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Director Amanda On The Main Stage At Brighton SEO

Having attended Brighton SEO for over a decade now, I can safely say that it’s one of the best, if not the best SEO conference in the world, so I was absolutely delighted when asked to speak on the main stage this year covering the topic “SEO For YMYL Websites”

For those of you that don’t know what YMYL is, it stands for “Your Money Your Life” and it’s a term that was coined by Google to cover websites that can have an impact on someone’s money or life. At Cedarwood, we specialise in working with companies like this and with years of experience building links in particularly tricky industries i.e. gaming, vaping, medical, legal so it was great to be able to share some knowledge about this with the community.

So what were some of the key takeaways from the talk?

  • User intent is key – matching user intent plays a huge role in the YMYL space and it’s really important that we are keeping this in mind. This ties in really well with the idea of creating a “satisfying amount of content” – that is the right amount of content for a user, not a certain number of words, to answer the questions/queries they might have and allow them to make an informed decision
  • Reputation is important –  in particular your external reputation. Google yourself – see what people are saying about you and make sure that you work to build your reputation with effective Digital PR – this will go a long way to helping what people have to say about you and also what Google are seeing being said about you
  • Showcase your trust signals – whether it’s through industry accreditations or simply by telling people why they should trust you, showcasing this on your website and on external websites plays an important role on building those all important E-E-A-T signals
  • And on the topic of E-E-A-T, making sure that it shines through in everything that you do. Google have openly stated that for YMYL websites they place a heavier weight on E-E-A-T signals so it’s important that those are showcased at every opportunity
  • Finally, making sure that the look and feel of your content matches the expertise of it – there’s no point having great content only for it to look “amateurish” – take time to consider the way content is displayed and that it matches the expertise you are showcasing.

I had a great time in Brighton, got to meet some fantastic people and hear from some thought leaders across the industry.

You can find a link to my full slide deck here: https://www.slideshare.net/slideshow/amanda-walls-brighton-seo-seo-for-ymyl-websites-9pptx/267570020

Until October!

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A Guide To Meta Creatives

Meta ad creatives come in various forms and formats. From single images to videos, carousels, and collections, Meta offers a range of options for you to choose from to help businesses achieve their marketing objectives. But, with all these options it can sometimes get a little confusing on which ones are the right ones to pick. 

This blog is going to run through the different types of ad formats, their specifications and best practices for each one. 

Ad Formats

Image Ads

These are the most basic type of ads on Meta platforms and consist of a single image that is usually accompanied by text and a call to action (CTA) button. The image should be eye-catching and relevant to the ad’s message. Image ads are easy to create and are a great option if you have a limited budget.

Best Practices for Image Ads:

⚡Use high-quality images that are relevant to your ad’s message.

⚡Keep text to a minimum to avoid clutter.

⚡Use a clear CTA button that is in line with your campaign objective.

⚡Showcase your USPs to attract your audience.

Video Ads

Video ads have become increasingly popular in the last few months. They can be used to showcase a product or service, tell a story or entertain the audience. Video ads can be in-feed or story ads and can be a maximum of 60 seconds long. They are a great way to connect with the audience and build engagement. 

Best Practices for Video Ads:

⚡Grab the viewer’s attention within the first few seconds.

⚡Always use subtitles or captions to make your message clear, even when muted and for accessibility purposes.

⚡Tell a story or create an emotional connection with your audience.

⚡Include clear CTA buttons to encourage action from the viewer.

⚡Keep the video short and sweet (under 30 seconds is ideal).

Carousel Ads

Carousel ads consist of two or more images or videos that the user can swipe through. Each card has its own headline, description, call to action button and link to its landing page. You could use this feature to showcase different products, highlight multiple benefits, or you can create a story for the user to swipe through. 

Best Practices for Carousel Ads:

⚡Use high-quality images/videos that showcase your product or service.

⚡Create a story with your slides or highlight different products or features.

⚡Make sure you are sending users to the most relevant URL for each card.

⚡Select a clear CTA on the card that aligns with your campaign objective.

Collection Ads 

This format shows a collection of images that can be used to showcase multiple products. Users can click on a collection ad to view a fullscreen instant experience. This provides the user with a seamless instant experience without leaving the app. This is only available for Facebook feeds, Instagram feeds and Instagram stories.

Best Practices for Carousel Ads:

⚡Use high-quality images/videos that showcase your product or service.

⚡Create a story with your slides or highlight different products or features.

⚡Select a clear CTA on the card that aligns with your campaign objective and encourages users to click through to an instant experience.

Image and video specifications


Ad Format 

Recommended Ratio 

Recommended Size (Px)

Recommended Length

File Type








1:1 or 9:16 

1080×1080 or above 

15-30 secs

MP4 or MOV



1:1 or 9:16 

1080×1080 or above  

15 secs to 10 mins

MP3 or MOV





2-10 cards






or above






5-15 secs

MP3 or MOV





15-30 secs

MP3 or MOV

Right Column






Top takeaways

💥If you are unsure it is best to keep the size 1080×1080 pixels as this fits the most placements.

💥Keep ad copy short and to the point to make it easier for the audience to digest.

💥Include clear CTAs that align with your campaign objective.

💥Remember to highlight your USPs to attract your audience.

💥Trial different creatives to see what works best for you and your objectives.

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Do’s And Don’ts For E-commerce On Facebook

The e-commerce landscape has experienced rapid changes in the past few years from the advancements in technology, changing consumer behaviours, and the impact of worldwide events such as the COVID-19 pandemic. This industry has been through its fair share of ups and downs. So where does that leave Facebook Ads and their effectiveness in driving e-commerce sales? 

We’ve put together 5 essential do’s and don’ts to keep in mind when creating your next sales campaign.



👍Do define your target audience. Take time to clearly define your target audience before creating your ads. Explore Facebook’s wide range of audience options including interests, detailed targeting, website data and lookalike audiences. The more clear your target audience is the more likely Facebook will target your ads at the right people that are the most likely to buy your products!

👍Do use compelling ad copy and high-quality creatives. Social media is highly visual and very competitive. Make sure your ad stands out from the crowd by making your ads eye-catching and creating emotion for the user. Ensure that you highlight the benefits that your products offer.

👍Do test! Experiment with different ad formats, such as carousel ads, video ads, and collection ads, to see what resonates best with your target audience. Along with this make sure you’re filling out all the different options for ad copy within the primary text, headline and description sections. Facebook allows you to add multiple text options that they will then show to each person, based on what they’re most likely to respond to.

👍Do set clear campaign objectives. Is your client looking to drive sales, generate leads, or increase traffic to their website? Make sure that this is clear to you before you start and select the aligning Facebook campaign objective for the best results.

👍Do optimise your ads for mobile users. With the majority of Facebook and Instagram users accessing on a mobile device, ensure that you optimise your ads for mobile. Look at your ad creative and copy to make sure it is mobile-friendly and eligible. If you’re creating ads on your desktop, make sure to test it on your mobile to make sure all creatives are eligible and not too small to read.



👎Don’t overcomplicate your ad campaign. We usually use the 3×3 rule. 3 sets of the ad set with different targeting and 3 different ads. This allows us room to test what works best whilst still being easy to manage and optimise. If you have too many ads sets you can overload Facebook’s delivery systems which will negatively impact your performance.

👎Don’t narrow down your target audience too much. Broad targeting is on the rise on Facebook and we can agree that our best-performing campaigns are ones that have a broad target audience. This allows Facebook delivery systems to find the best people to show your ad to. This can lead to potential customers that you didn’t know about before. If you narrow down your target too much it limits Facebook’s capabilities, which will most likely lead to poor performance.

👎Don’t ignore your landing page experience. The majority of users are on a mobile device, therefore, make sure your landing page is mobile-friendly, and responsive. Having a slow loading speed can put users off and result in low conversion rates.

👎Don’t forget what the customer is looking for. It is important to think like your target audience to create the best ads for them. Is your product solving a problem for them? What makes it better than your competitors’ products? Have you got enough social proof online that you can use to your advantage? Think about why your customer would find value in your product and use this as clear USPs within your ads.

👎Don’t rely on one ad set or ad. Facebook works best when it can use its machine learning capabilities to test and see what performs best for your audience. Creating more ad sets and ads will allow for a better chance of success to hit the mark when it comes to your audience. You can optimise your ad sets later on, if you find that one ad set performs a lot better than the other then you can allocate more budget towards driving better results for your campaigns.


To round this up, Facebook ads can still be very effective in driving results for your business. Make sure you’re staying up to date with all the best practices, and testing to see what works best within your own ad account. You can start by focusing on these do’s and don’t to help increase your chance of achieving your campaign objective and start driving sales. Be responsive to the changes in consumer behaviour and market trends to ensure your product portrays value to your target audience. 

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Meta Targeting 101

With Meta’s social media platforms being some of the largest in the world, it would be foolish not to advertise there. With over 2 billion users, Meta targeting options allow advertisers to hone in on specific demographics and interests, making it ideal to reach your desired audiences. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the different targeting options available on Meta and how to use them effectively.

Audience Options

As always with Meta advertising, your journey begins at Ads Manager. To view your audience go to tools on the top left corner and click on ‘Audiences’. 

This will bring you to a list of all your existing audiences – allowing us to create new audiences or edit existing ones. 

This will bring you to a list of all your existing audiences – allowing us to create new audiences or edit existing ones. 


Saved Audiences:


By using saved audiences you can include or exclude people based on demographics, interests, and behaviours. This is referred to as detailed targeting audiences by Meta.


🎯Demographic Targeting – This allows you to target users based on various demographic data, such as age, gender, location, education level, and more. 


🎯Interest Targeting – This allows you to target users based on their hobbies, interests, and activities. 


🎯Behavioural Targeting – This allows you to target users based on their digital activities, purchase behaviour, mobile device, or consumer classification. 


Saved Audience’s best practices:


⚡ Detailed targeting works best the broader you can make it. If you narrow your target down too much you’re limiting the capabilities of Meta’s delivery system to show your ad to the right people – which will likely reduce the performance of your ad.

⚡ Turn on advantage detailed targeting, this is recommended by Meta to reach beyond your audience to drive the best performance for your ads. 


Custom Audiences:


Custom audiences connect with those who have already connected with your business or product. You can use sources such as websites, app activity, customer lists and engagement to create these.

Website data is an important source as it allows you to target people who have visited specific pages of your website, and also people who have taken part in a number of events such as; Page View, View Content, Add To Cart, Initiate Checkout, Search, Purchase and, Add Payment Info. If you want to make it more specific there is an option to set the aggregated value. For example, View content > 2.


Another useful audience is catching your Instagram and Facebook engagers. By using the Instagram Account and Facebook Page Meta Source you can create audiences for people that follow your account, have engaged with a post or ad, or even saved a post.

There are so many audiences you can create so have a play around with it and see what you can come up with.

Custom Audiences Best Practices: 

⚡ If you are using custom audiences do not add detailed targeting as well. This can confuse Meta’s delivery system as it has too many criteria to work with, which can be detrimental to ad performance. 

⚡ When creating the audience give a clear name including the retention time that you have selected so you can easily find it when you’re using it within an ad in the future.

Lookalike Audiences:

Lookalike targeting allows you to target users who are similar to your existing customers or website visitors. These are created from existing custom audiences. When you set up a new custom audience you will be prompted to create a lookalike. These are ideal for businesses looking to expand their customer base by reaching users who are likely to be interested in their product or service. This is also a great audience to use if your custom audiences are too small to use within ads. 

Lookalike best practices:

⚡ It is best to start small. We would recommend you start with a 1% lookalike audience, these are the most similar to your data source and are likely to have the best outcome.

⚡ Having a high-quality data source is an important factor in whether or not the audience is likely to complete the desired action. Avoid making audiences for website visitors as many of these would have left without completing another event. Whereas, using add-to-cart sources contains people with higher intent.

Rounding It All Up

Our last piece of advice is to test, test, test! Testing is so valuable when advertising on Meta. My go-to structure to test an audience is setting up three different audiences within the ad set level of the campaign and seeing which one performs the best.

In conclusion, Meta’s targeting options are incredibly powerful tools that help businesses reach their desired audience effectively. By using demographic, interest, behavioural, and lookalike targeting options, businesses can create audiences that are most likely to engage with their ads and convert into customers. By leveraging Meta’s targeting capabilities, businesses can create more effective advertising campaigns and achieve their marketing objectives.

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A Guide To Advantage+ Campaigns

.Facebook’s Advantage+ campaigns were first rolled out in August 2022, so by now, you’ve probably had a chance to check them out. If you haven’t, don’t stress, I’m here to give you the lowdown on what it is and how it works.

What is Advantage+?

Advantage+ campaigns are designed to be the most efficient solution to drive sales, using machine-learning algorithms to target your ads to the right people. Meta offers a simplified setup process that takes care of many of the more manual tasks, such as audience targeting and creative options. These automated shopping campaigns can give you more opportunities to reach people interested in your product, whether you are new to Meta ads or have more experience.

What are the benefits?

Some of the key benefits that Advantage+ offers include:

  1. Simplified set-up: Advantage+ has streamlined the campaign setup process to make it super easy for you to do and reduce the manual work involved, such as bid strategy and ad optimisation.
  2. Machine-learning: Advantage+ uses machine learning to identify the highest-value audience across all Meta platforms to target your ads. This increases your opportunity to reach people that are more likely to convert.
  3. Streamlined performance goals: This helps you optimise to achieve the best outcome for your business.

However, the major drawback of these automated campaigns is that you have less control over the audience you are targeting. Additionally, the lack of freedom when optimising the campaign can impact your goals and objectives, meaning, these campaigns are not for everyone.

How to set up an Advantage+ campaign?

Go to Ads Manager and create a new campaign 

Select ‘Sales’ as the new campaign objective

Choose the Advantage+ shopping campaign option

Manually input your campaign settings;

  1. Rename your campaign 
  2. Select ‘Conversion Location’
  3. Choose the correct Pixel and conversion event
  4. Select the audience location
  5. Set a daily budget and ad schedule 
  6. Choose the attribution setting for the campaign

Then you will move on to the ad settings;

  1. Rename your ad
  2. Select your Facebook page and Instagram account
  3. Create a new ad or use an existing post and follow the instructions for ad setup and ad creative
  4. Ensure your website destination is correct
  5. Make sure your tracking is added

Once you’re happy with your new campaign, then review your edits and publish

What next?

If you are giving these campaigns a try, make sure that you have all tracking set up correctly with appropriate UTMs. Give your campaign time to go through the learning phase to allow it the best chance of success; try not to change the ad too drastically, otherwise, it will delay this period. And finally, once your campaign is active, be sure to regularly check its performance against KPIs to see if this is the right campaign style for you.

To conclude, Advantage+ campaigns are a simplified approach to getting the most out of your advertising budget. They are similar to Google’s Performance Max campaigns by using machine learning to optimise your campaigns. It’s great for all advertisers whether you’re a beginner or more experienced. If you haven’t already I would definitely recommend that you give these automated Advantage+ campaigns a try and see how they perform for your business. AI is on the rise in the marketing world, so it looks like these campaigns are here to stay.

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iOS 14.5 and the Effects on Meta Advertising.

Over a year has passed since the introduction of IOS14 & 14.5 which changed the landscape of Meta advertising. This blog will talk through the updates and the detrimental effects this ultimately had on paid social advertisers.

iOS 14 & 14.5 Update Changes – What is it?

Perhaps one of the most significant changes arising from the updates was that Apple limited the amount of data Meta could get from their users. Apple launched the App Transparency feature which asked the user for permission every time an app requested their IDFA (Apple’s Identifier for Advertisers). 

This prompt allows users to ask the app not to track and, if selected, prevents any user activity being tracked across company apps and websites.

Since Apple’s new privacy feature the rate of opt-in figures has, unsurprisingly, been low. According to Statista as of April 2022, the opt-in rate was at 25%.

What does this mean for Meta advertising?

With the majority of consumers choosing to opt out of data, there has been a significant impact on the amount of data marketers are now able to collect.

As a result of the update, Meta Pixel is now unable to track user’s activity properly, which is a big change to adjust to. Advertisers now report far fewer clicks on their advertisements as people choose to opt out of tracking. As a result, the conversions that are made cannot be reported on as granulary; for example, demographic data is no longer collected, meaning that advertisers can no longer use this information to personalise ads. Consequently, this has made it more difficult when optimising ads and caused a notable decrease in performance for all campaigns.

Another clear impact of the update is the lack of audience data that can be used for remarketing purposes. Meta audiences is one of the reasons that advertising through these platforms was so popular. Targeting users through lookalike, remarketing and custom audiences is now limited in its capabilities. To tackle this, campaigns should target a broader audience using interest marketing, this will allow Meta to use their own data to put your ads in front of people likely to convert. 

Aggregated Events Management

In addition to the reduction of user data that Meta can access, there is also no real-time reporting in Meta and results can take up to 3 days to appear. In response to this, Meta developed the aggravated events management system to help advertisers with reporting. This requires brands to limit their conversion events to 8 per domain. Meta Events Manager now only tracks the last single event made by the user, it’s therefore important to prioritise the order of conversion events. It’s also vital to have your domains verified in order to have this working effectively, so keep an eye out for the warning sign that will tell you if it’s not.

How can agencies respond to this new normal for Meta Ads? 

  1. Verify your domain: This tells Meta that you are a legitimate business and allows for the 8 conversion events to be assigned to that domain.
  1. Set up Aggregated Event Management: You can set up 8 conversion events. Meta will only track the last conversion event with the highest priority. 
  1. Target broad Audiences :Targeting large audiences with similar interests will allow Meta to put your ads in front of the right people. 

Summing up the IOS 14 & 14.5 Updates

The IOS 14 and 14.5 updates have had a huge impact on how advertisers utilise Meta for advertising. The updates mean it’s no longer as efficient as it has been before, but there are still things we can do to give our campaigns the best chance of succeeding. After all, advertisers are known for adapting to change and, as such, we must stay vigilant for any more updates in the paid social scene and run with these changes.

Find out how we work with the iOS changes and can help guide your social advertising
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Finding The Right Facebook Ad Type For Your Campaign

Facebook is continuously evolving and offering more and more new ad formats, but how do you know which one is best for you? This blog will walk you through the various formats, and help you choose which you should adopt to reach the right audience to help you hit your campaign goals.

Image Ads

Image Ads are the most simple of the ad formats. You can use your own photos or create stock images to engage your audience. A picture, after all, is worth a thousand words, so don’t be afraid to get creative to attract your audience. Facebook’s creative hub allows you to test different image and text formats to find the best look for your advert.

These have the benefit of driving awareness of your business, can communicate a simple message to your audience and are quick and easy to create.

Video Ads

Video ads are a powerful way to showcase your products and services by using visuals and audio to capture your audience’s attention. These can be used to highlight a unique feature of your product or tell a story to drive awareness of your brand. Video ads can appear in a variety of placements including feeds, stories, reels, and many more.

The main advantages of this format are improved brand awareness, customer engagement, and increasing lead generation. So your choice is not limited when deciding to use a video ad.


Stories provide an edge-to-edge experience to steal your audience’s attention with quick-frame videos and interesting ads. Stories can have a very large reach and a higher click-through rate. 

Unique ads can be used to increase customer interest and boost awareness of your products. 


Messenger Ads are a perfect way to encourage customers to interact with your brand. The use of manual and automated features can be used to personalise your message to your existing or potential customers. 

Messenger ads are effective in reaching large numbers of people and starting conversations with your customers.


Carousel ads let you display as many as 10 images or videos within a single ad. Each image or video has a headline, link and call to action button, making it easy for the customer to navigate when clicking the ad.

Carousel ads are used best to:

  • Showcase multiple products in a single ad
  • – Highlight different features of a product or service, 
  • Take the user through a process 
  • Tell a story of your brand.

The main benefit of carousel is it increases consideration towards your brand and encourages people to actively engage with your product or service.


Slideshow ads contain different images that come together in a single harmonious slideshow. These are comparable to video but can be made on a smaller budget. Additionally, these are quick to create and can be set up easily from your Facebook page or phone. No matter how fast or slow the connection, these advertisements load quickly and play smoothly. 

These are most useful if you need to create an immersive ad quickly and inexpensively, and want to reach people with slower connections.


Collection ads have the unique ability to tailor your catalogue to each individual. The usual format consists of one main image accompanied by 3 smaller images. When the customer clicks on the ad they will receive a full-page instant experience which allows customers to see the storefront, browse for products and make a purchase effortlessly. 

These are helpful if your campaign’s goal is to drive product awareness and increase conversions for your business. 


Playable Ads allow customers to interact with your app before they decide to install it. These ads consist of 3 components; a lead-in video, a demo and, finally, a call to action. These are most commonly used for gaming apps.

Playables are effective for engaging customers and driving actions, as the customer gets to have a preview of the app before they decide to download it.

Which ad format is best for me?

With all these different kinds of formats available to select, how do you know which one to choose?  It is crucial to define your target audience in order to know who to direct your ads at. Each ad format comes with its advantages so you need to select one that aligns with your campaign objectives. 

One more thing

It’s important to remember that Facebook is constantly evolving, so it’s critical to stay on top of the latest changes to ensure your business thrives on the meta platforms.

Get in touch today if you want to start integrating Facebook advertising into your marketing strategy.

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LinkedIn Ads – Are They For You?

We all know about the effectiveness of Google, Bing and Facebook Ads, but what about LinkedIn Ads? Do they provide an effective ROI?

Who should use LinkedIn Ads?

A simple answer is B2B marketers whose potential clients are on LinkedIn. I have worked in B2B sales and I can attest that LinkedIn is a B2B sales gold mine. It is a world’s most up to date directory of 500 million professionals world-wide, including the key decision-makers who get on LinkedIn in their downtime to look for content and connections to better their careers and businesses. In short, if you are selling a B2B solution, then LinkedIn Ads could help you get in front of the right people in a micro-targeted way.

Audience targeting

In comparison to Google or Facebook Ads, LinkedIn Ads offer a very granular and accurate audience targeting. You can target specific companies, job titles, industries and regions. This enables you to target very specific audiences that fit your Ideal Customer Profile. You can narrow down your audience to as low as 500+ people based on multiple criteria listed in people’s LinkedIn profiles.

3 Popular LinkedIn Ad Types

If you are a frequent LinkedIn user you have probably seen them around the site, but here is an overview:

Display Text Ads

Text ads consist of Headline (25chr), Description (75chr) and an image (100×100 px). Text ads appear in a variety of sizes:
  • 300 x 250
  • 700 x 17
  • 160 x 600
  • 728 x 90
  • 496 x 80
All these ads, if they are showing a valuable proposition, can be effective in generating brand awareness and/or capturing leads.

Sponsored Content

The content posted on your company page is only visible to those that follow your company page. With Sponsored Content Ads you can push your post to be shown to specific audiences that do not follow you. This is a great way to boost the visibility of your brand posts and send relevant traffic to your site to capture leads. It looks like a regular post, the only difference is the little Promoted sign. Also, you can add Call-To-Action buttons like Learn More or Sign Up.

Sponsored InMail

A lot of Recruiters and Sales Development Reps use InMail to message individuals outside of their network. By using Sponsored InMail you can scale it up and send InMail blasts to very targeted audiences. Despite not being personalised messages, you can pivot your message to your specific audience by their company, industry or job title. According to SaaS company RepliconSponsored InMails provide 11 times better response rate than cold emails. Impressive, isn’t it? Nevertheless, InMails won’t replace Emails, but they provide an alternative way to get the attention of key decision-makers whose email inboxes are flooded.


The costs vary largely by industry, seniority of prospect and location. All LinkedIn Ads work on Pay-Per-Click, Pay-Per-1000-Impressions or Cost-Per-Send for InMails. So there is always an auction running before the ad is shown or InMail sent and it depends on competitive bidding for those actions. As a result, it is more expensive to reach the most important decision-makers in the key industries. CPC tends to be around $2-$5 and Cost-Per-Send for InMail between $0.20-$1. We are now in the early days of the rise of LinkedIn Ads. Ever since Microsoft acquired LinkedIn in 2017, their ad platform is evolving rapidly and more and more B2B marketers are turning to LinkedIn Ads to generate leads. Thus, bid competition is likely to become more intense and cause ad spend to go up. The time is now to try LinkedIn Ads.