LinkedIn has announced it will discontinue its lookalike audiences feature starting February 29, 2024.
According to a statement from LinkedIn, after February 2024, advertisers will no longer be able to create new lookalike audiences or edit existing ones. Any current lookalike audiences will become “static” and stop refreshing with new data.
LinkedIn stated that active ad campaigns using lookalike audiences will continue to run but will be delivered to the now static audience pool. After 30 days of inactivity, unused lookalike audiences will be automatically archived by LinkedIn.
Alternatives: Predictive Audiences & Audience Expansion
As an alternative to the soon-to-be-phased-out lookalike audiences, LinkedIn recommends advertisers use its newer “Predictive Audiences” and “Audience Expansion” feature instead.
Predictive audiences utilize LinkedIn’s AI to build custom audiences likely to convert based on advertisers’ conversion data, lead gen forms, or contact lists.
Audience expansion is suggested for marketers looking to broaden their target demographics. It expands target audiences using LinkedIn’s professional demographic data.
Both features aim to help advertisers identify and reach high-intent individuals similar to their existing customers.
Predictive Audiences Details
You need at least 300 people in the selected data source to create a predictive audience. The system allows a maximum of 30 predictive audiences per ad account, and they can’t be shared between accounts.
Note that campaigns using predictive audiences won’t be able to expand the audience.
Audience Expansion Details
Audience expansion relies on professional demographics and can be combined with Matched Audience segments.
LinkedIn has highlighted that performance metrics include data from those you initially aimed your ads at and the wider group. However, you won’t be able to widen your audience for adaptive ad formats or audiences chosen based on predicted behaviors.
Implications For Current Campaigns
Any current ad campaigns using lookalike audiences must switch to predictive audiences or turn on audience expansion to keep a dynamic targeting approach. LinkedIn said there will be a 30-day grace period where unused lookalike audiences can still be accessed before being archived.
In addition, LinkedIn’s API for creating lookalike audiences through third-party marketing platforms like HubSpot will go away. This means marketers who rely on those integrations to build audiences will need another option.
LinkedIn stated that existing lookalike audiences will function normally until February 2024.
Advertisers are advised to begin using Predictive Audiences and Audience Expansion for future dynamic targeting needs. More details are available in LinkedIn’s announcement and help documentation.
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