Most small business owners know a social media presence is important for their marketing. However, for a strong social presence, is not enough on its own. You must also have a great website, consistent quality content and it’s important to invest in social media advertising as well. The biggest players in online ads for small businesses are Facebook and Google Adwords Express.
Why Invest in Social Media Ads?
According to recent research published by LinkedIn and Marketing profs there is lots of evidence online advertising works.
- 78 percent of social marketers surveyed said they’re either very satisfied or somewhat satisfied with the value of Facebook Ads.
- 60 percent of participants in a study indicated they’ve purchased from a business because of something they saw on Twitter.
- 44 percent of small and medium businesses use social ads for brand awareness.
- 41 percent of small and medium businesses use social ads to drive revenue.
- 26 percent of Facebook users who click on an ad make a purchase.
In addition to reaching consumers and B2B customers on platforms they’re using, social media ads are very cost-effective. You get to choose how much you’ll spend each day, with most platforms having a click-through rate as low as $0.45-$3.77 per click. It depends on your competition and which users you’re trying to reach, and days/times your ad is running.
How to Run Successful Online Ads
Your digital marketing strategy, starts with building your web presence you’re your landing pages. many businesses overlook four crucial steps to an effective advertising campaign. As you begin a social media advertising campaign for your small business, make sure you aren’t guilty of missing these important elements:
- Select Your Ad Platform Carefully.
Where are your target users? It’s extremely important you know which social media platform(s) they use most frequently.
For example, if you’re trying to reach millennials, you may want to invest in Instagram ads or if you want to reach Gen X parents you may want to advertise on Facebook, whereas if you’re trying to target other business owners, LinkedIn may be a good fit.
Take the time to make sure you’re choosing the right platform(s) for your target consumers. After all, it’s a waste of your hard-earned dollars to spend money advertising on a network your target audience doesn’t use.
- Where will you send social media users?
Many small businesses make the mistake of focusing all their efforts on the ad itself, without thinking about where they plan to send users. While your home page or contact page has necessary information about your company, they aren’t the best spot to direct traffic.
Instead, create a separate “landing page” that’s designed to be a natural follow-up to the ad. On this page, you can use similar language and visuals so there’s a natural flow from your ads to your website, with a clear call to action, whether it’s contacting you for a consultation, purchasing your product or providing you with their contact information so you can add them to your email marketing list.
- Begin with A/B Testing.
You can implement every best practice in online advertising, but the best way to learn incredibly valuable information about your target audience is through: A/B testing your ads. Run three to five ads for five to seven days. Then compare the results to determine which two resonated better with your target audience.
For example, use the same language with your ad, but include different images in a few ads and a video in the other. When the ads finish running, you can review the results and see which ones your target users responded to best.
Through A/B testing, you can glean all sorts of valuable insight including types of visuals, imagery, colors, language, etc. It’s worth the investment up front to learn, before loosing a ton of money on ads that don’t convert!
- Review Google Analytics Following Every Ad.
Even if you’re not A/B testing, reviewing your data is key to a successful social media ad strategy. You need to understand the actions visitors take from ads to through your site.
Any social media platform you run ads on will be able to provide insight regarding ad engagement and click-throughs; Google Analytics can take the data a step further by showing you where users went on your website after visiting the landing page.
By reviewing this data following each ad, you can draw helpful conclusions to strengthen your next advertising campaign.
Get Started With Your Social Media Ads!
There’s no time like the present to begin your social media ads! By carefully selecting which platform(s) you invest in, taking the time to create a relevant landing page, doing A/B testing up front and reviewing your analytics after each ad campaign, you’ll be well on the way to a successful campaign.
About the author:
Erika Taylor Montgomery is CEO of Three Girls Media, Inc., which provides custom quality content and personalized public relations with each clients’ goals and budget in mind. Learn more: www.ThreeGirlsMedia.com.