Social Media Marketing Tips in 2018: How To Make The Most of Your Money
by Mike Khorev
September 5, 2017
in Social Media
The organic reach on major social media platforms are declining each year. That is a harsh truth we must face, and there are two main reasons of this phenomenon: First, is that there are simply too many contents being published on social media, and naturally each of them will get less exposure. Second, is that it’s a well-known secret that major social media platforms intentionally limit organic reach from brands, and only showing relevant contents (preferably from friends and family) to their users.
With that reality, we now have to invest on social media advertising to get better results, especially short term. Does this mean organic social media marketing is completely dead? Not necessarily, as there are several benefits of organic social media marketing, especially if you are low on budget. However, it’s safe to say that there will be limitations to organic reach, and you will need a longer timeframe to see results.
Yet, social media advertising can be really expensive, and can even lost you money when not managed well. For the rest of this guide, we will discuss four key steps on making the most of your social media advertising campaigns. Let us begin with the first one.
1. Choose The Right Plattform
Seemingly obvious, but many businesses fail to recognize the right social media platform for them, especially which platforms to advertise in.
Some social media platforms are better for B2B environments,like LinkedIn and Twitter and some others are better for B2C, like Instagram and Facebook. While some work for both types, it is important to choose the most effective platforms depending on your niche and/or industry.
Also, it is important to note that each platform offers different advertising options with various pricing options, so you might also want to choose the one(s) that can fit your budget.
Facebook is generally the most popular platform to run an advertising campaign, with over 4 million active advertisers to date https://expandedramblings.com/index.php/facebook-advertising-statistics/. Twitter, Instagram, and Linkedin are also great platforms with excellent ROI, and generally these 4 should be your first choices.
So, how can you decide which platform to use for your business? Here are a few tips to help you get started:
- In general, although not always, Linkedin and Twitter (and YouTube) is better for B2B advertisements, while Facebook and Instagram will strive in B2C environments.
- Linkedin performs extremely well in generating lead, but we can’t say the same about conversions
- For engagement, YouTube is arguably the best platform due to its native video contents.
- Twitter is great for quick, short-term advertisements for both leads and conversions
- As you might have guessed, Facebook is generally the most well-rounded platform with flexible targeting options
2. Determine Your Goals
Advertisements are costly, in fact, they can be really expensive. So, the first thing we should do is to determine our advertising goals, and make sure our money are well-spent to achieve those goals.
Now, we can make the process of determining goals really simple or really complicated, but in essence, we should first understand the concept of marketing funnel and https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/what-is-the-buyers-journey.
We can use advertisement to strengthen different stages of the marketing funnel. So, although there can be countless different advertising goals, we can generally put them into just three big groups according to the buyer’s journey:
There are generally two approaches here: getting more traffic, so that more people are aware of your business, and improving your brand image https://www.feedough.com/brand-image-explanation-examples/
Arguably the broadest part of the marketing funnel. Here, you can advertise your contents to provide more information to your customers. A simple ad designed just to sell your product will also do the job. The key here is how can you increase the interest in your products/services.
Here, you are targeting those who already show interests in buying, and aim to finally get that conversion.
So, which marketing funnel stage will be your advertising goal? Or is it all of them? As you can see, different advertising goals will lead to different approaches, so it is really important to decide on those goals first.
We have discussed how social media advertising can be really expensive when not managed well. So, what’s the solution? The answer is targeting
By targeting the right audiences, you can get more attention, and so you can make sure your money is well spent.
The basic idea of targeting is really simple: you target audiences that are similar to your previous successful campaign. But what if you’ve never had any successful campaign before? Well, that’s an entirely different story, and you might need to do further trial and error. However, a good place to start is to target your closest competitor’s audiences. (link to competitive analysis article)
Back to topic, if you do have a successful audience profile, most if not all major social media platforms do offer the option to target custom audiences. In Facebook, we got the custom audiences and lookalike audiences features. In Linkedin, we got the matched audiences feature, while Twitter call theirs tailored audiences.
Yet, there are cases when we want to target people outside our successful audiences. For example when we are launching a new product for different market segment. We can also tailor the target audiences based on that need.
So, your targeting should be based on the goals you’ve decided on step 2 discussed above, and that’s how you can make the most of your money. The targeting options offered can be really detailed, and you might get overwhelmed if you are not careful. The more detailed your targeting is, the higher the chance of a successful campaign. Here are a few guides that might help you:
- A very in-depth guide for Facebook ad targeting by Advertisemint
- Another one from Marketingprofs, discussing Facebook and Instagram targeting options.
- A different take on Facebook ad targeting by Adespresso
Retargeting advertising is a relatively new form of online ads designed to target the previous visitors of your site. You can make certain actions as the trigger of the retargeting ad, and so the ad will only be shown to users that took (or not took) that certain action.
For example, if you are a SAAS company selling an e-commerce software, you can retarget visitors that attempted to sign-up for a free-trial, but leave before the whole process was done.
In that case, say if you have set up a retargeting ad with Facebook, that user will see an advertisement that reminds them to try your product when they logged in to their Facebook.
As you can see, retargeting ads are effective, because they target audiences that are already interested in your product/service, or at least have been aware of your site. How effective can they be? Statistics suggested that retargeting ads are four times more likely to get conversion, and on average, will get three times more clicks.
How can you set up a retargeting campaign? Most of the major social media platforms offer their retargeting campaigns using their social media pixel.
5. Measure Everything and Refresh Your Campaigns
It is absolutely essential to keep track on your campaign(s), and continuously testing your contents to make the most of your money. Always refresh and alter your contents, as overused and stale ads won’t be very effective.
There are various tools available to help you measure your progress, or you can use the social media dashboard to perform analytics. Here are the key areas you should focus on:
- Ad Copywriting
Are you currently using the absolute best copy that could go with your ad? Check user responses, and adjust when necessary.
You can use A/B testing to test various images. Even the smallest design changes can make a whole lot of a difference.
- Landing Page
Is your landing page optimized for conversion? Is the bounce rate high? There is no use of an excellent advertising if your landing page doesn’t work.
Unless there will be a drastic change or a new game changing platform, we can be sure that social media marketing will only get more expensive in the years to come. We should remember that each social media platform is essentially a business, and they are also trying to make money.
While we can’t achieve much results with organic social media marketing anymore, especially in a short-time basis, what we can do is optimizing our paid social media marketing campaigns to make the most of our money, get a better ROI, and make more profit.
If we can use our budget wisely, social media is still a very powerful way to advertise our business, and the most important thing is to understand our advertising goals and act accordingly to have effective investments.
The social media marketing game might have changed and you can work with digital marketing expert to ensure you are getting the highest ROI.
Mike Khorev is an SEO expert and digital marketing consultant who helps small and mid-size businesses generate more leads, sales and grow revenue online. He offers expert advice on marketing your company the right way through performance-based SEO digital marketing, web design, social media, search engine marketing and many other online practices. Find him on LinkedIn and Twitter
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