Paid ads come in many forms, Google Ads as well as an option to pay for ads on pretty much every social media platform as well. So what should you choose, what should you look out for and how do you plan an ad campaign?
Choose the right platform
For many, the obvious choice is Google. These ads almost every time we search on Google, which is quite a lot for some of us! So we can be tempted to assume that they are the best option. But are they really?
Google Ads have a place and are useful in certain circumstances. For a new website which is working on their SEO ranking it can serve a few purposes purposes.
- It can put you at the top of the search results and in front of people immediately so you’re gaining brand awareness while you improve your search ranking
- Paying Google for ads can improve your search ranking with… well, Google. Do I need to explain this one?
- Any clicks on your ad will boost your search ranking as traffic to your site tells Google that your site is worth visiting. A great way to get you started.
So why, you may ask, do I sound less than enthusiastic?
Let me ask you this. When you search on Google and you see an ad at the top of the results. Do you click on it?
Maybe you do, but most people dont. So Google Ads are not the most effective in terms of online advertising to increase traffic. As I said, they have a purpose in certain circumstances.
Here’s another thing to consider. Google advertise their Google ads using…. Facebook ads. Google and Facebook are bitter rivals, remember, so why would they do that? Well, when we get to the Facebook ads part of this post that may be come more clear!
Social Media Platforms
Pretty much every social media platform now offers the option to advertise. So if you have a preferred platform where you know your ideal audience is spending time then the ads on that particular platform may be the best option for you. Do some specific research to make sure that ads on that platform are effective and give results, but generally the costs involved are manageable so you can set a small budget and give it a go to really test which options will work best for you.
So what about Facebook? Why does Google pay their rival to use their advertising platform when they have their very own Google ads?
It comes down to one specific thing, which is a complicated part of Facebook ads but a simple reason that it is one of the most powerful ways to advertise online.
Facebook Ads can be incredibly targeted. You can show your ads to groups of people based on gender, location, interests, age, family and a whole raft of other criteria. So if you know who your ideal customer is you can specify exactly that group to see your ad. You only pay if they click your ad, so you are able to show your content to that specific group of people and pay for the subset that take action. What other form of advertising offers that?
Depending on keyword, audience size and other factors, Facebook ads are very low cost. You can manage your budget and even a few euro can give returns.
You can specify exactly what customer action you want the ad to target – do you want to boost website traffic, generate leads, actual contact by phone or message? You can even do a set of ads with a different goal for each one, see which performs best and then focus on the ones with highest return.
It is incredibly flexible, which means that it can be incredibly complicated to get started. There is free online training (be aware that training information can become outdated fairly quickly as Facebook regularly change their system) or we can help – click to contact us and find out more.
The other thing that you need to be aware of is the strict rules. Facebook ads are reviewed before they can be published and if you violate any of their regulations the ad will be rejected. If you repeatedly send similar/the same ad which is rejected your account may be blocked from advertising and it can be fairly painful to reverse that decision. So we would always recommend you review the Facebook advertising policies before starting the ads process.
As a bonus, remember that Facebook owns Instagram. That means that the Facebook ads manager can be used to run ads on Instagram as well. Instagram is proving really effective right now, to varying degrees depending on industry, so these are also well worth exploring.
So what are you waiting for?
Why not give it a go and let us know how you get on? Or if it sounds like just too much hassle but you’re curious to see whether it could be an effective way to grow your business get in touch and we can discuss the possibilities for your specific needs.