Social Networks

The best way to combat it is to encourage your followers’ commitment to creating content – because social networks prioritize content shared by people: you and me, not companies.

However, all companies need a social media advertising strategy – and sponsored ads will help you increase organic traffic as well. Sponsored ads increase the number of followers on social networks and help reach audiences similar to those you’ve already identified.

Advertising also helps you increase the number of shares, which increases traffic to the website, and which Google uses as one of hundreds of signals to organize its ranking.

Where to start?

In this post I will guide you through the following steps so you can launch an effective social media advertising campaign:

  • Know Your Audience
  • Design the content to be promoted
  • Create a flow of advertising
  • Create audience groups
  • Measures, itera and optimizes

Know Your Audience

It may sound shocking but creating a plan to advertise on social networks starts with getting to know your audience.

What are their dreams and fears? What are the problems they want to solve with your products and/or services?

If you have already created and shared content, you may have an idea about what type of content is most interesting to your audience. Social network management platforms show you (sometimes) the stark reality with their statistics.

Google Analytics has some useful features to help you measure and compare the commitment levels of each post on your website. And if you have already done advertising campaigns on social networks, you have seen the statistics of social channels.

Two (relatively) quick ways to fix it:

  • Interview your customers and ask them why they decided to buy your product, what problems they needed to solve in doing so, and how they felt using your product for the first time. As a result, you’ll get real phrases that your potential customers can easily connect to. In the end, you’ll want to attract similar people to your most profitable and loyal customers.
  • Create user-generated content campaigns and ask your audience to publish images that show how they use your products. You can use Flockler’s content aggregation tool to display content in one place and then analyze which pieces of content generate the most engagement, how your customers describe your product, and what patterns you identify in the images. Choose the best ones and ask permission from those who have published them to use them in your ads.

Nothing is more powerful in social media marketing than the testimonials of other consumers.

Design the content to be promoted

The next step is to design the content to be promoted. Facebook offers the most extensive selection of social network formats for creating ads, such as videos, carousels, sponsored events and much more.

These ad formats may differ between different social networks and are constantly evolving, but one thing always remains: your ad needs to resonate with your target audience. And while user-generated content can help, the text and visual resources you use in your ads are the key to success.

Create a flow of advertising

I openly admit that I bought products after seeing them advertised on Facebook.

Maybe it was a discount on a product I was seeing just before or even something I hadn’t even thought to buy, but the image caught my attention – and the ad was clearly segmented for an East London hipster like me.

But when we at Flockler drive traffic directly to our product page, conversion rates are low. I’m sure many B2b companies do the same.

An effective social media advertising plan moves the audience from knowledge and interest to desire and action (conversion).

If a potential customer knows nothing about Flockler’s technology and how it allows brands to display social content on their website, it will be rare for a person to click and start their 30-day free trial. We’re all on Facebook and other social networks to entertain us and, let’s be honest, your wall can’t compete against Trump memes.

If you install the Facebook pixel on your website, you will be able to display ads in a certain order, starting with a knowledge-generating ad. If the potential customer clicks on the link or watches your video, they will then enter their Facebook account and you can show them another ad to direct them to the East London hipster conversion like me.

But when we at Flockler drive traffic directly to our product page, conversion rates are low. I’m sure many B2b companies do the same.

Here is an example of an advertising flow for Facebook:

Start your advertising stream with a branded video (the shorter, the better) and show it to a wide audience using segmentation by interests such as recipes, dog accessories, entrepreneurship or the corresponding theme.

Don’t make a video with only brand or product content, show useful content aligned with it.

If you don’t have a video, use a piece of content that is easy for a person who doesn’t know you to read.

Create a group from people who have seen 25% of your video (one of Facebook Ads Manager’s cool tools). If you have a B2b business, I would recommend sharing a slightly more advanced piece of content after the first post.

If you have a consumer product, create a carousel that shows the benefits of the product from the customer’s point of view. User-generated content improves ad effectiveness and conversion rates.

Using the Facebook pixel (you need to have it installed before step 2) creates a personalized audience of people who have visited your website. Then create an ad with a lead that offers exclusive content or downloadable material and ask them for the email address in return.

Notice! The personalized audience needs to reach a certain number of people before they can use it in your ads. Add a few pieces of content to increase the list of visitors before you get to step 3.

Create audience groups

Now that you have a variety of texts and have defined the flow, the next step is to use the tools social networks provide you to create personalized audiences.

Facebook and Instagram are by far the most advanced channels and here are some examples of segmented audiences you can create to increase the effectiveness of your ads:

  • Audience 1: an audience based on the existing followers on your page
  • Audience 2: people who have seen 25% of your previous videos
  • Audience 3: people who have interacted with you on Instagram or who have visited your profile
  • Audience 4: people who have visited your website in the last 30 days

The list is endless – and Facebook adds new features weekly. One of the best ways to keep up with these updates.

On Twitter, try the so-called “similar followers” (audience settings). This allows you to segment followers (and similar profiles) of specific accounts. As an example, we have segmented our marketing influencing articles to followers of Amy Porterfield. Most of her followers are marketing professionals – and they are interested in issues we address on our blog.

At LinkedIn, it’s a good idea to segment ads based on skills, because that’s something LinkedIn users can add to their profile because they think they’re good at it. This shows that they are interested in learning more about these topics.

Measures, itera and optimizes

Now that we’ve talked about segmenting, it’s time for you to jump in. If the content doesn’t work, even the most effective segmentation will be useless. Social network ads are based on auctions, which means your content is competing with other ads to reach the same audience.

As a broad estimate, you should spend 60% of your time planning and creating ads and 40% on iteration and optimization.

In addition to creating multiple variations for the same ad and advanced tools such as Facebook’s Dynamic Ads, the beauty of social media advertising is in being able to make modifications in real time. Variations between short and long texts, humorous or serious tone, formal or informal.

If your ads seem to be achieving the estimated reach, try expanding your target audience. If the number of clicks on the link drops, try changing the header.