet the specialist behind this tactic

Canberk Beker is the Group Global Head of Paid at Cognism and a member of the Advisory Board for Growth at Hockeystack.

Follow Canberk on LinkedIn for more insights.

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How Cognism Increased Engagement on LinkedIn Ads by 200%