In a digital world filled with different advertising channels, a lot of small business owners can get lost. You can run search ads on Google, use LinkedIn to make connections with B2B customers and have a social connection with people on Facebook or Instagram. But if you’re on a limited budget, what is the best advertising platform to be working with?
Social Media Uncovered
While it’s great for everyone to be on social media, including your mom and your dad’s best friend, social is really not a commerce platform. If you consider the intent of people on social media websites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, these people are there to communicate with friends, view photos and find fun stuff. Chances are they are not looking for a service professional, new doctor or real estate agent. It may happen, but it’s really not what these platforms are geared toward.
The Cost of Social
Knowing that the intent is really not there, businesses still choose to pay high advertising fees for Facebook and Instagram. If a business owner is pursuing a branding strategy where they are just trying to get their business name out there, social media can be a great play. However, if you expect social media users to perform an action like subscribe to a service or buy a product, you better be equipped with the right budget. As mentioned, these platforms are not really for shopping, so you’ll need to plan for a lot of window shoppers who are not ready to take action.
Find the Right Intent
Since we have established that the intent is all wrong for social, where does that leave the average business owner who wants to drive new traffic to their website?
Email marketing is a very cost-effective method of online advertising that doesn’t require much effort at all. A business owner will use a service like Mailchimp or Constant Contact, create email assets (images and text copy), define their list of audience members and hit send. The response might be low, but the cost is also low.
Search Engine Optimization
Although it takes long to rank a website in Google’s search results, the results are long-lasting. Instead of showing an ad every once in a while on a platform like Facebook, you directly connect with consumers who are actively looking for your services or products. Search engine optimization should be part of your marketing mix as it establishes you for long-term gains. While you may have to hire an SEO expert initially, you’ll be able to managing things at a reasonable cost.
Another great and cost effective way to reach new customers is by making connections on LinkedIn. This is completely free with an active profile and you can begin having conversations with potential customers right way. Log on and start making connections!
So Are Facebook Ads Worth It?
All things considered, Facebook is very costly platform that doesn’t deliver great results. If you have the budget for a branding campaign, Facebook and Instagram can be good and will definitely spread the word about your product or service. Otherwise, look to free platforms and other free