What is Paid Advertising?
With so many different ad types, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed quickly. But it doesn’t have to be confusing or overly complicated. Let’s break it down. Paid advertising is any digital advertising paid for versus owned or earned. Advertising space is typically bid on between advertisers and the ad space owner. In other words, you pay for ad space in exchange for using that space. Pretty straightforward. Now let’s dive deeper into the nuances that make paid advertising one of the most effective ways to drive traffic and sales for your brand.
How PPC Advertising Works
PPC or Pay Per Click advertising is a digital marketing strategy where businesses or advertisers display ads on search engines or social media platforms but only pay a fee when someone clicks on their particular ad. Let’s use Google as an example, and let’s say you’re selling handmade jewelry. Google uses specifically designed algorithms to recognize the highest-quality sites. Adwords is Google’s PPC advertising platform. Advertisers bid on keywords they want to use to trigger their ads to appear. Based on the algorithms mentioned earlier, Google decides how to display those ads.
The Business Benefits of Paid Advertising
Because PPC advertising can typically be managed in-house and has been proven to be easily trackable and cost-effective, it’s become a top choice for businesses large and small. With so many consumers shopping online, it doesn’t matter what market you’re in; the competition can be fierce. When you also factor in the supply and demand challenges we’ve experienced since the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses’ budgets have been cut back. If you want a profitable bottom line, advertising is essential for brand recognition. PPC advertising is a great way to work within a scaled-back budget and still get your brand name out there in front of millions of potential customers. If you’re not entirely convinced, here are just a few more advantages of paid advertising:
- Accumulate results almost immediately in most cases.
- Increase your website’s overall number of clicks, creating more traffic and brand visibility.
- Reach your target customer in real-time.
- You set your maximum budget and adjust as needed.
- You only pay when someone clicks on your ad.
- Brand recognition across the world wide web.
(Almost) Everything is Measurable With Online Advertising
The beauty of pay-per-click advertising is that compared to other forms of advertising, such as billboards, radio, or TV, businesses can track people who saw their ad and even bought their product or service. Advertising platforms such as Google, Linkedin, and Facebook provide advertisers with access to a cache of information about their audience, such as their interests and demographic, making it easier to understand their target audience and evaluate their return on investment for a particular ad campaign.
Reach Your Audience Where They Are Online
More and more people are turning to the Internet for entertainment. That doesn’t mean that the traditional means of watching TV are lost. However, studies show that the time spent in front of a television has declined over the years as more and more people prefer to find their content online via their laptops, IPads, or cell phones. Businesses have a better chance of zeroing in on their target audience with a well-thought-out digital marketing campaign. Online advertising platforms are well aware of this fact and will help you to reach the right audience at the right time. It will take effort, but you’ll find the right ad platforms for your product or service with some investigating and fine-tuning. It’s important to remember that the marketplace is constantly changing. What’s in one day may be out the next, so it’s essential to keep your eyes and ears open to what’s current and relevant for specific audiences.
Paid Advertising Channels
Now that we understand a little more about PPC, let’s look at a few of the most popular paid advertising channels to get you headed in the right direction.
It should be no surprise that the number one search engine is at the top of the list. Google ads is one of the most popular and powerful tools ever created. All advertising channels have pros and cons, but the traffic Google receives every second of every day is mind-blowing. It is estimated that over 63,000 users search Google every second! Google ads give business owners the opportunity to:
- Increase leads and customers.
- Convert each click into business leads and customers.
- High return on investment with quick results.
- Increased awareness about your market and competitors.
- Flexibility with your ad campaigns.
With over 310 million active monthly users and 900 million users globally, there’s no doubt that Linkedin has a significant audience. Linkedin is unique in that it gathers information about each of its user’s jobs and skill sets. This means that for business-to-business marketing, Linkedin ads deliver targeted marketing to the right users based on their market, years in the industry, job title, and seniority rather than by their interests or behavioral targeting. Linkedin ads run a little higher cost-wise than other advertising platforms, but the quality of the leads is the real selling point here. If you have a deal large enough and can sustain the recommended budget, Linkedin ads could be a great addition to your targeted advertising campaign.
When you consider adding social media advertising to your digital marketing campaign, you may wonder which platform is the best for PPC advertising, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Consider not which is best but will provide you with the best opportunity to increase your brand’s awareness to your target audience. They all have several things in common. They can drive brand awareness, reach a large audience, and increase traffic to your landing page. But each of these platforms has a different audience and different purposes. Facebook is one of the most active social networks connecting people with friends and family, with over 1.6 billion users worldwide. With Facebook ads engaging with the right user and creating a self-service advertising campaign is as easy as:
- Choosing the right objective.
- Selecting your target audience.
- Choosing where you want to run your ad – whether on Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, Audience Network, or all four.
- Setting a budget.
- Picking a format.
- Placing your order.
- Tracking ad performance and making adjustments to ads as needed.
Twitter is often lost in the shadow of Facebook, but it’s right up there in popularity with over 330 million active monthly users. Twitter users share real-time information, popular events, the latest trending news, and ideas in little snippets. They want to learn what’s new and discover brands that make an impact. Whether you’re a large or small business trying to grow your brand, Twitter offers unique solutions for any budget.
Instagram is about connecting and engaging with influencers by sharing videos and photos. 75% of Instagram users are between the ages of 18-24. Instagram ads offer different budgets based on your specific marketing needs, allowing advertisers to adjust their budgets anytime. Instagram ads also allow you to boost any post and turn it into a targeted ad. They even offer small businesses a How-To Guide for best practices and tips!
Benefits of Targeted Advertising
Advertisers can present audiences with ads tailored to their interests using customer data such as demographics, browsing behavior, and shopping habits.
Research indicates that 71% of consumers prefer personalized ads. The better a brand is at showing the end user that they understand what they want and need and can deliver it, the more likely they will respond to that advertisement and become a customer.
Establish brand awareness
Brand awareness is precious when promoting your business or product because it is based on recognition, trust, and loyalty. An essential component of brand awareness advertising is for companies to present their target audience with relevant, high-quality content. The brand could be negatively impacted if it doesn’t meet their needs. When establishing brand awareness, remember to be authentic, tell your story, and advertise it to the right people at the right time.
Streamline marketing efforts
Targeted paid advertising is one of the quickest ways to help potential customers find your brand. Rather than waiting for new customers to see you, you can find them quickly and cost-effectively at the right time and place. Resist the urge to advertise on channels just because they are popular. Consider your target audience above all else. Focus your marketing efforts on the sites where the right people for your product or service are frequent.
With a targeted paid advertising campaign, marketers are taking the guesswork out of collecting the data driving potential customers. With that vital information, businesses can focus on spending their marketing dollars on potential customers who are the most likely to buy their products.
Track Your Paid Ad Results
Tracking your paid ad results is necessary to ensure a successful ad campaign and an increased ROI. If your goal is to build brand awareness, then your primary areas of focus here are:
- The number of clicks on your ad.
- Impressions – the number of times people saw your ad.
- CTR or click-through rate – the number of clicks divided by impressions.
- Average engagement – the number of likes, comments, or shares.
If you want to drive leads and conversions, focus on:
- Conversion Rate
- Cost per conversion
Benefits of Paid Advertising
As mentioned earlier, paid advertising is one of the most cost-effective ways to increase brand awareness and turn leads into new customers. It allows businesses to reach target demographics in specific geographic locations and consistently engage with potential customers, all while maintaining complete control over their marketing budget and increasing their return on investment.