The Benefits of Social Media Marketing – Advertising on Social Media
This article will help you understand social media marketing and advertising. Everything from how it works to all the rewards you can reap.
In the last decade social media networks have become one of the most prominent and essential pieces of digital marketing. It’s a market that can’t be left untouched. Data collected from last year shown that in the UK alone, there are 32 million users on Facebook – with more signing up every single day. Sites like Instagram and Twitter had around 14 million and 20 million users respectively by the end of the year, and B2B social networking site, LinkedIn, had around 19 million. The numbers don’t lie, it’s now the era where social media and marketing go hand in hand.
So, to reach a whole new range of users, you need to implement the ultimate social media marketing strategy, to access a whole new pool of potential customers. Whilst you may not have the budget for a social media marketing agency, this article is at your disposal for free. All you need to know about social media marketing, including all the benefits, drawbacks and handy information you need to start marketing on social media. Here’s all the social media marketing tips and information you’ll need.
The Age of Social Media
Set your mind back to about 12 years ago. Social media back then was nothing more than a site to connect with friends or family, posting updates – both long and short. But now, it is a titan in the digital marketing world. Any top digital marketing team knows the best way to reach their clients is through social media. Below, are the stats for the most favoured social media networks for businesses. The data was collected via a Clutch Survey, in late 2017.
Some businesses are more suited to other social media platforms than others. ‘Visual’ businesses (designers, clothing brands) perform better on Instagram, due to the style of the social platform. Other businesses, such as recruiters, prosper on LinkedIn due to the nature of the platform – accessing businesses and professionals to advertise and market. Whilst not every platform is suitable for every business, creating a social presence online is imperative to succeed. Not only can you build brand loyalty, but you can directly connect with your customers. Be it for customer service or to directly advertise new products, each social platform has its benefits.
Knowing your Market
As a business owner or marketer, you know who your products or services are aimed towards. Your ideal demographic is built into the foundations of your business’ marketing plan. Accessing that market would be ideal, and extremely cost effective wouldn’t it? Well, targeted advertising on social media is but one of the many ways to reach your market directly online. Internet advertising has surprised print advertising in the last decade, and with no surprise – it’s quicker to do, easier to manage and the results can be tracked, right from the campaign’s start to the end.
Different social platforms offer different capabilities. But one of the best features available by far is targeted advertising. Standard advertising is considerably less effective than social advertising. Putting a toy advert on TV at 11pm is slightly ineffective, as children are more likely to be in bed, and therefore can’t nag their parents for the toy. Whilst times and audience watching are taken into consideration, there’s no guarantee that a business is reaching their target market. That’s what makes social advertising so powerful. Your desired demographic can be immediately accessed and targeted. Whether it be age, gender or location – all the information social network users input is now at your disposal. It’s part of the terms of agreement that no one ever bothers reading. You effectively opt yourself in to be reached by businesses.
Facebook advertising is one of the biggest players in digital marketing strategies regarding social media. The sheer number of UK users alone is enough to entice any business into using its services. You can set up campaigns, budgets or even one-off ads to target your desired demographic, all from your computer. You can also target interests and behaviours, all the data collected by Facebook and Facebook’s partners too. Facebook also allows you to input custom information too, including phone numbers, email addresses, Facebook user IDs or app user IDs, from your own marketing list.
So, whilst you can reach a new audience by selecting behaviours, interests and demographic, you can target your current customers using their email or phone number. This is beneficial for follow up products or services, to entice your customers into using your business again. There a numerous Ad types too, including video, image or even slideshow ads – all accessible via Facebook business features. Pricing is determined by multiple factors, including your desired reach, demographic, ad type and geographical location too. Both your budget and campaign are completely managed through Facebook Ads, so you’ll never over spend and can stop/pause a campaign at any time.
Many of the features for Instagram are similar for Facebook, due to Instagram being owned by them. Ad types include slideshows, photos and videos too. Payment and settings are usually managed through Facebook, and for a business profile, you’ll need to connect to your company’s Facebook page. Targets can be selected to boost website clicks, reach, post engagement and local engagement too, among others, it operates in a similar way to Facebook. Instagram and Facebook’s capabilities are so similar, that you can implement almost an identical strategy on both of the platforms.
As mentioned before, social media marketing for LinkedIn is ideal for business or employee targeting. Recruiters or company product businesses are just some of the businesses that are effective for digital marketing on LinkedIn. Like Facebook, you can directly target an intended audience, based on their interests, skills or the sector of their profession, even their position within a company. Text ads are usually cheaper than image or video advertising on LinkedIn, but again, the price varies and depends on different factors like audience and reach. You’ll be able to manage and set up campaigns from the business services tab on your home page.
Twitter is a slightly different platform to the previous aforementioned social networks. Twitter has a capped character count, so posts cannot be as long as they are on Facebook and LinkedIn. With three different ad types that are focused on tweets, accounts and trends, you can directly target an audience with selected goals in mind, including gaining followers, engaging or bringing more website traffic in, to name a few. Location targeting on Twitter is more refined than most other platforms, including the inclusion of postal code area and languages too – it offers a high-level targeting service for ads. You can even target keywords that users tweet, as well as their engagement with trends or even their behaviours. You can easily manage your budget and access campaigns from your homepage, on Twitter business account types.
Top Social Media Marketing Tips
If utilised correctly, social media marketing can be one of the most effective tools for marketing online. Digital marketers strongly advise that your business should have a social presence, with consistent posting, advertising and a strong visual image. Whilst all of it may seem complex, taking the time to work on your social media is one of the best things to help your company succeed. It’s relatively easy, but can be time consuming. With that in mind, we’ve got some tips on social media marketing, to make it easier for you to utilise.
Not everyone is savvy with social media, but if you take the time to learn about it then it can be wildly beneficial for your business. There are loads of resources available, to help you understand social media and how to manage it effectively. Once you understand how it works, you can move on to learning about social media marketing in more detail. Knowledge is priceless, but time is precious – if you haven’t got enough time, and do have the money, to manage your social media, you can always use a digital marketing agency to handle it for you.
- Build your Brand
Social media for businesses is all about being consistent. Posting updates, contents, and engaging your audience. Yes, it is a powerful marketing tool, but working on your customers is just as important too. Create resources, blogs and lots of posts too. Social media marketing is ineffective if you don’t have a social presence. Running competitions or creating blog posts are good ways of brining in more likes and more website traffic too. Useful information is vital in blogs, the better it is, the more likely it will be shared, which in turn, grows your business. Engage with your audience, social media is a great platform to respond to queries and complaints too. Use it to spread information about your business and the services/products you provide.
One essential thing, that will save you both time and money, is to track your social media marketing. By monitoring the effectiveness of campaign, you’ll be able to see what works and what doesn’t. Did you get the results you hoped for? Was your budget big enough to run for the entire campaign? You can’t succeed by repeating mistakes, so learn from every new campaign and track it throughout. You’ll be able to see all the data behind your campaign, as well as add to your budget if need be.
If there’s one thing customers don’t like, it’s seeming the same ad, repeatedly. That’s why different campaigns are essential – it stops social media users becoming bored with seeing your business promoted on their feed. So, create multiple campaigns, with new video or images, to give each marketing feat a fresh approach – don’t recycle the same old image, time and time again. Your customers will get bored, and it might do more harm than good.
If you can master social media marketing, you’ll have access to a whole new pool of potential customers. Use the right social media for your business, keep your customers engaged, and create a winning social marketing plan too. Learn how to utilise social media marketing to boost your online success.