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LinkedIn Matched Audiences: improve the efficiency of your retargeting campaigns

By Hephzy Asaolu | No Comments | 13th January 2020

LinkedIn is one of the most popular platforms for generating business leads. This is why 80% of B2B leads generated on social media comes from LinkedIn and 58% of B2B advertisers find LinkedIn advertising to be an effective investment of their budget in terms of ROI.

LinkedIn is not resting on its oars. The company is optimizing the platform more for advertising. This is why Matched Audiences was launched on April 24, 2017

In this article, you will learn about LinkedIn Matched audiences and how to use it to improve the efficiency of your campaigns.

What is LinkedIn Matched Audiences?

Linkedin matched audiences

LinkedIn Matched Audiences enables you not only to retarget website visitors but also to promote your product and services to contacts from your CRM databases and marketing automation platforms and reach decision-makers at target companies with the account-based targeting feature. 

Matched audiences help you to focus your marketing efforts on the audiences and accounts that are likely to convert. With it, you can manage your audiences in one dashboard and grow your business with lookalike audiences.

LinkedIn Matched Audiences is available for Sponsored Content, Sponsored InMail and other different ad formats.

LinkedIn Matched Audiences results

LinkedIn created a six-month pilot program that enables 370+ advertisers to create 2000+ campaigns for beta test.

The result?

The customers using account targeting saw:

  • A 32% increase in conversion rates after a click and a 4.7% decrease in cost per click with account targeting.
  • A 37% increase in CTR with contact-based targeting
  • A 30% boost in CTR and a 14% decrease in cost per click from website retargeting ads.

Below are three ways you can use matched audiences to prospect b2b clients. 

1.   Website Retargeting

The website retargeting feature of the matched audience tool allows you to target LinkedIn users who have been to your website with ads. This is done by defining your target audience and offering them relevant ad content based on the pages they visited, such as the product page, blog pages or content they viewed on your website. 

With website retargeting you can:

  • Segment website visitors based on the website pages they visited
  • Tailor your ad content based on pages visited
  • Convert more prospects to paying customers.

How to create a website retargeting campaign 

  1. Add the LinkedIn Insight Tag to your website.

If you are familiar with the Facebook pixel, you’ll notice that the LinkedIn Insight tag is quite similar. Follow these steps from LinkedIn to add it to your website.

  1. Create an audience to retarget.

On the campaign manager, click on “Create an audience to retarget” and set up the three rules for tracking.

LinkedIn matched audiences

There are three rules as shown in the image above. The start with, Exact and contains.

  • Select Start with to retarget users who have been to your website using the specified URL
  • Select Exact to retarget LinkedIn users who visited the URL you specify
  • Select Contains to retarget visitors to URLs that contain a specific string of characters.

Add the URL of the website you want to retarget the visitors.

LinkedIn Matched Audiences

Once you define your URLs, LinkedIn will display ads to anyone who has been to your website in the past 90 days.

Consider that you need to have an audience size of 300 to see results and that it may take up to 48 hours. 

The second LinkedIn Matched Audiences feature is account-based targeting.

2.  Account-Based targeting

Also known as ABM, account-based targeting is the second feature you can use in the LinkedIn Matched Audiences. It enables you to target companies against the 12+ million LinkedIn pages on LinkedIn. The best advice is to target professionals who make or influence the buying decisions of your targeted accounts. The way you can do this is by combining your target account list with targeting facets such as Job title, Job Seniority, etc. Ensure you don’t add too many facets to avoid the risk of hyper-targeting.

This feature enables you to target a list of up to 300,000 companies and target demographics at the companies. With account-based targeting, you can show ads to the influencers and decision-makers at the companies you want.

How to set up the account-based targeting

1.  List out your target accounts

You can do this using a spreadsheet. In the first row, write “company name“, then type in the names of the company and save it as a .CSV file. See a sample below.

LinkedIn Matched Audiences

2.  Create your ads for account targeting

Sign in to the campaign manager. Click on “Tools” and select “Matched audiences” from the drop-down menu. 

On the “uploaded audiences” tab, click “Upload list“. Type in a name for the list, select “match based on a list of accounts” and click on “upload file“. Then click on “next” to upload the list.

LinkedIn will match the companies against the companies on LinkedIn. 

The third LinkedIn Matched Audiences is Contact targeting.

3.  Contact targeting

The contact targeting option of the LinkedIn Matched Audiences is similar to the Facebook custom audiences. It requires that you upload the email addresses you want to target on LinkedIn. With the contact targeting option you can:

  • Upload a list of email contacts to target on LinkedIn
  • Contact potential customers, current customers, and unresponsive customers
  • Get more conversions.

There are two ways to set up your contact retargeting with LinkedIn. The first is to upload your email list manually on LinkedIn, while the second is to import your email list through Leadsbridge.

If you decide to upload your contact list manually,  the first thing you need to do is to Prepare your email list in a spreadsheet. Ensure you format the CSV file with a single column and one email address per row. Use the word “email” as the first row. LinkedIn allows you to upload about 300,000 email addresses. You must have at least 300 email addresses on your list. When you are done with the formatting, follow the steps below.

Go to the “campaign manager”, click “create an audienceand select “Match based on a list of email contacts”, and then upload your file and click on next.

LinkedIn Matched Audiences

Once you upload the file and click on next, the contact list will be uploaded and matched. 

If instead, you decide to upload your list automatically through third-party software such as LeadsBridge, your list will be constantly updated for evergreen campaigns. This option is particularly favorable for large organizations that have to keep high volume CRM segments automatically synced.  

LinkedIn Matched Audiences

Through Leadsbridge integration, you can create audience segments and use them for your LinkedIn ads targeting. It also helps you to scale audience building by automating the task of sending new email addresses as they come into LinkedIn Matched audiences from your CRM software.

Below is a video showing how to integrate Leadsbridge with your LinkedIn matched audiences.

How to connect My CRM Example to LinkedIn Matched Audiences | LeadsBridge Documentation


The LinkedIn Matched Audiences tool offers capabilities for businesses. It reduces the sales journey and keeps your brand fresh in the minds of prospects with decision making power. It saves valuable time and helps you to achieve better ROI with LinkedIn advertising by making it possible to create audiences from your contacts and showing your ads to any one of its 500 million members.


Curios to know more about the LinkedIn topic? Enroll for free in our dedicated webinar and learn how to seamlessly collect high quality leads and gain new clients with LinkedIn!

How to Seamlessly Collect High-Quality B2B Leads And Gain New Clients with LinkedIn
There is a reason if 43% of B2B marketers have attributed sales to LinkedIn over the past years. Learn from Erin Sumpann, Product Marketing Manager at LinkedIn, what are the best strategies to grow your list of B2B leads, maximize the quality of your leads and increase your sales conversions.
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Hephzy Asaolu

Hephzy is a Professional writer and blogger with over 9 years of experience in writing digital marketing content that gains social media attention and increases search engine visibility.

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