If you’re ready to ramp up your digital advertising strategy this year, it's time to revisit your options. Whether you’ve advertised in the past and want to build on your success, need to adjust your strategy for better results, or are starting from scratch, we recommend reviewing your goals and then choosing a platform and strategy based on those goals.
There are many ways to promote your business online, and there is no single platform or strategy that is guaranteed to work best for every business. Here are four popular digital advertising strategies you might want to consider, and a few reasons they may be the right option for your company:
Option #1 | Search Engine Marketing
In order to create a highly-effective digital advertising strategy, you need your business to be found by the right person, in the right place, at the right time. For businesses who want to increase their visibility in search engine results pages, search engine marketing (or SEM) is often used as a complement to their search engine optimization strategy.
Through SEM campaigns, you can strategically bid on specific keywords and boost your visibility to users who are searching for those terms online. Because you can select the keywords you want and choose your own budget, SEM can be an incredibly cost-effective way to promote your business online.
- Target Users Who Are Ready To Buy. One of the key advantages to search engine marketing is that it allows you to target users who are actively searching for your products or services online. By zeroing in on the right keywords, you can position yourself in front of people who are ready to buy.
- You Control Your Budget. With search engine marketing, you have an incredible amount of control over your advertising budget. Simply set a daily budget that you feel comfortable spending, and easily increase your budget as you start seeing results.
- Be More Competitive. Chances are, one or more of your competitors are using search engine marketing. Rather than losing out on leads, help your business stand out in key search results with your own SEM campaigns. If you have a quality website and the right keyword strategy, you can compete with much larger rivals (even on a budget).
Option #2 | Social Media Advertising
It’s a fairly common misconception that only large brands can thrive on social media. While big companies usually have a dedicated social media marketing team and substantial marketing budgets, there are some advantages to being a smaller player within the sphere of social media.
Users on social media tend to prefer seeing authentic, engaging content that is relevant to them. They also enjoy receiving fast and personalized responses to their comments or messages on social media. These user preferences give small businesses an advantage, because they can often engage with their followers on a more personal level. Small businesses are also more deeply connected to their local community, making it easier to understand their audience and start meaningful conversations.
While it’s beneficial for your business to be present on social media, you also need to be visible to your target audience. These days, organic reach is hard for businesses to achieve on social media. Fortunately, social media advertising can be incredibly affordable, versatile, and effective.
- Surprisingly Scaleable. You don’t need a massive budget to create a social media ad campaign. In fact, starting small can be a great way to experiment with different targeting, ad creative, and other elements in order to find what works best for your business. Once you’ve discovered a strategy that works well for you, you can easily scale up your budget.
- Tons of Creative Potential. The best way to stand out on social media is by sharing creative content with your audience. On social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, you have access to a wide variety of ad formats including video, carousel, slideshows, and more. Businesses of all sizes can experiment with unique, eye-catching social media ad creative.
- Measurable Results. With social media advertising, measuring the outcome of your campaigns is relatively simple. Through Facebook’s Ads Manager, you can monitor your campaign performance and make adjustments to your budget, targeting, ad creative, and other elements. By adding the Facebook Pixel to your website, you can also track what actions users are taking on your site after clicking on your ads.
Option #3 | Remarketing Campaigns
If you want to drive results from your digital marketing efforts, it’s all about being in the right place at the right time. However, not every user who lands on one of your product pages or reads your blog is ready to make a purchase. Perhaps they are just doing some cursory research or looking at a few different companies before making their final decision. While they might not be ready to buy just yet, these visitors still hold a great deal of potential for your business.
Rather than let this valuable audience slip away, you can use remarketing campaigns to stay connected with them and inspire them to return and convert. Remarketing is a powerful way to build brand recognition and generate more sales and leads.
How It Works | In order to create a remarketing tag, you will first need to add a snippet of code to your website. The code can be found within the advertising platform you are using, such as Google Ads or Facebook. Once the code has been added to your site, you will be able to create an audience (or multiple audiences) based on which pages of your site they did or did not view. You can then use that audience or audiences for your advertising campaigns.
You can create one simple remarketing campaign with more general messaging, or develop a more complex strategy based on how deeply someone engages with your website content. For example, you could run one set of ad creative to anyone who added an item to their cart but didn’t complete their purchase and a different set of creative to those who simply read a blog and then left your site. Typically, your remarketing strategy will vary depending on how long and complex your sales cycle happens to be.
By tailoring your remarketing creative, you can nurture your leads using more targeted and relevant messaging and drive results more cost-effectively.
Option #4 | Influencer Marketing
One of the trickiest aspects of digital advertising is reaching your customers with content that feels relatable, natural, and less like an advertisement. Creating effective content that fits more authentically in your target audiences social media feed or inbox is no small feat. Showcasing your brand without coming across as overly-salesy is an incredibly fine line to walk, and it’s a challenge that businesses of all sizes face when they market themselves.
To connect with their target audiences in a more authentic way, an increasing number of brands and businesses have tapped into the power of influencer marketing. Generally speaking, influencers are individuals with a strong social media following. By partnering with the right influencers, you can share your message with their audience and connect with more prospects online.
For smaller businesses, influencer marketing may seem out of reach. However, you can still use influencer marketing to reach new audiences at a scale that makes sense for your business. Here are some tips for small businesses who want to experiment with influencer marketing:
- Reach Out to “Micro-Influencers.” Rather than pursue influencers with a massive following, seek out individuals who have a relatively small but highly-engaged base of followers. Often referred to as micro-influencers, their recommendations can have a surprising amount of impact on their followers.
- Stay True to Your Brand. As you seek out micro-influencers to partner with, make sure you are looking at individuals whose social presence and following is a good fit for your business. Take a look at the content an influencer is sharing, how much engagement it receives, and who their followers are. You’ll also want to steer clear of any influencers who have a history of sharing controversial content to avoid experiencing any backlash from your partnership.
- Track Your Results. Tracking the true impact of influencer marketing can be tricky, but there are ways you can gain some insight. Have your influencers use links with UTM parameters when they share promotional content (UTM parameters are tags that are added to a URL, which allow you to track and monitor website traffic from specific campaigns). Beyond monitoring your UTM links, keep an eye out for general increases in site traffic and sales or leads as these may be tied to your influencer campaign. While it may be hard to see the full impact of your campaign, tracking what you can will help you measure and refine your influencer strategy.
By understanding the digital advertising options that are available to you, you can more easily develop a strategy that drives results for your business. If you could use some guidance in crafting an effective digital advertising strategy, contact our team for a free Digital Marketing Blueprint.