I think you’ll agree with me when I’m saying that to get marketing results through advertising there’s always going to be a “hard” cost – the purchase of the actual advertising placements you’re buying. In digital advertising, that includes:
- Paid search engine ads like Google AdWords
- Banners or boxes on website pages (display ads)
- Paid-for content placements (native ads like Facebook’s branded content)
- Other social media advertisements, mobile advertising campaigns, email sponsorships or video ad campaigns.
Well, it turns out that beside the fact to reach the right audience at the right time in ways that would otherwise not be guaranteed with traditional advertising, digital advertising offers you several other advantages as you will discover within this article.
Digital Advertising: Let The Numbers Speak!
According to Zenith’s new Advertising Expenditure report here below global internet advertising expenditure will exceed US$200bn in 2017, well above more traditional advertising channels such as television, newspapers or radio.
(Ref: Zenith’s new Advertising Expenditure Forecasts)
But that’s not all!
With smartphones accounting for nearly 72% of global internet use you quickly understand all the advantages and opportunities you have as a small business owner, solopreneur or freelancer to invest your time, money and efforts into digital advertising in order to boost traffic, leads and sales.
(Ref: Ofcom – The Communications Market Report 2016)
Said this, let’s discover..
5 Reasons Why You Should Invest in Digital Advertising
- Your customers are online: Between online research and social media, nearly 50% of all small businesses get found online first.
- Advertising can jumpstart your business: Startup businesses need customers. Sure, you can try to build a customer base the grassroots way, but if you really want to get the word out fast, it’s hard to beat the power of advertising.
- Advertising helps establish credibility for your business: Consumers often think that if a business is advertising, then it must be legitimate and successful.
- You control the message: Your ad message can simply be about making people aware you exist or you can also give them an incentive like an offer code for a discount or free shipping to get them to act immediately.
- Digital advertising is trackable and measurable: Most kinds of online ad buys now come with the ability to log into a dashboard that gives you campaign performance data in real time. You should also have Google Analytics installed on your website so you can get a bigger picture of your advertising’s impact on your overall website traffic.
Google & Facebook: The Most Productive and Low Cost Solutions
When it comes to finding success with online advertising, there are two behemoths that no business can ignore: Google and Facebook.
Google and Facebook alone have accounted for almost two thirds of global adspend growth since 2012 (Jonathan Barnard, Head of Forecasting at Zenith)
Both continue to gain ground because their campaigns are accessible to advertisers of all sizes and offer the most performing and cost-effective solutions, such as:
- Google AdWords: These campaigns run in Google’s search engine results (both desktop and mobile), and ads appear with the word “AD” in front of them. You can bid on as many keywords as you like and you only pay when someone clicks on one of your keyword ads. There is no minimum budget to begin a campaign
- Google Display Network: Ads that appear outside of Google search. They can be text, graphic, Gmail and in-app ads. You can manually select the kinds of sites your ad will appear on or allow Google’s algorithm to suggest them to you.
- Google Remarketing: When a user visits an advertiser’s site and doesn’t complete a target action (like making a purchase), that user is then shown more ads from that advertiser as they surf the web.
- Facebook Ads: When you buy Facebook ads, you can choose to run them only on Facebook or you can also run them on Instagram and on the larger Facebook Audience Network. Facebook doesn’t require any minimum budget either and, like Google, you bid for your placements. There are lots of ways to set-up and run a Facebook campaign (Here there is a nice podcast about how to boost sales with Facebook)
Running Online Advertising Campaigns
Many small businesses feel intimidated by online advertising. Setting up and running cost- and results-effective ad campaigns can be complex and time consuming, and knowing what kind of advertising to spend dollars on can be confusing. If you’re going to go the do-it-yourself route, spend some time in the Google and Facebook advertising Help Centers to get familiar with best practices so you don’t waste your money along with your time. Or, of course, you can hire an experienced Fiverr freelancer to help you get the most out of your ad spend.
Have you ever run a Google or Facebook ad campaign? Would you do it again and why? What lessons did you learn the hard way? Let us know in the comments below!