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Pay to Play in Today’s Digital Age

Jul 18, 2019

If you’ve been in business for half a decade or more, you are keenly aware of social media. We occasionally find that clients who have been in business for much longer than that are not as knowledgeable about the maturity of social media and its advertising reach as a paid segment of any marketing budget.   

In 2019 and beyond, it is essential for all marketers and businesses to recognize, and accept, that the days of free exposure on social media are far behind us. Rarely is anything free, and digital marketing is no exception. With organic social reach diminishing over the past few years, businesses have been left with one of two options: pay or don’t play. 

Throughout the years, social media has quickly evolved to be one of our top forms of communication. With each social media platform having a unique and ever-changing algorithm, it is this technology that determines how we communicate and interact with others on social media by prioritizing what we see from whom and how often. 

As a business owner, it is important to understand that as these social channels and their algorithms evolve, so should your campaign. As a result, companies and brands alike have had to implement a modern marketing strategy in order to keep up with the changing social media dynamic. 

So where do you go from here? Because social media platforms are placing less importance on branded content and more of an emphasis on meaningful interactions, it is key to have an idea of what your next steps should be. While there are many components to a digital advertising campaign, here are five tips to consider before getting started: 

  • Set a goal. Is your goal to increase sales and lead generation? Or are you looking to expand your brand visibility? Understand what you would like to accomplish from a paid advertising campaign and build your strategy from there. 
  • Know your target audience and where to reach them. Which social media platform(s) resonate best with your audience? This will help you choose the appropriate social media for your campaign. A 2016 study by pewresearch.org revealed the age and gender of people utilizing various platforms to get their news. That’s a good place to start.
  • Set a budget. With an experienced social media agency, your digital ads will target exactly the demographic you are looking to reach. That makes social media, in general less expensive because you are laser-focused on your specific audience member.
  • Incorporate a call-to-action. As with any effective advertising, you must ask for the business. Whether you are offering a unique benefit, a price-point value or a new innovation or product, you need to provide a call-to-action.
  • Implement advanced targeting methods. This is the key advantage of knowledgeable social media advertising. If you know that Facebook is trending age 35+ and you want to reach college kids, that’s not your media platform. Research before you spend dollar one!

If you have found that your brand is getting lost in the flow of the internet, it is time to embrace the powerful tool that is social media and adopt a paid advertising campaign. Paid social media ads allow for advanced targeting, converting prospects into leads, generating new leads, and much more. Each component of a paid campaign is designed specifically to your business, your audience and your goals. 

It is safe to say that these trends will continue, therefore challenging companies and brands to stay in front of their audience. And while implementing a new digital approach may seem daunting, especially with the ever-changing nature of the internet, it is always helpful to consult with industry experts who can align your business goals with your strategy, as well as help to optimize your ROI. With most of your customers and potential customers already online, it makes sense to target the masses right where they can see you: via their chosen social media.