LinkedIn Video Ads: Best Practices & Ad Specs

Author's avatar Marketing Mar 31, 2021 12 minutes read

Table of contents

    Peter Caputa

    Enjoy reading this blog post written by our experts or partners.

    If you want to see what Databox can do for you, click here.

    Did you know that there are 740 million active users on LinkedIn

    49% of Internet users who make more than $75,000 USD use the site. 

    And, LinkedIn ads account for more than 33% of their revenue. 

    LinkedIn is no longer just a website that you log into once a year to update your resume or search for jobs.

    There is new content being created on there all the time. And, if you are in B2B marketing, there is a great chance that your target audience is actively using the social media site, as evidenced by the recent survey we ran. 

    what do you primarily use Linkedin for?

    In fact, almost 60% of the people we surveyed work in B2B marketing.  

    What best describes your business?

    If you are like the B2B marketers in our survey, LinkedIn video ads are one tactic you can use to get in front of key business decision-makers. In this post, we’re sharing a guide to LinkedIn Ads, including: 


    How Do LinkedIn Video Ads Work?

    LinkedIn video ads are sponsored content that appear in a user’s newsfeed similar to Facebook video ads.

    Here is an example of a video ad from Dell. 

    Just like on Facebook, you have a headline and text description along with your video content. They recommend  keeping your headline under 70 characters and your text description under 600 characters as well as uploadingvideo captions in the SRT format.  

    Linkedin video ads

    In addition, if you want to get some insights into ads that your competitors are running, click on “Why am I seeing this ad.” 

    Linkedin video ads competitor tactic

    While your video ads can technically be as long as 30 minutes, the most effective ads on both Linkedin and Facebook tend to be under one minute.

    Here are the most common specs for Linkedin video ads.

    • Most common sizes:
      • Horizontal: 1920 x 1080
      • Horizontal: 1200 x 675
      • Vertical: 720 x 920

    Carl Johnson of Bestwinesonline adds, “Video ads represent the next evolution of LinkedIn Sponsored Content. With Sponsored Updates, you can now create and promote video content to your networks. The new video ad format gives you more creative options than ever before. You can use video to tell richer stories, drive leads, and engage prospects and customers.

    What’s in a video ad?

    A video should be entertaining, engaging and short. A few best practices for creating your next video ad:

    Keep your videos short and to the point. Think 30 to 60 seconds to keep things simple and clear. Make sure to include a strong call-to-action at the end of your video ad to drive prospects or customers directly to the right place on your website. Make sure you’re using videos that are optimized for mobile.”

    In addition, nearly 80% of the marketers we surveyed have run video ads before. 

    What is your experience with Linkedin video ads?

    And, 52% of them said their video ads convert better than other channels. 

    In your experience, do Linkedin ads convert better, worse, or the same as other channels?

    For added context, most were spending less than $5,000 per month on video ads. 

    How much does your company spend on Linkedin video ads every month?

    11 Ways for Using LinkedIn Video Ads to Drive Conversions

    In addition, here are some tips to drive more conversions using video ads.  

    1. Capture people’s attention within 3 seconds
    2. Don’t bury the lead
    3. Focus on ad targeting
    4. Create ads that speak to your ideal customers
    5. Demonstrate your expertise at the start of your video
    6. Use humor
    7. Add captions
    8. Keep your ad under 1 minute
    9. Tell a story
    10. Demo your product
    11. Add an emoji in your headline

    1. Capture people’s attention within 3 seconds 

    Your business isn’t Netflix or Disney. People aren’t going to wait until you make your point. They are just going to keep scrolling. 

    “In the world of scrolling through social media, the first 3 seconds of any video is extremely important,” says Kevin Christensen of Boulder Heavy Industries. “LinkedIn is no exception. Make your first 3 seconds eye-catching enough to pull in your target audience. More people will also read the bottom headline before the actual post copy, so make sure the CTA is clear and concise enough to either get them to click or continue watching past your first 3 seconds.” 

    Jay Lu of Sofary Lighting adds, “The average human being today has an attention span of 8 seconds, according to recent studies. When you combine this with the fact that people prefer to click through their feeds very quickly, you have a problem. Users are likely to scroll right past your video if it isn’t engaging enough from the start. Having the first few seconds of your video really count is the only way to stop this. In reality, people who watch the first three seconds of a video are more likely to watch the entire thing. 

    As a result, make sure the first few seconds of your video are captivating and attention-getting, and that viewers are compelled to avoid scrolling. Also, keep your videos brief and to the point. The best-performing LinkedIn video advertisements are under 15 seconds long, according to the website.” 

    In fact, Jack Story of Assured Marketing says, “The best way to go about this is to think of your ad as an elevator pitch rather than an advert, its going to be seen for a short amount of time while users are scrolling between posts, it needs to come off as an organic post and most importantly be memorable for anyone who views your ad.” 

    When it comes to social media advertising, capturing your audience’s attention is crucial and it’s essential to make the most of those first few moments. Social media reporting tool can be a valuable tool for businesses looking to create compelling, data-driven ads that stand out in a crowded social media landscape.

    2. Don’t bury the lead 

    Your call-to-action should be in the first 10 seconds of your video, and ideally in the first 3 seconds. 

    “My top tip is never bury the lead: you want your call to action to be in the first ten seconds of your video at the latest,” says Andrey Doichev of Inc and Go. “Within the first five seconds is even better. Remember how your audience is watching- they’re likely on their phones and get bored easily if your video is too long or pointless.” 

    Guy Bauer of Umault adds, “Think of your video as an ad for your offer. Many folks think the opposite. The offer is an afterthought – something LinkedIn forces them to do. This leads to earning more buttons that take you to the homepage.

    Your video should entice people to gain the knowledge that’s in your offer (whitepaper, ebook, guide, etc…). So don’t make the video about something generic or too macro, advertise your offer. This will lead to higher conversion rates.” 

    3. Focus on ad targeting 

    One of the fastest ways to lose money on Linkedin is to create an ad for everyone. Instead, it is better to go niche. 

    “The main tip that I have is to utilize the targeting to its utmost potential,” says Martina Cooper of BHMR. “Especially if you’re in B2B, Linkedin Ads can be a goldmine of opportunity since you can really nail down your target audience. You can filter by age, employee count, position, location etc. Obviously, also make sure that your ad is congruent with your targeting and measure its performance using this social media dashboard software. You can have a fairly general ad but I after using Linkedin Ads for a while now I recommend creating specific ads for every target group.” 

    Related: LinkedIn Ads Best Practices: 10 Tips for Running Successful Campaigns

    4. Create ads that speak to your ideal customers 

    Another quick way to blow your ad budget is to focus your ad on what your company cares about instead of what your ideal customer cares about. 

    “Don’t think about what you want to say,” says Joel Bergvall of Shareability. “Think about what the audience wants to hear.” 

    5. Demonstrate your expertise at the start of your video 

    If you are running ads to a cold audience, it is vital to establish your authority and credibility as quickly as you can. 

    Jon Torres recommends, “Position yourself as an authority in your niche to gain instant credibility. How? Add a real video of yourself in an actual conference, presenting an honest talk about a specific pain-point that companies in your niche have. Or, use the clip of an actual interview you had with an industry-respected personality, or a show, or webinar.” 

    6. Use humor 

    Many people think you have to be boring, serious, and corporate on Linkedin. That couldn’t be further from the truth. 

    “Even if LinkedIn is mostly a professional B2B network, it doesn’t mean that you need to be 100% serious with your video ads,” says Jonathan Aufray of Growth Hackers Marketing. “After multiple experiments, we found out that video ads using humor, irony and sarcasm work well.

    You don’t have to take yourself or your brand too seriously, even on LinkedIn. People will appreciate the authenticity and the light message you’re passing across.” 

    7. Add captions

    Similar to Facebook, most Linkedin video ads are played without sound. So, captions are important. 

    “You have to take into consideration that people will be scrolling through their feed, and while native videos will auto-play, they’ll auto-play without sound,” says Tam Johnson of Smallpdf. “So for your video to grab people’s attention, it absolutely needs to contain captions. Captions ensure your message gets across—whether people can’t or don’t want to turn their sound on.” 

    8. Keep your ad under 1 minute 

    It is worth repeating again. Unless you are a movie studio, most people aren’t going to watch more than a few seconds – maybe a minute – of your ad.  Editing is your friend. 

    “It’s really important to pay attention to your video ad’s length,” says Sandra Chung of PlayPlay. “At PlayPlay, we’d recommend keeping them no longer than a minute depending on the goal of your video.

    This is because on LinkedIn, a 15-second video is short enough to capture users’ attention and hold it-which is great for a brand awareness ad.

    If your objective is lead generation, your video can be up to 1 minute long as this gives you enough time to showcase your values, convince your prospects to engage or include customer testimonials.” 

    9. Tell a story 

    Better yet, tell a compelling story in less than one minute. 

    “Visual storytelling on LinkedIn Video Ads helps you to personalize your brand while maintaining a professional image,” says Brian Stewart of ProsperoWeb, LLC. “Build content that tells a story, regardless of your target, because it lets you interact with your audience. It enables you to communicate directly to your audience and craft a message that will resonate with them. You may intensify the effect by adding a personal greeting, highlighting important events, showcasing your brand culture, or using personal stories.” 

    10. Demo your product 

    There is a reason why QVC, The Home Shopping Network, and infomercials in general are still around, it is because if you can effectively show what your product does, people will buy it.  

    “A product demo video is a great conversion tactic,” says Avinash Chandra. “Your objective of making the video should be clear in the first 5 seconds. It should reflect the pain points of your potential customers in a very engaging way.” 

    11. Add an emoji in your headline 

    Finally, it turns out emojis aren’t just for texts. They can actually help your video ads stand out. 

    “My best tip for creating high-converting LinkedIn video ads is to include an emoji in your video’s headline,” says James Pollard of The Advisor Coach LLC. “I’ve split-tested video headlines with and without emojis. In almost every case, videos with emojis in the headlines have higher clickthrough rates, lower CPCs, and more. You can see an example of one of my ads here.” 


    In sum, if you are a B2B marketer, there is a good chance that your ideal customer may be on LinkedIn. If you want to stand out, experiment with a handful of LinkedIn video ads and measure how well they perform using a social media dashboard. Start small by trying out a few tips from this post. 

    Author's avatar
    Article by
    Jessica Malnik

    Jessica Malnik is a content strategist and copywriter for SaaS and productized service businesses. Her writing has appeared on The Next Web, Social Media Examiner, SEMRush, CMX, Help Scout, Convince & Convert, and many other sites.

    More from this author

    Get practical strategies that drive consistent growth

    Read some