If you want to get the best results from your marketing campaigns, you need to meet your customers where they actually spend time. This is most likely a combination of search engines and social media sites.
Paid advertising is one of the fastest ways to get targeted traffic if you choose the right places to advertise.
The following are your five best options for digital advertising platforms to get more engagement, sales, and opt-ins from your marketing efforts.
Google was one of the first major digital advertising platforms and it’s still one of the largest. Even as social media captures more traffic, you can’t afford to overlook the world’s largest search.
Even with competition from other search engines such as Bing and Yahoo, as of 2021, Google captured 78% of the world’s search engine traffic.
One of the areas in which Google is now particularly strong is local search. While many businesses now compete fiercely at local SEO, paid local listings are a way to ensure that your business gets seen by people searching locally.
Google Ads is one of the costliest paid advertising platforms because of its size and scope. You can mitigate the costs, however, by bidding on long-tail keywords rather than the most popular and competitive ones. This is often effective when targeting local customers, as you can focus on neighborhoods and regions as well as cities.
Dynamically calculate the cost and return on investment of Google Ads campaigns.
For example, “Brooklyn fitness classes” is fairly broad but if you narrow it down to neighborhoods and types of fitness classes you might choose “Park Slope Pilates classes” or “Williamsburg yoga.”
The Google Keyword Tool can help you identify the best long-tail keywords in your niche. This Google Ads cost calculator will help you estimate the costs of your next campaign.
The largest alternative to Google AdWords is Facebook. As the leading social media site, Facebook offers you the chance to connect with a very large audience and create extremely targeted campaigns.
Compared to other social sites, Facebook’s demographics cover the entire spectrum – young, old, male, female, all corners of the earth, all interests, etc. This makes it relevant to businesses in every industry.
While Google Ads allows for many types of targeting, such as by geography, device, and, of course, keywords, Facebook gives you many more targeting options such as gender, age, interests, income, and education. This makes it one of your best choices for niche marketing.
Facebook is now competing with Google for local marketing as well. Facebook’s Ad manager is useful for studying your results and refining your ads. You can test various types of ads, such as images, videos, and boosted posts.
If you have a Facebook page, you can send paid traffic to your page and build your following.
Instagram is one of the leading visually-based social media sites. Its members tend to be young and obsessed with photographs and other engaging images such as short videos and memes.
As it’s owned by Facebook, the digital advertising platform is the same one you’d use for Facebook. Some advertisers use both social media sites but you can also focus solely on Instagram.
There are a few choices for Instagram marketing. One is to sponsor posts, which people will see in their feeds. You can target your audience using similar criteria as with Facebook ads.
Another option for Instagram is influencer marketing. Influencers are people with large followings whose opinions can motivate people to buy products.
You can reach out to such people individually or buy shoutouts on various marketplaces. Make sure you choose influencers who are popular with your audience, not simply people who are famous in a general way.
This type of marketing works best if it appears natural and authentic. Ideally, you build a relationship with influencers who recommend your products because they really believe in them.
While most people know that LinkedIn is the leading social media site dedicated to business, not everyone thinks of it as a viable option for advertising.
LinkedIn, however, offers several interesting advertising options including promoted InMail messages, sponsored content, and text ads. These types of ads give you a chance to reach businesses of all sizes in several ways.
InMail, which is LinkedIn’s own messaging option, lets you send personalized messages to people who fit your demographic. As with Facebook, you have some good targeting options although in this case, the focus is B2B whereas most other social sites are B2C-oriented.
Sponsored content is a good way to build your brand. You can, for example, post an article on LinkedIn and sponsor it.
These types of ads aren’t actually a distinct platform but often appear on popular websites.
Placing banner ads or native ads on targeted websites is another way to reach your desired audience.
You can place display ads on Google and Facebook in addition to their many other advertising options. If you want your ads to appear on influential websites (such as news sites or sites owned by large companies in your industry), you can work with ad networks that specialize in finding the best placement ads.
If you want to try native ads, which have the appearance of organic posts or articles, Outbrain and Redirect.com are leaders in this field.
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There are now more choices than ever for advertising online.
While we’ve covered some of the most popular choices, you may also want to try other possibilities as well. YouTube, which is owned by Google, has its own video advertising platform that works through AdWords.
Snapchat is a good choice if you’re targeting younger users such as millennials or Gen Z.
Pinterest is an often overlooked possibility that’s especially good for promoting physical products.
Another site you may want to investigate is Reddit.
With so many choices, it can be challenging to find the ideal advertising solutions for your business. Here are some of the considerations to keep in mind:
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