LinkedIn’s Nancy Kerrigan Campaign: AI Tools for B2B Marketers


On June 7, 2023, LinkedIn, the professional networking platform, released a new B2B research report and introduced several B2B tools, including generative AI ad copy features. The launch was accompanied by a captivating advertising campaign led by Ryan Reynolds’s Maximum Effort, showcasing these products.

A recent LinkedIn research highlights that 76% of B2B chief marketing officers often feel pressured to demonstrate short-term returns on investment, while 70% of B2B marketers prioritize generating new business in their marketing budgets. These findings depict an industry facing mounting pressure, as outlined in LinkedIn’s first-ever B2B Marketing Benchmark study released on the same day.

LinkedIn is unveiling a suite of new marketing products and services to assist B2B marketers in driving business growth and enhancing their bottom line. The updates include latest ad formats, such as in-stream video ads, inbox-placed “conversation ads,” and “thought leader ads,” which amplify content from executives or other employees. These new ad formats will be accessible starting in July.

Moreover, LinkedIn is introducing a new ad copy suggestion tool powered by generative artificial intelligence to aid in copywriting. Given the platform’s observed 142% increase in AI-related posts in recent months, this tool is essential to LinkedIn, indicating growing interest from B2B marketers.

Research on LinkedIn shows that almost 80% of B2B marketers plan to increase their use of generative AI to improve efficiency, create content more quickly, and produce content that connects with their target audience on a deeper level. To promote these new B2B tools, LinkedIn partnered with Ryan Reynolds‘ creative agency and production firm, Maximum Effort, for a multi-channel campaign featuring Olympic medalist and figure skating legend Nancy Kerrigan.

In a 30-second TV ad, Kerrigan endorses “CRM Solutions Software” cereal, frustrating a viewer who is unsure whether the product aids in user adoption or supports interoperability with their existing database. A dancing panda fails to alleviate the viewer’s concerns. While a cereal commercial may not assist a B2B marketer in selling CRM software, LinkedIn ads will. The ad concludes with the tagline: “With 70 million decision-makers, LinkedIn is the place to B2B.”

According to a statement from the brand, the campaign aimed to humorously parody common advertising tropes seen in B2C advertisements, such as featuring a renowned spokesperson on a cereal box and cute talking mascots.

The campaign extends to digital and social media platforms and includes out-of-home creative placements at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity this month.

Other notable features include an API for audience insights designed for agency partners, the ability for users to directly message a brand page on LinkedIn, and a new “CMO Scorecard” to provide evidence of the overall impact of paid brand activities.

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