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By Will Rico | January 28, 2022


LinkedIn ads provides a wealth of options, from bidding and billing options to the targeting facets you can use to reach your ideal audience. There are several ad options at your disposal as well. Depending on your goals, different ad types will suit your needs better than others. 

As you’re setting up a campaign, one of the first questions LinkedIn will ask you is to choose your objective, and depending on the objective you choose, your options for ad types will differ.


In the table below, we show which ad types are available for which objectives.


Single Image Ads

Single Image Ads show up in your audience’s LinkedIn feed and combine introduction text with powerful imagery to captivate your audience.


Single image ads are the most popular ad type on LinkedIn, including among CommonMind clients. These ads are a digital billboard you can use to grab a user’s attention, hopefully stop their scroll and encourage a click.  We use single image ads to:

  • Promote brand awareness by sharing high-impact blog posts
  • Encourage conversions by highlighting a content offer
  • Promote thought leadership

Carousel Ads

Carousel Ads give you additional space to tell a story with a swipeable series of cards. These are often a combination of imagery and text. 


Carousel ads are helpful if you know your data is best shown in a static form but there is too much for a single ad. They work very well for showcasing speakers for an upcoming event because each speaker can get his or her own card in the carousel. They’re also good for showing multi-step simple processes, such as “get started in three easy steps” campaigns with supporting imagery.

Video Ads

As the name suggests, Video Ads let you captivate your audience with powerful visuals in video form. 


Video ads give you powerful insights such as percentage watched times. You can also retarget users who have watched various percentages of your video. For example, you can create an audience of users who watched at least 50% of your video.

Event Ads

Event Ads are similar to Single Image Ads. However, they are optimized for maximizing event attendance by including event details, such as date, time, and a call to action button unique to events. 


Event ads feature an “Attend” button so users can easily indicate that they will be attending.

Message Ads

Message Ads allow you to advertise with a targeted message straight into your audience’s LinkedIn inbox. 


Message Ads work great for a few different objectives, including website visits, lead generation, and website conversions. In fact, some companies find that their Message Ads yield greater conversion rates than their display ads. 

Conversation Ads

Similar to Message Ads, Conversation Ads target users’ LinkedIn inbox. The main difference is that you can deliver multiple offers and types of content in the same message, giving the ad a “choose your own adventure” feel. 



Conversation Ads deliver on many of the same objectives that Message Ads can. However, because you can deliver more offers and further customize the body of your message, they’re particularly effective for engagement.  

Lead Gen Forms

Lead gen forms are less of an ad “type” and more of a feature that you can use with different ad types. A Lead Gen Form is a valuable tool for collecting quality leads. Instead of requiring leads to fill out every field of a form, LinkedIn will scan the user’s profile to autofill most (if not all) of the form fields. This provides a seamless experience for your audience, allowing them to review the information and click submit in a few seconds. 


Spotlight Ads

Spotlight Ads are dynamic ads that show up outside of the user’s LinkedIn feed. Instead, they are displayed in the right rail as you’re browsing LinkedIn. These are typically used to highlight a product, service, event, or job opening. 


Spotlight Ads can be effective for driving awareness. The ads are tailored to members based on their LinkedIn profile data and can grab a user’s attention by using his or her own profile image. You’ll often see them used for HR/recruiting ads

It’s important to note that Spotlight Ads are only viewable on desktop. 

Follower Ads

The other type of dynamic ad that shows up outside of the user’s LinkedIn feed is the Follower Ad. They’re nearly identical to spotlight ads, but the objective is to have your audience follow your LinkedIn company page. 


Follower ads can be helpful for engagement and brand awareness. They allow you to showcase your company’s LinkedIn page while also giving your audience a quick way to follow your account.

Text Ads

Text Ads appear in the right rail, i.e. outside of the LinkedIn feed, similar to Follower and Spotlight Ads. They allow you to target specific audiences, captivate them with compelling copy, and link to an offer of your choosing. 

Using the wide range of targeting options available to you, text ads allow you to drive high-quality leads to your business. They also give you the option to add an image, which can be as simple as your logo. 

Text ads are also desktop only and won’t show up for mobile users.

Single Job Ads

The Single Job Ad is optimized for driving quality candidates to a job opening with a particular company. 


Different LinkedIn Ad Types for Different Objectives

From brand awareness to lead generation, the LinkedIn Ads platform has an ad type for every objective. 

Some ad types work well across several different objectives as well. For example, Single Image Ads work well across the board (except for video views). 

Although there’s much more to any PPC strategy than simply picking the correct ad format for the job, the format you choose can make a big impact on the results you see. Don’t hesitate to test different formats against each other or purposefully use 2 or more formats simultaneously. You can sometimes see a lift by running multiple formats at the same time.

Need Help With LinkedIn Ads? CommonMind Can Help

CommonMind can help you reach your goals and achieve reliable growth with your LinkedIn Ads strategy. Reach out to us for more information.