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Craft The Perfect LinkedIn Post For Thought Leader Ads

The growing momentum of executive social media means LinkedIn’s thought leader ads are a useful addition to the platform. This feature allows marketers to sponsor or “boost” organic posts from their employees, such as their CEO or other executives. A complementary piece to your overall digital marketing program, LinkedIn’s thought leader ads can help drive brand awareness, build credibility, and strategically position your executives on LinkedIn.

In this article, we share our tips on how to craft the perfect LinkedIn post to sponsor as a thought leader ad!


Before You Start, Identify Your Goal!

The first thing marketers should keep in mind is that you don’t want to sponsor just any post from your executive. If you’re investing in thought leader ads, start with a goal in mind. Thought leader ads take an organic post and push it out to your target audience on LinkedIn who may not have otherwise seen your executive’s post.

What is it that you want to achieve by getting your executive’s post in front of more people?  Are you looking to position your executive as a thought leader by getting their post in front of a specific audience within the industry? Are you trying to share business-related content and want to build brand awareness through your executive’s authentic and approachable content?

Before even writing a social media post for your executive, marketers should first have a clear goal in mind.


5 Tips On Crafting Compelling Thought Leader Ad Content

The factors that make an organic post compelling overlap with some of the factors that make thought leadership ads interesting. However, there are some differences since we’re talking about creating an organic post with the purpose of sponsoring it later. Here are our tips:

1. It’s an organic post first, an “ad” second

Thought leader ads are different from traditional LinkedIn ads where digital marketers may be trying to promote a service or sell a product straight off the bat. It’s important to remember that an executive’s post will be an organic post first. This means it should be aligned with their existing social media strategy and be written in their tone of voice.

Consider the launch of a new product. While the company’s LinkedIn page might focus on promoting its features, pricing, when it’ll be available, and where customers can buy it, the executive’s post should take a less “salesy” approach. Instead, focus on the development and innovation behind the product, or highlight the team that brought it to market. Executive social media can be an excellent tool for sharing stories that aren’t featured on the company’s social media pages. That brings us to the next point!

2. Balance expertise and relatability

These posts are first shared on a personal LinkedIn page, not the company’s page. It’s important to be authentic and relatable as these factors help boost engagement with readers. Executive social media has the benefit of being more personal than a brand’s social media account, so take advantage of this!

A well-crafted LinkedIn post for thought leader ads will balance expertise and relatability. You want your executive to come across as knowledgeable in their industry, but you also don’t want to alienate too many readers with overly technical language or jargon.

3. Tap into relevant and trending industry topics

Part of positioning your executive as a thought leader is to share relevant perspectives on currently trending industry topics. For example, over the past year, one of the most common topics on LinkedIn has been artificial intelligence. While many executives are discussing this topic, marketers can find a unique angle for their own executives to share.

Our tip: We don’t recommend sponsoring posts that lead to a third-party article (unless that article features your executive or brand in some way). Instead, when sponsoring a post with a link, prioritize content that drives to your company website. We’ll share more tips on this in the next section.

4. Incorporate multimedia elements effectively

It’s not just the post copy that’s important. The visuals for your executive’s post can help attract attention as well. On LinkedIn, marketers can upload one or multiple images to their post, a video, or a carousel (by using the “document” option and uploading a multi-page PDF).

These visuals help support the story you want to tell in the executive’s post. Here are some examples:

  • A video of your executive discussing the successes from the previous year
  • A carousel featuring five sustainability goals your company has committed to
  • A single image quote graphic featuring a podcast episode uploaded on your company website


Optimize Executive’s Content For Engagement

Putting money into sponsoring your executive’s posts can help increase visibility, but what else do you want readers to do? Keep these tips in mind when developing your CTA, or “call to action.”

1. Create easy, actionable, and relevant CTAs

After reading the executive’s post, what’s the next action you want the reader to take? In many cases, a post will link to a website.

Here are some examples:

  • An executive sharing their industry insights with a link to a recent podcast they were on (this is a case where sharing a third-party link is encouraged)
  • A post celebrating a successful partnership with a client with a link to a case study on the company website

The post’s call to action should be easy to spot and relevant to the topic. In many cases, they’re positioned near the top or bottom for easier visibility, but that’s not always the case. It depends on the other parts of the copy as well. Also, CTAs don’t have to be links. The CTA can also ask the reader for engagement, which brings us to the next point on our list.

2. Encourage audience interaction

Instead of or in addition to asking users to click on a link, your executive’s post can encourage readers to interact with the post in some way. For example:

  • Leave a comment to share their thoughts
  • Share the post with someone else on LinkedIn

Encouraging audience interaction and discussion is an effective way to build a stronger audience on LinkedIn and strategically position your executive as a thoughtful, approachable leader.

One important aspect to keep in mind is that having multiple CTAs in a single organic post may “split” the type of engagement you’re driving towards. For example, in a post that includes both a CTA to click a link and a CTA to leave a comment, some LinkedIn users might just do one or the other.

3. Include important keywords and hashtags

Another effective way to optimize your executive’s thought leader ad for engagement is to include important keywords and use hashtags strategically. Both of these strategies are best practices that help boost a post’s reach.

Keywords help LinkedIn’s algorithm understand which audience the post should be shared with. Changes over the past year mean that insight-driven posts that share knowledge are preferentially treated by the algorithm. Consider any keywords or phrases that are used within the executive’s particular industry or trending topics that may spark conversation with other LinkedIn users.

When it comes to hashtags, the top factor to keep in mind is that hashtags should always relate to your post. Whether you’re using hashtags in the post copy or as a separate hashtag block or list under the post copy, pay attention to the topic your executive is sharing and curate hashtags that make sense.


Promote Your Executive With LinkedIn’s Thought Leader Ads

LinkedIn’s thought leader ads are an effective way to promote content from your company’s CEO and executive team. It’s also not as heavy a lift as creating brand new ads since marketers are essentially sponsoring an existing organic post. We share our insights on whether thought leader ads could be a good fit for your digital marketing strategy and how we used thought leader ads for one of our clients.

If you want to learn more, check out our previous article below.