By Stacey Micallef
Online advertising is booming. In fact, 2017 is the first year that online ad spend has surpassed that of TV advertising. Facebook¹ and Alphabet² (Google's parent company) are the two major players expected to pocket half of that online spend this year. So how does a business make sure they’re getting seen and heard in what is becoming a very competitive space?
Get to the point
Online is a busy, fast moving space. You’ve only got a second or two to capture your target audience’s attention so there’s no time to be wishy washy. Know who you’re talking to and then get to the point, succinctly and, if you can, creatively. Gone are the days of just a handful of TV channels where audiences were relatively captive. There are so many distractions just a click away that your online advert needs to hit the mark from the offset.
Embrace the change
Facebook and Google don’t stay the same for long; they’re constantly evolving their products to improve customer experience but ultimately to improve profit margins. The way you targeted an advert last month could be vastly different to how you’ll do it next month. The goalposts are constantly changing. Make sure you’re on top of the ever changing landscape to remove any guesswork and ensure your advertising spend consistently delivers for your business.
Divide and conquer
With many businesses competing in a cluttered landscape, you need to work harder to reach you target audience. It’s a noisy space with businesses all clambering to speak to their targets, who may be exactly the same as yours. So ensure you give your advertising the best chance by segmenting who you’re targeting to … and then some. Never try and talk to everyone because you risk talking to no one.
For example, if you sell donuts you may want to split your budget three ways with three separate adverts, one to reach the sprinkles fans, one for the glazed lover and one for the chocolate addict.
Example talking to all donut lovers
Targeted adverts talking to segmented audiences
People who are or know a sprinkles lover are more likely to share the advert, tag them in or like the advert that talks directly to them; More so than the advert talking to all donut lovers. This will give you better cut through to the people most likely to be interested in your product. Overall your ad may be seen by less people, but it will talk directly and resonate more strongly with those that do.
Think about the user journey beyond the advert
To maximise your adverts ROI, make sure you have a clear goal for what you want your advert to achieve and then set conversion tracking to measure the effectiveness.
If you sell products online, then you want to know which adverts are not only just getting the most likes and shares, but which adverts are converting to sales or website traffic. Make sure you look at all the metrics to get a clear picture of your adverts performance.
Take this example advert below. Imagine both adverts where shown to 1000 people and everyone who clicked then landed on the same website page.
Advert a. had a lot of interest. The advert was engaging and encouraged a lot of people to click onto the website. However, when they arrived on the website they then failed to purchase. Maybe on this site, the new flavours were not exciting enough, or were not easy to find. This shows that the creative worked, but the customers did not find what they expected when they arrived.
Advert b. had less engagement. The advert did not attract as much attention/interest. Therefore, not many people clicked onto the website. However, those who did, found what they were excepting on the website and then had a high conversions rate to sales.
Advert a. could be improved with a better landing page experience. Advert B could be improved with a more engaging advert. Never look at just the advert performance alone. Always consider what else is impacting the online experience.
Optimise adverts for a mix of metrics. Your campaigns should have a spread of measures such as engagement, page likes or reach, whilst other should be about goal conversions such as sales, or video views. It’s important to have a mix so that you are growing your business reach and brand awareness whilst meeting other goals such as sales conversions or website visitation. This mix will give you immediate rewards and whilst at the same time providing longer term benefits such as more leads.
We’re here to help
If you’re struggling to keep up with the ever-evolving landscape of Facebook and Google’s advertising products, or need help executing an engaging creative online campaign, the team at PIER can assist in helping you find the right online strategy for your company. Drop us a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
¹Facebook – Instagram, Facebook
²Alphabet – YouTube, Google AdWords, Google Ads, Google Maps, Search + more