The Complete Guide to LinkedIn Ad Specs


If you’re a B2B brand looking to build awareness, develop relationships with your audience and generate leads, LinkedIn advertising could be just the ticket. Find out what you need to know about getting started with LinkedIn ads as part of your social media ad strategy and the various formats you have to choose from.

LinkedIn currently boasts more than one billion users worldwide, with 39 million of those being in the UK. The channel’s popularity has continually grown throughout the last few years and isn’t showing any signs of slowdown.

With its expansive and diverse audience, it’s no surprise that advertisers want to use the platform to engage new customers and bring leads all the way through the sales funnel.

According to the platform, LinkedIn ads increase buying intent by 33 per cent. Additionally, the site is ranked top for B2B lead generation and 40 per cent of advertisers believe LinkedIn to be the most effective channel for driving high-quality leads.

Organic content is the beating heart of any social media marketing strategy, but launching ad campaigns is a tried and tested method to increase your reach and attract the right audience to your business.

So, read on to learn everything you need to know about LinkedIn ads, including the formats available to choose from and how to target your ideal audience, as well as all of the different ad specs and dimensions on the platform.

Getting started with LinkedIn ads

Before you can set your first LinkedIn ad campaign live, there are several prerequisite steps to be taken. Primarily, you’ll need to have a LinkedIn Page and a Campaign Manager account. A LinkedIn advertising agency can help you set these up if you’re unsure where to start.

Creating a LinkedIn Page is free and, if your organisation doesn’t already have one, it really should. The advantages of this include the ability to publish paid ads and as your business posts great content that earns interactions, you’ll rank higher in LinkedIn’s advertising auction.

Once that’s taken care of, the second compulsory task is to create a Campaign Manager account. This is LinkedIn’s advertising platform and provides a high level of control over your advertising.

The platform will take you through the process in a simple way, including:

  • Selecting a Campaign Group: This involves setting aspects such as location and budget
  • Choosing an objective: Here, you’ll tell LinkedIn what action you want the target audience to take upon seeing your ad
  • Pinpointing your target audience: In this step, you can choose to display your ads to LinkedIn users with specific traits, like job title or industry type to help boost the impact of your campaign

Once you’ve configured the fundamental aspects of your advertising campaign and determined how much budget to devote to LinkedIn advertising costs, the next thing to do is pick the right ad format.

What types of LinkedIn ad formats are there?

When it comes to choosing what type of ads you want to run for your organisation, the various LinkedIn ad formats offer plenty of options. These can be broken down into five main categories, which are:

  • Sponsored content: Image, video, carousel, event and document ads
  • Message ads: LinkedIn InMail and conversation ads
  • Text ads
  • Dynamic ads: Spotlight, follower and job ads
  • Lead gen forms

The success of your LinkedIn advertising campaign will be significantly affected by the type of ad format you choose. So, let’s break down these four categories further.

Organic social media posts take time to gain traction, so, if you’re looking for quick wins or instantaneous results, paid advertising will give you that boost. Bypassing the algorithm to get your content in front of audiences in a timely fashion represents a good move at strategic points in a campaign.

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content ads allow you to push your products or services directly onto the LinkedIn feeds of users, which makes this an ideal choice for marketers looking to increase website traffic, create new leads and improve brand awareness.

Each type of sponsored content comes with its own set of ad specs, which you can view below.

Image Ad Specs

  • Image resolution: 1200 x 627
  • Ad image file type: PNG, JPG, GIF
  • Ad image file size: 5 MB maximum
  • Image display size (for rich media): 1.91:1 ratio (1200 x 628px), 400px maximum in width
  • Max weight (for rich media): 100 MB with a recommended PPI (pixels per inch) of 72
  • Ad name character limit: 255 
  • Introduction text character limit: 150 on mobile, 600 on desktop
  • Headline character limit: 70 characters on mobile, 200 on desktop
  • Description character limit: 70 characters on mobile, 300 on desktop
  • URL length: This will be converted into a short link if it exceeds 23 characters
  • Destination URL spec: must include “http://” or “https://” prefix, up to 2,000 characters

Video Ad Specs

  • Ad name character limit: 255
  • Introductory text character limit: 150 
  • Video length: 3 seconds minimum, 30 minutes maximum
  • File size: 75 KB minimum, 200 MB maximum
  • File format: MP4
  • Frame rate: 30 FPS
  • Pixel and aspect ratio requirements:
    • Landscape (16:9):
      • 640 x 360 pixels minimum
      • 1920 x 1080 pixels maximum
    • Square (1:1):
      • 360 x 360 pixels minimum
      • 1920 x 1920 pixels maximum
    • Vertical (4:5):
      • 360 x 450 pixels minimum
      • 1536 x 1920 pixels maximum
  • Minimum resolution 600 x 600, maximum resolution 1080 x 1080
  • Audio format: AAC, MPEG4
  • Audio size: 64 KHz maximum
  • Video captions: SRT format
  • Video headline: 70 characters maximum to avoid truncation on most devices, 200 on desktop
  • Destination URL must have the “http://” or “https://” prefix and are limited to  2,000 characters
  • Ad name: Use up to 255 characters to name your carousel ad
  • Introductory text: 150 characters maximum, to avoid truncation on some devices (255 maximum characters)
  • Cards: two cards minimum, 10 cards maximum. Individual cards within the carousel must meet these requirements
    • File size: 10 MB maximum
    • Recommended individual image spec: 1080 x 1080 with a 1:1 aspect ratio
    • Rich media formats supported: JPG, PNG and GIF (non-animated)
    • Headline text can take up a maximum of two lines on each card without being truncated
    • Destination URL much have the “http://” or “https://” prefix and be 2,000 characters or less
    • Destination URL carousel ads must be 45 characters or less
    • Lead gen form carousel ads must be 30 characters or less

Event Ad Specs

  • Ad name: Use up to 225 characters to name your ad
  • Introductory text: 150 characters maximum to avoid truncation on certain devices (desktop limit is 600 characters)
  • LinkedIn event URL: Add the URL for your event. The platform will automatically use the thumbnail image for your advert

Document Ad Specs

These ads allow you to place documents directly within users’ LinkedIn feeds, where your target audience can quickly and easily download your content without any need to leave the platform.

Document ads are ideal for nurturing your existing audience, but also for collecting high-quality leads and gauging the level of interest your content is generating.

To create a document ad on LinkedIn, your file must be in a PDF, DOC, DOCX, PPT or PPTX format, with a maximum size of 100 MB. In terms of aspect ratios, you can choose between horizontal, vertical or square, and the document can’t exceed one million words or 300 pages.

You can use any of the standard PDF layouts:

  • Letter: 8.5 by 11 inches
  • Tabloid: 11 by 17 inches
  • Legal: 8.5 by 14 inches
  • Statement: 5.5 by 8.5 inches
  • Executive: 7.25 by 10.5 inches
  • Folio: 8.5 by 13 inches
  • A3: 11.69 by 16.54 inches
  • A4: 8.27 by 11.69 inches
  • B4: 9.84 by 13.90 inches
  • B5: 6.93 by 9.84 inches

Message Ads

Sponsored messages help to reach out and directly engage with your target audience in their LinkedIn inboxes. This supports you to promote upcoming events, new products or services and drive leads through the sales funnel. There are two main types of message ads.

Message Ad Specs

  • Ad name (optional): Use up to 50 characters, including spaces
  • Sender: Select from available senders
  • Message subject: Up to 60 characters
  • Message text: Up to 1,500 characters
  • Clickable links: Three links max
  • Hyperlink: Up to 70 characters
  • Custom terms and conditions: 2,500 characters max
  • CTA button copy: Up to 20 characters
  • Landing page URL in hyperlink or CTA: URLs must include the “http://” or “https://” prefix. Use up to 1024 characters for your destination link.
  • Banner creative: 300 x 250
    • File type: JPG, GIF (non-animated), or PNG (no flash)
    • Maximum file size: 2 MB
    • Click-through URL

Conversation Ad Specs

  • File type (banner): JPG, PNG
  • Image size (banner): 300 x 250 pixels
  • Image file size (banner): 2MB max
  • Ad name character limit: 225
  • Message character limit: 500
  • Footer character limit: 2,500
  • Call-to-action character limit: 25
  • URLs in a hyperlink or CTA must include “http://” or “https://”, with a limit of 1024 characters for the destination link

Text Ads

Text ads are smaller, less invasive formats that push your content either at the top or bottom of users’ LinkedIn feeds. Generally, these are used to boost traffic, improve brand awareness and earn new leads.

Text Ad Specs

LinkedIn text ads can appear in several dimensions, including:

  • 160 x 600
  • 300 x 250
  • 498 x 80
  • 700 x 17
  • 728 x 90

Once you’ve decided which of the above you’d prefer for your text ad, the mandatory specs are:

  • Ad image resolution: 100 x 100 pixels
  • Ad image format: JPG, PNG
  • Ad image file size: 2 MB maximum
  • Ad headline character limit: 25
  • Ad description character limit: 75
  • URLs in a hyperlink or CTA must include “http://” or “https://”, 500 characters maximum for the destination link

Dynamic Ads

Dynamic ads are customisable, letting you tailor them based on member profile data, such as their names, job titles or even the specific companies they work for. Due to space limitations, dynamic ads are only shown on desktop devices. 

When it comes to running these ads, there are four main formats to be aware of.

Spotlight Ad Specs

These ads literally place your product or service in the spotlight, highlighting the benefits to potential customers and directing your target audience to a pre-chosen page on your website.

  • Ad description character limit: 70
  • Ad headline character limit: 50
  • Company name character limit: 25
  • Ad image: 100 x 100 minimum
  • Ad image file type: JPG, PNG
  • CTA button character limit: 18 maximum (including spaces)
  • Background image size: 300 x 250 (exactly)
  • Background image file size: 2MB maximum

Follower Ad Specs

Follower ads inform LinkedIn users about your organisation, page and products or services. These encourage viewers to follow your business and enter the sales funnel. 

  • Ad description character limit: 70
  • Ad headline character limit: 50
  • Company name character limit: 25
  • Ad image: 100 x 100 minimum
  • Ad image file type: JPG, PNG

Jobs Ad Specs

  • Company name character limit: 25
  • Company logo size: 100 x 100 px minimum
  • Ad headline character limit: 70

Lead gen form ads

To quickly capture information from potential customers, lead gen forms are the perfect tool. They can be engaging, interesting and most importantly, they let you collect data without wasting too much time or money.

Lead Gen Ad Specs

  • Form name character limit: 256
  • Landing page URL character limit: 2,000
  • Ad headline character limit: 60
  • Ad details character limit: 160
  • Privacy policy character limit: 2,000
  • Call-to-action character limit: 20
  • Confirmation message character limit: 300
  • Form fields: Three to four is recommended, but the maximum is 12

With so many options when it comes to LinkedIn ads, the platform allows you to place your adverts in front of the right audience. Ultimately, this means the channel presents one of the biggest opportunities for generating leads, boosting brand awareness and driving conversions. If you want to know more, consider working with a LinkedIn advertising agency, which will be able to walk you through the various options and settle on the best strategy for your brand.

8 Minute Read

By axonnmedia | Updated

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