Social media is a huge part of our digital world now – and only getting bigger. Your business likely already has an organic social media strategy in place. But getting your content noticed on social media is hard in an over-saturated market. It might be time to get into social media advertising – paying to promote your ads and content on social media platforms. How can you create social media ad campaigns that drive the results you need to grow your business? Read on to find out.
What is Social Media Advertising?
Social media advertising is paying for your content to be seen on any or all of the social media networks – Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, Twitter, and more. All the major social networks offer advertising options, but they are all different. And not every one will be right for your business.
You want to be sure with social media ads that you’re not just paying to get views on your content for the sake of getting more viewers alone. It’s critical to promote content that ties into your larger business goals, like growing brand awareness, getting new leads, or increasing sales.
The Benefits of Social Media Marketing
Social media advertising is effective for several reasons. It meets your audience where they already spend their time – on social media sites. Since there are so many different social sites and they have plenty of user information, you can effectively reach your target audience with ease. And social ad campaigns are quite cost-effective – they’re much cheaper than print advertising.
Growing your brand awareness is important to growing your business – that’s why it should be part of your digital marketing strategy. After all, your potential customers can’t buy from your business unless they know you exist. Sharing your content on a few relevant social media platforms helps build brand awareness. But it’s easy to get lost in the crowd. That’s where social ads come in to boost your content and your brand profile.
You can’t grow your business without getting new leads. Promoting your content on social media is a great way to gather those leads because you’re talking to people who have already opted to engage with your content. They’ve already shown interest in your brand or in what you’re offering. You can use links in your ads or profile to gather further information like email addresses and add those leads into your marketing funnel. You can also do giveaways, share videos with events and updates, and create contests to gather more leads from your paid content.
Several social media platforms offer shopping platforms built right into the site. For example, you can enable Instagram’s Shopping feature or Facebook’s Shop Section to drive sales. These features let customers view the details of products you’ve shared in posts like sizes, colors, and prices. Then those visitors can go through the platform to buy the products directly from your site.
It provides several benefits – allowing you to showcase your products attractively while reducing the steps and friction involved in making a purchase. It’s a seamless and visually compelling experience. It’s also a cost-effective way to boost those conversions and can be combined with retargeting display ads for extra effectiveness.
Build Customer Relationships
In today’s marketing-saturated world, consumers are looking for an authentic and engaging experience with brands. They want to feel they’re interacting with a company they can relate to – and social media provides this experience. Paid social media campaigns like Instagram ads allow you to stand out from your competitors and bring in new visitors and followers, and build a relationship from there. And once a lead has become a customer, engaging social ads can keep them coming back for more if they like your product. Retaining loyal customers is a cost-effective way to grow.
Creating Your Social Media Advertising Strategy
Now that you know how beneficial social media ads can be for growing your business, how can you create a social ad strategy that works for you? Start with social media marketing strategy first. Every business is different, so your plan will need to be tailored to your brand. But there are some tried-and-true steps to creating the social ad strategy for your business.
Study Your Target Audience
First, you need to figure out who your ideal customers and buyer personas are. You may have already created these buyer personas as part of your overall digital marketing strategy. This is an especially critical step in your social ad strategy because the more targeted your ads are, the more effective they will be.
Decide Which Sites To Use
Once you know who your ideal buyers are, do research into which social media sites they use frequently. Professionals and businesses are on LinkedIn, while millennials flock to Instagram and boomers use Facebook most often. Pinterest users are largely female, while Twitter skews more male. Find out where your potential customers spend their time – both by reviewing demographic information for each social platform and finding where activity groups who like your product spend their time.
Create Engaging and Authentic Content
Your promoted content needs to stand out from the crowd, and have a cohesive look and feel to increase your brand awareness. But the specifics of creating ads for each social network are different. Facebook allows you to create and share video ads, which can make a big impact when they’re done correctly. Consider what your competitors are doing and figure out a way to stand out from them. Always use compelling copywriting for your ad content, especially in text-heavy mediums like Twitter advertising. And include high-quality images that tell a story in every ad, especially on visual mediums like Instagram.
Optimize Your User Experience
Once your social media audience clicks through your ads, you don’t want to drive them away from a sale. You should have landing pages that have the same look and feel of your ads, and the same call to action so your customers don’t get lost along the way. If your Facebook ads feature pictures of the Bahamas as a destination for your travel agency ads, but your landing page features snow-covered ski resorts, you’ve wasted that ad spend on a prospect who is unlikely to convert to a customer.
Measure Your Results
You should never run any kind of advertising campaign without a plan in place to review and measure your results. Otherwise, you won’t know what ads are working and which are just wasting money. Calculate your ROI for each ad and see if you have the budget to increase ads that work well. Be sure to tweak or cut any ads that are underperforming. Most social sites offer sophisticated analytics to help you review your ad campaigns as they run.
Measuring success in your social media campaigns takes more than just one metric. You should define success based on your business goals. For example, measuring your engagement rates – likes, comments, and shares – is valuable, especially if your goal is increasing brand awareness. Google Analytics can help you measure how many visitors each social media site has brought to your website, which is another useful metric.
Increasing your Effectiveness
Need help making your social media marketing deliver big results? It’s a powerful tool to grow your business – but only if you have the right strategy and delivery. At ContentFirst.Marketing, we help busy business owners just like you increase the effectiveness of your social media strategy and overall digital marketing plan. And we have the resources you need to stand out from your competitors and grow your business. Schedule your free business review today and build the foundations for real success.