Meta’s Facebook and Instagram Ads vs. LinkedIn Ads: Which is Best for B2B?

Whereas Meta has many more users, LinkedIn has incredible job-related data such as job title and the company you work for. I would recommend Facebook and Instagram ads (Meta) if you are targeting small businesses, freelancers and consultants, doctors, lawyers and entrepreneurs. Whereas if you need to target people who work at bigger companies with specific job titles, you can do that efficiently on Linkedin.

As someone with extensive experience in both Meta (formerly Facebook) and LinkedIn advertising, I often get asked which platform is better for B2B marketing. The answer? It’s nuanced. Let’s dive deep into the specifics of each platform, their costs, and their potential ROI.

The Experience Behind the Analysis

My journey in the world of online advertising began with Facebook and Instagram ads. Over time, as the digital landscape evolved, I transitioned into LinkedIn advertising. Today, I run a LinkedIn ads agency, and while we primarily focus on LinkedIn, I maintain an unbiased perspective on both platforms.

There are two things I would consider important as a B2B marketer to make this decision. The Cost and ROI, as well as who we can target on each platform. I would say always go to the cheaper platform. If it is like for like in terms of ‘the who’, then go where you can find the traffic for cheaper, which would be Facebook. 

Yet, this is not the case. I often struggle to target specific professionals or companies on Facebook. LinkedIn’s superpower is its incredible laser-sharp targeting capabilities because of the job data it has. Therefore, if you need to target bigger companies or specific job titles, we can do that better on LinkedIn than on Facebook. 

The Cost and ROI Breakdown

Meta (Facebook & Instagram)

  • Click-Through Rates (CTR): On average, Meta boasts a CTR of 0.9%.
  • Cost Per Click (CPC): The average CPC on Meta is around $1.86, though this can vary based on the industry.
  • Conversion Rates: The average conversion rate, such as form fill-outs or downloads, is close to 10%.
  • Cost Per Action (CPA): The CPA, which could be for actions like signing up for a sales call or downloading gated content, varies. However, for B2B sectors like consultants, agencies, and SaaS companies that require sales calls, the CPA can range from $50 to $300. On average, you might spend about $120 for a sales-qualified call.

LinkedIn

  • Click-Through Rates (CTR): LinkedIn generally has a lower CTR, averaging around 0.5%.
  • Cost Per Click (CPC): The CPC on LinkedIn can be as high as $9, depending on your target audience.
  • Cost Per Lead (CPL): The CPL on LinkedIn can range from $15 to $350, depending on what you classify as a “lead.”
  • Sales Qualified Lead (SQL) Costs: On LinkedIn, the cost for an SQL can range from $350 to $800. The average is closer to $600 to $800 per scheduled phone call.

The “Who” Factor: Targeting Capabilities

Meta

Meta is excellent for targeting small business owners, freelancers, consultants, lawyers, and doctors. If these profiles match your Ideal Client Profile (ICP), then Meta is your go-to platform.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn shines when you’re targeting larger companies or specific job titles. Whether you’re aiming for VPs of marketing, CTOs, CEOs, or entire departments like HR, LinkedIn’s targeting capabilities are unparalleled. If your ICP involves larger companies or specific industries, LinkedIn is the better choice.

The Bigger Picture: Return on Investment (ROI)

While LinkedIn might seem more expensive upfront, it can often yield a higher ROI, especially if you’re targeting bigger companies with larger Lifetime Values (LTVs). For instance, if one big client on LinkedIn is worth four smaller clients on Meta, then the higher costs on LinkedIn are justified.

Bonus Tip: Combining the Power of Both Platforms

One effective strategy is to utilize both platforms in tandem. For instance, you can download a list of companies from Crunchbase, upload them to LinkedIn, and target specific roles within those companies. This ABM (Account-Based Marketing) strategy can be incredibly effective in reaching the right audience.

Conclusion

The debate between Meta and LinkedIn isn’t about which platform is universally better. It’s about understanding your specific needs, your target audience, and your budget. Both platforms have their strengths, and the key is to leverage them effectively for your B2B marketing goals.

Further Reading 

Hungry for more insights? Don’t forget to dive into our other articles covering LinkedIn and LinkedIn Ads, grabbing email addresses from Instagram followers, and a wealth of strategies for turbocharging your B2B growth. 

Check out: 

Philip Ilic

Philip Ilic

B2B Growth Specialist

Phil helps B2B SaaS companies with growth marketing and is a deep specialist in Linkedin advertising and paid social more generally (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn). He runs a paid social agency called Superlumen.co and is the founder of B2Bhero.co.

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