Before you automatically allocate a lump sum to traditional communication channels, consider allocating marketing spend towards advertising via social media platforms, too.
With 16 million South Africans being on Facebook, followed by eight million on Twitter, 6.1 million on LinkedIn and 3.8 million on Instagram, social media certainly has the numbers to reach members of your target market.
Read on for more reasons why you should invest resources into running social media advertising campaigns for your business.
Increased brand awareness
Social media advertising can help you tell your business story to the people who may not know about you yet. Not only will the ads increase your brand’s online presence, but they can also assist you with finding the right people who will have a genuine interest in your business and what it has to offer.
In essence, you’ll be able to use the ad platform’s wide network of users and extensive targeting capabilities to increase brand awareness and connect with those most likely to make purchases from you in the future.
The fantastic thing about social media advertising is that you can stipulate precisely who you want to reach with your ads. Everything from age, gender and location to language, interests and relationship status can be specified in your targeting.
Because of this, social media advertising needn’t be a shotgun approach where you put something out there not knowing where it’s going to end up. There are plenty targeting options at your disposal, giving you an unmatched opportunity to reach members of your target market.
Did you know that, on average, your Facebook posts will only be seen by about 10% of your following? Organic reach is on the decline, while user and business updates are on the increase, making it trickier than ever to stand out in the social media crowd.
This is where social media advertising comes in, giving you the opportunity to cut through the noise and appear directly in your target market’s newsfeed where they are more likely to see and engage with your content.
Through boosted posts on Facebook and sponsored content on LinkedIn, your updates will be served to a much wider audience and, as a result, you can receive more likes, comments and shares. Of course, the catch with this is that your content needs to be interesting, informative or entertaining to begin with.
Out of all advertising avenues, social media can give you the most bang for your buck. Not only can you reach thousands of people, but it’s also possible to get them to like your page, engage with your posts and even click through to your website – all for a few Rands, or even cents, at a time.
With social media advertising, the power of choice remains in your court – you can stipulate the budget and time-frame, and the advertising platform will split your budget accordingly. You’ll also be able to adjust your budget or targeting and even pause or cancel the ads at any moment.
Increased inbound traffic
Social media ads are perfectly placed to drive people directly to your website by way of a clickable link. Facebook, specifically, gives you the option of running campaigns that are designed to send people to your website and have them take valuable actions once they get there.
It’s important to remember though, that the content on your site needs to live up to your target market’s expectations once they’ve clicked the link. Two top tips for doing so, is to send them to a web page that is relevant to what you speak about in your ad and include a call-to-action on the web page, to assist your potential customer further along the sales funnel.
Unlike many traditional advertising platforms where you can only estimate the reach your ad will receive, social media advertising will allow you to see exactly how many people your ads reached, down to the nth person.
Depending on your ad objective, the platform can also show you which results were achieved in relation to your end goal. In addition to this, you’ll also be able to gain further insight into your target demographic. This may include insights into which gender or age group responded most positively to your content, or which kinds of imagery and words were well-received, so that you can continue to do more of what works best.
As a business owner, you will recognise the value in diversifying your marketing efforts. By combining sales, public relations and direct marketing initiatives with solid social media advertising campaigns, all your communication can come together nicely, creating a positive impact on your brand image and customer relations.