Social media has brought significant changes to our world. The development of digital communication channels and social networking sites revolutionized how people interact, engage, and connect.
Gone are the days when people used to mail letters through the post office or the times when people only got to talk to each other face to face. With social media, it’s easy to stay up-to-date and in contact with others. However, social media’s impact did not stop there.
Businesses and brands also experienced tremendous changes upon the introduction of social media, particularly in the realm of advertising. Nowadays, social media marketing is almost always a primary marketing strategy, regardless of whether it’s a startup, small business, or global enterprise.
However, starting a social media advertising campaign is not easy. There are a lot of factors that digital marketers need to consider in order to effectively and successfully meet their goals with the use of social media.
To give you a better idea, here is a brief overview of social media platform advertising campaigns and a guide on how to incorporate them into your marketing strategies.
Benefits of Social Media Platforms Advertising
Before we dive into the different social media platforms and their advertising programs, let’s first look at the benefits of social media advertising.
Vast Online Reach
According to the latest reports, there are more than 4.9 billion social media users globally. That is more than half of the world’s total population. Considering this, one of the benefits of using social media as a marketing tool is its large and wide user base. Businesses and brands have the ability to reach audiences of diverse demographics by advertising on the most popular social media platforms.
Better Brand Visibility
Another advantage of advertising on mainstream social media platforms is the better chances of visibility. Knowing that a significant percentage of the world is on social media, establishing a presence on social media can greatly boost a brand’s awareness and online visibility. Having an active social media brand profile also helps in increasing brand recognition to a continuously growing audience.
Engagement and Connectivity
One of the reasons why social media advertising works for brands is because it provides an extremely accessible platform for businesses and customers to interact and connect with each other.
Business owners can use social media to publish relatable and relevant content that can help build connections and relationships with people. They can also use social media as a communication tool to provide timely customer service and support.
Targeted Campaigns and Segmentation
Determining a target audience is essential in digital marketing. Doing this allows businesses to direct their campaign efforts to demographics with higher chances of conversion. Advertising on social media platforms provides entrepreneurs access to targeted marketing campaigns, making them more effective and efficient compared to broad marketing efforts.
Top Social Media Ad Platforms for Online Marketing
Facebook is the largest social media platform in the world. With roughly 3 billion active users, its users account for roughly 40% of the total global population. Facebook has significantly changed over the years. While the platform initially started primarily for social networking, tons of features have been added that turned Facebook into an ecommerce, social network, and content site.
Facebook features its own ad management system that helps brands easily conduct advertising campaigns. Reports even say that Facebook ads effectively reach 2.11 billion of its users, emphasizing the platform’s wide reach and diverse demographic. However, Facebook Ads is primarily known for its comprehensive audience targeting.
Types of Facebook Ad Formats
Brands can use various types of ad formats when conducting online marketing campaigns through Facebook. This includes
Image ads are the simplest format in Facebook advertising. Brands use one still image to deliver a message to a targeted audience.
Video ads are significantly more engaging than image ads. The ideal length for Facebook video ads is roughly 15 seconds for maximum viewership and audience retention.
Carousel ads combine images and videos in one advertisement. This format features a short video clip at the forefront with a collection of scrollable under it. Carousel ads can be more engaging and allow brands to provide more details and information.
Facebook Stories ads are a new addition to the platform’s advertisement program. Unlike other ad formats, story ads are placed in the platform’s Stories feed instead of the regular homepage.
Messenger ads are another unique format that only appears in the user’s Messenger tab. This type of advertising is typically considered more targeted and personal, often leading to better conversion rates.
YouTube is another popular social media platform that has integrated advertising features to help businesses, brands, and creators. As the largest video-sharing platform in the world, YouTube also offers great opportunities to reach larger audiences with the use of more engaging video content.
YouTube advertising is primarily known for its audience targeting capabilities that are based on users’ viewing behaviors and search history. Through this, advertisers can better reach viewers with a perceived interest in a brand’s product or service.
Types of YouTube Ad Formats
YouTube also offers advertisers several ad options to choose from. Here are some of the most basic formats used in YouTube advertising.
In-feed video ads
In-feed video ads appear on the user’s home page, search results pages or as related videos to previously watched content. YouTube in-feed ads always show up at the top of search results for better visibility.
YouTube offers two types of in-stream video ads. Skippable in-stream ads pop up at the start, middle, or end of a video, and users have the ability to skip it if they are not interested.
On the other hand, non-skippable in-stream ads, as they are called, are ads that appear in a YouTube video that users cannot skip. This format forces viewers to watch the ad in order to continue watching their selected video.
Overlay ads are simple banner-like advertisements that pop up at the bottom of a YouTube video. This format uses still images and is a lot less intrusive than in-stream video ads.
Instagram is another popular social media platform focused on visual content such as images and videos. In recent years, Instagram has become a social media platform favored by online businesses, brands, and influencers.
Because of its focus on engaging visual content, brands often turn to Instagram to promote and advertise their products or services in an aesthetically pleasing manner. Due to this practice, the platform has integrated a variety of advertising features that make it easier for brands to post and promote their content.
Types of Instagram Ad Formats
While images and videos are generally more engaging, Instagram has added several advertisement features to make posts more eye-catching and impactful to a brand’s target market. While users can normally find images, videos, or a collection of both for advertisements, here are some of the unique Instagram ad formats.
Shopping ads are particularly designed to promote products or services from an ecommerce business. This ad format can use either images or videos. However, its unique feature is that brands can link product tags on their post, allowing users to purchase products directly from the ad post on Instagram.
Instagram comes with an Explore page where it shows users highly-curated content based on their viewing habits, interests, and preferences. Explore ads appear on a user’s explore page, allowing brands to target a market specifically interested in their products or niche.
Instagram reels are another video-focused media. However, unlike the platform’s Stories feature, these don’t disappear within 24 hours. Instagram reels are seconds-long clips that can be heavily and creatively edited to the user’s liking. Brands can utilize Instagram Reels ads for product launches and demonstrations.
Effective marketing is essential for running a successful online business. Using social media as a marketing tool to promote your products or services can be a way to do that if you know how to do so properly.
There is a lot to consider when it comes to social media advertising. Different social media platforms have varying features and user demographics. Aside from that, social ads come in a variety of types and formats. Take careful consideration when choosing the platform and format, as they can easily spell the success or failure of your social media strategy.
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