More and more the major social media platforms are pushing their advertising programs. As time has gone on these platforms are trying harder to monetize their extensive social networks and take advantage of the huge amounts of content those networks have generated. While this may be frustrating to people who utilize social media, the truth is there has never been a better time to take advantage of these social media advertising networks.
Why should I pay for social traffic though? Isn’t the advantage that social is free?
It all depends on your goals. If you’re looking to grow your follower base fast or get a burst of buzz for a big announcement, social advertising can help you achieve those goals for the right budget.
Can’t I just do this for free by pushing my social content on my own?
Sure you can, but there is no guarantee that you will reach everyone. Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn are vast networks with millions of users. Their advertising platforms have grown much more sophisticated and give you options to reach a targeted audience on their networks that you might miss otherwise. Remember: advertising on search was thought of as “free” too but businesses currently run extrememly profitable paid search campaigns while also optimizing for free organic traffic. You’ll reach more people if you use both methods.
Why Would you Pay for Social Media Followers?
Think of your social media followers as leads that need to be nurtured. They may arrive at the very early stages of the process but, like many other online leads, they can be guided and sold on your services. Wouldn’t you be willing to pay a few dollars for a lead if you knew it was well targeted? Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn offer advertising options designed to promote your account where you pay only for new followers or likes. You set the bids, so you can assign the value that makes sense to your business to each new follower or like.
How do I know what social content to promote?
Once again it depends on your goals. Both Facebook and Twitter have options to suggest content to promote based on existing engagements. Or you may want to promote important content that has a limited reach on its own. You can even use LinkedIn and Facebook ads to send traffic directly to your site. If you have a relevant offer to promote you can use their ad networks to reach targeted audiences on Facebook and LinkedIn that you would miss otherwise.
I heard LinkedIn ads don’t get much traffic. Should I just stick with Facebook and Twitter?
For sure Facebook and Twitter will get you more activity overall. Recent updates to LinkedIn are helping businesses get more targeted traffic from their network. Promoted Updates allows you to promote your content in prime real estate on the LinkedIn feed as opposed to the regular LinkedIn ads which are buried on LinkedIn pages. LinkedIn is also offering the option now to promote your page and get new followers that way.
Social Media advertising is here to stay. It’s likely that the social networks will continue to assign prime real estate to their advertising, so it’s best to get started in exploring the world of social advertising. If nothing else get more familiar with the options available to you. You may find an opportunity to reach your audience that you’ve been missing out on.