LinkedIn Document Ads Tips + Performance Data

As an agency with several B2B clients, we were excited when LinkedIn launched Document Ads back in September. Now that we’ve had a few months of testing under our belts we wanted to share some tips as well as some test performance data to help you as you navigate this new ad type.

Document Ad Tips

Design for Mobile Users

At this time, Document ads are only available on Mobile when using the Lead Generation campaign objective. This could change later this quarter, but for now, this is a key consideration. The ads will run on Desktop, however, for Brand Awareness & Engagement objectives.

With that in mind, you’ll want to be sure your documents are designed for Mobile users if you’re running Lead Gen campaigns. We also recommend launching separate Lead Gen campaigns leveraging different ad types to help fill the gap in targeting Desktop users. You can find the Device setting under Audiences Attributes > Interests & Traits > Member Traits > Device Preferences within campaign creation to focus your additional campaigns just on Desktop users:

Provide Document Feedback

Our clients are new to this ad type just like we are. We’re thankful to have open lines of communication and flexibility with our clients, making it possible for us to provide helpful feedback about the documents they have sent along for campaign use.

Some feedback we’ve been able to provide to help improve the user experience has included things like: adjusting page order, creating a more eye-catching cover page, including a table of contents within the first few pages, adjusting the copy to single-column for better readability, etc. Help the client put their best foot forward with a new Document Ads test by providing helpful feedback.

Keep Testing

We’ve run several different tests for our client’s Document Ads campaigns. For one client, we ran a 3-page vs 5-page preview test. We wanted to see if there was a strong performance difference when we stayed within LinkedIn’s recommended page preview number (3-4) vs. going outside of that recommendation:

You can see that our 3-page variants are winning with a higher CTR, lower CPC and CPA, higher CVR, and overall more engagement.

When comparing our Document Ad campaigns to other types, it also appears they perform a bit better, however, it’s important to keep in mind this is not an apples-to-apples comparison since our Document Ad campaigns are Lead Gen and therefore only running on Mobile devices. Unfortunately, LinkedIn doesn’t yet offer the reporting capabilities to allow us to see the device performance breakdown of our ‘Other’ campaigns.

You can see a similar story here with another client’s campaign performance data:

These were also Lead Gen campaigns, so that’s important to keep in mind. However, the variance here is much greater than for client #1. Here, we shifted over completely to Document Ads for now. As long as the lead quality stays strong for a Mobile-only effort like this, it seems like a win all around to shift.

We’ve also run copy tests as well as Work vs Standard email fields in the forms. You could also test different document cover pages, document page order, different assets, etc. There are lots of test options here.

Keeping things fresh is important, as we’ve seen performance declines once ads have run for a few weeks. LinkedIn allows members to see five unique creatives per campaign in a 48-hour period, so they recommend 4-5 creatives per campaign for an ideal test setup.

Align Assets with User Funnel Stage

This is a best practice across the board. But LinkedIn provided a helpful chart that shows which asset types are most effective for which stage of the buyer journey. It shows:

  • Infographics, case studies & testimonials are most effective in the Awareness stage
  • Presentations & best practices & tips are most effective in both the Awareness and Consideration stages
  • How-to guides are most effective in the Consideration stage
  • And ebooks, whitepapers and webinars & events are most effective in the Evaluation/Purchase stage


You might find different results when you test, but it’s a smart idea to leverage the data LinkedIn has already provided when planning your Document Ad tests!

LinkedIn’s Tips

Of course, LinkedIn provides its own set of tips for this new ad type as well:

  • Use a PDF file for the best quality
  • Keep file size under 100mb
  • Keep document length under 10 pages and use 3-4 preview pages
  • Include images, bullets & graphics
  • Don’t use CTAs, as they aren’t active in-platform
  • Include an attention-grabbing cover page and enticing preview pages


Overall, we’re happy with the performance of our Document Ad campaigns and look forward to Lead Gen being offered for Desktop users later this year!