If you’re new to the world of paid advertising campaigns, choosing the right platform to drive traffic to your website and/or store to increase sales can be challenging. Whose advice is best? Which advertising platforms are cost-effective for your industry? Do you need a large budget? After working with many clients at all stages of their journey, we’ve put together this guide to choosing the right platform for your paid advertising campaigns to assist you in venturing into unchartered territory and help prevent you from exhausting your budget on unsuccessful campaigns. Keep reading to learn more!
Major Advertising Platforms
Before we discuss how to choose the right platform, we will briefly overview the most popular and foundational advertising options including Google Ads, Facebook and Instagram Ads. This of course is not an exhaustive list, there’s also other platforms including LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, and most recently TikTok. However, if you’re just getting started, we recommend beginning with the foundational platforms and adding others as you gain experience and confidence.
Google Ads are the paid listings at the top of the search results, before the organic results. There are usually three to four ads per keyword. Google Ads have become extremely popular due to the mainstream usage of Google as a search platform. They are effective because the viewer is already in the buying mode and are actively looking for a product or service like yours, we refer to these viewers as warm leads. Google Ads operate at a higher cost per click as conversion rates are often higher than social platforms.
Facebook and Instagram Ads
Facebook and Instagram Ads gained popularity with the growing demographics represented on the platforms. On average, you’ll come across an ad about every five posts in your feed and in stories, articles, the marketplace, messenger, and other locations. The social aspect of Facebook and Instagram allows businesses to generate exposure and begin to develop relationships with users through brand recognition, social proof (engagement and reviews), and two-way communication. Facebook and Instagram users are considered cold leads as they have low purchase intent compared to someone searching on Google. However, the platforms are a great way to introduce your audience to your brand, educate them on your products and services and be top of mind when they are ready to make a purchase. The lower cost per click on Facebook and Instagram offsets the lower purchase intent.
Elements to Consider
Now that we’ve discussed the options, let’s dive into the elements to consider when deciding which platform is the best for your paid advertising campaign.
Business Type and Target Demographic
Here’s our checklist of things to consider. Knowing the answer to these will help you match your offering with the platform/s that house your potential customers.
What is your business type? Do you sell products that can be distributed via online shopping or do you provide high-end services that are a niche solution for a specific audience?
Do you only offer your products and/or services locally or are you able to service a wider customer base?
Do you have set pricing, or do you customise packages for each client depending on their specific needs?
Who is your target demographic? What is their gender, age, location, interest, job title etc.
Do you sell business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C)?
It’s a common misconception that if businesses sell B2B that Facebook won’t be effective as it is seen as the more social network. However, it’s important to remember that the business owners or executives that you want to sell to are individuals with personal lives too. When they are scrolling on Facebook, even though they may not be at work or actively thinking about work, they would always have it in the back of their mind. The great thing about Facebook Ads is that you can drill down and target those who manage Facebook pages, have particular interests and have listed themselves as having a particular job title or role. The objective here is to think laterally, rather than to omit an option because of its perceived customer profile.
Brand Recognition or Sales
Once you know exactly what you’ll be advertising and who your target audience is, the next element to consider is the goal of your paid advertising campaign. At which point of your sales funnel do you want to target clients? Are you looking to start from the top of the funnel and generate awareness of your brand to begin the lead generation process? Facebook and Instagram Ads are great for brand recognition as you can drive a high volume of targeted leads to your website, landing page or other call to action for a relatively low cost. Then you can begin your lead nurture process by re-targeting to those potential customers.
If you are a well-established brand and sales is the goal for your paid advertising campaign, we find that Google Ads are most effective for lower funnel approaches as there is already purchase intent. Facebook Ads can also be effective in this stage, however rather than general targeted Facebook Ads, we recommend remarketing and lookalike campaigns to leverage your website visitors, engaged social media followers and previous buyers. Of course, this type of Facebook Ad does require data so you may need to start with general Facebook Ads so your Pixel can capture data which can then be used in remarketing campaigns.
If you are leaning towards Facebook and Instagram Advertising, it’s important to note that the success of these campaigns heavily depends on the quality of the ad creative. To capture the interest of your target audience in a sea of posts and other ads, your copy must be engaging and your media assets including photography and videos need to be high-quality and clearly portray your offering. While stock images would be preferrable than lower quality photography, we recommend investing in original content creation for the best results. If you have a service that is difficult to express visually, Google Advertising may be more effective.
The final consideration when choosing the right platform for your paid advertising campaign is your marketing budget. If you have a healthy budget that allows you to test the success on both Google Ads and Facebook and Instagram Ads, go for it. Once you have some results, you can then refine and direct the majority of your budget into the platform that produces the best results. However, if you have a limited budget, we recommend analysing your answers to our business type and target demographic, brand recognition or sales, and assets sections to make an informed decision of where to devote your efforts. With a smaller budget, we recommend going after the lowest hanging fruit, for example, if you have a high volume of website traffic, remarketing would be the way to go.
Once you have run a few paid advertising campaigns and have some results, determine if it’s still the right platform for you and your goals. If you’re finding that the campaigns aren’t generating brand awareness or sales, depending on your goals, pivot and try a new platform. If thinking about paid advertising campaigns makes your head spin, or you find it hard to keep up with the constant updates, no need to worry, the team here at Evie Studios are experts at all platforms and can complete the whole process for you so you can get back to focusing on your strengths in your business.
Feel free to get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org, we’d be more than happy to chat to you about the best campaign to help your business prosper.
(02) 8006 4212