What is Social Media Advertising?

Mobile device with Facebook Analytics open near a green plant.

Social media advertising is a division of digital advertising. It has two major social media marketing methods: paid and organic.

  1. Organic social media advertising has no upfront cash expense but does cost when it comes to time and labour.
    • An example of an organic social media marketing tactic is to join online groups, clubs and organizations based on your interests. These groups require nurturing over time and regular valuable interactions. Medium to large companies will likely have a Social Media Marketer hired to manage these valuable online interactions and social groups.
  2. Paid social media advertising can be a set expense reoccurring daily, weekly, monthly or other.
    • Social media networks (like Facebook, Instagram and Youtube) allow advertisers to create different types of posts depending on the product/service being shown. Images and videos are most common but carousels and interactive ads a uniquely effective as they allow users to quickly discover information about a product or service.

A major advantage of digital advertising is that advertisers can place ads in front of the perfect audience anywhere in the world using gathered demographic information. Social media ads really allow you to reach a wider audience than those who are following you and will naturally lead to an increased following.

The Digital Ad Advantage

In a physical storefront, you are limiting your business to a specific location and hoping the right individual will walk past and enter your store.  To a degree, you’re leaving your business’ success to chance.

The stark difference between this and a social media campaign is that digital ads using keywords and interests that individuals have willingly provided in order to put your storefront digitally in front of a worldwide audience, instead of just an average person walking down the street.

Audience Targeting

Using gathered demographic information when advertising on social media is known as Social Media Targeting.  This is the combination of geotargeting, behavioural targeting, socio-psychographic targeting, etc., to identify a detailed target group specific to your business’ services and products.

Social Media Platforms

Popular social media websites like Facebook, Instagram, Youtube and LinkedIn offer different ways to advertise your business’ brand. These options come in the form of single images, videos, carousels, slideshows, collections, stories and more.  Because there are so many advertising types, it’s best to start by asking “What type of content will attract your target audience best?”. This is identifying your brand persona. Once you have your brand/marketing persona identified, it’s good to start asking more questions like “Will my ads be educational or entertaining? Do images, videos or slideshows make the most sense?”.  These questions are important before the advertising process begins and is something our team is happy to help with when hiring us for social media ad services.

Best Uses of Social Media Advertising

Digital advertising offers cost-efficient targeting, a wide audience reach and is rapidly growing among businesses. So, what is the best goal for a business’ using social media ads?

The ultimate goal is to generate new clients and new revenue. This can be achieved in the form of individual goals or a combination. Here are some top examples of digital advertising goals:

  1. Promote your business’ brand
  2. Enhance your business’ social media presence
  3. Send potential leads to your business’ web site
  4. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) purposes

Be sure to always keep in mind that even killer content needs intriguing graphics and design to really draw the crowd in. Knowing your target audience well and creating pieces that they will identify with that are also visually appealing is the key to getting those online leads!

Start Strategizing

It’s a lot of information to absorb and we at LRA are hoping you’ve learned some new bits about social media advertising from this article.  If you’re interested in advertising online, our team can help you create a great social media strategy. Fill out our contact form to get started!



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