Chances are that your business already has a social media presence. Whether you’re sharing your latest promotion or offering a behind-the-scenes look at your business, your social media content allows you to build a relationship with your customers and prospects. With 2.8 billion active users worldwide – that’s 37% of the entire population – social media has become a cornerstone of most digital marketing strategies.
But as the social world has grown more crowded, it’s gotten harder to stand out and grow your audience organically. That’s where social media advertising comes in. It offers an opportunity to make your social media content – content you’re already creating – work harder for you. Done well, social media advertising can help build your brand awareness, increase engagement, and ultimately, improve your bottom line. And done poorly? You risk wasting your money or alienating your prospects. So let’s take a look at what you need to know before you click the “Boost” button on your latest Facebook post.
Pros and Cons of Social Media Advertising
Social media advertising can range from paying to boost your high performing content to creating full-blown marketing campaigns to move your prospects through the marketing funnel. And while you may be tempted to jump in and start promoting your content, understanding the pros and cons of advertising on social media can help you optimize your strategy so you get the best results.
- Easy to get started: Since you’re already creating social content, you can start an ad campaign with just a few clicks of your mouse. Each social media platform offers tools that make it easy to get started, as well as to refine and target your campaigns to make them more effective.
- Affordable: Compared to traditional advertising channels, advertising on social media is incredibly affordable. And because you can tailor how you pay (per click or per impression), it can be a cost-effective way to extend the reach of your content.
- Targeted: When you advertise on social media, you have tons of options to control exactly who sees your ads, so you can ensure your ads are focused and relevant. Add in smart retargeting, and you can show your social media ads to just the right audience at just the right time.
- Easy to track: If you’re spending money on advertising, then you want to know the money is being put to good use. You can easily track likes, comments, shares on your social media ads, so you always know how they are performing.
- Times consuming: It takes time and effort to get the best results with your social media ads. From figuring out the best mix of ads to creating engaging content to monitoring your social accounts, expect social media advertising to take time to implement successfully.
- Competitive: The social media market is a crowded and competitive. In fact, a survey by eMarketer showed that 88% of businesses use social media to spread the word about their businesses. That means you’ll need to figure out how to stand out. Creativity goes a long way, but you may want to consider hiring a social media expert to help your content gets noticed. According to survey
- Risk of ad fatigue: Because it’s so easy to start a campaign or boost a post, you run the risk of showing your potential customer ads too often or too soon. A well thought out advertising strategy can help ensure your audience doesn’t tune you out.
- Learning curve: While it’s easy to get started, there’s a lot to learn about social media advertising, including how to use the tools on each platform and what content resonates with your target audience. Know that effective social media advertising will require an investment of time and money to get right.
Getting Started with Advertising on Social Media
Now that you know what to expect and are ready to get started, the following four tips can help you make the most of your social media advertising efforts
1. Get to Know Your Audience
Social media advertising is most effective when you deliver highly relevant content to a very specific group of people. As a result, the most important part of your social media advertising strategy is a clear understanding of your target audience – who they are, where, they live, and what they like – since that drives everything from where you advertise to the tone and content of your posts.
2. Set Goals
Once you understand your audience, make sure you set goals for your social media campaigns. What are you trying to do? Build brand awareness? Grow your email list? Increase conversions? All are valid uses of social media advertising, but each requires different tactics. For social media advertising to work for you, you must consider what you hope to accomplish each time you spend money on a campaign.
3. Pick the Right Tool
Facebook. Twitter. Instagram. LinkedIn. All of the popular social media platforms offer tools to help you quickly and easily run ad campaigns, including the ability to target your ads to very specific audiences. So how do you know where to advertise? The best platform to advertise on is the one that’s most popular with your target audience. Picking the tool for the job will help you make the most efficient use of your ad dollars.
4. Track Your Success
Don’t just hit publish and forget about your campaign. Tracking your results is crucial. Most platforms provide metrics that help you gauge how your campaign is doing. Be sure to follow what’s working – and what’s not – so you can adjust accordingly.
Reach Your Target Audience on Social Media
Social media offers a unique opportunity to engage with your customers and build a relationship over time, so they’ll be more likely to do business with you in the future. By boosting the performance of your social content with paid ads, you can reach a larger audience and help move your prospects through the marketing funnel. At EmoryDay, our team of marketing specialists can help you determine whether social media is the right choice for you and how to get the most from your digital advertising budget. Contact us today to learn more.