Social media advertising may be one of the most effective and accurate forms of online marketing. People often think of Google or Bing Ads as the primary source of sales or leads online. However, depending on your industry or business objectives, showcasing ads on Facebook or LinkedIn could be the best starter choice.
First, we have performance tracking capabilities, of course. This refers to the ability to determine real ROI and cost-per-lead, among other key performance indicators. Also, and most importantly, you can direct your ad towards a highly-filtered, well-defined audience. Social media advertising provides precisely those two aspects of online marketing with astonishing precision, which is what sets it apart from other marketing platforms.
Let’s take a step back before we get too far ahead of ourselves. Before considering social media advertising, you have to understand fully what it is and how it works. For instance, it is important to note that every social media platform has a unique type of user engagement, every user interface is entirely different, and people consume the content uniquely on Instagrams as compared to Twitter.
What does it all mean for you as an advertiser? Let’s explore your options when it comes to social media advertising
Audience Size – Social Media Advertising
We could spend a considerable amount of time discussing the audience size of Facebook or LinkedIn and how this is growing exponentially through time, but that would not serve the purpose of this article. How many active users are there on Facebook? How many Likes occur per day? The audience is massive, we get it, and you could easily spend thousands of dollars in a few minutes if you wanted to. But, our focus today is merely strategizing for social media advertising.
What Is the Most Significant Benefit of Social Media Advertising?
Advertising on Facebook or Instagram has a huge competitive advantage over Google or Bing Ads. The answer is simple: audience identity.
When creating an account on Facebook or Linkedin, you must input information such as your age or gender, and, additionally, people can choose to share if they are either single or married or share their entire educational background. That’s just a glimpse of data in each profile. The accuracy of people’s identity on these platforms is quite impressive indeed. It’s not only about the personal information people are likely to add on their own, but also their behavioral background that we can track, such as interests, hobbies, or even purchase history.
Social media is a massive collector of personal information, and we are meant to use this data to showcase our ads at our best advantage.
Google, for instance, lacks this data. When running a PPC campaign for Search on Google, most of your traffic in demographics fall under the unknown category, for not all users are signed-in when browsing through the web. On the other hand, when browsing on Instagram, you have to be logged in, forcing you to share your personal information to happy advertisers who will show you ads.
Purpose of your Ads
Do you have an account on social media? Think about Instagram and consider what you would do with the app. People usually do things like upload a picture from their trip to New York. Instead, they may merely browse through the news feed and Like any content shared by their friends, relatives, or public profiles. Here is a crucial aspect of Instagram, the content focuses on the image itself instead of the text. Now, think about Twitter, does the content resolve around an image or mostly text?
The way users engage within each platform will determine the format of your ads. However, we must also consider the purpose of both, your business, and the marketing platform itself. Here’s an example:
Peter offers nutritional products for athletes or exercise enthusiasts, meaning it’s a business-to-customer approach. His purpose is to target his ads to people interested in anything related to dietary products, healthy food, or exercising. Also, people who follow public figures well known for weight lifting, among other related activities, are of great value. Peter has quite a modest budget for this month and can only afford to advertise on one marketing platform at a time. Then, which social media platform would benefit him the most, Instagram or Linkedin? Do Instagram and Linkedin share the same purpose? Of course not! Linkedin is, technically, an online resume. The content across these two platforms differs significantly.
When defining the objective of your ads, you must also consider the meaning of each marketing platform. In this case, it would not make sense for Peter to invest on Linkedin when Instagram offers better marketing capabilities that align with his objective. Linkedin is a great social media advertising platform but not for his business, especially when constrained by a small budget. Right off the start, we saved a lot of money by not investing in Linkedin.
Targeting Settings and Reach
Again, the size of the audience is immense. You will only have successful campaigns in social media if you narrow your audience substantially. Keep this in mind, the more you filter your audience, the better.
Social media advertising offers you everything you need to know about your audience. Not only that, it is super accurate. Social media has more information about their audience than any other marketing platform or channel out there.
The worst mistake made by those attempting social media advertising is related to general assumptions. For instance, you may know that your usual converter is the age group from 45 and above. However, right before you launch your campaign, you consider that could be too narrowed and decide to add people from 35 years of age. That minor adjustment in your settings could be the determining factor between success and failure.
One Last Thought About Social Media
Your business must have a relevant and unique identity online, too. People don’t set a different name of Facebook versus LinkedIn; one person is identified universally by one name, so should be the case for your business.
Assuming that your business name is Lloyd’s Baking Goods, every single account out there, Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube, must refer to the business as such. All search engines will, then, consider multiple accounts on different platforms to be part of the same company, increasing your business relevance across the board.